Windows 7 Available

While I spent the last two weeks sick at home, Microsoft was busy releasing their newest Windows OS. Windows 7.

We have released a picture tour of the installation earlier in this blog. Windows 7 pricing is considerably more favorable (From roughly $120 to $220 for full licenses, upgrades less) than in the recent past, rolling back prices almost to Windows 98 levels. There is another very favorable feature of the current Microsoft pricing in that a ‘Family Pack‘ is available to install on several household computers for a price just over the cost of installing on one computer. Microsoft Office prices run from about $150 for the “Home and Student” version up to roughly $540 for the full business “ultimate” version.

The things I have noted most about the Windows 7:

1. Fast installation — our test took literally five minutes, most of which was my time taking screen shots. This is the fastest Microsoft Windows install I have done in a long time.

2. Fairly fast performance provided you have at least 2 gigabytes of RAM and a 2 GHz dual-core CPU. It runs faster than Vista by a noticeable margin — possibly on a par with Windows XP.

3. It tells me in advance before letting a web site install anything. This is important as it is an effective deterrent to infected websites doing a ‘drive by download’ (that is installing malware on my PC just because I viewed an infected web page). The ‘Drive by Download’ has replaced email as the primary method of malware propagation. Windows XP users almost always create their account as an ‘Administrator’ account to save themselves hassels, and in this mode Windows XP is happy to download and install all the viruses any infected website wants to put into your computer, without telling you anything.

4. There are still gadgets, but you must turn them on and the side panel that used to hold gadgets is gone — you place each gadget individually. The net affect of this is that you must size your main window manually so it does not overlap the gadgets. The gadgets can be told to stay on top, but they cover up part of the window when it is maximized.

Over all moving up to Windows 7 is a good idea. I feel that careless or uninformed use of Windows XP is the primary factor that has allowed spam and viruses to disrupt the Internet, and removal of Windows XP from operation would go a long way toward restoring Internet functionality. I like Windows Vista, but the slowness is agravating and it replaced far too few Windows XP computers. In my opinion total replacement of the Windows XP installs with full, clean, installations of Windows 7 would benefit the end user as well as the general Internet community.

Note: this article is the writers personal opinion. It is based upon almost 40 years of experience in small computers and communications, but it is still an opinion.It is presented AS IS. All use is at your own risk.

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