Monday, June 1, 2009

I'm giving Windows 7 a shot full time!

OK, here goes!

I decided, because I'm a glutton for punishment, to install Windows 7 on my personal laptop (main home computer).

My Information:
  • Computer tech by profession, Bachelors Degree in Computer Science, Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer. Guess you can say I am a Tech; however, I want my experiences to be just as easy and seemless as the next guy/girl.
Here is what I did:
  • Backed up everything.. software, etc. Wrote a list of software that I wanted to re-install (consider it clean up time).
  • Performed an upgrade from Windows Vista to Windows 7, Advanced option: Do not upgrade applications, etc.. only files. I think it's worth noting that my laptop had Windows XP on it when I bought it (3 years ago)...
  • Desktop computer (over 5 years old) has been upgraded to Windows 7 (clean installation) due to OS issues with Windows Vista causing all sorts of problems.
Here are my initial impressions:

  1. Windows 7 installed much faster and easier than any previous OS, asking only a few questions during the installation. The installation took less than 45 minutes to complete even with over 100GB of data to back up/save.
  2. When Windows first came up (logging on), I noticed the interface is about the same.. just a name change and a prettier background.
  3. After logging in, I noticed all of the improved interfaces, bells and whistles.. etc... I am very pleased with the UI (User Interface) changes from Vista to Windows 7. I don't think I'll ever go back!
  4. Wow! That's all I have to say about the new backgrounds and built-in wallpaper slideshow... these new wallpapers are breathtaking!
  5. Devices that had driver issues (Toshiba Laptop) updated to the Windows 7 versions pretty quickly (even the graphics card). I was very impressed how the devices updated and were ready to go without even asking me (it told me as it was doing it)! This is a huge improvement over Vista, not to mention the drivers actually being available prior to the full release date! Guess that's why MS is doing them this time around instead of waiting on the OEMs.
  6. There were two devices that Windows could not fix (Memory card reader and something on the main board). I installed the Vista (yes, I said Vista) drivers for these devices (found previously on Toshiba's website) and bingo! Every device is working great.
  7. System Rating = 3.1 (with MS drivers).. I think I was at 3.0 for Vista using the Intel graphics driver (by far the worst rating in the system).
Installing Applications
  1. I had a modest list of apps to re-install (would rather re-install and find updated versions than try the app upgrade). The ones to note are: MS Office 2007 Pro Plus, messenger apps, Antivirus, java, quicktime, adobe products, imgburn, dvdfab, splitcam, Vistumbler, Chrome, MS Money, and Tweetdeck.
  2. Of the apps, Antivirus (Specifically Norton Internet Security 2009) was listed as an issue on Norton's website. They do not have a full version out for Windows 7 (they stated an update patch will be out at time of full release); but do have a trial version (in beta of course) that they offered for 14 days. Well, rather than put myself through that hell, I decided to install AVG Antivirus (one on the handfull MS identifies as ready for use). AVG's site states it's good to go for Windows 7. Good job AVG!
  3. All, and I mean, all other apps installed after only 2 which required an updated version (found out when installing, MS identified the compatibility issue and forwarded me to a link to get the latest version for each app!!!).
  4. Everything is working great, all apps are functioning great, and I am loving the new Windows 7.. guess I'm a PC.. haha. Now MS, come buy me a tablet that works with Windows 7 so I can try out all of the touch features.
The rub:I figure the only way I will know how Windows 7 will affect me is to run it full-time, so that's what I'm doing. I will post another review after using it for a while on things like battery life (from their claims that it lasts longer), usability between networks, homegroup, and much more! Come back and read it!

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