Archive for category Windows

First Look: Windows 7 Ultimate RC

On June 2, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 7 will lunch on October 22, 2009. Since the release candidate has been out for over a month I decided to give it a shot on my old Dell Inspiron 630m. This system has never run Vista and it’s not officially supported by Dell to run it. Here are the specs for my 630m:

  • Intel Pentium M 1.86GHZ
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 80GB HDD
  • Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG
  • Broadcom 440x 10/100 NIC

win7As you can see, it’s not the most impressive system. I downloaded the DVD image from the Windows 7 website. The down load was a bit over 2GB which I found a little excessive but then again it’s Windows. After burning the image I inserted the DVD into my laptop and booted from the DVD the installation loaded fairly quickly compared to older versions. The disk petitioner has a straight forward UI and formating process was quick. The whole installation took just over 45 min which is decent. Once I booted into the OS, it ran perfectly and it installed all my drivers as soon as I ran the Windows Updates. That’s great since in XP you would spend a good portion of your time downloading and installing drivers.

Ok, so the installation went well. Now its time to get a feel for performance. Through out my uses the system didn’t freeze even though it maintained a high CPU and memory usage during my testing. The new taskbar feels a lot more intuitive than Vista’s. Things like the wireless network management in the task bar make it a much nicer experience. Microsoft also reduced a lot of the permission prompts for basic settings which makes the security much less annoying. System restarts are also less prominent.

The only major problem I had with Windows 7 is that when I unplugged the AC Power the screen goes from 32 bit color to what I believe is 8 bit color. This is a major problem if it happens on newer system but I believe that it is a driver problem since this system does not officially support Vista.

All in all Windows 7 is shaping up to be a good release. Much better than Vista was. I look forward to being able to recommend people to upgrade from XP.