The day draws closer for the general release of Windows 7, the next version of Microsoftâ€™s operating system for PCs.
I installed it last night on my Dell XPS 420 desktop PC. Iâ€™d installed the Windows 7 beta in January in a separate partition on this machine; it was a simple matter to format that partition and install the RC as a fresh install, which is what you must do if you have the beta already installed.
So the Dell now lets me choose which operating system to run: Windows 7 or Windows Vista.
If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then this Animoto video may be a good teller of my story in installing Windows 7 RC.
You can also see the screenshot images at Flickr.
I do plan to test Windows 7 RC and post a review or two on my tech blog, and may well end up installing it on the Dell as the primary OS. Iâ€™m not likely to upgrade from Windows Vista; rather, Iâ€™d do a fresh install.
I have plenty of time as the RC doesnâ€™t expire until June 1, 2010, just over a year away. The final release version is due much sooner than that, though: some speculation is it could be sometime in October 2009.
I have two specific points about the RC that I want to mention in this post.
1. Both the download of the ISO image on May 5 and the actual installation yesterday were a breeze.
Iâ€™m especially impressed that on the first run of Windows Update after the install completed, one essential update was a hotfix for a serious bug described in KB 970789.
Thereâ€™s quite a bit of commentary and opinion about this bug and its fix.
Ok, so a bug managed to get through the beta testing phases. The key point is that the bug was found and a fix rapidly delivered.
Remember: â€˜Release Candidateâ€™ isn’t the same as â€˜Release.â€™ Expect things like this to happen; treat this RC still as unfinished software.
A bit of a strong opinion, for sure, but it reflects the disappointment I experienced when I tried to install the Symantec product â€“ all I got when trying to run the installer on the installation CD was a bald error message saying â€œThis product requires Windows XP or Windows Vista. Setup will exit.â€
And that was it. No â€œletâ€™s take you to our friendly website where weâ€™re sure youâ€™ll find the version you need.â€ Not even a message saying â€œWin 7 version coming soon.â€ That sucks.
Still, a link to firewall/anti-virus app vendors from Windows 7 RC brought up all the usual suspects including Norton. But Windows 7 is conspicuous in its absence from the system requirements description for Norton Internet Security 2009 (incidentally, I am testing this app courtesy of Edelman).
Contrast that with AVGâ€™s welcoming message to Windows 7 users regarding their AVG Internet Security product.
I downloaded and installed a 30-day free trial. What will I do when 30 days are up, I wonder.
Anyway, the Windows 7 RC is installed and ready to go.
More experiences in due course over on the tech blog.