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Ballmer gives a hoot for the official release of the Windows 7 beta.  (Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech)

Windows 7 beta is available to MSDN and TechNet subscribers now. It will be available to the general public Friday. Windows 7 is landing in mid to late 2009.  (Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech)

Microsoft Project Manager Charlotte Jones was on hand to show off Windows 7's new user interface. Windows 7, which sports an OS X like skin, is much more intuitive and graphically rich than Windows Vista.  (Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech)
The public will get its first, well... official first taste of Windows 7

Steve Ballmer, always an entertaining speaker, graced the Consumer Electronics Show 2009 in Las Vegas with a keynote speech on the night before the show's official launch. While not as animated as in some of his speeches (there was no hollering involved), his enthusiastic presentation did not disappoint and included a number of big announcements.

Perhaps the largest was the (official launch of the Windows 7 beta to MSDN and TechNet subscribers.  The beta may look a little familiar to some as it leaked onto torrents last week.  Some have accused Microsoft of engineering the leak as a PR stunt.  All of that is in the past now, though, as Windows 7 beta is getting official.  The beta will be available to general users worldwide this Friday.

Steve Ballmer broke the news to tremendous applause, stating, "The beta version of Windows 7, Microsoft's next-generation PC operating system, can be downloaded today by MSDN, TechBeta and TechNet customers. Consumers who want to test-drive the beta will be able to download it beginning January 9 at"

A Group Project Manager, Charlotte Jones, was on hand to walk the audience through all Windows 7's hottest features.  What was most interesting was how different the feel from Microsoft was in contrast to past OS's.  Gone was the spartan interface of past versions of Windows, replaced by a graphics rich user OS.  Some audience members might have sworn they had accidentally stumbled into an Apple Leopard demo at MacWorld.

While Windows 7 is architecturally remarkably similar to Vista, Microsoft's focus has been on providing users with in essence a cleaner, more intuitive, and prettier interface.  While the merits of such an approach, long championed by Apple, are debatable, it’s hard to debate that Microsoft has succeeded in meeting these goals.

The Preview Bar, which previews Internet Explorer 8 tabs, jump lists available in most programs, dockable windows, and even the much maligned revamped taskbar were all showcased.  Jones also demoed some of the new touch screen technology, an important addition to Windows 7.

In all the UI is shaping up to be fast, responsive and intuitive.  The learning curve may be slightly steeper for those with limited computer experience as the new OS brings more menus and widgets to the interface, but for all the added content it mostly feels remarkably simple and intuitive.

Noticeably absent, though, was any sort of information on the memory footprint of Windows 7 or talk of hardware compatibility, two major concerns users have voiced on DailyTech and elsewhere.  While memory usage in Windows 7 was very similar to Windows Vista in the milestone releases, a source at Microsoft spoke with DailyTech before the briefing and stated, "The final release will likely be substantially leaner than the milestones."

Memory usage and hardware support were two of Windows Vista's biggest shortcomings, particularly during the OS's early days.  While it is unclear if Windows 7 is going to give Vista's critics something to change their minds, it may go a long way to helping the average user have a more enjoyable experience.  And as of Friday you can go online and download the official beta and form your own opinions of 2009's biggest coming software release.

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Wishful thinking...
By ryedizzel on 1/8/2009 11:01:16 AM , Rating: 4
I know that a lot of major corporations (Intel included) decided to stick with Windows XP and wait for the next OS release. So hopefully this will be everything that Vista wasn't. Although from what I have read so far Windows just seems mostly seems like a refined version of Vista.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 11:06:41 AM , Rating: 4
For many companies, the release of Windows 7 will be their signal to upgrade from XP to Vista. Most companies try to stay at least one release behind.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Chaser on 1/8/09, Rating: 0
RE: Wishful thinking...
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 11:35:44 AM , Rating: 3
The odds of large corporations (besides Microsoft) adopting Windows 7 right away are approximately zero. They will wait years after it is released.

In the meantime, much of their hardware will have been upgraded/replaced, and so Vista will become more appealing.

I don't work in IT, but I see how a lot of my customers approach IT, and these are the types of trends that I've seen in the past.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Chaser on 1/8/09, Rating: -1
RE: Wishful thinking...
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 11:47:56 AM , Rating: 3
Relative to Vista, Windows 7 seems rushed. That is because the Vista development cycle was too long, and Microsoft has (hopfully) taken steps to fix that. Windows 7 development should be about as long as Windows XP.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 11:53:15 AM , Rating: 5
I wouldn't say Windows 7 has been rushed out of Redmond. The time between Vista and Windows 7 is actually longer than the time period between 2000 and XP, and before that, we saw updates every year between 98 and 2000 (98 in 1998, 98SE in 1999, ME/2000 in 2000). The only reason it feels rushed is because of the almost six year lull between XP and Vista.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By RamarC on 1/8/2009 1:47:07 PM , Rating: 2
The workstation/server OS's aren't on the same time line as the consumer OS.
So, when judging development time you have to compare

and remember that XP SP1+SP2 were HUGE and possibly could have merited their own version numbers had the UI changed.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 2:46:40 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't say anything about servers. Why did you think I did?

XP is the successor of 2000... not ME. Win9x died when Microsoft decided to build their next "consumer" OS with 2000 as its base.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Spivonious on 1/8/2009 3:07:56 PM , Rating: 2
MS's first NT-based consumer OS was XP, not 2000. So the transition from ME to XP is correct.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 3:25:06 PM , Rating: 3
I didn't say 2000 was a consumer OS. XP's base is NT, which in my book makes it succeed 2000 instead of ME. Besides, the workstation and consumer OSs are now one and the same. The only difference now what features are turned on/off.

All that's beside the point. Regardless of who is correct, my point still stands; both ME and 2000 were released in 2000. My time line is still correct.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By mindless1 on 1/10/2009 12:32:24 AM , Rating: 2
Not really, the idea 2K isn't a consumer OS is an arbitrary marketing decision having nothing to do with reality.

2K has all the typical features a non-noob consumer OS should have, and in fact anyone with common sense went to 2K for home use instead of sticking it out with 98se or ME until XP came along. To some extent businesses would be the exception to that, but not any smart ones since 9x was such a fragile thing to use and should've been abandoned the moment SP1 for 2K came out.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By jonmcc33 on 1/9/2009 7:48:36 AM , Rating: 2
You are right, Fanon. There was Windows 2000 Pro which was a workstation/consumer level OS. Windows XP is indeed the successor of Windows 2000 Pro. I believe that RamarC saw Windows 2000 and automatically translated it to Windows 2000 Server.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By tcsenter on 1/10/2009 4:37:12 AM , Rating: 2
Compared to prior Windows launches and development cycles why has Windows 7 been rushed out of Redmond?
More apparent ignorance from you about the world prior to Vista.

Microsoft originally planned to release 'Longhorn' in late 2003 / early 2004, which would have represented approximately the same 3-year "ish" release cycle. The fact that Microsoft royally screwed the pooch on Longhorn and was forced to abandon its three-year goal for that release cycle does not mean it was never the goal. MS is back on track now (the track it intended to be on all along since the release of Windows XP).

Think of it this way. Let us suppose that you plan to complete one home improvement project every year. You meet that goal for 2009. However, your project for 2010 somehow becomes so seriously mired in waist-deep sh-t, that you aren't able to complete it until 2011. Does that mean your plan had always been to complete one project every other year?

Seriously, you need to stop offering commentary on this until you fill the expansive holes in your knowledge of pertinent history. We're only talking about history going back six or seven years ago, where have you been? Are you still in high school or something?

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Chaser on 1/8/2009 11:48:08 AM , Rating: 4
And the odds of them going to Vista are even less. This isn't about keeping up with versions or one behind. Vista flopped on the corporate side. Windows 7 is the response.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By wempa on 1/8/2009 1:29:51 PM , Rating: 3
The odds of a company adopting Windows 7 after the first service pack is released are much higher. That shouldn't take "years". I know that's the way my current company and several other I worked for operate. I think companies will leapfrog Vista.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By foolsgambit11 on 1/9/2009 6:38:46 PM , Rating: 2
The trouble with that is that leapfrogging Vista will require them to stay with their current systems for no less than 2 years (7 comes out at the end of this year, a bit more than a year for the first service pack, and then some time to test and adopt W7SP1 throughout the corporation). Which means that, come 2011, they'll still be using Win2k or XP, a decade after it was released.

Although XP/2000 will still be much more useful at age 10 than Windows 3.0 was in 2000.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By mindless1 on 1/10/2009 12:26:55 AM , Rating: 2
What could possibly be a problem with that, providing the OS still suits their needs? The majority of businesses don't need anything more than XP, and actually didn't even need XP but that's what the OEMs offered once it replaced Win2k.

Businesses will switch when their hardware gets replaced at sufficient rate that instead of "downgrading" fewer to XP, they're upgrading fewer to Vista. It'll also depend on their licensing at the moment.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By foolsgambit11 on 1/10/2009 3:23:21 PM , Rating: 2
And continuing support by MS for the OS. In 2 years, XP will be nearing the end of its lifespan. Companies need to be thinking about getting ready for that day, at least.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By mindless1 on 1/18/2009 12:04:16 AM , Rating: 2
You greatly overestimate the need for MS "support", particularly when an OS has matured so much in contrast with a young OS.

In fact, many businesses didn't ever use MS support, their support came through either the PC manufacturer or a 3rd party contract.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Dreifort on 1/8/2009 12:36:58 PM , Rating: 2
large gov't or private institutions usually avoid migration to new OS. not just because they want time to test the new OS in their environment, they don't want to break their budget. when they do convert over to a newer OS, it is usually because the manufacture has put an end to the support for that OS/product. Microsoft's target date to end XP support is? 2012?

I don't expect to see any major changes in corporations or gov't institutions until 2010. And only then, they will begin the migration process (which will take a yr or more). The actual change will prob happen mid 2011.

Most gov't agencies I am familiar with still use XP on a wide basis. And half use novell. Novell's network structure is coming near the end of their life -- I see these agencies already planning to move to MS or Linux.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By flydian on 1/8/2009 7:59:22 PM , Rating: 3
To build on that...

I think many will wait until most of the new computers they have "refreshed" have come with Windows 7 Licenses. Until that time, they'll probably just downgrade the new hardware to XP. Then when they make the switch, they'll just create images and upgrade everyone to the new OS at the same time in one big project. This diminishes the excess cost of OS licenses, while maintaining workgroup parity.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By tcsenter on 1/8/2009 7:17:33 PM , Rating: 4
lol! You could replace "Vista" with "XP" and "XP" with "2000" in your post above, and it would be historically correct.

Since it appears that you just started using computers a few years ago, and thus have no sense of history prior to Vista's release, I thought you might like to bone-up on how the world was before your awareness of it began:

Intel rejects Windows XP in favor of Windows 2000:

Sluggish corporate adoption of Windows XP:,4814...

Microsoft tries to jump-start stalled XP adoption with new licensing and other incentives:

Three years after release, XP adoption still too slow:,1000000121,3915...

Four years (!) after XP released, more corporate desktops still running Windows 2000:

Lastly, Google "Windows XP Reloaded". Sound familiar to any other redux marketing campaigns recently?

RE: Wishful thinking...
By mindless1 on 1/10/2009 12:37:02 AM , Rating: 1
There is a difference in the length of time that is elapsing. It was to be expected that a company stick with the same OS on most systems so when they are bought and last a few years, of course they'll be that # of years behind the intro of the newer OS.

What we have instead is the conscious decision in addition to that trend, delaying uptake by a longer period. Businesses switch when they actually "need" to, and there's already far more functionality in XP than they needed, typically reducing it's functionality is par for the course.

RE: Wishful thinking...
By tcsenter on 1/13/2009 2:05:57 AM , Rating: 2
I agree there is a difference in the length of time that is elapsing.

Companies who in 2002 and 2003 had planned to skip Windows XP for 'Longhorn' were almost certain to change those plans based on Longhorn's repeated delays. If you push Windows 7 back a full two years like 'Longhorn' was, most companies who for whatever reasons decided to 'skip' Vista will be very likely to make the same about-face.

Is that the difference you meant?

RE: Wishful thinking...
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 11:19:09 AM , Rating: 2
Ditto what TomZ said. It's normal operating procedure to let an operating system mature before before rolling it out in your company. Companies didn't jump to XP right away, either.

Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By lebe0024 on 1/8/2009 11:02:41 AM , Rating: 5
I recently purchased an MSI wind and since then I've put XP, OSX leopard, Ubuntu 8.10, and Windows 7 on it.

Windows 7 was by far the best. The UI was beautiful and was very usable with the netbooks small screen. Windows 7 + Google chrome was perfection. It also narrowly beat XP for performance and battery life.

OSX felt fast, but the battery life wasn't so great and the UI was not well suited for the small netbook screen. The dock itself seemed to take up a third of the screen.

Unfortunately, Ubuntu was by far the worst for it's overall sluggishness, hardware support, and battery life. I really wanted ubuntu to rock, but even the Netbook Remix edition failed to impress.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By lebe0024 on 1/8/2009 11:56:38 AM , Rating: 3
Wow, I can't believe I was modded to 0 for this. Appearently people don't like sincere assessments of their favorite operating systems. I'm guessing it was the ubuntu remark that did me in. Which is a shame, because I actually love ubuntu and I use it all day long at work -- but it's just not ready yet for a weak machine like a netbook.

By Aloonatic on 1/8/2009 12:11:27 PM , Rating: 3
Thanks for the post. It's encouraging to hear that Win7 works well on a netbook, which I'm assuming that you haven't modified?

By jonmcc33 on 1/9/2009 7:57:47 AM , Rating: 1
Yes, you cannot insult the Linux community. Their OS is perfect. You also cannot insult the Mac community either. Their OS is perfect too.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By FITCamaro on 1/8/2009 12:23:27 PM , Rating: 2
I think that if Windows 7 memory usage is the same as Vista in beta form, they'll make good on their promise to lean it out. Beta versions always have a ton of debug code running.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 12:26:02 PM , Rating: 2
Beta versions always have a ton of debug code running.
The "checked" builds do, but the normal builds that most people are running don't. The performance difference between checked and non-checked is quite noticable.

By bldckstark on 1/8/2009 12:38:32 PM , Rating: 2
I have 7 on my desktop and I like it so much I am ready to install it on my Acer One netbook. I would never consider installing Vista on my netbook, but it looks like 7 will run great on it. 7 uses 1/3rd less RAM on my desktop than Vista did, and still runs and loads faster. Internet transfer speeds have been about 10% faster too. Virtual library is nice. Homegroups is weird. UAC has four level settings that can be changed easily.

I also installed Ubuntu 8.10 on my netbook and have not had a good time with it.

I have two other laptops with Vista on them, and I will probably change them both to Win 7 after RTM.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By akugami on 1/8/2009 4:21:26 PM , Rating: 2
Any comments from anyone about dual booting Vista with it? My main machine is a Vista X64 one and I'd like to dual boot into the Windows 7 beta when it becomes available. I have a Technet account through work so I'll be playing with it as soon as one can legally download it.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 4:30:28 PM , Rating: 1
AFAIK it's available now on TechNet. I have MSDN and have downloaded it already.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 5:12:29 PM , Rating: 2
The dock itself seemed to take up a third of the screen.
Man, are you serious about that?

'Cause if you don't know that OS X dock can be easily resized by one mouse click'n'drag you gotta see a doctor or something...

Tell me you were trying to make a dumb joke

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By lebe0024 on 1/8/2009 6:19:11 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunatly no, I wasn't joking ! HA! I'm a fool. I may check it out again soon. But either way, having a doc and a menu bar does eat up the vertical real-estate.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 8:18:46 PM , Rating: 1
having a doc and a menu bar does eat up the vertical real-estate
Same as in Windows, except that Windows's huge toolbars and ribbons eat way more vertical space than OS X thin menu bar.

RE: Windows 7 is great for netbooks
By wrekd on 1/9/2009 12:32:38 AM , Rating: 2
I was wondering about Windows 7 on a netbook. I'm using a Dell Mini 9 with Ubuntu and 2GB of RAM. I also got the 32GB SSD. What I want to know is can Windows 7 be installed on a USB stick as easy as Ubuntu can...or even at all?

Also wasn't Microsoft developing a low profile server OS that could be installed on USB? It was supposed to be for simple domain controllers and such.

After installing from USB I don't want to have to go back to CD/DVDs.

By jmurbank on 1/14/2009 1:52:20 AM , Rating: 3
What makes me annoyed is when people compared different OS and select Ubuntu as GNU/Linux distribution for the test. Ubuntu has always score poor on my computers. It is poor installing and booting up. I can not recommend it because it is an unreliable distribution. There are better distributions that can compete well. I prefer Gentoo because it is easier to customize it for performance. Gentoo has always perform well. Sure you can cheat yourself by using Sabayon Linux, but it will not have the same performance if you installed Gentoo yourself. Also expertise of GNU/Linux from the user always shows which test failed. I assume your experience of GNU/Linux is poor and can be better. I suggest try again next year with a year of GNU/Linux of experience.

On my Dell Inspiron 1520, I can easily get equal battery usage with my install of Gentoo and Windows which is 4 to 6 hours. I do not use an eye candy desktop managers. I use Xfce which resembles Mac OS X GUI. Some people say that LXDE is another good desktop manager that is light and fast which should also save battery power and resources.

About the article:
Microsoft still is advertising what new features they have included in their new Windows release, but they have never advertise any improvement on how much resources it takes up. Windows 98 requires 128 MiB of memory to do well. Windows 2000 and XP requires 1024 MiB or 1 GiB of memory to do well. Windows Vista requires 4096 MiB or 4 GiB of memory to do well. Windows Vista is the worst because people have decided to disable swap file to just get better performance. What does this mean Microsoft does not care about the efficiency of their operating system. RAM is not effectively used because most of it is free while swap is being used. The processor also does not get efficiently used. It takes longer to do things in Windows compared to other operating systems. No offense, Microsoft only cares to make an operating system for idiots. Sure Mac OS X is another OS for idiots, but it is efficiently designed for the work that a user is doing.

By chmilz on 1/8/2009 11:16:31 AM , Rating: 3
And with this beta launch there will be a pre-advertising campaign to hold off the Mac slander machine, right? I mean, Mac only advertises fallacies about what its competition supposedly can't do, since it's own computing products are useless to the masses.

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 4:49:16 PM , Rating: 2
Apple's computing products are useless to the masses
That sounds pretty dumb, 'cause you can do pretty much anything on a modern MacBook that an average user wants to do, while getting a great battery life, much better than Vista's (just read Anandtech notebook reviews for the last couple of months for the proof). You sound like a dumb Wintel fanboy, excuse me for talking straight.

RE: Advertising?
By SavagePotato on 1/8/09, Rating: 0
RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 5:26:17 PM , Rating: 1
I wouldn't call Lexus useless to the masses, Savage, you're totally wrong here.

RE: Advertising?
By SavagePotato on 1/8/2009 5:33:13 PM , Rating: 1
Of course, since everyone knows it is your personal deity based on your post history.

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 5:44:14 PM , Rating: 1
Everyone? You call yourself "everyone"? You too should seek professional help :)

RE: Advertising?
By themaster08 on 1/8/2009 6:26:21 PM , Rating: 2
No. I think I know what he's getting at. Your unwarrented and unwavering support for AMD!

He might be a Wintel fanboy, but you're quite clearly an AMD fanboy.

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 7:47:56 PM , Rating: 2
Are AMD fanboys supposed to drive Lexuses? What do you think?

RE: Advertising?
By themaster08 on 1/8/2009 7:53:36 PM , Rating: 2
Have you ever heard of sarcasm? ;)

Maybe the CEO of AMD drives one ;)

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/8/2009 8:44:12 PM , Rating: 2
Don't tell me he's an AMD fanboy :))))

RE: Advertising?
By B3an on 1/9/2009 5:04:18 PM , Rating: 2
Pirks, is that you in this video?? @ 1:30 ...

"i'll buy almost anything if it's shiny and made by apple"

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/10/2009 7:18:05 PM , Rating: 2
Who told you I own anything made by Apple, moron? ;-)

RE: Advertising?
By Screwballl on 1/9/2009 10:44:29 AM , Rating: 2
That sounds pretty dumb, 'cause you can do pretty much anything on a modern MacBook that an average user wants to do, while getting a great battery life, much better than Vista's (just read Anandtech notebook reviews for the last couple of months for the proof). You sound like a dumb Wintel fanboy, excuse me for talking straight.

Ok see you on the gaming server!

What? There is almost no games that the average Joe can play available for the Mac?

I work in IT and deal with tech support for customers. At least 75% that bought a Mac is sorry they did and if it were not for the piss-poor return policies and "restocking fees" of most stores, they would have taken it back and gotten twice the hardware power with a Windows machine (for the price).

Sorry there is a reason Macs are relegated to "also-ran" with 5% or less of the market. Even desktop linux based machines have increased their use to over 4% now.

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/10/2009 7:31:20 PM , Rating: 2
see you on the gaming server
What game exactly are going to beat me in, loser? In Gears of War 2 or in Halo 3? Or maybe in The Darkness, huh? Come back when you have those great games on your peecee, lama :))) *LOL*
At least 75% that bought a Mac is sorry they did
Yeah, sounds like a great explanation of why Mac sales grow year over year :))) Got something less old and boring, besides these fairy tales of yours?
there is a reason Macs are relegated to "also-ran" with 5% or less of the market
Drivers of cheapo GM cars say the same things when they see shiny new Lexus passing by :-)

RE: Advertising?
By chmilz on 1/9/2009 3:20:35 PM , Rating: 3
That sounds pretty dumb, 'cause you can do pretty much anything on a modern MacBook that an average user wants to do, while getting a great battery life, much better than Vista's (just read Anandtech notebook reviews for the last couple of months for the proof). You sound like a dumb Wintel fanboy, excuse me for talking straight.

I'm not a fanboy of anything. There's nothing a Mac can do that a PC can't, but there's a great number of things a PC can do that a Mac can't. Hardware upgrades, gaming, HTPC, media server, and more... at a mere fraction of the price to boot. Those are things I'm a fan of, regardless of the manufacturer.

RE: Advertising?
By Pirks on 1/10/2009 7:49:23 PM , Rating: 1
There's nothing a Mac can do that a PC can't
There's a few for your to start with: 1) PC doesn't have MagSafe, hence PC can't do safe connections to power cord 2) PC doesn't have multitouch glass trackpad hence PC can't do multitouch gestures 3) PC doesn't have battery efficiency of a Mac (see recent notebook reviews by Anandtech for a proof) hence PC can't stay on as long as a Mac on a same battery and same hardware 4) PC doesn't have the portability/weight/thickness of a Mac when PC has the same hardware (not weaker than Mac's!), hence portable PC can't run as fast as a portable Mac of the same size/weight/thickness. 5) PC doesn't have the "app portability/movability" of a Mac, I mean PC can't just copy all the installed apps by ? simple file copy operation like on a Mac. Hence PC can't move/copy apps/settings between machines in a snap, like Mac does.

The list goes on and on, I'm just too lazy to type a few more about malware, universal x86/x64 binaries and so on and so forth. There are TONS of things that PC can't do and Mac can. You just have to be not a zealot (like SavagePotato for example) and look at things with your open eyes and open mind.

And this is from a guy who doesn't own anything made by Apple, I only occassionally use Macs at work (PowerMac G5 mostly). So you can try to call me names like fuckhead SavagePotato and others like him do, whatever. This won't skew me in any way, I'm not buying things for fanatical/brand reasons.

I'm just enjoying certaing fuckheads here, like SavagePotato, and their clownish performance that starts the moment they see me here :-)
Hardware upgrades, gaming, HTPC, media server
You can do all of this on a Mac too, it's just a different machine. Like I always said - you don't have to buy a Lexus to go somewhere, you can buy cheapo GM and be happy. But the moment you start saying stupid things like "Lexus is an overpriced gay junk" you immediately become a fuckhead similar to SavagePotato. It's that simple, man :-)

By Aloonatic on 1/8/2009 10:56:47 AM , Rating: 2
So is this the Tock (or Tick I can never remember which way round they go) release of Vista in an Intel Style?

From what has been previewed it looks like it could be a very interesting OS, offering enough to make a change over from XP (tho Vista isn't too bad to be fair and II have no problems with it at work) worth while when I eventually get round to building my forever postponed new rig.

I am guessing that a fair few of you guys will be downloading this and giving it a go, I look forward to hearing what you find.

I might have beem tempted myself, but my 2.53GHz Northwood P4 with Radeon 9200 may not be up to it or be able to give it a fair shake :)

RE: TIck/Tock
By ZaethDekar on 1/8/2009 11:30:20 AM , Rating: 2
I will be putting this on an Athlon 2800 with a nVidia 6800 GT, and either 2 or 4 GB of memory (I don't remember haha)

So I will let you know how it runs.

Overall though I am excited to try it out. I've always put a demo build on my secondary computer (thats what it is for). I think the only release on it that isn't a beta build is a linux distro but then again most all of them are still in 'beta' style condition.

RE: TIck/Tock
By lebe0024 on 1/8/2009 11:57:40 AM , Rating: 3
I'm certain it will run great. In my experience with it on my netbook, it runs as fast as XP.

RE: TIck/Tock
By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 1:29:33 PM , Rating: 2
From the performance reviews (though i haven't tested on low end hardware yet myself), it seems to run magnificently on hardware of all specs and is faster than XP. Of course, faster than XP doesn't mean it'll run on extremely low end hardware (400MHz celerons with 128MB of ram lol) but yours should do just fine i would imagine.

RE: TIck/Tock
By GreenEnvt on 1/8/2009 1:45:02 PM , Rating: 3
I put it on a P4D 3.0ghz, 1gb ram, with a geforce fx 5200, and it runs great.

RE: TIck/Tock
By The0ne on 1/8/2009 7:08:43 PM , Rating: 2
You might want to give your PC as shot with Windows7. I think it'll run fine. I've given away all of my older ( >1year) PCs to families and friend. I have 2 quads and a OC e6300 to work with. But even the e6300 is a mid-level PC. I would like to test it out on my two work laptops but they're work so I don't want to have to lose my data or get complaints :)

What we really need now are benchmarks as these "fast" comments, including mine, might be due to trickery and not necessarily quicker. Numbers will tell the story.

By alu on 1/8/2009 12:48:54 PM , Rating: 2
benchmarks benchmarks benchmarks

RE: benchmarks
By The0ne on 1/8/2009 2:30:24 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately I don't have benchmarks yet but first impressions are good. OS size is about half of Vista. Wow, imagine the impossibility of that according to so many people defending Vista. Go figure. Boots and shuts down pretty quick. Apps starts quicker and so forth. Interface is simpler and cleaner and I actually don't mind using it. UAC is easier to control now.

There are already users out there that have run apps such as photoshop and such on the OS. If you're interested in their review and the performance you should probably check them out. So far, the reviews have been positive. I'm planning on running the apps myself.

I don't like Vista much and felt I wasted good money on the Ultimate version. However, with 7 I think it's a good optimized version of Vista to own. Lets really see how it shapes up when released :)

RE: benchmarks
By HollyDOL on 1/8/2009 5:51:40 PM , Rating: 2
Hmm, am I the only one whose Vista shown notice-able performance boost compared to XP?

Using MSDNAA Vista Bussiness x64 version...

RE: benchmarks
By The0ne on 1/8/2009 7:01:20 PM , Rating: 2
It just depends on what app you're using and to some extent the hardware. When I was into video enc/dec I used Vista quite a bit. The extra memory and the supported 64 apps reduced the time dramatically. However, the only game I play FFXI didn't work initially and didn't run quite well, in terms of FPS. A lot of fault was because of unsupported drivers initially.

Then you have UAC, the default save battery mode, and all of what have been discussed before. Those I can deal with but I really can't stand bloated programming. It's code and code thrown together to make things work and often work inefficiently. I just hate seeing that happen. When you have the opportunity to work with people who do care and have excellent coding Vista and other apps becomes hilarious.

I was being a bit sarcastic with the "half the size of Vista" comment but if you seriously ask those whom had defended Vista how Windows7 could be half the size of Vista while being the NEW OS, most wouldn't have an answer. And if they did, I can assure you it's because the code is more efficient if not also optimized. They can't use the same arguments anymore because media player is still there yet takes up less space. Amazing!

Vista is ok now I think but with Windows7 looming just around the corner and being as good as first impressions go it's probably not worth getting Vista completely if you haven't yet. Im waiting to try the 64bit version this weekend.

By Josh7289 on 1/8/2009 2:04:50 PM , Rating: 2
Steve Ballmer broke the news to tremendous applause, stating, "The beta version of Windows 7, Microsoft's next-generation PC operating system, can be downloaded today by MSDN, TechBeta and TechNet customers. Consumers who want to test-drive the beta will be able to download it beginning January 9 at"

Since I don't pay for any of those, I assume I'm not a "customer" of any of them. However, I do have access to MSDN Academic Alliance.

Is there any way for me to download the beta legitimately?

By TomZ on 1/8/2009 2:11:29 PM , Rating: 1
I think you misunderstood. The download was available starting yesterday for MSDN and TechNet, and will be publicly (openly) available tomorrow. At least for the first 2.5M downloads.

By Josh7289 on 1/8/2009 2:50:44 PM , Rating: 2
Oh yeah, whoops.

Cool, thanks.

By HollyDOL on 1/8/2009 5:49:03 PM , Rating: 2
Nothing on my MSDNAA as well so I guess Steve's going to make us wait :-/

what about the friggin start menu
By raghavny80 on 1/9/2009 12:21:37 AM , Rating: 2
In XP and Vista, you could revert back to the classic Start Menu (of 95,98,2K,ME) . 7 PreBeta and Beta seem to be missing the option to revert to the Classic Start Menu.. I am being forced into an unproductive start Menu with 7 that is as bad as the ribbon of office12.

By inighthawki on 1/9/2009 3:38:59 AM , Rating: 2
I know some people like the whoe legacy thing, and enjoy things the way they were, but please explain how you lost ANY productivity by using the new start menu...

Examine here:

--Shut down/log off, both right at the bottom of the new start menu
--Run, if you dont take the 10 seconds to turn it on, the search box at the bottom is basically a built in run command, not to mention its other useful features. The search is quite magnificent
--Help/settings(and everything in it) are all basically now default menu items. Control panel, printers/devices, etc, all one click away, no need to access menus anymore.
--Documents, theyre all listed under recent docs, already there.
--Programs, theyre now all listed better than ever in a nice orderly layout. Keeps the whole screen clean and very easy to navigate.
--Shortcuts, you can pin anything you want to to the menu for quick access.

Where's the loss? Last i checked it even had more, you just have to move your mouse to a different screen coordinate to get to it.

By The0ne on 1/9/2009 3:22:33 PM , Rating: 2
I have to double check but I think you're able to use classic. I love classic :) One thing I haven't figure out is how to not use any image backgrounds. Can't find the option to use none O.o

Very Happy with Windows 7 Beta
By ezinner on 1/8/2009 9:49:17 PM , Rating: 2
Installed quickly and located all the drivers with Windows Update. Boots and responds better than my Vista 64 partition on my laptop with 4gigs. I like the new preview dock, it takes up far less real estate. Being able to specify how icons are displayed in the system tray is brilliant. WMP 12 started playing part two of a two set avi file automatically. All in all, very pleased with the stability and then power management is better. Many small but useful improvements in the interface, but still no anti-virus. When will the learn?

RE: Very Happy with Windows 7 Beta
By Nekrik on 1/9/2009 12:19:32 AM , Rating: 2
I'd love to see AV included too but I imagine there are significant legal issues which prevent them from including such functionality. They did learn that the hard way :).

The upgrade route
By crystal clear on 1/9/2009 8:26:51 AM , Rating: 2
Sorry if you are running WinXP you dont qualify-got to take the Vista route.

Read this-

-- Attempts to upgrade from XP were met by a warning that: "To upgrade to Windows 7, the computer needs to be running Vista with Service Pack 1 (SP1) or later. Upgrading from Windows XP to any edition of Windows 7 is not supported;";jsessionid=I...

RE: The upgrade route
By crystal clear on 1/9/2009 8:59:37 AM , Rating: 2
Some more information-

Important Program Dates for the Windows 7 Upgrade Program are listed in the table below. Some dates have not been finalized and will be included at a later date. These dates are marked as to-be-determined (TBD). However, for planning purposes, program eligibility will begin on July 1, 2009.

By Howard on 1/8/2009 2:49:49 PM , Rating: 2
Come on, now. Honestly.


I have a GREAT idea!
By ShaolinSoccer on 1/9/2009 3:56:18 AM , Rating: 2
How about M$ just make XP look like Vista and add touch support and just keep adding things that are necessary like drivers and more security? WOW! I am a GENIUS! (and sarcastic...)

Friday morning
By Screwballl on 1/9/2009 10:01:27 AM , Rating: 2 has slowed to a crawl this morning... anything from Microsoft is just taking forever to load... like 3-5 minutes or more per page on my 10Mbps connection.

Still a fat cow.
By whirabomber on 1/8/2009 12:15:20 PM , Rating: 1
If all windows 7 changes is how clean it works on the ui level what is the point to go from vista? By the time I was happy with vista, it looked like XP but everything (configuration wise) was obscured somewhere. Crashes are handled well on Vista (vista says an application has gone south, checks for a solution and sometimes even asks if a restart of the app is in order). I guess I would agree with the comment that vista is a fat xp that has had its configuration gone a bit south. In all honesty, I don't miss XP.

as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By RamarC on 1/8/09, Rating: -1
By Aloonatic on 1/8/2009 11:01:48 AM , Rating: 4
I fear you may be disappointed.

I hope that it comes with the option for the "classic" style though. Not for me, but for all the people I work with who have insisted on it when using XP and Vista. They will be wanting familiarity when win 7 is the default OS on mew machines in the near future.

Is it really that hard to use the "ribbon" style interface though?

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 11:16:11 AM , Rating: 5
I didn't find it difficult. It took me about five to ten minutes to get used to it. At the same time, I know people that insist it's evil and complain about it every chance they get.

I like it. Everything's categorized, and if what you want isn't in one of the categories, it's in the office menu.

By quiksilvr on 1/8/2009 1:51:36 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly, it's not confusing. Just because its different doesn't mean its bad. Which would you rather have? This:

Or this:

The ribbon is organized, is categorized perfectly and doesn't require you searching through the toolbar list in Office 2003.

By akugami on 1/8/2009 3:35:06 PM , Rating: 2
You's more a case of people being ingrained in their usage of the Office suite of apps. I don't mind the ribbon, even though I have a hell of a time finding certain commands at times. It's just that while the controls are better organized, they aren't where we're used to them being. I have this problem as I'm sure many others do. After a bit of usage however, any objective person will see that while it's still a work in progress, it at least makes sense for the most part.

By PrinceGaz on 1/8/2009 8:33:11 PM , Rating: 4
I have mixed feelings about the "ribbon". As I am not a regular Office apps user, I often find myself spending time trying to find what used to be easily accessible commands, and often resorting to the help feature to find out where they are now, only to find they were right there in front of me but disguised in a whole new look.

Moving things about is a risky idea when pretty much every Windows or OS/X app up until now has had a similar approach since the earliest days of the GUI. It's like deciding the QWERTY keyboard no longer makes sense as we aren't using mechanical typewriters now, so changing the layout of all the keys to a new arrangement that a focus group has decided is better.

I remember DOS based spreadsheets like Lotus 123 and WordPerfect had essentially the same tried and trusted menu arrangement as Office 2003 had, but now Office 2007 comes along and effectively substitutes a selectable button-bar, which requires you switch context between different groups of operations instead of being able to access them all directly. I know screen-space is more available now, but the ribbon to me is a step backwards as for most "normal tasks", it fills up additional screen space and for most general usage of the applications with it, requires more mouse clicks than the traditional method.

By quiksilvr on 1/9/2009 2:39:10 AM , Rating: 2
What "normal tasks" are you talking about? Changing the font, spacing the lines, adding bullet or numbering, or choosing the style are at Home. If you want to reorient the page you go to Page Layout. If you want to Word Count you go to Review. After a while it just makes sense. Just picture what you want to do and imagine which section it would be under.

By foolsgambit11 on 1/9/2009 7:04:23 PM , Rating: 2
It's like deciding the QWERTY keyboard no longer makes sense as we aren't using mechanical typewriters now, so changing the layout of all the keys to a new arrangement that a focus group has decided is better.
Wait, you aren't using a DVORAK keyboard?

By DeepBlue1975 on 1/9/2009 10:07:09 AM , Rating: 2
The only thing I don't like about the ribbon is its size. But that's not really a problem for me, as I've simply minimized the ribbon so that I only see it when I need it, instead of just letting it eat up a significant part of my display's height.

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By Motoman on 1/8/09, Rating: -1
RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 12:07:18 PM , Rating: 2
I'll give you a specific example of something that is much easier in 2007 - embedded tables. I use tables a lot in Word documents and e-mails, and creating and editing tables is a lot easier in 2007 because of the Ribbon.

What specific things did you find difficult to do in 2007?

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 12:28:10 PM , Rating: 1
Essentially everything, including searching for blindingly-obvious things like Open File, Save/Save As, and Print.

I use tables on occasion. The table thing in 2003 is point-and-click. Don't see how it could be easier.

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By TomZ on 1/8/2009 12:53:24 PM , Rating: 2
Once you figured out that the Office button menu was the same as the old File menu, did that really slow you down much?

In 2003, doing a lot of manipulation on tables was slow and required lots of right-click menu and sub-menu operations. With 2007, you just focus one of the Table ribbon tabs and you can quickly execute lots of table manipulation commands. Much better.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:09:15 PM , Rating: 3
...just remembered it properly:

"Excess functionality intimidates the user"

Words to live by as a developer.

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 1:21:25 PM , Rating: 2
I hear the complaining from a lot of people, and quite frankly i think if it took longer than a day to get used to the new interface then you just have a learning disability of some sort which prevents you from learning a new interface. People do the same complaining about vista, about how its "not xp" and "nothing is in the same place". If you quit complaining and put forth effort into finding and remembering where things are, it won't take long to appreciate it.

Saying "omg i dont know where this is, it sucks" is no excuse for it being bad, it only means YOU haven't put forth the effort. Nobody is going to keep terrible looking GUIs for the couple people who can't seem to handle it.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:25:49 PM , Rating: 2
Nice rant. Except that, clearly, one could infer from my communication skills that I'm not likely to have a learning disability of any kind. And I did note that I gave it a full year to try to get used to it. I'm sure that there are plenty of people who threw their toys out of the pram within a couple days and gave up - I'm not one of those people.

So please inform me exactly how I "haven't put forth the effort." And please also inform me how the Office 2003 interface is a "terrible looking GUI."

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 1:38:13 PM , Rating: 4
I find it hard to believe that after a year of using it, you didn't catch on that the Home tab had most of the font settings you'd need, the Insert tab allowed you to insert everything you wanted, the Page Layout tab had every setting you'd want to configure to change the page's layout, ect, ect, ect. It's an extremely easy UI to learn and get used to. Yes it's much different than the menu + toolbars of previous versions, but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to learn where things are.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:46:56 PM , Rating: 2 most users, I use those functions very rarely. I had to re-find that stuff every time I wanted to do them, because they aren't things I do all the time, and therefore I didn't learn them by repetition. You can learn anything by simply doing it enough...but a user interface that doesn't intuitively place funtions for a user to find when they don't use them all the time is bad.

The fact of the matter is, the ribbon interface is just simply *different* without having had any good reason to be *different*. There is no benefit to it...none. You shouldn't go and change something in a wholesale manner like that just so you can say you did something new...if it isn't fundamentally going to make the typical user's life better, don't do it.

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By Fanon on 1/8/2009 2:02:31 PM , Rating: 2
It's different for a very good reason; it's more intuitive and efficient.

" most users, I use those functions very rarely. I had to re-find that stuff every time I wanted to do them, because they aren't things I do all the time, and therefore I didn't learn them by repetition."

That's the beauty of the ribbon. Everything is categorized so that you don't have to remember where everything is. I rarely need to add a footnote to a document, but I know that it's in the References tab. In 2003, where do you go to add a footnote? It's hidden in the Insert menu (Insert -> References -> Footnote).

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 2:25:47 PM , Rating: 2 2003, it's under the View menu - one step to Headers and Footers.

...and precisely what sense does it make to put headers and footers under References? If you find that intuitive, then I guess kudos to you. To me, that's like placing "machine screws" in a bin labeled "Citrus Fruits."

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 2:28:22 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry, just dawned on me you weren't talking about a regular page footer, but rather a true reference footer like with a superscript.

I have not ever had any need to do such a thing, so can't comment. But, having said that, it's a very uncommonly used function (ask any group of typical users how many times they use a reference footer - I'm guessing they will likely not properly recognize what you're even talking about like I did). So why put obscure functions out in the open, while hiding obvious ones (like New)?

By Fanon on 1/8/2009 2:38:38 PM , Rating: 2
"I have not ever had any need to do such a thing, so can't comment. But, having said that, it's a very uncommonly used function (ask any group of typical users how many times they use a reference footer - I'm guessing they will likely not properly recognize what you're even talking about like I did)."

That's my point. I've needed footnotes probably twice in the last ten years, but if I were going to need one in the next ten, I'd know to go to the Reference tab because a footnote is used as a reference.

"So why put obscure functions out in the open, while hiding obvious ones (like New)?"

It took me less than then seconds to find New, Open, Save, and Save As in the office menu (when you first run an app with a ribbon, the damn office button is glowing with a tooltip essentially saying click me for goodies!). They're not hidden. If you find clicking the office menu an annoyance, then adding those functions to the Quick Access Toolbar is trivial. Save is already there by default!

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 1:49:07 PM , Rating: 2
The learning disability thing was clearly a joke, and the fact that you put forth a whole year to learn it and didnt end up learning it strengthens my point that you didnt actually put forth effort, but rather probably just did like a lot of people and complain about how its so hard to use, and never get anywhere. Most people i knew figured out the whole ribbon interface in the matter of the first time using it.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:58:21 PM , Rating: 1
...until you have to go and find something you don't use often, but which should be pretty obvious. File Properties, as noted in the OP. Line spacing. Headers and footers. On a day-in, day-out basis, doing average stuff,'s fine. But spending 10 minutes or more trying to find something that should be exceedingly obvious like the above because some asshat decided to put it someplace stupid and give you an easter-egg hunt once every few weeks will point out quite quickly how poorly thought out and executed the ribbon interface is.

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 3:02:56 PM , Rating: 2
I've had to occasionally look for rarely used things, but never has it taken more than 30 seconds, since everything is organized neatly in categories.

By Jacerie on 1/9/2009 9:05:28 AM , Rating: 2
But spending 10 minutes or more trying to find something that should be exceedingly obvious like the above because some asshat decided to put it someplace stupid and give you an easter-egg hunt once every few weeks will point out quite quickly how poorly thought out and executed the ribbon interface is.

If you actually spent 10 minutes and didn't use the help feature to find it, then the fault is entirely yours.

-1 for bein a tard.

By Lord 666 on 1/9/2009 11:24:05 AM , Rating: 4
Ignore Motoman... he's just a troll who wants to change careers from a mechanic to IT person.

Please see his other posts and personal attacks concerning the proper term on Wrenches for supporting evidence.

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By The0ne on 1/8/2009 2:21:12 PM , Rating: 2
Everyone has a tolerance level. I don't have the time nor the luxury to be losing hours upon hours of fiddling around with the ribbon. Your hour for work might not be worthwhile for you and others but some of us do treasure the time.

Anyone can put the effort to learn anything in various length of time. Having to put time to learn something that isn't intuitive to you is not time well spent. It might be for you and for others but some one us find it very difficult with the ribbon to do some of the basics. As other have pointed out why would you NOT include the save, print and open icons on the ribbon when you know it's going to be use.

And I'm 90% sure that telling people here that they have a "learning disability" because they don't like it and can't get use to the new suite isn't a smart idea. Most of the members here, to my experience, have a high level of education as well as experience.

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 3:04:49 PM , Rating: 2
Im not putting forth specified amounts of time. I didnt install office and then give myself an hour to browse around, i learned everything within 1 hour of USING the program. When i needed something it always seemed to be right where i expected it.

Also, save and print ARE, by default, in the ribbon toolbar, only new and open are absent (which i admit is quite stupid.)

By SavagePotato on 1/8/2009 4:31:13 PM , Rating: 2
You are dealing with someone who represents the sad majority of users in a workplace situation. They know just enough of what they have been taught to navigate through starting the computer, using office in a set manner shown to them initially, and anything whatsoever that deviates from that predetermined path is not something their mind can handle.

People like this simply do not have the ability to pick it up on the fly, because they are too inept and basically need a several week sit down course at the local community college to learn something like how to use office 2007.

Hopefully this era of trying to get the technologically inept up to speed for the rest of us will come to a close, when the youth of today who live eat and breathe technology from elementary school on come of age.

You can take creative intelligent people as well, and for some reason put them in front of a computer and their mind closes and suddenly it becomes 20 times harder to learn something. People that can rebuild an engine from scratch but can't navigate windows for example.

What it often comes down to is a fundamental refusal to learn out of hatred for change.

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By The0ne on 1/8/2009 6:49:41 PM , Rating: 2
Must I repeat myself again. I said that for some of use wasting an hour or more to get some work done is already a waste. I'm an advance office user, word and excel particularly, so it's not that I can't be expected to learn to use it. What I find is that the change IS significant enough that I'm spending more time hunting for the basic commands to just get work done.

Sure you get use it eventually and I applaud anyone for having to learn it in a hour or less. That's great for you. But telling some of us that we have a learning disability because we don't see a reason for the change nor like to have to hunt for a command that is hidden deep someplace else is unfair and ignorant.

Do I come here and tell you that you have a learning disability because you can't program, can't design and what not? Of course not because I realize, which you haven't, is that people are different and there is a tolerance level where changing something doesn't even make sense. Change for the sake of change is not necessary a good thing.

But yea, good thing you can learn office in an hour. I'll spend my time designing a mini-robot in that time.

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 9:39:41 PM , Rating: 2
When did i say i wasted an hour? My point was: As i worked, i managed to accomplish my task and learn how to navigate it all within an hour. No taking time to learn it, no breaks or pauses. When i needed something, it took about 30 seconds to find and then that was that. The assignment probably took 58 minutes, finding what i needed took 10 seconds a pop inbetween that.

By SavagePotato on 1/9/2009 12:47:39 PM , Rating: 2
Still points to you being a bit slow, I could learn to program with little trouble If I decided I wanted to be a programmer and put the effort in to do it.

Some people can learn naturally and on the fly with no trouble whatsoever, other people have to sit down study their ass off and still barely scrape by. I would guess you fit in that category.

Most of the people commenting here learned office 2007 while using it, easily, and with little to no loss of productivity. If you are that concerned with having archaic old menus because it's what you know, maybe it's just a case of being a little too self important combined with being a little slow.

By PhoenixKnight on 1/8/2009 1:28:07 PM , Rating: 2
For the average consumer who just writes letters and does the occasional chart or spreadsheet, OpenOffice is perfectly sufficient, not to mention free.

Personally, I've never needed to use any of the advanced functions of MS Office that aren't in OpenOffice. The only real problem I have with OpenOffice is that it's thesaurus really sucks compared to MS Office's.

I made the switch after spending 5 minutes in MS Office making a resume with 2 columns, only to spend another full hour struggling against Office's autoformatting to get what I actually wanted. OpenOffice simply works correctly for me, so I've stuck with it ever since.

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By rtrski on 1/8/2009 1:34:29 PM , Rating: 4
...frankly, the fact that I had to create a "custom" toolbar thing to keep an icon for Open, Save, and Print instead of being forced to go into a menu seriously pissed me off. I have NO idea what kind of genius decided that the rarely-used Open, Save, and Print functions should ONLY exist in a menu, and not be on any toolbar/ribbon by default.

You did? Color me confused....

Save and print are right up there next to the 'office' symbol button, by default, regardless of what 'ribbon' menu you're looking at.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:36:42 PM , Rating: 2
...all I can tell you is that after installing 2007 fresh from disk, they weren't there, and I had to figure out how to do that myself.

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 1:50:35 PM , Rating: 3
By default, save, print, undo and redo are in the ribbon bar, so theres no excuse for those. and if you want new and open, its a matter of about 2 clicks to the "customize ribbon" menu, and maybe 5 more to add them there.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 2:01:14 PM , Rating: 2
OK, you know what, maybe it's New and Open I'm thinking about. Been a long time since I ditched it, so you may honestly be right about save and print being there. However, my point is it that New and Open are such irrelevant functions as to be hidden under some menu someplace by default? Why should I have to "customize" a toolbar to add New and Open, and now that I think about it, Save As too. Whatever. There is no excuse for that kind of design, and it appears that I was incorrectly remembering which blindingly obvious buttons were missing, and I apologize for that.

By cyriene on 1/8/2009 1:56:51 PM , Rating: 3
Ctrl-O, Ctrl-S, Ctrl-P FTW!

The default line spacing annoyed me too. I don't know why I would want a space after my paragraph. I have to have all my papers typed to a certain format so I always have to change their line spacing.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 2:02:42 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed...although I'm not crusty enough to pine for the days when everything was accessd via key combinations. The only ones I use on a regular basis (which is to say, by instinct), are ctl-c, ctrl-v, and ctrl-x. I don't know any of the others well enough to use them as normal routine.

By foolsgambit11 on 1/9/2009 7:21:14 PM , Rating: 2
ctrl-z, ctrl-y. Ironically, I originally learned ctrl-z playing Spider solitaire, and just started using it intuitively in everything else. Then, once I would accidentally overdo the 'undo', it was natural to have to learn the 'redo' keyboard shortcut. Lots of work updating reference spreadsheets. Therefore, ctrl-f and ctrl-h. And, because sometimes you just need the catharsis, ctrl-a followed by delete.

By Spivonious on 1/8/2009 3:05:25 PM , Rating: 2
Just hit Ctrl-O, Ctrl-S, and Ctrl-P. I don't know anyone at my office that clicks the toolbar buttons.

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 3:08:48 PM , Rating: 2
While i agree that's an option, some people don't like keyboard shortcuts. Personally i use ctrl+s on occasion to save time, most usually in notepad, but i have the habit of using the new, open, save, and print buttons on the toolbar. I, unlike a lot of the people here, however, dont have an actual problem clicking 10 times (30 seconds max) to permanently add new and open to the ribbon toolbar for future use.

By Spivonious on 1/8/2009 4:11:32 PM , Rating: 2
And customization options are great to have. I'm just pointing out that if you're already typing, why move you hand to the mouse to click a button? I think most people don't use keyboard shortcuts because there's no good way to discover them.

By tdawg on 1/8/2009 6:58:11 PM , Rating: 1
The new Excel is reason alone to upgrade to Office 2007, in my opinion. So many convenient new features, not to mention the ability to deal with more than 65,000 rows of data (not sure what the exact number is).

While I have no problem using Office 2003 (installed on my laptop), I really enjoy using Office 2007 (at work and on my desktop at home). I'm not picky really, as I actually really liked the new OpenOffice, and have no problems going from one app to another.

By Omega215D on 1/8/2009 1:55:28 PM , Rating: 2
In office 2003 I had to go through several steps for certain functions, the Ribbon interface cuts that down nicely.

I for one hope the Ribbon interface remains and maybe improved (for those not used to it).

RE: as long as it doesn't have any friggin' ribbons
By TomZ on 1/8/09, Rating: 0
By Bateluer on 1/8/2009 12:30:15 PM , Rating: 1
I agree. The older menus were less intuitive, its just that every got used to using them. The ribbon in Office 2007 is much more intuitive and easier to use than 2003's menus, after you get through the short period of re-adjustment.

Honestly though, you'd better get used to the ribbon, its not going away in future versions of office and windows.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:07:39 PM , Rating: 4
Menus make perfect sense. Like a well-organized warehouse. Easy to find anything you need.

The ribbon is more like a college're pretty sure everything you need is in there...somewhere...maybe under the dirty underwear? Oh c'mon, it's got to be around here *somewhere*. WTF is it? What the hell is that? Why would I be able to find that useless POS instead of the one thing any sane person in the world would need? AHHHHH!!!

By inighthawki on 1/8/2009 1:23:53 PM , Rating: 1
That sounds like the exact nonsense from someone who doesn't know how to find his way around a UI. It didnt take me, and clearly some other people, very long to learn the ribbon interface, and once you do you'll realize everything is FAR more organized than a toolbar/menu system.

By Motoman on 1/8/2009 1:27:51 PM , Rating: 2
...except that it isn't. Even on programs that I have *never* used before, I can find what I need via a traditional menu system very quickly. If after a year of trying the ribbon still frustrates you, why in the hell would you not ditch it and go back to something that is vastly superior?

By RamarC on 1/8/2009 1:35:09 PM , Rating: 4
Studies have been performed that show that humans have a hard time dealing with more than 7 choices. The ribbon gives you 8 top choices and usually 7+ blocks with 7+ choices inside each block.

As everyone's said, its differences can be (re)learned but its enhanced ease of use is only true for folks who use a fraction of the features.

Take Themes and Styles for instance... most people I know find them more difficult to apply and edit. Can anyone explain why Macros are under the View item? And Headers/Footers are page elements which (to me) should be in Page Layout but they wound up under Insert. Click a picture and viola, a new Format category appears in the ribbon. But highlight a paragraph and Formatting is handled with a right-click and a (drum roll please) popup menu.

By FaceMaster on 1/8/2009 8:42:42 PM , Rating: 2
I can't count the number of times I have to resort to help in Office 2007 because I can't figure out where the heck something is!

Nice to see the Help file finally being used. At least there isn't a paper clip.

As for me, I have no trouble finding my way around/ I think it's a major improvement- so... natural.

Forget it
By Mithan on 1/8/09, Rating: -1
RE: Forget it
By DuctTapeAvenger on 1/8/2009 12:45:49 PM , Rating: 1
I'm sure someone out there will have a friend in Russia that can hook them up with a copy.

Not that I'm condoning that sort of action. I'll buy myself a legal copy if I don't get one through my MSDNAA account. It'll look great on my shelf next to XP and Vista.

"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town." -- Charlie Miller

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