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Consumers can download the Release Candidate build of Microsoft's slick new OS, Windows 7, and try it out for themselves. Both 32- and 64-bit versions are available for download.
Consumers can finally get their hands on a near-release copy of the latest version of Windows

Windows 7 has the tech community and the consumer world buzzing.  For consumers, it has been a long four months since the release of the Windows 7 beta which saw hundreds of thousands of downloads.  Some turned to torrents to try to swipe the newer beta builds or the recent Release Candidate, but for most it was a matter of waiting.

The waiting is over at last as Microsoft has officially released the Release Candidate 1 build of Windows 7 to the general public.  The build is available directly from Microsoft for download.

Microsoft is suggesting that novice users not download the build as no tech support will be provided.  Customers who download the build will have to burn the ISO onto a disk.  Unlike the more recent beta candidate builds, the RC1 build requires a complete reinstall, even on machines with a working build of Windows 7.

Both 32- and 64-bit versions of the build are available.  Microsoft recommends users' computers have at least 1GHz processor, 1GB of RAM and 16GB of free disk space.

Microsoft is promising not to limit the number of downloads of the new release, like it initially did for the beta release (before later relenting and allowing unlimited downloads).  The beta release proved a headache for some, as the large demand crashed some of Microsoft's servers at the time, rendering many eager users unable to download the beta from Microsoft.  Microsoft is hoping that this time around things go more smoothly.

The test builds of Windows 7 will work until June 2010, but starting in March 2010 they will shut down every two hours.

Microsoft has publicly stated that Windows 7 will launch "no later than January 2010."  However, it now appears that the new OS will land in time for the holiday season, as Acer has leaked its release date as October 23.

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By Morphine06 on 5/5/2009 3:54:03 PM , Rating: 2
I picked up an ATI HD4770 last week. There was no XP, Vista, or W7 driver for it at ATI's site, still isn't. No catalyst drivers for W7 worked with the 4770.

ATI isn't supporting a product that has already gone to market! I was forced to use the Diamond driver disc in XP32. Still using vgapnp.sys for W7...

Just a heads up for those interested in the 4770. No driver love no matter what OS you are using, but especially W7.

By omnicronx on 5/5/2009 4:45:23 PM , Rating: 2
May 13th.. Cat 9.5 drivers..

If you can't wait.. try these

Have not confirmed myself.. I'm going to wait until official.

Make sure you install them manually (ie through device manager, I have my own disk, etc..)

By Donkeyshins on 5/5/2009 5:15:34 PM , Rating: 2
There should be MS WDDM drivers built into Win7 that support R7xx chips including the HD4770. The only exception may be if RV740 is substantially architectually different from RV730 / RV770 (which from what I read doesn't seem to be the case).

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke
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