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Windows 7 launch events are being held across the country.

Retail deals from chains like Staples also abound.  (Source: Model D Media)
The future of Windows is here

Today is a great day for Microsoft.  After enduring three years of criticism under the Vista era, the company is finally prepared to turn over a new leaf and bask in the critical praise of its new operating system, Windows 7.  Faster, with a richer graphical interface, and with a smaller footprint, Windows 7 is an evolution that improves on Vista in nearly every way.

To kick off the launch, many events and sales are going on across the country today.  Last night CompUSA (now owned by Systemax Inc) held launch events at 10 of its stores.  The first 77 customers at the door received $77 gift cards.  One of the 77 will receive a Windows 7 dual-core PC.  For those who missed the midnight madness, CompUSA will continue to randomly give away copies of Windows 7 throughout the day.

Office Depot is also offering lots of free software, including AVG's Internet Security Suite (regularly $70) to Greeting Card Factory Deluxe (regularly $50).  In total 19 titles are offered on a pay up-front, mail-in-rebate basis.  Get a full list of titles here.

Staples also has some hot offers.  Grab this coupon and a Staples associate will install Windows 7 for you, for free.  You'll also earn $75 off your computer purchase and snag a $500 coupon book.  Get the coupon here.

Microsoft is also a series of events dubbed "the NEW efficiency" across the country.  Some of these events already took place, but some, like and Orange County event on October 26, may still be open.  Check here for more details.

Students can also get an upgrade copy of Windows 7 Home Edition or Professional edition for a mere $30, until January 2010.

Also, those looking to upgrade more than one PC in a single home can look towards the Family Pack which will upgrade three machines to Windows 7 Home Premium.

For those looking to take advantage of Windows 7's new multitouch functionality, you might want to check out the TouchSmart 600xt multitouch PC, one of the first Windows 7 multitouch machines.  Powered by Intel processors and sporting a 23-inch screen at a  $1,049 price tag the device looks like a good value.  It offers support for gesture and multitouch based moves, scrolls, and zooms.

Even if you don't get any special launch deals, Windows 7 should be a deal in itself.  Cheaper than Vista, the OS uses less memory, so it can fit on many netbooks.  The OS also brings DirectX 11 graphics, which AMD/ATI already includes hardware support.

Another of the most promising features of Windows 7 for fans of 2D-retro games or programming professionals is XP Mode.  Available with the Professional and Ultimate editions, this mode offers virtualized versions of Window XP that your programs can operate seamlessly within alongside normal Windows 7 programs. 

Windows 7 looks like a fresh start for Microsoft, but the competition will be tough.  Microsoft will face stronger pressure from the smartphone and netbook markets, albeit not necessarily direct competition.  And they also must compete with a invigorated Apple, which just debuted Snow Leopard and new Macs.

The true test will not be the glowing reviews, the colorful launch events, or the innovative features.  Windows Vista in many respects had all of those.  No, the true test will be the public reception.  The public will make or break the new OS.  And the public will be able to make up their mind, starting today.

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It's crap.
By reader1 on 10/22/2009 10:16:18 AM , Rating: -1
Microsoft's monopoly has made them complacent. There aren't any significant new features or improvements, only a bunch of gimmicks, like Aero Shake and Aero Peek.

RE: It's crap.
By nosfed360 on 10/22/2009 10:23:44 AM , Rating: 4
Apple lover trolling?

Learn before you speak, the number of tweaks/fixes over XP is huge. A lot of it is little stuff, but it makes the overall experience much better.

1.I use skype a LOT...xp would not lower the volume of other apps automatically when a skype call came in.

2. I use a USB headset...XP required that I plugged it in BEFORE starting whatever app I was using that provided audio...such as a game. 7 will move the udio output over on the fly

3. The new taskbar is leaps and bounds above XP.

4. My laptop with XP required a reboot anytime I plugged a projector into it. Windows 7 see's it as plug and play, and I can switch right to it.

I could go on and on all day with little things, and this leaves out the big stuff. For me, all these little things add up to an experience that vastly improves my workflow....and in the end, that's all an OS is supposed to do.

RE: It's crap.
By 3minence on 10/22/2009 10:35:25 AM , Rating: 2
I too use Skype on Win7 and it handles the volume so much better. I can control the volume of each app through Win7 instead of going into each individual app and changing the volume.

RE: It's crap.
By 9nails on 10/22/2009 10:38:48 AM , Rating: 2
Ok, those are little changes, but they're really cool!

It seems like Seven will be a collection of small things that together they really add up. Honestly, they didn't have far to go from Vista to make things better. Vista just needed better drivers at first.

In Seven everyone will have different things that they like about it. Certainly more than they dislike, but getting thru the new interface will be the one area we go back and forth on.

The one thing that I liked in Seven was that I could drag the time bar in Media Center to rewind/ff a video. I can also leave UAC on, enjoy the security, without much hassle now.

RE: It's crap.
By reader1 on 10/22/09, Rating: -1
RE: It's crap.
By nosfed360 on 10/22/2009 11:10:49 AM , Rating: 2
you have to be an apple troll.

How hard is it to open a new instance...middle click?

and how is switching actually get previews of tabs. stop trolling.

RE: It's crap.
By jonmcc33 on 10/22/2009 11:50:02 AM , Rating: 4
Don't feed the troll. Just rate him down so nobody else has to read his rubbish.

You know how good Windows 7 is. Just use it and enjoy it. Let the troll cry by himself in the corner. If he is a Mac fanatic then he's already living in misery, just doesn't want to admit it.

RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/22/2009 12:18:43 PM , Rating: 5
The new taskbar combines program launching and task management. They are two completely different things and shouldn't be combined
Why then OS X Dock combines them?

P.S. see guys, its really easy to catch reader1 off guard :)) Not even a need to downrate him. Just ask him about OS X Dock and he looks stupid. Done!

RE: It's crap.
By Boze on 10/22/2009 12:53:57 PM , Rating: 3
Wow, this is almost like a new Pirks!

Hmm, new Pirks release on the Windows 7 release date... coincidence??... or did Microsoft pull some kinda Agent Smith move from Matrix Reloaded and rewrite Pirks! :O

RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/22/09, Rating: 0
RE: It's crap.
By SavagePotato on 10/22/2009 3:53:07 PM , Rating: 2
Because he is also a troll with no conviction behind anything he says.

He just trolls whichever way the wind blows.

Give him a week and he will be making his stupid car analogies and piling up 30 -1 posts to a thread just as always.

RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/22/09, Rating: 0
RE: It's crap.
By SavagePotato on 10/22/2009 6:39:53 PM , Rating: 2
See, still a world class douchebag just as predicted.

There's your all new pirks.

RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/23/2009 7:10:20 PM , Rating: 2
There's your all old potato troll. As boring and predictable as ever.

RE: It's crap.
By Akrovah on 10/22/2009 7:18:37 PM , Rating: 2
My guess is that even the normal MS bashers/Apple supports can see that reader1 is a complete retard, and they probably want to distance themselves from him.

RE: It's crap.
By callmeroy on 10/22/2009 12:35:07 PM , Rating: 2
What the hell is your point to your postings?

First I'll play your game for a second and PRETEND you speak the truth (even though you don't) --- only the weakest mind or cult follower kind of personality (you know like Apple fans) would be convinced to like/buy/use a product or not solely based on the ramblings of a delusional forum troll.

Second, we all get it you are Apple fanboy supreme -- you hate Microsoft, you hate PCs and you hate Windows....

Please post your email and I'll send you a coupon for a free cookie.

Now move along....

RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/22/09, Rating: -1
RE: It's crap.
By themaster08 on 10/22/2009 1:02:37 PM , Rating: 2
He makes sense sometimes, you know

Unfortunately, not this time....

RE: It's crap.
By zombiexl on 10/22/2009 2:14:15 PM , Rating: 2
Why do you have to hate java to like .net? I develop using java and c# (even a little when really I have to). They each have their good and bad points.

That said I prefer c# over java, but thats just because lately my java writing has been limited to cell phone midlets and j2me leaves a lot to be desired.

RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/22/09, Rating: 0
RE: It's crap.
By themaster08 on 10/23/2009 4:29:34 AM , Rating: 2
The new taskbar makes it harder to launch a new instance of a program and makes it harder to switch between tasks.

Of course it's harder, if you're using an Apple mouse. We PC users have real mice. You know, ones with at least 2 physical buttons and a scroll wheel, which can also be used as a button!

As the poster below your post has mentioned, a simple click of your scroll wheel whilst hovering over the program on the taskbar, will magically open a new instance of that program!

That was hard now, wasn't it?

RE: It's crap.
By magneticfield on 10/22/2009 12:00:13 PM , Rating: 4
I've been using win7 for a couple of weeks, then went back to XP (different latops).

Going back to XP was a very unpleasant experience, through lots of small annoyances that were not there in win7. You should try it.

People when think about win7 usually expect to need a more powerful machine, but I used win7 on celeron mobile 2GHz with 1GB DDR2 and 60GB 5400rpm hdd on a intel 945 laptop, and it worked just fine.

WinXP was the thing that kept our machines going year after year, but after using win7 for a few weeks, all I can say is that XP is crap!

RE: It's crap.
By magneticfield on 10/22/2009 12:01:32 PM , Rating: 2
oops, pushed the wrong reply button, it was meant to be one level higher, sorry!

RE: It's crap.
By ggordonliddy on 10/22/2009 11:07:57 PM , Rating: 2
Just because someone doesn't like Windows 7 doesn't mean they like Apple. Smart people just understand that Windows 7 blows bloody dripping tapeworm/maggot-infested feces in all directions. The problem is that they are copying a piece of sh!t like MacOS. That is the wrong direction.

The taskbar changes suck, you complete dumb@ss.

Of course there are some improvements, but overall XP is much better. Much faster to do things. If you are too ignorant to realize all of the things that are more tedious to do now, you should drill out your eyeballs (use a large rough spade bit, please - no prissy 1/8" round bits for you).

RE: It's crap.
By dgingeri on 10/22/2009 10:35:32 AM , Rating: 2
There's a lot new with this version, including fixes for Vista features. Simply put, it is what Vista should have been, and would have been if they hadn't been in such a hurry to put out Vista. Next time, they should take a page from Blizzard and put it out when it's ready.

As for new features, try this out:
1. Virtual XP mode: running old programs in a virtual XP environment so that they can still run
2. Better network security: although Vista was lightyears better than XP, W7 is even better.
3. better multi-core support: It handles multi-thread applications much better, including not waking up sleeping cores until they are needed and doing system tasks on alternate cores while the primary core is being used by an application.
4. much better interface: the tweaks to the Aero interface have significantly improved things over Vista, not just "gimmicks"

RE: It's crap.
By dgingeri on 10/22/2009 10:58:31 AM , Rating: 2
Oh, I forgot to mention, there's also the little matter of machines performing ~10% faster with W7 than Vista. I'll be quite happy when my system performs as well with W7 as XP.

RE: It's crap.
By reader1 on 10/22/09, Rating: -1
RE: It's crap.
By Pirks on 10/22/2009 12:27:29 PM , Rating: 3
Open platforms cannot be secured
Closed platforms can't be secured either. Heard about Xbox 360 and iPhone cracks? Maybe you should think a little before posting here, eh?

RE: It's crap.
By Boze on 10/22/2009 12:58:19 PM , Rating: 2
reader1, I'm a little confused by some of your comments.

1. I don't know enough about virtualization to comment on this.

2. Can you tell me what exactly your definition of "secure" is? Are you saying that Linux, an open platform, is not able to be secured as well?

3. I do have to agree with this, although if you look at the timeline, XP is almost 9 years old now, and we have to make progress eventually.

4. I will concede that point for the time being, but as more programs integrate with the Windows 7 taskbar, it becomes much easier to do things. I love how when I move my mouse over the Google Chrome taskbar button, a slew of program options pops up. Its really quite nice. Once the business users catch on to it, I think you can improve productivity somewhat.

RE: It's crap.
By xDrift0rx on 10/22/2009 2:08:05 PM , Rating: 2
1. so what you're saying is that using boot camp is something silly? a see a lot of people use it.

2. wasnt there a test done at a hackers convention where it took them two hours to find a loop hole in vista, while it took like 5 minutes on OSX?

3. obviously an older pc would perform better on XP, though with all the added features and visual effects in 7, it does a damn good job of being efficient.

4. while that may be true, it does greatly help IT personel, and everybody using the same OS will be less painful than criss-crossing. all the little bits add up in end...

RE: It's crap.
By Akrovah on 10/22/2009 7:31:45 PM , Rating: 1
1) No Comment

2) No OS is secure. Period. Which is more easily broken is a matter of heated debate on these forums, and I will not go there right now.

3) My main point - THATS A GOOD THING!!!!!! Almost every OS releae in HISTORY has been accompanied by slower perfomance on equivalent hardware, because each OS upgrade typically takes more resources than the previous iteration. This is true of every OS line, even Mac, otherwise Snow Leapord wouldn't have higher system reqs than 10.0, or whichever was the first to switch to intel since that is a more direct comparison. The fact that they were able to get the new features and upgrades, or "gimmicks", if you prefer, into Win7 without a signifigant perfomance hit over a 9 year old OS is outstanding, especially as XP's performance itself has improved with the SPs over the years.

4) Correct. At least until, as someone already said, more applications make use of the new abilities.

RE: It's crap.
By HaB1971 on 10/22/2009 12:47:27 PM , Rating: 2
DING DING DING !!!! Reader1 is back to using the 'Monopoly' word without knowing what it means.

Please get off of your bandwagon before you get the "You have died of Dysentery" message as you're on a lost trail.

Are you a member of The Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka Kansas - Anti Microsoft Chapter?

The title of it's crap should sum up your history of comments on DT.

RE: It's crap.
By blwest on 10/22/2009 2:05:42 PM , Rating: 1
Negative history in DT means you're simply not a MS fanboi. That's all.

RE: It's crap.
By C'DaleRider on 10/22/2009 6:07:22 PM , Rating: 2
No, reader1 isn't part of Westboro Baptist Church....even those strident evangelical zombies make more sense than reader1.

No, reader1 is also known as siliconDoc, snakeoil, and maddoctor, a trio of his alter egos, depending upon subject. He just trolls any tech thread and uses which ever pseudoname that he's created to fit the trolling to be done in that particular thread.

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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