Software & Apps News - Page 189

The latest and most important Software & Apps news - Page 189.

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Which Windows 7 SKU is right for you?

Cameron Wilmot | Feb 5, 2009 12:39 AM CST

Not every customer has the same needs. In general, we discovered that most think we should have about 2 or 3 SKUs but there isn't much agreement what "the right" SKUs should be. So we are accommodating specialized needs for customers in specific markets. You could also think of these as niche offerings. A small percentage "niche" (like 2%) of the overall customer base is still many millions. That feels pretty big to me and we wanted to make sure we had the right solutions for them. We think it is important to respond to the needs, so we have:

• Windows 7 Starter: Something that our OEM partners asked for is to have an offering for folks that will do very limited things with their PCs and for PCs with limited hardware capabilities. Windows 7 Starter only allows up to 3 applications to run at once. This is something that will be offered only through OEM partners.

• Windows 7 Home Basic: Another offering that our OEMs asked for was a basic offering on Value PCs in emerging markets. This is something that will also only be available through OEM partners.

• Windows 7 Enterprise: An offering asked for by our best and largest enterprise customers which has all the advanced security and manageability capabilities which also includes BitLocker data protection. This is something available only through Volume License agreements.

And, for those who want everything we have Windows 7 Ultimate.

Continue reading: Which Windows 7 SKU is right for you? (full post)

Windows 7 Touch and Multi-Touch Demoed

Sean Kalinich | Feb 2, 2009 12:19 PM CST

In case you were wondering, I installed Windows 7 Beta in two ways on the TouchSmart PC, both which had different advantages. First, I upgraded from Vista, keeping all the drivers, etc. intact. Though I was able to get going quickly, the experience was hampered by touch software that HP ran on top of Vista. To get at the control that come native in Windows 7-which I highlight above-I had to partition the drive and do a clean install. Though I had to gather up some drivers and install them manually with some trickery, I got the more honest Windows 7 touch and multitouch experience.

I am happy that HP is pushing its TouchSmart platform to consumers with such enthusiasm, and I'm happy that Microsoft decided to weave touch into the fabric of its OS. One day we may even take it for granted, like keyboards and mice now. The real question is, what will developers do?
I'm going to spend the next few days investigating more touch and multitouch applications and interfaces, because while Microsoft and HP should be praised for supplying the capabilities, the goodness will come in what developers do with them.

Continue reading: Windows 7 Touch and Multi-Touch Demoed (full post)

How do games run on Windows 7 Beta 1

Sean Kalinich | Jan 26, 2009 11:59 AM CST

We just spent the last week installing and running through 22 different games, of varying ages, going back as far as Quake II. We also ran some of the newest, hottest titles, including several using the Games for Window logo program, which is supposed to be a sort of "Good Housekeeping" seal for PC games. If the game has the Games for Windows logo, so the thinking goes, then it should at least install and run properly.

Before we dive in, though, a caveat. Windows 7 is a beta OS, so some of the glitches and problems we encountered may well be fixed. Still, some of the problems we ran into were surprising, to say the least. On the other hand, the majority of games did seem to run just fine.

Continue reading: How do games run on Windows 7 Beta 1 (full post)

Go grab the Windows 7 BETA before it's too late

Cameron Wilmot | Jan 23, 2009 11:07 PM CST

The shutdown of general availability for the Windows 7 Beta will occur in 3 phases over the course of the next few weeks:

• Starting January 27th, the Windows 7 page will be updated with a warning that time is running out on downloading the Windows 7 Beta and that we will be limiting downloads shortly. People will be encouraged to register and start the download of the Windows 7 Beta sooner rather than later.

• February 10th, new downloads of the Windows 7 Beta will no longer be available. People who have already started their Windows 7 Beta download and have not yet finished will still be able to finish their download and are encouraged to do so.

• February 12th, people will no longer be able to complete their download of the Windows 7 Beta. Anyone who hasn't finished downloading the Windows 7 Beta will be unable to do so.

Product keys for the Windows 7 Beta will continue to be available. So if you have the Windows 7 Beta but didn't get a product key you will be able to do so even after February 12th.

Continue reading: Go grab the Windows 7 BETA before it's too late (full post)

Next steps for Internet Explorer 8

Sean Kalinich | Jan 15, 2009 3:16 PM CST

We will release one more public update of IE8 in the first quarter of 2009, and then follow that up with the final release. Our next public release of IE (typically called a "release candidate") indicates the end of the beta period. We want the technical community of people and organizations interested in web browsers to take this update as a strong signal that IE8 is effectively complete and done. They should expect the final product to behave as this update does. We want them to test their sites and services with IE8, make any changes they feel are necessary for the best possible customer experience using IE8, and report any critical issues (e.g., issues impacting robustness, security, backwards compatibility, or completeness with respect to planned standards work). Our plan is to deliver the final product after listening for feedback about critical issues.

We will be very selective about what changes we make between the next update and final release. We will act on the most critical issues. We will be super clear about product changes we make between the update and the final release.

The call to action now for the technical community is to download beta 2 (if you haven't already) and let us know about your experience. Next, please prepare for final testing with public update so you can let us know - quickly, loudly, and clearly - if you find absolutely critical issues with it before the release of the final product.

Continue reading: Next steps for Internet Explorer 8 (full post)

Gizmodo gets a BSOD in Windows 7

Sean Kalinich | Jan 13, 2009 8:47 AM CST

It's good to see that Microsoft hasn't bothered to change the old Windows blue screen; and by good, we mean bad. Isn't it about time to fail a little bit more gracefully? Or at the very least, in a way that actually makes sense to end-users? The error throws up the driver that caused it (way at the bottom of the error) before automatically rebooting, but actually identifying it via which type of component it is-sound, video, USB, hard drive-would be useful for people who just want to know what they did to cause it.

Continue reading: Gizmodo gets a BSOD in Windows 7 (full post)

In-depth look at the new Windows 7 Beta

Steve Dougherty | Jan 13, 2009 12:02 AM CST

Last week's CES saw the announcement of the much anticipated public beta of Windows 7, with 2.5 million license keys promised to beta testers on Friday. Friday arrived, and as is now well-known, Microsoft's servers melted under the load. The key generation is now more or less working, and the 2.5 million limit has been scrapped, so it's time to take a look at what's on offer.

The first public sightings of Windows 7 were at Microsoft's PDC developer conference in October last year. The lead-up to PDC was unusually secretive, with Redmond giving little away about what Windows 7 would actually contain when it shipped, in contrast to the extremely public lead-up to Windows Vista's release. The covers came off at PDC, with the star of the show being Windows 7's new taskbar. Unfortunately, the build that was given out to PDC attendees lacked the new taskbar, so the one feature we all wanted to play with wasn't actually available. The public beta, build number 7000, finally gives us the new shiny taskbar. If all goes well, this will be the only beta Windows 7 gets; a Release Candidate should land some time around April, going RTM in July, and hitting retail two to three months later.

Continue reading: In-depth look at the new Windows 7 Beta (full post)

Windows 7 Public BETA 1 available

Sean Kalinich | Jan 9, 2009 12:58 PM CST

Windows 7 is...
the next release of the Windows client operating system, built on the secure foundation of Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. Performance, reliability, security, and compatibility are core tenets of this release as we collect your feedback to meet our engineering goals of making Windows 7 the best-performing and most stable Windows operating system to date. New innovations in the product are designed to augment your ability as an IT professional to better provision and manage increasingly mobile PCs, protect data, and improve both end-user and personal productivity.
See Windows 7 for yourself

We are inviting IT professionals around the world to work with the Windows 7 Beta in their lab environments and secondary PCs to help ensure smooth adoption when the final product is available and to gather feedback from real-world settings.

Continue reading: Windows 7 Public BETA 1 available (full post)