Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What is new in Windows 7

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I recently installed windows 7 beta in my PC, it is the upcoming version of microsoft client operating system series, just after Windows Vista. At the first sight, we can identify, windows 7 is just an upgrade of Vista. But there are certain new features added, and as usual, certain options has been eliminated.

Let us look at some of those enhancements, which is coming with Windows 7

As of Office 2007 applications, Ribbon interface implementation in Paint and Wordpad applications:

Windows Explorer, almost similar to Vista

New Taskbar and Start Menu Properties contains a few new options and has a re-designed interface.

Windows 7 setup is very same as Vista setup. Same interface, same options, same wizard, same timings. Everything is same except the setup background and the boot screen which is too awesome. "Starting Windows" is displayed along with a glassy scrollbar in the middle of boot screen. The setup background is the same image which is used as desktop wallpaper in the latest Windows 7 built.

Calculator has also been re-designed. It provides 2 new options: Programmer and statistics.

The Small Stuff

Want to change your screen resolution? In XP or Vista, you have to right-click the desktop and choose Properties (or Personalize, in Vista), then open another dialog box. In Windows 7, right-click on the desktop and the Screen Resolution menu is right there. One click saved.

Another example is backing up your system to an external hard drive. In XP, you need a third-party program. In Vista, you need to plug in the drive and then hunt down and configure the Backup program. In Windows 7, you plug in an external hard drive and one of the options prominently featured on the AutoPlay menu is Use This Drive for Backup. If you choose that option, it walks you through the process of setting up an automated backup.

There are undoubtedly a few examples of actions that are more complex in Windows 7 than they used to be, but on balance, my experience with Windows 7 is that it gets most common tasks done faster, with fewer menus and a dramatic decrease in annoying pop-ups and unnecessary wizards. That’s the kind of productivity enhancer that pays off for users at any level of skill and experience, once they’ve gotten over the learning curve.

Desktop Search

The more I use the refined Desktop Search feature in Windows 7, the more I love it. From the standpoint of raw functionality, you could accomplish the same thing with Windows 2000 or XP and a variety of free utilities such as X1 or Copernic. The precursors of Windows 7 Search originally appeared in 2004 as part of the MSN toolbar, then as an add-in service for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, and finally as a standalone Windows Search 4.0 update that shared code with its Windows Vista sibling.

Integrated search is one of those features that rewards a little bit of training. Learning a few key operators from the Windows Search Advanced Query Syntax, for example, makes it much easier to narrow a search. Probably the biggest advance in Windows 7, though, is the way that the Start menu search works. In Vista, you can type a term (or an advanced query) into the Search box, and you get a subset of the total results. If the thing you’re looking for isn’t in that list, you have to click Search Everywhere and fuss with an extra set of options in Windows Explorer. In Windows 7, each heading is a live, clickable link:

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