If you haven’t heard yet, the new version of Windows is right around the corner. After having a ton of issues plague the Windows Vista operating system to the point that most people did not want to use it even if they had never seen it in their life, Windows 7 is trying to be a much more stable, more faster, more efficient operating system.
To create a buzz around the new OS and gather feedback, Microsoft decided to completely open up the download of their Release Candidate. You can download it for free from their web site (around 2.5 GB), burn it on a DVD-ROM and install it on as many computers as you want. Once this is done, you will be able to run the new OS until March 2010, at which point it will start shutting down after 2 hours of use. It will then completely stop working in July 2010. Still, from May to March is still a good 9-10 months of use!
After running the new OS for a few days, I can honestly say that I like it. It has not crashed on me once. Most applications that I have tried installing have worked without any hassle. Finally, the new user interface concepts that Windows 7 introduces are really enjoyable. For example, instead of having large buttons on the task bar for applications that are running, the new OS only shows the icons. Even more, if you have an application pinned to the task bar for quick access, starting it up will only change the color of the icon, not create a separate element on the task bar. Here is a quick snapshot of my desktop with a few windows up.
At this pace, I am going to really be considering getting an upgrade to the new OS when it’s released before the year is out. I just hope that they keep the upgrade price reasonable (CAD $100-130) as it currently is with Vista.