Windows 7 RC: The Switch

This weekend, I finally finished getting our desktop computers replaced. They’re older system that have been running Windows XP for a long time. I’d gotten newer hardware and had started building new systems, intending to put Vista Ultimate SP1 on them (so we could take advantage of domain memberships and Windows Media Center goodness with our Xboxes), but one thing led to another and they’ve been sitting forlornly on a shelf.

I must confess – I’m not a Vista fan. I grudgingly used it as the main OS on my work MacBook Pro for a while, but I never really warmed up to it. SP1, in my opinion, made it barely useable. There were some features about it I grew to like, but those were offset by a continued annoyance at how many clicks useful features had gotten buried behind.

So when I finally got busy getting these systems ready – thanks to Steph’s system suddenly forgetting how to talk to USB devices – I decided to use Windows 7 RC instead. What I’d seen of Windows 7 already made me believe that we’d have a much happier time with it. So far, I’d have to say that’s correct. Steph’s new machine was slightly tricky to install – the built-in network interface on the motherboard wasn’t recognized so I had to bootstrap with XP drivers – but otherwise, the whole experience has been flawless.

Want to try Windows 7 for yourself? Get it here.

One of my favorite experiences was migrating our files and settings from the old machines. Windows 7, like Vista and Server 2008 before it, includes the Easy Transfer Wizard. This wizard is the offspring of XP’s Files and Settings Transfer Wizard but has a lot more smarts built in. As a result, I was able to quickly and easily get all our files and settings moved over without a hitch. With the exception of a laptop, we’re now XP free in my house.

Today, I ran across this blog post detailing Seven Windows 7 Tips. There were a couple of them I had already figured out (2, 4, and partial 3), but I’ll be trying out the rest this evening!

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