The widely anticipated Windows 7, will be released on October 22nd. Windows 7 is perhaps the best operating systems Microsoft ever made, and after Windows Vista’s debacle, it has definitely put Microsoft fortunes on the right path again.
But should you as a user upgrade to Windows 7? Should you invest more money to buy a new OS? Should you wait to hear feedback from others before you upgrade?
Also Read: Ultimate List of Tips & Tricks for Windows 7
These questions cannot be easily answered, but let me tell you one thing. If you are using Windows Vista, it is well worth the $120 or so to upgrade to Windows 7. To be very frank Windows Vista was a nightmare, not only for Microsoft, but for several million users who were forced into buying new PCs and Laptops, pre-loaded with Windows Vista.
Frustrations with Windows Vista
When I was running Windows Vista on my HP Special Edition laptop, there was not one day, without frustrations and crashes. Since I have moved to Windows 7 RTM, I have been able to run the same laptop with double productivity. Not once have I seen a crash or BSOD (Blue Screen of Death), which is so famous and ridiculed in almost every Microsoft OS.
To be frank, I used Windows Vista for more than a year, and that piece of crap cut down my productivity to the lowest levels. I was spending more time trying to keep the system stable, running as few applications as I could, while I could get my work done.
As far as Windows 7 goes, I can tell you that I am very much satisfied. I have been able to open 30 applications at once, without even having my CPU or memory load go beyond 75%, a truly amazing feat.
Also Read: 3 Really Useful Windows 7 Tips
More Control for the User with UAC
Microsoft’s attempt at providing security, completely went wrong with the introduction of UAC (User Access Control). Not only was it totally annoying, it also made users less productive even when they wanted to perform the smallest of tasks.
Of course, you could always disable UAC in Vista. However, the mere thought of its existence made many users fret. Windows 7 also comes with UAC, however, this time Microsoft has given more control to the users, by allowing them to set the level of control the OS should have over activities on the PC. You can also disable the UAC in Windows 7.
Features and Goodies in Windows 7
To add to that, Microsoft has really put all its efforts into making Windows 7 productive for the users. Features like the redone taskbar, Libraries, JumpList, Aero peek, Aero Glass and Aero Shake make it a wonderful experience to work with. Windows 7 is the best in every way I could see. It makes everyday computing easier.
Drivers, Drivers and more Drivers
Back in the days, when I was using Windows 98. I had a full stack of drivers in the form of floppy drives and CDs. That stack grew smaller once I moved to Windows XP. However, it grew substantially after I moved to Windows Vista.
With Windows 7, I did not have to install a single driver, everything was installed for me. It detected each and every hardware on my laptop, and installed all the correct drivers. No more figuring out those yellow marks in the device manager.
Windows Vista, was a system administrators nightmare since it did not recognize even popular hardware. Windows 7 on the other hands will make system administrators pretty happy, since their work is cut down as far as installing drivers is concerned.
Lower Requirements to Run Windows 7
Windows 7 might work just fine on your old PC or laptop, unlike Windows Vista which had requirements that were extravagant in every sense. On the other hand, Windows 7 will work on your old workhorse, powering your Windows XP installation. However, having a decent graphics card and at-least 1GB Ram is recommended.
You may want to check the system requirements for Windows 7, to verify if your old system will be able to run Windows 7.
Benchmarking Windows 7
Several sites have benchmarked Windows 7, and most of the times, it has performed much better than its predecessor.
There are improvements in boot time, shutdown time and wakeup from sleep, which were really very slow in Windows Vista. In my tests, I have been able to run more than 35 full-blown heavy applications and haven’t yet seen any problems.
Ball is Your Court
The ultimate decision of buying Windows 7 or not, is in your hands. However, before you do buy it, take a tour and try it for yourself. What works for someone, may not actually work out for someone else. The best option, is to try things out for yourself before you make a decision.
You might also want to consider, that in the future Windows XP will no longer be supported. On the other hand, Windows Vista is a pain in the posterior. Windows 7 is not cheap, however you can buy anytime upgrade and a family pack which will allow you to install the same copy on 3 PCs.
Starting October 22nd you can also buy new laptops and desktop computers pre-loaded with Windows 7. If you want to upgrade your current PC or laptop, you can take a look at Windows 7 pricing and decide if you want to upgrade.
It would be interesting to know if you would be buying Windows 7 or upgrading your current PC? Do let us know about your thoughts.