Monday, July 13, 2009

7 Things in Windows 7

If you follow computer operating system news, you might have noticed the conversations in some technical circles about Microsoft's next operating system called Windows 7. This new Windows version is due out in the fourth quarter of 2009 and it includes some interesting and useful features.

It appears that Windows 7 is going to be a good one. At least that is the early consensus from those in the hallowed halls of IT. Windows 7 RC1 (Release Candidate 1) is being put to the test and here are seven (imagine that) things that are liked about this new operating system:

1) Windows 7 Action Center

No, this is not a news desk on your local TV station. This is a centralized location from which management of user security, troubleshooting, and recovery issues can be performed. All of these features were included in prior versions of Microsoft Windows, but you had to go to separate places to get to them. Now, this application brings them all together under one roof. Brought over and expanded from Windows Vista, this is one improvement that is sure to please.

2) Windows 7 Problem Step Recorder

Have you ever had a problem with your computer that keeps on happening again and again? If you cannot connect remotely to a help desk or other source of support, you cannot accurately describe what is happening. Now, you can use the Problem Step Recorder (PSR) and record all of the screen pictures, keystrokes and mouse clicks and save them into an MHTML (web) document that allows you to send it as a zipped (compressed) file to those who can help you.

3) Windows 7 ISO burner

The term ISO is a name for an image (software capture) that is created for the purpose of distributing software to computers. Mainly used to create CD's, the ISO standard has been around for a while. But in the past, Windows versions did not have a utility that allowed you to burn this directly to a CD or DVD. Now you will find this useful applet included in the operating system right where it needed to be all along.

4) Windows 7 Credential Manager

Ever get tired of managing multiple user names and passwords? The new Credential Manager is better than Windows Vista's User Accounts applet. It allows for secure storage of passwords and credentials in the Windows Vault that gives you access to other computers, websites, email accounts, etc.

5) Windows 7 Text Tuning and Color Calibration

In your use of Windows, getting things to look right on your monitors can sometimes be a chore. What resolution do you use? What if you want to use a resolution that does not look right on the screen? Now you can adjust that with this Control Panel application. This is particularly helpful if you have more than one monitor, because you can adjust each separately. It actually lets you compare text and colors on your monitor and pick what looks best to you.

6) Windows 7 System Repair Disk

Different Windows versions have included some repair features in the past, but nothing like this. This feature provides a very user-friendly graphical interface that allows you to create a CD or DVD that is bootable and contains files that can help you fix problems with your Windows Installation. You can access system recovery options even if you don't have or can't find your original Windows installation disc.

7) Windows 7 Backup and Restore

In Windows XP System Restore was perfected. But backup remained limited in its features. In Windows 7, backup features have been greatly improved and combined with restore functions to allow for a better overall experience in these critical areas.

Windows 7 includes many other new and improved features over prior versions of this operating system, but these are 7 of the most commented-on by early adopters.


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