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First look at Windows 7 beta 1

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I have to thank Santa for leaving me a copy of Windows 7 beta 1 in my stocking for Christmas Day. This beta (build 6.1.7000.0.081212-1400) should be the first and only beta from Microsoft of Windows 7, and I’m pleased to report that it’s a good one.

I’ve not had a long time with Windows 7 beta 1 (given the holidays) but I’ve played with it long enough to form a few opinions:

* There are no new features in this build. If Microsoft has any new stuff lined up for the RTM then we’re going to have to wait to find out. Features-wise, build 6.1.7000.0.081212-1400 is similar to earlier builds I’ve looked at (here are some posts for you to check out: 1, 2, 3).

* This beta is of excellent quality

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does anybody really care about ms windows anymore?

re: meh

Just 90+% of the desktop market.

Nah, most of the microsoft

Nah, most of the microsoft windows users I know really don't care. A lot of them don't even like microsoft windows. They are just using what they know. New version of windows? big fail.

Full Windows 7 beta 1 review I’ve now had my hands on Windows 7 beta 1 build 6.1.7000.0.081212-1400 (the build that is widely expected to be made available to beta testers by Microsoft early in January) and have had some time to compose my thoughts and feelings about this latest release.

Beta 1 is very similar to M3 builds

The first thing that’s striking about Windows 7 beta 1 is how similar it is to the M3 builds that I’ve been using since October. In fact, put builds 6801 and 7000 beta 1 side-by-side and you might be hard pressed to spot the difference (especially if you activated the Blue Badge features). This means that if you’ve been following Windows 7 builds then when you get your hands on the beta you’ll be pretty familiar with the beta. The flip-side is that I’ve got fewer new things to show you!

It’s unusual not to be faced with heaps of new features with each build - it’s almost as though Microsoft had a plan for Windows 7 right from the start, baked these features into the early M3 build and have since been working on refining these features. This is an interesting approach that seems to have resulted in the best beta build of an OS from Microsoft that I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen a LOT of beta builds!). Wow!

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