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Archive for November 2012

The Windows 7 engineers have hinted that Windows 7 may be a minor release in the eyes of some users but a major one for others. While they haven’t defined Windows 7 as being a minor or major release, they are suggesting it’s somewhere in between.

The Engineering Windows 7 blog has recently talked about how the scale of a new operating system release is relative to every type of users. While for end-users a major release typically comes with an upgraded or new PC, for developers the defining factor is the number of new capabilities and APIs introduced.

In weighting the advantages and disadvantages of re-architecting the Windows operating system in order to create a major release for everyone, one that performs better and takes full advantage of the latest technologies, the engineers at Microsoft agree that the key is a balance in the release of any operating system, including Windows 7.

The blog posters were careful in not categorizing the new Windows 7 operating system as either a minor or major release, and resorted to calling it an “awesome release.”

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As Microsoft starts to spread more Windows 7 builds to beta testers, more screenshots and releases make it online for anyone to view and download. Microsoft tries to track down the leakers to make the release of Windows 7 more mysterious and exciting.

Starting September 12, Microsoft has started spreading M3 builds of the Windows 7 operating system within the company but also to selected beta testers outside of the company.

The M3 release of Windows 7 shows an updated Paint and Wordpad that feature the ribbon interface introduced by Microsoft Office 2007, however no noticeable new features were introduced. The Control Panel and many of its modules, such as the Display Settings now follow a new layout that’s meant to ease the access to common settings. Windows Media Player now also comes in a Lite version that loads audio and video files faster.

Microsoft officials frown upon the leaked versions because they might give the wrong idea to the public. Also, they kept a tight lid on the information surrounding the screenshots and the Windows 7 M3 release in general, but they are expected to release a broadscale beta of Windows 7 in December 2008 followed by the RTM (release to manufacturing) version just 6 months later, in the summer of 2009. The new rumored deadline of June 3, 2009 puts Windows 7 about 6 months ahead of the original deadline.

It is unclear whether or not Microsoft will be handing out early releases of Windows 7 at the upcoming PDC and WinHEC conventions; if they do, more leaked screenshots and builds are expected to leak from the hands of the attendees.

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Almost two months ago Eric Traut gave a presentation on operating systems in which MinWin was brought to light for the first time. Although used for running a basic HTTP server, MinWin is a stripped down version of the Windows kernel that will be used as the foundation for Windows Vienna.

Almost two months ago Eric Traut gave a presentation on operating systems in which MinWin was brought to light for the first time. Although used for running a basic HTTP server, MinWin is a stripped down version of the Windows kernel that will be used as the foundation for Windows Vienna. MinWin is composed of approximately 100 files totalizing 25MB on disk and 40MB set up, in comparison with Vista which is made up of over 5000 files and approximatley 2500MB on disk.

Since MinWin is simply an effort from Microsoft to bring the kernel down to the smallest possible size in order to achieve the best efficiency for the upcoming versions of Windows, it will not be a kernel that is going to be distributed all by itself but merely a starting point for the next generation of operating systems built by Microsoft that break the legacy with the Vista operating system and its ancestors.

 

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