After trying for most of the day on Friday, I was finally able to get the Windows 7-64 bit ISO downloaded, burned to a DVD and installed on my DV6253 HP Entertainment laptop. Getting the product key took quite a bit longer-but I did get one.
I must say, this beta release beats the two betas that I played with for Vista. This one ‘feels’ like a shipping product. It’s slick, fast and looks nice. The updates to WordPad and Paint make them useful again and the new theme manager is pretty nice. So far, many of the UI irritants that I have with XP and Vista have been fixed, though the font viewer is STILL the bloody version that shipped waaaaaaay back in the stone age.
Speaking of themes, there is a nice background changer available that will periodically change the wallpaper. Very nice. The included themes are pleasant and offer nice variety. There three basic theme types: Aero Glass with the nice pretty stuff, Aero Basic without the transparency and Classic? What the hell? Why put that there? It should have died with Windows 2000. If I want my machine to look like something I bought in 1996, I will run Windows 98. Enough with the ‘classic.’
So far, the only application that I have installed is Evernote 3, but only because it was the first thing I saw in my backup of the laptop, so I gave it a try. Evernote 3 is an inferior version of both Evernote 2 and Microsoft OneNote. It is a glorified note taking application. Useful, but limited. I digress. Evernote installed just fine and seems to work as designed. I suspect everything else I have been using for the last two plus years in Vista will just work.
Windows 7, so far, has been just fine. No real surprises. It installed in about half the time that Vista did and a fraction of what it took to install XP or Windows 2000.
I think Microsoft has a winner here. I need to use it for a while, but, dare I say, on the surface, it seems better than Vista and way better than XP.