My colleague forwarded an email from a Microsoft employee to me. It’s about Windows 7 RC news. It is confirmed that Windows 7 RC will be released in just a few weeks. It can be downloaded from Windows.com, TechNet and MSDN when it’s available. The downloads will be available at least through June 2009.
If you have installed Windows 7 Beta before, you know that there are two kinds of installation: clean install and upgrade. Here are the recommendations for different OS.
- Windows XP: Clean install.
- Windows Vista: Upgrade.
- Windows 7 Beta: Clean install (Upgrading is possible, but new features of RC will not work if you choose to upgrade from Windows 7 Beta to RC).
Even though you can upgrade from Vista to Windows 7 RC, I’d suggest that you do a clean installation instead. Windows Easy Transfer can help you transfer files and settings from the old OS to the new OS. However, the Windows Easy Transfer do not transfer settings for 3rd party applications by default. Please refer to this post about how to customize it to transfer those files.
There are some useful printing administration scripts since XP. When I tried to use them on Windows 7 Beta, I couldn’t run them. They are not in the system path. I found them in
where %SystemRoot% is usually C:\Windows . To use these scripts, you can set your path to this directory or just copy the scripts to
By default, you can only run these scripts by cscript.exe or wscript.exe. For example, to run prnmngr.vbs, you need to type:
If you want to run the scripts by typing it’s file name, type the following:
cscript //H:CScript //S
This command sets the default script host to cscript.exe, you can then run the scripts by typing the file names with or without extension.
There are seven scripts in total.
To learn more about these scripts, type the name followed by /? .
Recently the plug and play stops working on my MacBook under Windows 7 Beta several times. I had to restart the machine just to get it to work again. It is very annoying if you are in the middle of something and you have several applications running.
I first tried to restart the Plug and Play service, but the option to stop or restart the service has been grayed out. Accidentally, I found that the plug and play started to work again after I restarted Windows Explorer.
Follow these steps to restart Windows Explorer.
- Right click on the taskbar and select Start Task Manager.
- Select explorer.exe and click on End Process.
- Sometimes, the system offers to run explorer.exe after your terminate it. If not, click on File -> New Task (Run …) and enter explorer. Click on OK to continue.
PCMark05 is my favorite benchmark program for PC performance. I never had a problem running it. I tried to run it on my newly built Core i7 machine under XP, it hangs at splash screen. I had to use task manager to kill the process. I thought it doesn’t like my 4.5 TB RAID under XP, so I did not try to fix it. XP is not going to be the main OS for the machine, so I went ahead and install Windows 7 Beta.
After the installation of Windows 7 Beta, I tried to run PCMark05 again and to my surprise, same problem. I then got serious about the problem. A thread in AnandTech mentions a patch for it. The link in the original thread is invalid though.
I finally found a patch on Futuremark’s download site, which fixes my problem. I tested the patch and it works under XP and Window 7 Beta. Just in case the link might be broken in the future. The name of the patch is Futuremark_SystemInfo_Hotfix_Feb08_installer.exe and the title is Hotfix for 3DMark®06/05/03 and PCMark®05.
When I tested creating an ad hoc network on Windows 7, I could not figure out how to enable encryption. I tried a different combinations of passwords in ASCII or Hex formats and they did not work. It was not until I tried to create an ad hoc network on Leopard that I learned what should I put in as the password for the network. On Leopard, the program clears states that the password has to be 5 characters long.
I decided to try it again on Windows 7. I created an ad hoc network using WEP encryption and I gave it a 5 characters long password. It works flawlessly for this configuration.
I then revisited the process of creating an ad hoc network on Winodws 7 and found that the GUI actually gives you hints about the password. Please see the screenshots for WEP and WPA configurations.
There are not a lot of native drivers for Windows 7 Beta now. Even though you can use the Vista drivers for most of the components. Sometimes, you might need to use the compatibility mode to install those old drivers or application. To use the compatibility mode, follow these steps.
- Right click on the executable file and select Properties.
- Click on the Compatibility tab and check the box Run this program in compatibility mode for: . Select the legacy OS in the drop down box.
- Click on OK to close the dialog windows.
- Right click on the executable file again and select Run as administrator to run it.
If this still does not work, try to find updates for the drivers or applications you want to install.
Quite a few readers have reported problems booting to Windows XP after they install Windows 7 Beta. I was curious about how to fix the problem.
I took a Dell Dimension which I just rebuilt with Windows XP. I wanted to install Windows 7 and make this a dual boot machine and see if I can reproduce the error.
Windows XP is on the C: drive and the D: drive is reserved for Windows 7. There are two ways to run the Windows 7 Beta installer, one is booting the system using the installation DVD, the other is booting the machine to Windows XP and run the setup program under XP. I decided to use the first method.
The installation went without a problem. The installer even created an entry for booting to Windows XP on the boot menu. I could boot to the newly installed Windows 7 Beta. I noticed that even I installed Windows 7 Beta on the D: drive, the system now treats D: drive as C: drive. When I choose XP, the system just rebooted itself and booting to safe mode or choosing last known good configuration did not help. I suspect the problem is caused by the drive letter change.
What I did to fix the problem is to do a repair installation of Windows XP. For those who are not familiar with repair installation, you can google “windows xp repair installation” and you can find step by step instructions on how to perform this. And, no, the repair installation does not erase your files or programs from the machine. After repair installation, I could boot to Windows XP, but I could not boot to Windows 7 Beta.
I installed Windows 7 Beta again, but this time, I DID NOT boot the machine using the Windows 7 Beta installation DVD. I ran the setup program after I booted the mahcine to Windows XP. After installation, I could boot to both Windows XP and Windows 7 Beta. This time, the drive letter did not change and Windows 7 was installed correctly on D: drive.