At about the same time I was experiencing freezes on the HP2710P tablet pc with Vista Business, I decided to download the beta version of Windows 7 (build 7000). Let me say at the outset that the installation and the amazing experience I have had with Windows 7 had me seriously thinking if I should stay with Mac OS X. Of course, it is too early to say if I will do so, but one thing is for certain, switching back to Windows is now a possibility. Even with just the beta version (we all know that the final version will only be better), my experience has been superb to say the least. Most of the things that I like with theMac OS X, I can now see almost flawlessly implemented in Windows 7. W7 has practically turned the 2 year old HP2710P 1.2 ghz Core two Duo into a productivity gem.
The Install. After downloading the ISO image for the 32 bit version, I just followed the steps here in order to have a DVD disc of the beta OS. I then popped the DVD in an external DVD drive and after a restart, I just followed the onscreen instruction. It was defintely the best install experience of any windows OS. I was done in less than 30 minutes. All of the 2710Ps drivers seem to be built into the installer and everything from sound, wireless, and tablet functionality were all working fine. The only issue was with the fingerprint reader but it was handled very well by W7's ACTION CENTER (a notification appeared in the system tray).
Compatibility with my favorite applications. All of my must have applications are installed and are functioning without any issues. I have installed Office 2007, Mindmanager 8.0, Zoundry Raven, Sugarsync, Firefox 3.0.5, Photoshop CS3, and TextAloud. I also installed a trial version of Kaspsersky internet Security as it is one of the 3 being endorsed by W7's Action Center.
Tons of Keyboard shortcuts. One thing I love in the OS X is Quicksilver, a software that allows you to customize triggers to open a specific application or folder. The built-in W7 shortcuts coupled with Launchy is, IMHO, close enough to Quicksilver.
Attention Grabber no More. Using it for 2 days, I find that W7 allows me to work without any distractions which was common (read: everytime) in Vista. Applications would open in a snap, no slow downs, and except for those from Kaspersky, I hardly ever get any pop ups from the OS. However, I would need to give it more time before I say more.
Speed is awesome. At least when compared to Vista and XP. ZDNet actually made a comparison here.
The experience thus far has been great that I also installed W7 in the netbook. I will write about that experience as soon as I finish installing my favorite applications.
Let me just end this blog with this statement for now:
As someone who performs almost every computing task on a Mac (for the past one and a half years) and tells anyone who will listen that the average consumer should be using a Mac instead of a Windows machine because of security and stability, I'm starting to prep myself for the single moment that I thought would never come: I'll be using a Windows 7 machine as my main computer and telling anyone who will listen that, believe it or not, using the latest Microsoft operating system is truly worth it - once again.
UPDATE: I have now installed W7 in two other computers here.