Windows 7 Hits the Market

windows7 Windows 7 Hits the Market

Today is the day that Windows users have been waiting for since 2001- the day when Microsoft releases an XP update that isn’t complete and utter crap. Unlike Vista, Windows 7 maintains the low profile of Windows XP while also giving the user the interface of Vista. Many people had to skip Vista due to slow or old computers, but with Windows 7 you can run the newest version of Windows on more or less any machine that runs XP- including netbooks.

This is of course an MP3 player website and so computer operating systems isn’t normally our business, but the release of Windows 7 does bring a lot of features that directly affects how you use your MP3 player with the OS. Read on for a list of how WIndows 7 will improve your MP3 player experience.

Device Stage

We’ve covered device stage before, so I’ll only do a quick summary of the feature. Device stage is basically a dedicated console on your computer which gives you information about your MTP player. This can include manuals, links to accessories etc or a more basic interface like with the S540 in the picture, which gives you a few transfer options as well as a capacity meter and battery meter. Device stage is accessible through “devices and printers” in the control panel and should also pop up as an autorun option when you plug in your player. Note that this is for MTP players only

device stage 01 thumb 480x270 Windows 7 Hits the Market

Libraries

The Library feature is basically a set of virtual folders than consolidate the files from selected folders into one. The music library will for example let you select various folders with music in them located in different places on your computer or the network (if the files are properly indexed, which requires Vista or 7) and the content of these folders will show in the music library folder as if they were all a single folder. This makes it a lot easier to keep track of your music and should also make it easier to use music software that looks for changes in a folder once that is supported by the programs in question. So far I’ve been disappointed with the lack of support for this feature; yes, Windows 7 wasn’t released until today, but the public beta has been out for 8 months. If they wanted to support it, they had plenty of time- nothing stops anyone from supporting a feature before the release instead of after.

Windows Media Player 12

While not technically a feature of Windows 7, the OS does come with Windows Media Player 12. Many people don’t know that MTP while acting like drag-and-drop in Windows actually require Windows Media Player installed to work. Therefor a lot of people who don’t use WMP still run version 10, which lacks several MTP features introduced in WMP 11 and 12. This includes better understanding of supported files, so that it will let you transfer files that WMP 10 will insist are unsupported and even ask you if you want to transcode files that the player doesn’t support. Bottom line, Windows 7 will force people to upgrade their WMP version to one that will make MTP a lot better even if they never use WMP.

Removable media capacity meter

While a small feature, it’s one I find really useful havign used Windows 7 for a while now. Vista added a new feature where you could see the capacity of a drive as a small capacity meter under the disk icon in “My Computer”. This did not work for removable media, but that has been fixed in Windows 7, allowing you to see the available capacity of your MSC/UMS (not MTP this time) player without right clicking -> properties.

capacity meter win7 Windows 7 Hits the Market

Windows powered media devices

The last few years computer parts have gotten cheaper, smaller and more power efficient. Windows 7 is the first Windows OS that supports multi-touch, which opens up for tablet devices that don’t need keyboard to work. This combined with devices the shape of the Viliv S5 will make for killer PMPs, and the prices are coming down so much it’s actually a viable option. Among the first manufacturers to do this is Archos, which is coming out with the Archos 9 Internet tablet this fall. While larger than most PMPs, it’s comparable in price and usability to the old Archos 704/Archos 7 type PMPs but with a lot more functionality under the hood.

Should you upgrade?

My definite answer to this would be “yes”. No matter if you run XP or Vista at the moment, Windows 7 will be a major upgrade in any way. Normally an OS is full of incompatibility issues and bugs when it’s first released, but Windows 7′s excellent backwards compatibility and the extensive beta testing that was done on the OS before release means that you can safely move over to the new OS with no regrets. The cheapest option is an upgrade pack to home premium if you have a qualifying system to upgrade from, and the cheapest option if you don’t is the $199 Windows 7 Home Premium. >z always, Amazon has them all.




14 Comments

DOOM on October 22, 2009 9:29 AM

Very informative write up :) Pre-ordered mine about a month ago (Free btw) should be getting it in a couple of weeks or days depending on how many orders they received.:O

gill_za on October 22, 2009 10:13 AM

Nah… Never looked back and since switched to Linux. Use wine for games.P.S. Tried installing winxp with custom SATA drivers for my laptop recently E8210 and spent 3 days!! Tweaking all the drivers, getting updates, solving issues… Linux worked on it out of the box 2 years ago…

gill_za on October 22, 2009 10:14 AM

pardon my messed up sentences :) little sluggish in the morning

Martin Sägmüller on October 22, 2009 11:15 AM

They finally fixed the drive capacity display for removable storage? Oh brother, took them only about 7 years or so. It worked fine in Windows 2000 and was broken in XP and Vista ever since.

humorsimpson on October 22, 2009 12:45 PM

Do you mean that “Windows 7 will be a major upgrade in EVERY way”? Not clear by the sentence.

Nobody Important on October 22, 2009 5:07 PM

I can’t say I agree with the review. XP still works just fine. Vista, if you have a modern machine, is adequate. Windows 7 isn’t much of an upgrade, and certainly not worth the $120 asking price. Go buy a nice pair of headphones instead.

Curiouss on October 22, 2009 5:24 PM

I like the REmebmer memory capacity meter thingy =D

Jpoon on October 22, 2009 5:57 PM

I’m going to start the formatting process today after I’m all settled in at home :D …The biggest hassle was backing up all my stuff to make sure I won’t lose anything in transition!I can’t wait to see how it pans out though, I totally skipped Vista. XP 64bit professional all the way until Windows 7.If any of you guys have a student e-mail address (name@institution.edu) then definitely go for the 30 dollar upgrade patch. For 40 bucks you can make sure that you have a backup download as well, so no worries about being without an OS backup disc. I’m sure I will be quite happy as I’ve been using the release candidate on my partition for quite some time now.

Junkk29 on October 22, 2009 11:56 PM

If you’re a student you can get it for $29.99 freakin awesome!http://www.win741.com/

Jordan on October 23, 2009 8:56 PM

Yeah, what Junkk29 said! That’s what I’m going to do. And I’ve been using the Windows 7 RC and it’s pretty good, I really like it. Major upgrade from XP and Vista and it’s very pretty. :)

nezbleu on October 24, 2009 12:50 AM

“The last few years computer parts have gotten cheaper, smaller and more power efficient.”Not just the last few years, but for many years. So why does an OS upgrade cost more every time? Two hundred bucks for an operating system? Really?Once again, Linux rocks.

Anthony Galli on October 25, 2009 12:51 AM

Win7 really seems to be the Ultimate Windows OS.As soon as apps are upgraded and incompatibilities are fixed, I hope it will be the true Win2K sucessor!

Arthur Bishop on October 26, 2009 8:04 AM

Windows 7 is merely Vista fixed up. Great although expensive considering if you forked out for Vista and now have to double dip for something Microsoft should have provided initially.

ericgt on October 26, 2009 5:02 PM

It’s all down hill from Win2K/XpSpent the weekend install on some else’s comp. Spent 1 hour with the beta in August, that was more than enough for me.

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