Windows 7 SKUs Announced

image Today Microsoft announced the SKUs for Windows 7.

The version lineup is different than Vista. Home Basic is now only available in “emerging markets”, and a new “Starter” edition has been added for lower-powered PCs (think netbooks). That’s a bit of a reversal compared to Vista where “Home Basic” was on just about every PC at big box stores.

Also noteworthy is that the “Ultimate” version won’t be sold directly to businesses or consumers, and will only be offered as an add-on. Here are the highlights of the different versions of Windows 7:

  • Windows 7 Starter
    – Broad app and device compatibility with up to 3 concurrent applications
    – Ability to join a Home Group
    – Improved taskbar and JumpLists
  • Windows 7 Home Basic
    – Available in Emerging Markets only
    – Unlimited applications
    – Live thumbnail previews & enhanced visual experience
    – Advanced networking support (ad-hoc wireless networks and internet connection sharing)
    – Mobility Center
  • Windows 7 Home Premium
    – Unlimited applications
    – Aero Glass & advanced windows navigation
    – Easy networking & sharing across all your PCs & devices
    – Improved media format support, enhancements to Windows Media Center and media streaming, including Play To
    – Multi-touch and improved handwriting recognition
  • Windows 7 Professional
    – Unlimited applications
    – Ability to join a managed network with Domain Join
    – Protect  data with advanced network backup and Encrypting File System
    – Print to the right printer at home or work with Location Aware Printing
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
    – Available through Microsoft Volume Licensing only
    – Unlimited applications
    – BitLocker data protection on internal and external drives
    – DirectAccess provides seamless connectivity to your corporate network.  (requires Windows Server 2008 R2)
    – Decrease time branch office workers wait to open file across the network with BranchCache. (requires Windows Server 2008 R2)
    – Prevent unauthorized software from running with AppLocker
  • Windows 7 Ultimate
    – Unlimited applications
    – Includes all Enterprise and all Home Premium features, including multi-language packs

Source: PC Magazine and Microsoft Press Release

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Windows 7 vs Ice Storm

This picture was taken in front of my house the morning of 01/28/2009 Tonight the Kentucky Small Business Server User Group (KYSBSUG) is scheduled to have our 59th consecutive monthly meeting. The topic is “Windows 7 – First Look”. Unfortunately, we’re in the midst of an ice storm in Louisville, which makes driving (and even getting electricity) rather difficult. I checked in on Kevin Royalty up in Cincinnati and apparently they’ve got even worse conditions than we do (they’ve got 10” of snow and ice so far).

Here are some pictures of the conditions near my house in Louisville:

The show must go on though, if possible. And to be on the safe side, instead of risking life and limb on the icy roads tonight, we’re switching to a Microsoft Live Meeting format. Here’s the registration link:

The Live Meeting seats are limited and will be made available on a first-come first-served basis. The actual Live Meeting URL will be emailed out to all registered attendees at 6:00 PM Eastern (GMT –5). If you don’t get an email at 6:00, we don’t have power. 🙂 We hope to see you there!

02/02/2009 UPDATE: You can now download a ZIP file with the entire Windows 7 presentation. Instructions:

  1. Simply right-click and save this file (40.5 MB) to your hard drive.
  2. Unzip the file.
  3. Double-click the ReplayMeeting.htm file to replay the meeting.
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