Microsoft Windows 7 RC1
Windows 7 Release Candidate 1 (RC1) is a polished piece of work, ready for prime time
- Early beta tests suggest that the OS will be quicker than Vista
- Too soon to make a proper assessment of the operating system
It's way too early to make a proper assessment of Windows 7, but Microsoft has made its intentions clear: Windows 7 is intended to right the wrongs Vista wrought, but retain that operating system's good points. And at this point, we can't argue with that. Our early beta tests suggest that the OS will be quicker than Vista, which can only be a good thing. We'll be updating this review as we get more information on and time with Windows 7, so be sure to bookmark this page.
Windows 7 RC1: Windows Explorer and search tweaks
In Windows 7 RC1, both Windows Explorer and file search have been tweaked in subtle, but generally useful ways.
One small but useful change is the way in which Windows Explorer displays folders in the Address Bar. Previously, if you browsed to a folder deep within your hard disk and the entire path could not be displayed, the parent folder of your current folder might be truncated. In Windows 7 RC1, the parent folder and the current folder are always displayed.
Searching has been slightly improved as well. In the beta, when you searched for a file, it also displayed snippets of information from the file that were quite useful in determining whether the file was the one you were searching for. In Windows 7 RC1, you now get more of a good thing — the snippets are longer, and they're included more frequently.
In addition, in the beta, you would see file properties within search results, but those properties were not labeled. In Windows 7 RC1, they are labeled, making them easier to understand. In addition, there have been some layout and colour changes. The result is that, overall, search results are easier to scan.
Windows 7 RC1: A few desktop tweaks
Among the more entertaining additions to Windows 7 in RC1 are a slew of very un-Microsoft-like desktop backgrounds that make one wonder whether people in the Microsoft art department have been ingesting chemical compounds that are not strictly legal.
Many of the new backgrounds are a mixture of Sergeant Pepper-style psychedelic art and Japanese anime, with a chaser of Hieronymus Bosch thrown in. They're thoroughly entertaining and the most unlikely art you'll ever see coming out of Microsoft.
In Windows 7 RC1, you can also control whether to hide or display desktop icons and gadgets. Right-click the desktop, select View, and you get a menu that gives you control over whether you want to display the icons and gadgets or hide them.
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PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
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