Go get it - http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-7/beta-download.aspx
You'll need some technical skills, like knowing how to:
Burn an ISO file to make an install DVD (A good example of what we mean by “technical”)
Install Windows (of course)
Backup and restore your PC (There's a chance of losing files, so it's a good idea to do a backup of anything you want to save.)
Set up a network
It can be glitchy—so don't use a PC you need every day.
Minimum recommended specs call for:
1 GHz 32-bit or 64-bit processor
1 GB of system memory
16 GB of available disk space
Support for DirectX 9 graphics with 128 MB memory (to enable the Aero theme)
Internet access (to download the Beta and get updates)
And yes, like anything tech-related, these specs could change.
Some product features of Windows 7, such as the ability to watch and record live TV or navigation through the use of "touch," may require advanced or additional hardware.
You'll need a system recovery disk (and know how to use it).
You're [almost] flying solo: you'll need to troubleshoot problems yourself and call on other Beta testers for their know-how.
It's a two-way thing—Beta testing is about feedback so our developers can fix bugs and hear what appeals to the people who use our products daily. Please tell us what you think.
Watch the calendar. The Beta expires on August 1, 2009. To continue using your PC, please be prepared to reinstall a prior version of Windows or a subsequent release of Windows 7 before the expiration date. (See installation instructions.)
More Windows 7 goodness with the Windows 7 Keyboard Shortcuts post from Brandon Paddock. I’m a big fan on Windows Key + which brings up the funky little magnifying glass you can control as shown above. Handy for image editing etc. Here are a few others but for the full list head to Brandon’s blog
HT to Sarah
I loved Tim Sneath’s Bumper List of Windows 7 Secrets and in particular the wallpaper one as it showed some of the attention to detail that I love in Windows 7 that was missing in Vista.
Depending on which locale you choose when installing Windows 7 you will see a different set of wallpapers. As Tim notes, if you picked US, you’ll see beautiful views of Crater Lake in Oregon, the Arches National Park, a beach in Hawaii etc.
For the UK we get some druid looking fields, bluebells, what looks like a Lake District scene, rolling fields and more. It’s a really nice touch and you can check out all of the wallpapers if you have Windows 7 installed at C:\Windows\Globalization\MCT. (Note that some countries contain a generic set of placeholder art for now.)
I periodically review what search terms bring people to my blog and it continues to surprise me that a search for I’m A PC Stickers is pretty high up the list. I can only conclude people are looking for advice on ways to remove these things from their PC :)
Seriously…for years I have said that stickers are one of the most effective and viral social objects so if you are looking for an I’m A PC sticker leave your name here in the comments. I’m trying to see if there really is demand for these things and if so, whether I can help get them dropped from helicopters or something similar.
Oh and if you’re in London this Monday night (Feb 2nd) I may have a few of these things to hand out at The Burlington Arms
it’s a growing enterprise this themes business. Hot on the heels of my original post on there are more new Windows 7 Themes – this time from Paul Thurrott.
I also meant to post a link to http://www.ithinkdiff.com/windows-7-themes/ a while back when the author, Imran Hussain posted a link in my comments. He has a beautiful, large set of free Windows 7 themes.