It’s great to see Windows 7 Beta finally released to the world! We're very proud of what has been accomplished over the last months; in many ways, it sets a new quality bar for a beta operating system release. Building on top of the Windows Vista foundation, Windows 7 adds a great deal of polish and refinement to both the user interface and the underlying architecture, while at the same time introducing many new features and improvements that support new hardware, give power users and casual users alike better tools to manage their digital lives, and enable new classes of application experience.
Over future blog entries, I’ll spend time drilling into some of those areas in more detail; of course, there are plenty of articles already out there that dissect Windows 7 in some depth, with the Windows SuperSite and Ars Technica providing notably comprehensive entries. I’d also like to draw particular attention to the series of Windows 7 interviews that Yochay Kiriaty has been posting on Channel 9, which give the inside scoop on the development of many of the most significant new features.
For now, though, I want to focus in on some of “secrets” of Windows 7: the many little tweaks and enhancements that we’ve made in this release that I’ve discovered and collated over the last few months of using Windows 7 across my home and work machines. These are the things that are too small to appear in any marketing document as “features”, but that you quickly miss when you switch to an older version of Windows. There are some who think that we’re arbitrarily hiding functionality to make Windows easy for casual users, but I’d argue that a great deal of effort has been put into this release to satisfy power users. In homage to those of us who enjoy discovering the nooks and crannies of a new operating system list, I’ve put together the longest blog post that I’ve ever written. If you’ve downloaded and installed Windows 7 Beta recently, I think you’ll enjoy this list of my thirty favorite secrets. Have fun!
This side-by-side docking feature is particularly invaluable on widescreen monitors – it makes the old Windows way of shift-clicking on two items in the taskbar and then using the context menu to arrange them feel really painful.
If it’s not obvious by the semi-tortuous steps above, it’s worth noting that this isn’t something we’re exactly desperate for folks to re-enable, but it’s there if you really need it for some reason. Incidentally, we’d love you to really try the new model first and give us feedback on why you felt the new taskbar didn’t suit your needs.
Great tips, some work in Vista 2.
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Windows 7 seems to natively support DivX.
As most of you know the talk on the web over the last few days has been about Microsoft Windows 7 and it’s release into beta status. Those power users keen on having a look on what’s new have been frantically downloading it to get it installed. I now
Really interesting ! I have not played that much with 7 right now but I really like most of the new feature.
Something is a little disturbing in the 1st secret ... why aren't there any way for this : maximizes and restores the horizontal size ?
It is less useful than the vertical maximizing but we should also be able to do this for 4:3 resolution.
I like the 22nd secret.. I will try this one as soon as I get my UMPC which will be the perfect toy to try this secret !
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Awesome summary. Can you please tell us why Windows 7 STILL does not include the ability to mount ISO files as a virtual drive? Don't make me burn coasters, please!
Great roundup. And I like the fish. :) Clever clever.
Okay I read Wikipedia but I'm still confused... what's with the fish?
Nice run down tim.
(another name for the siamese fighting fish is "betta" -- is that it?)
What no Songsmith! I'm buying a Mac. Seriously though, can we haz the concept of sudo on Windows. Administrator should not be the default account for base installs, and it should ask me for my password before executing anything with Administrator permissions.
Great job and some very interesting things to be cheked out - thanks!
Quand on installe la Beta 1 de Windows Seven, puis la suite Windows Live (Messenger, Mail, Writer, …)
Hey thanks so much, I chuckled at the subtle betta fish, some of those will definitely come in handy, especially the vertical task bar.