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.
A feature that we noticed during our earlier trial of the beta but weren't able to try out first-hand is the Jump List. Fully functional in the public beta, jump lists add a handy submenu to many applications, so you can see items that you recently worked with in a given app, or look at further options you have for starting new documents or accessing often-used features.
In our trials, the jump lists helped us get more out of the apps we worked with. But if this feature is to become even more useful, developers must embrace them in upcoming versions of new programs.
Another improvement in Windows 7's interface compared to Vista's is the simplified Shutdown control on the Start Menu. Gone is the unhelpful icon; in its place are clear, concise textual menus that tell you exactly what will happen when you click on them.
So you no longer have to reconfigure your Start Menu to determine whether your PC will shut down entirely or merely go into hibernation when you click the button.
A new addition to Windows 7 is the Action Center, which pulls a variety of security and maintenance features together in a single menu for simpler management.
Although it's unlikely to wow many advanced users, the Action Center's clearly labeled options should make it easier for beginners and intermediate users to set their system security preferences with confidence, manage backups, and troubleshoot minor performance problems or return to a previous restore point if things go awry.
Windows 7: Action Centre
As noted in our look at the earlier beta, Microsoft has tweaked User Account Control in some important ways that should go a long way toward addressing many Vista haters' complaints.
It now offers four levels of protection: always notify, notify only when programs try to make changes (this is the default), notify when programs try to make changes but don't dim the screen (our preference), and never notify.
We won't win many allies by saying this, but the setting we were hoping to see added to this list is an option to require a password when programs try to make changes, which would add a level of actual security to UAC: any fool with access to your computer can click Continue, but requiring an admin password would add a meaningful level of security.
This missing feature is standard on more-secure operating systems such as Linux, and it would be a worthwhile (though admittedly unpopular) addition. In any case, having four options built in is a major step up from the old Vista UAC workarounds.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® Portable SSD
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Google Daydream VR headset
Acer Swift 7
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
HP Pavilion x360 13”
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Surface Pro 4
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Village Roadshow aims to block 40 pirate sites
- Analysts peer into Microsoft's rumored Windows 10 Cloud
- Google lets users get social with Maps
- Microsoft unveils a bonanza of security capabilities
- Here's how Evernote moved 3 petabytes of data to Google's cloud
PCW Evaluation Team
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.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- Horizon Zero Dawn review
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Japan's pop culture, anime-friendly, J-Pop shrine, Kanda Myojin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCPerformance Test AnalystQLD
- FTMid-Level Software Engineer x 2 - Positive Vetting, NV2 or NV1 required!!SA
- TPInstructional Designer | DETQLD
- CCSenior Automation TesterQLD
- FTTechnical Consultant MS Dynamics AXWA
- CCCommercial Contract AdministratorACT
- FT.net Developer (Front and Back end)QLD
- FTSenior Database AdministratorVIC
- TPDrupal Developer - Immediate startQLD
- TPMobile DeveloperWA
- FTSenior Java Developers (Several positions available)QLD
- CCService ManagerACT
- FTSnr SOC Security Coordinator - Perm - North Ryde areaNSW
- CCProject Manager (Event Management)NSW
- FTSenior Business AnalystSA
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- CCStorage System EngineerNSW
- FTJunior Software Developer - SASACT
- CCSenior Technical Business Analyst - ITMSP - Melbourne CBDVIC
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Supply Chain Modules)QLD
- CCSenior Infrastructure EngineerNSW
- TPSenior Java Developer - ContractQLD
- CCProject Support OfficerNSW
- CCProject SpecialistVIC
- TPProject Coordinator/Junior Project ManagerVIC