A lot of people have been asking me when Windows 7 will release and what RTM means. They also seem unsure of which version to get. So, I decided to make a FAQ for Windows 7 RTM. If you have any questions that aren’t a part of this FAQ, mention them in the comments and I’ll answer them and add them to the list.
When is Windows 7 launching?
Which version of Windows 7 is currently available?
What is RTM?
It stands for Release to Manufacturers. RTM means that the code for Windows will be finalized and partners will receive it and start preparations to launch new PCs.
When will Windows 7 RTM?
Windows 7 will hit RTM this August.
When will Microsoft Partners, OEMs and businesses get Windows 7?
- ISV (Independent software vendor) and IHV (Independent hardware vendor) Partners will be able to download Windows 7 RTM from Microsoft Connect or MSDN on August 6th.
- Microsoft Partner Program Gold/Certified Members will be able to download Windows 7 RTM in English through the Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) Portal on August 16th. By October 1st, the remaining languages will become available to download.
- Microsoft Action Pack Subscribers will be about to download Windows 7 RTM in English starting August 23rd. By October 1st, the remaining languages will become available to download.
- OEMs will receive Windows 7 RTM software images beginning approximately 2 days after we officially RTM, as a little time is required to release and distribute these images.
- For Business Customers: Volume License (VL) customers with an existing Software Assurance (SA) license will be able to download Windows 7 RTM in English starting August 7th via the Volume License Service Center (VLSC). The rest of the languages for Windows 7 RTM should be available within a couple of weeks after that.
When will MSDN and TechNet subscribers get Windows 7?
MSDN and TechNet subscribers will get Windows 7 RTM on 6th August.
What is Windows 7 Family Pack?
Windows 7 Family Pack will allow users to install Windows 7 Home Premium (in selected markets) on up to 3 PCs at an expected price of less than $150.
Should I get a 32 bit copy of Windows 7 or 64 bit?
If you’re a novice user, I suggest you get the 32 bit version or stay with the version of Windows 7 you’ll get pre installed on your new machine since 64 bit has some rare compatibility issues that can be troubling unless you are capable of troubleshooting.
If you’re an experienced user and have more than 4 GB RAM and the processor to support a 64 bit OS, you should go for Windows 7 64 bit as it’ll provide better performance and stability specially in number crunching tasks.
How do I buy Windows 7?
Windows 7 can be pre-ordered from the Microsoft Store or from Amazon. Or you can buy a copy from a store after 22nd October. You’ll also get a copy of Windows 7 preinstalled if you buy a Windows 7 PC after 22nd October.
Why should I get Windows 7?
Windows 7 comes with new features that make it easier to get your work done faster. It handles media much better than previous version of Windows as well as provide superior performance. It provides better security as well. Check out all the new features here.
Is it better than Windows Vista?
Indeed. It fixes a lot of performance issues that were present in Vista. It also improves on features that were first introduced in Vista. Development of Windows 7 has been based on feedback from users.
Is it better than Windows XP?
Yes. It’s way better than Windows XP and provides a lot of new and improved functionality that just wasn’t present in Windows XP.
Which edition of Windows 7 should I get?
If you’re a home user or a student, Home Premium is the best version of Windows 7 for you. If you’re a developer or a business user, Professional is a better choice. If you’re looking for all the features of Home Premium and Professional, you should get Professional. Windows 7 Ultimate provides BitLocker and a choice of 35 language packs along with all the features of Professional. Check out the comparison chart of different Windows 7 editions.
How much does Windows 7 cost?
Here are the estimated retail upgrade prices of Windows 7:
- Windows 7 Home Premium (Upgrade): $119.99
- Windows 7 Professional (Upgrade): $199.99
- Windows 7 Ultimate (Upgrade): $219.99
And the estimated prices for full versions are:
- Windows 7 Home Premium (Full): $199.99
- Windows 7 Professional (Full): $299.99
- Windows 7 Ultimate (Full): $319.99
What is Windows 7 E?
Windows 7 E will ship in Europe without a browser due to EU legalities. A browser will be provided by the PC manufacturer on a CD or DVD or pre-installed by them on the PC.
What is Windows 7 N?
Windows 7 N is similar to E but it doesn’t include Windows Media Player – again due to EU legalities.
What are the hardware requirements for Windows 7?
- 1 GHz processor (32- or 64-bit)
- 1 GB of RAM (32-bit); 2 GB of RAM (64-bit)
- 16 GB of available disk space (32-bit); 20 GB of available disk space (64-bit)
- DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver
Will Windows 7 work with my hardware?
If Windows Vista worked on your PC or notebook, Windows 7 will run much faster on it. It is compatible with all your current hardware. In most cases it doesn’t even require you to manually install the driver, as it downloads them automatically from Windows Update.
Update: As Manan pointed out in the comments, you can download and run Microsoft Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor to see if your PC is ready for Windows 7.
Can I run Windows 7 on my netbook?
It should run well on your netbook if it matches the requirements for Windows 7. To find out how it’ll perform, you can try installing Windows 7 RC on it.
Will my current software work with Windows 7?
Most software should work fine with Windows 7. Some might require updates from their developers, but during Windows 7 testing, most developers and companies have updated their software. By launch, you shouldn’t have any compatibility issues with your software if it’s developed by a responsible company or developer.