While the worldwide economy is showing signs of recovery from the financial crisis of the past years, fact is that cost is a key fact to consider when it comes down to the adoption of new technology. Windows 7 makes no exception to this rule, with the operating system bound to have businesses that are upgrading pay for more than just the price tag. Microsoft is now offering a free tool designed to permit corporate customers to calculate just how much will embracing the latest iteration of the Windows client cost them.

In this regard, Windows 7 ROI Tool Lite is advertised as a resource capable of showing companies just how much they stand to save by upgrading to Windows 7. Unlike end users, corporate customers need to take into consideration the Total Cost of Ownership for new technology, as well as get estimates on their Return on Investment.

Windows 7 ROI Tool Lite “helps organizations assess their current PC total cost of ownership and the potential benefits from implementing Windows 7 to help lower costs, improve service levels and drive business productivity. Enter requested information, indicated in yellow. Default research metrics provided regarding current opportunities and potential savings based on Microsoft studies of first deployments, and Alinean research – 2009,” reads the description of the tool. More »

Just as it was the case for Windows Vista, Microsoft’s latest iteration of the Windows client can also be uninstalled, although “uninstall” does not specifically describe the process that end users will need to take in order to revert to a previously existing copy of a Windows OS. At the same time, also as for its predecessor, Windows 7 can only be removed and the previous Windows platform reinstated in a single installation scenario. Namely, uninstalling the latest version of the operating system is only possible if users installed Windows 7 as a new installation over an earlier version of Windows in the first place.

Obviously, clean installs of Windows 7, where no old OS existed on the hard drive, cannot be uninstalled. The same is valid for users that opted to upgrade from Windows Vista to Windows 7, as well as for those who created multi-boot configurations, deploying Windows 7 alongside older Windows releases.

Uninstalling Windows 7 is only possible if “You used the Windows 7 installation media to install Windows 7 to the same hard disk drive on which you had Windows XP, Windows Vista, or another version of Windows 7 installed. In this scenario, the Windows 7 installation will have created a Windows.old folder that contains your previous operating system and personal files. This Windows.old folder is in the root of the Windows partition,” Microsoft noted.
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To add Windows 7 to a system alongside an existing version of Window, you first need to make sure that you have an available partition (or unformatted disk space) separate from the partition that contains the system files for your current Windows installation.

The target partition can be a separate partition on the same physical disk, or it can be on a different hard disk. If your system contains a single disk with a single partition used as drive C, you cannot create a multiboot system unless you add a new disk or use software tools to shrink the existing partition and create a new partition from the free space. (The Windows 7 Disk Management console, Diskmgmt.msc, includes this capability; to shrink partitions on a system running an older Windows version, you’ll need third-party software.) The new partition does not need to be empty; however, it should not contain system files for another Windows installation. Run the setup program, choose the Custom (Advanced) option, and select the disk and partition you want to use for the new installation.

The setup program automatically handles details of adding the newly installed operating system to the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store.

And how do you edit and configure the Boot Configuration Data store? Surprisingly, the only official tool is a command-line utility called Bcdedit. Bcdedit isn’t an interactive program; instead, you perform tasks by appending switches and parameters to the Bcdedit command line. More »

1. Make Windows 7 faster – Part 1

2. Make Windows 7 faster – Part 3

3. Make Windows 7 faster – Part 2

4. Vista to Windows 7 Upgrades Kill Access to OEM Recovery Applications

5. UI Changes to Expect in Firefox 4.0

6. Recover Windows 7 from Driver Update

7. Patch Registration Cleanup Tool for Window 7

8. Apply a shade of Windows 7 to XP

9. Windows XP Mode RTMs

10. Windows 7 RTM Patches ISO Image
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Keeping Windows 7 and Windows Vista running under normal parameters takes much more work than is done in Redmond alone. Fact is that the ecosystems of software and hardware products designed to integrate with the Windows clients have to do this seamlessly, especially when dealing with solutions that hook into the core of the operating system. Driver update failures for example, can easily cripple Windows 7 and Windows Vista, causing the two platforms to no longer start.

“This problem may occur if any one of the following conditions is true: The new device or the driver causes conflicts with other drivers that are installed on the computer. A hardware-specific issue occurs. The driver that is installed is damaged,” Microsoft explained.

In case you performed a driver update for a device component of your computer and Windows 7 and Vista are acting up, then your best choice to resolve the matter is to roll back the changes. Reverting the driver update will cause the issues introduced by the refresh to go away. First you will need to boot into Windows.
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