Surviving Windows 7: FAQ: Page 2

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#4: I’m confused by all the different editions … which do I need?

If you have to ask the question, then chances are that you will be perfectly happy with the Home Premium edition of Windows 7. This OS is the cheapest consumer edition of Windows 7 and includes everything that the average user will need.

If you think that you might need something extra that’s not included as part of Home Premium, then there are the Professional and Ultimate editions.

The differences between the editions are subtle. To determine what’s best for you I recommend that you take a look at the editions chart over on the Microsoft website.

#5: What if I pick the wrong edition?

Don’t panic! There are two options open to you:

• First, you can use Microsoft’s Anytime Upgrade feature that allows you to purchase a higher edition. This is a quick 10-minute process and prices are reasonable.

• You might be able to add the feature you are looking for using third-party software. In fact, there’s almost no feature that you can’t add using third-party software.

#6: Should I go for 32-bit or 64-bit Windows 7?

If your hardware can handle it, there’s essentially nothing preventing you from going 64-bit and being able to break the 4GB memory limit that has plagued the 32-bit operating system.

If you have any doubt about your hardware, consult the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor from Microsoft.

#7: What’s the quickest way to install Windows 7?

Believe it or not, I suggest that you copy the files off the DVD onto a USB key if you have one that’s big enough and install from that.

Why? Because it’s faster than messing about with the DVD. If you have more than one PC to upgrade, then the minutes that you save start adding up. Not only that, but after copying the files to a USB key you can put the DVD disc away for safe keeping.

#8: What should be the first thing I do after installing Windows 7?

First, get all your hardware working right. After that, install all your must-have software. Then, make a backup of your system and store this safely on an external drive if you have one. Don’t have one? Get one!

Why make a backup? Because when it comes time to reinstall you’ll have a nice, clean image of your system that you roll onto your PC in a matter of minutes, if things go wrong. It’s an additional hassle at the beginning, but when you need that image, you’ll thank yourself that you did it!

Note: Windows 7 hits stores October 22nd!

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Tags: Microsoft, Vista, Windows 7, Windows XP

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