Windows 7 has RTMed & will be available through various sources starting from August 6th, not to mention that the particular build 7600.16385.090713-1255 has been available on torrents for quite some time. If you’re already on a RC (or later) build or are planning to upgrade from Vista, here are some pointers & links that might be helpful. If you’re running Windows Vista Home Premium or Windows Business you’re good to go. Windows 7 will definitely perform better on your machine than Vista.
If you’re uncertain about your PC hardware capabilities for Windows 7, then use Microsoft Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor.
Windows XP to Windows 7 is NOT supported, use Windows Easy Transfer.
You’ll need to do a clean install. However, you can use Windows Easy Transfer to move your files.For XP it needs to be downloaded, Windows 7 has the Easy Transfer wizard built-in.
Window Vista to Windows 7:
|Windows Vista RTM||Windows 7|
|Windows Vista (SP1 or SP2)||Windows 7|
|Windows Vista 32 bit (SP1 or SP2)||Windows 7 64 bit||(Clean Install)|
|Windows Vista 64 bit (SP1 or SP2)||Windows 7 32 bit||(Clean Install)|
|Windows Vista Business (SP1 or SP2)||Windows 7 Home Premium||(Clean Install)|
|Windows Vista Ultimate||Any SKU other than Ultimate/Enterprise||(Clean Install)|
If you’re upgrading to Windows 7 from a Vista edition that is lower in hierarchy you’ll need to do a fresh install. In all such cases make use of Windows Easy Transfer.
If you’re upgrading from Windows 7 RC to Windows 7 RTM, you’ll probably need to edit a setup file.
Windows Vista SP1, SP2 to Windows 7 upgrades supported:
Windows 7 Anytime Upgrade supported:
To Install Using USB Drives:
To make a bootable Windows 7 install USB drive (from ISO), I’d suggest you use this tool:
UPDATE: The tool is currently offline as of 10th November 1:30 PM (GMT +5.30) due to code licensing violations that surfaced.
To install Windows 7 on 4GB drives: You’ll need to use something like vlite to disable installation of features in Windows 7, create the ISO & use the tool above to make a bootable USB drive. Here’s an article on vlite. Here is an image from Ed Bott that shows the approximate amount of hard disk space taken by the various Windows 7 SKUs:
Some links that you can read:
- Some info on Windows 7 availability & prices in India
- Article by Imran — FAQ on Windows 7 with US prices, availability.
- Basic difference between the Windows 7 SKUs.
- Detailed difference between Windows 7 SKUs.