From: Craig Phillips [] on behalf of Craig Phillips []

Sent: Friday, November 13, 2009 8:39 PM


Subject: Cocktail Talk - Windows 7


Cocktail Talk

Bits and bytes of computer chat-chat
to help you through those dreary Cocktail Parties.

December 2009

Our Topic

Windows 7


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Cocktail Talk

Dear Craig,

Cocktail Talk
Welcome to
CN Consulting's "Cocktail Talk".

Cocktail Talk is a casual monthly newsletter intended to arm you with amusing bits and bytes of information on whats happening in the computer world.  Topics sure to break the ice and capture an audience at many a social or business event.

Cocktail Talk is archived on

Windows 7


CherryWindows Vista, and its many versions, lasted pretty long. Beta 1 Windows Vista was announced in the middle of 2005. Can you believe it?

Maybe saying Vista lasted pretty long is misleading. After all, its not like people rushed to buy Vista, people just kept on using Windows XP. Microsoft tried to force people to buy into Vista. They discontinued support, every June. Then Microsoft said "no more XP on new PCs". But customers demanded downgrades from Vista to XP.

Vista is pretty though and it did some pretty important things for Microsoft. Like lowering the bar for Windows 7 for instance. Like pointing out that people won't give up XP functionality. Like getting people used to being jacked around by a shell game when it comes to upgrades. 

Windows 7 has several versions; Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade at $119,  Windows 7 Professional Upgrade at $199, and Windows 7 Ultimate Upgrade at at $219. Before you get too excited and run out to buy 7 lets play the Windows 7 Upgrade shell game. 

OK, see if you can find the pea. If you have Windows Vista Ultimate you can upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate, but not 7 Professional or 7 Home Premium. With Vista Business you can go to 7 Ultimate or 7 Professional but not 7 Home Premium. Vista Home Premium gets you 7 Home Premium but not 7 Professional, but you can have 7 Ultimate. The same applies for Vista Home Basic. If you have XP you're skip out of luck.

I know, they "promised" XP people a free upgrade to 7, and you'll get one. You see there are upgrades that are upgrades and upgrades that are not upgrades. Upgrades that are not upgrades are called custom installs. Oh, there's the pea. Upgrading from Windows XP to Windows 7 is a custom install.

Microsoft has this to say about that:

A custom (clean) installation erases the contents of your PC's hard drive. Your files, settings, and programs will not be transferred to Windows 7. That means that to install Windows 7, you'll need to:

Backup all the files and settings you want to keep

Install Windows 7

Reinstall all your files

Reinstall all the programs you want to use.

These four steps take time, some technical skill and Windows Easy Transfer can help. However, If you're not comfortable with this process, please consider having the installation done by a local service provider.

Once you've backed up all your stuff, wiped XP off your PC, installed Windows 7 and reinstalled all your data, and software, you can run Windows 7 in XP Emulation Mode. It doesn't seem to make alot of sense spending hundreds of dollars, and a three day weekend, doing a custom install from XP to 7 just to emulate XP. But anyway. 

Now that you really, really, have to have WIndows 7 you probably should know if you can even run it on your PC. Microsoft has this to say about that: 

If you want to run Windows 7 on your PC, here's what it takes:
1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
1 gigabyte (GB) RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
HomeGroup requires a network and PCs running Windows 7
Windows XP Mode requires an additional 1 GB of RAM, an additional 15 GB of available hard disk space, and a processor capable of hardware virtualization with Intel VT or AMD-V turned on.

Evidently Windows 7's XP Mode takes alot more to run than XP Classic.

Look, Windows is the leader in a big way, and rightfully so, and I have nothing but love for Windows. Linux, Mac, please!  As a matter of fact, the Mac commercials bashing Windows are about as offensive as politics. Lets compare apples to Apples Mac. Mac software runs on one PC, one that costs 3 times as much as the ones Windows runs on. I can get a sexy little Netbook with Windows for $329. What can you do for me Mr. one-thousand-dollars MacIntosh? Oh, and the virus thing. Macs don't get viruses because nobody writes viruses to attack them. Why attack a handful of audiophiles and graphic artists when you can cripple major businesses? You can't even right-click a Mac. I can, but you can't. Anyway.

Windows 7 is an Operating System. It makes the PC work. That, is what, it does. Its not a game, its not fun, its an Operating System. It does have lots of Vista, also an Operating System, and Vista is really pretty. Vista even has a sheep-in-a-foggy-meadow-morning Desktop Background. I'm not sure if Windows 7 does. While most Operating System improvements are invisible to us Microsoft seems to put alot of effort into sheep and such.

Now that we have a handle on all the rigmarole over upgrading an Operating System, here's what I'm thinking; Buy a new PC with Windows 7, load Microsoft Office, use Windows Easy Transfer to copy your data, and get back to work. Buying a Windows 7 Upgrade and the required upgrades to your PC and getting Geek Squad to migrate your files and programs is going to cost more than a new PC. Not as much as a Mac, but alot, maybe almost half a Mac. 


Maybe a new Windows 7 PC is the way to go, maybe you'll go buy a Mac, but that's your call, and that's Cocktail Talk.


Thank you for reading,


Craig Phillips
CN Consulting, Inc.

CN Consulting, Inc -
Computer Consulting for Business!


CN Consulting provides Fortune 500 quality IT Services to organizations without an IT Department.
We focus on small to mid-size businesses with up to 30 networked computers supporting every aspect of business computing. Networking, support, training, application development, website and email. Everything from one source with total accountability.
CN Consulting Inc. (CNCI)  Is a female owned and operated consulting company serving Chicago and the Greater Milwaukee area since 1990.  CNCI brings to your business over 25 years of consulting experience.  With clients ranging from Fortune 200 companies to small scale operations, CNCI offers your business the quality and experience of a large consulting firm, but with personal, hands-on attention. 


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