Introducing Windows 7 Milestone 1 Build 6.1.6519.1

That's right! Windows Vista, SP1 or no SP1, and Windows XP SP3 are nothing more than old news. Microsoft has started shipping an early development milestone of Windows 7, the successor of Windows Vista.

At the end of the past week, the Redmond company was confirmed to have served Windows 7 Milestone 1, exclusively to key partners. At that time, Microsoft remained completely mute on Windows 7, not confirming and not denying, in fact not commenting at all on the evolution of the next iteration of Windows. But with Windows 7 Milestone 1 available outside of Redmond, the first details about the release have already been leaked.

It is clear that Steven codename Translucency Sinofsky, Senior Vice President, Windows and Windows Live Engineering Group, will not be all that happy about the information about Windows 7 Milestone 1 Build 6.1.6519.1 available to the public. The details were posted on the Neowin forum and only contained references to the Windows 7 M1, no screenshots. In this context, it is quite hard to verify the validity of the data, so you will simply have to take it with a grain of salt. However, the report does feature a high level of consistency when it comes down to additional references to Windows 7 M1.

Well, the first Milestone of Windows 7 Build 6.1.6519.1 is apparently in need of serious tunning when it comes down to integrating with new machines. It is in this regard further proof that this is indeed an early development milestone with inherent issues. From the get-go, the main problems revolved around diver support.

"One my primary machine, it asked for my SATA driver (never happened when installing Vista, as my drives were set as IDE in BIOS). After adding the driver from my USB thumb drive it would finally install. It didn’t boot after first restart, however. On my laptop it installed perfectly, but with no driver support for the video card. After numerous tries I gave up in the end, so Aero is now left in the dark," revealed Steven Parker, Group: Administrator, citing the original post of the Neowin member.

At this point in time, there is nothing new to report in therms of graphical user interface. Apparently, the Redmond company has implemented Widows Aero on top of Windows 7 to serve as the GUI. "The GUI, as much of you have guessed, is very much like Vista. I don't know if once the right video card driver is in place whether there will be flashy stuffs to surprise me. The system is very responsive, using barely 480MB of memory after boot," Parker added.

Windows 7 Milestone 1 Build 6.1.6519.1 comes with a revamped Windows Explorer, new XAML fonts (Composite Fonts), and a standalone application dubbed the XPS Viewer. The operating system also brings to the table a revamped boot screen, that apparently is also reminiscent of Windows Vista.

"Gadgets are now integrated into explorer. You can right click on desktop and select 'Add Gadget' or 'Hide Gadget'. There is a new gadget called 'Windows Media Center' that displays now playing information from the WMC. On the same menu, 'Display' is added above 'Personalization' which gives you direct access to display DPI settings. The page is much more polished than the one in Vista. The start menu features a pin besides each item. Clicking on it toggles pinning/unpinning the item. Search in explorer is now states where you search within (usually being within the folder, as in Vista). You can now, however, adjust the size of the search box," Parker stated.

Microsoft is but a week away from celebrating Vista's first year anniversary since the operating system hit the shelves. At the same time, Windows 7 is apparently planned for late 2009 or early 2010, with Milestone dropping in April/May 2008, M3 in the second half of this year, and the first beta sometime in early 2009. Of course that Microsoft has failed to offer any official confirmation of the work being done with Windows 7.

"Highlights include 'network aware', with improved connection tools and detections. It will have the ability to detect which network you're in and switch your settings and devices accordingly; With Live account, you can carry your IE settings and favorites with you; Gadget data caching; New Calculator, Paint, and Wordpad using WPF; install to desktop in 10 mins with only 1 reboot; instant streaming; better battery mileage, etc. All descriptions are scenario-based, so what will actually turn up is still yet to know," Parker concluded.


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