It is complete. I am now 100% Vista-free. Let me tell you, it feels good.
Windows 7 seems lighter, faster and cleaner. It has breathed new life into my aging computers.
Microsoft has done a good job of simply refining Vista. At first, I was disappointed that Windows 7 is so much like Vista. After upgrading 2 computers and working with the operating system, I am glad Microsoft didn’t start from scratch.
As an early adopter of Vista, I dealt with software and hardware compatibility issues. This was frustrating and costly as many programs and peripherals had to be replaced.
Fortunately, everything that worked on my Vista computers is compatible on Windows 7.
The learning curve is not nearly as steep, as well. When adopting Vista, there was a noticeable decrease in productivity as I learned how to do things the “Vista way”.
After completing the installation of Windows 7, I jumped right in. Nothing slowing me down. Only new features to learn over time.
I have suffered through upgrading every version of Windows since Windows 3.11 in 1994. Never has a Windows upgrade been so simple.
Upgrading from Vista to Windows 7 is a breeze. Launch the disc, follow the prompts and you are up and running. The installation can be time consuming (4-5 hours for each of my computers), but the process is very straight forward and simple enough to complete.
If you are upgrading from XP and switching from 32-bit Vista to 64-bit Vista, the process is a bit more complex. You will need to wipe your hard drive clean and start from scratch. This is a very long process as you have to reinstall on programs and device drivers. This may be a task best suited for a professional.
The installation is simple, but there are a few tips that will make for a smooth upgrade.
- Run the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor to identify if any of programs or hardware isn’t Windows 7 compatible. Address any issues it uncovers.
- Back up your data twice in 2 different locations. The Vista to 7 upgrade shouldn’t cause data loss, but better-safe-than-sorry.
- Unplug all peripherals over than your keyboard and mouse. You can plug those webcams other USB devices after the installation is complete.
- Temporarily disable your anti-virus program.
- De-authorize your computer from within iTunes. You can authorize it again after installing Windows 7.
- During the initial installation procedure, another Windows 7 compatibility test will happen. This one is more detailed than the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. If any issues are listed, quit the installation process, address the issues and start the upgrade again. This usually means removing a program or two.
After the Installation
Once Windows 7 is installed, there are a few activities to perform to ensure that your computer is running at its best.
- Run Windows Update to get any patches or updated drivers.
- Check for hardware driver updates on the manufacturer’s website. Many Windows 7 drivers are already available. If Windows 7 specific drivers aren’t out, the most up-to-date Vista drivers should work.
- Check for software updates. Depending on the program, updates can be found either from within the program or on the manufacturer’s website.
- Go to Microsoft’s website to download free add-ons like the Windows Live Movie Maker or desktop themes.
Overall, Windows 7 is a huge improvement over Vista. Any real estate agent running Vista shouldn’t even hesitate to purchase an upgrade disc. This technology is that good.
Those still working on 2001’s Windows XP, now might be the right time to invest in a new computer.
Check back for a more in-depth look at the best new features of Windows 7 and how they will benefit your real estate business.