Windows 7 is out, and doing very well in the market -- much better than Windows Vista at a similar point in its history. That's due to a couple of factors: 1) Widespread dissatisfaction with Vista (whether fair or unfair); and 2) Because it rocks. Here are five ways it's superior to Vista.
1. Increased Speed. Windows 7, unlike every previous version of Windows, didn't have increased hardware requirements to run smoothly. And on the same hardware, it runs significantly faster than Vista, in my experience.
The underlying code that makes up Windows 7 is essentially the same as Vista, but it's been tweaked and refined for the new operating system (OS). I've noticed a significant improvement in how fast applications open and close, and how quickly my laptop boots up (i.e. turns on). In both cases, the speed is at least double what it was under Vista.
Windows 7 can even run on some computers that ran Windows XP; this isn't recommended practice, but it can be done in some cases. This graphically demonstrates how much leaner Microsoft made Windows 7. The company listened to users who complained that its OSes were becoming increasingly bloated; Microsoft broke the camel's back with Vista.
2. Fewer non-essential programs. Microsoft cut out a lot of the fat with Windows 7. For example, it's dropped a number of programs that were included with Vista, programs the majority of us never used. For example: Did you ever use Windows Live Writer, Microsoft's blogging tool? Me neither.
The good news is that all those programs -- Photo Gallery, Messenger, Movie Maker and so on -- are still available; they're just not included in the base OS. Microsoft's Windows Live Essentials website has them all in one handy place for you to download. But you don't have to; Microsoft has given you back the choice. That's a good thing.