If you use a University Windows computer, it's increasingly likely to be running Windows 7.
For Windows machines, the University is standardising on Windows 7.
If you happen to be ordering replacement Windows computers, the Computing department will ensure the replacement computer is able to run Windows 7 and this is being introduced - usually on a 'Department at a time' basis.
Windows 7 - Getting Going
If you're used to Windows XP, Windows 7 won't be unfamiliar. Try this five minute video from Microsoft - it'll get you going with the new taskbar (the strip along the bottom of the screen) - and introduce you to the start menu, desktop, taskbar 'Jumplists' (external link).
Moving from XP, the taskbar has changed. You're now rather closer to things you've worked on previously. (Use the five minute video to see how)
If you're used to Windows XP, Windows Explorer - the file manager - may appear unfamiliar, but the changes are actually sensible. Here's Microsoft's comparison chart - Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7 - the chart's actually a useful pointer to new features, with links to help on each.
Windows 7: Staff Training
We offer training and support for staff on Windows 7. If you're staff, log into Minerva or follow this link to a Minerva course called 'Staff IT training'. This course contains links to training resources for Windows 7 and for Office 2007. If you've recently joined the University, it's possible that this module won't be available to you - if you find you log into Minerva and can't see it, get in touch and we'll fix this.
You'll probably find Windows 7 straightforward, but if you need to use Office 2007 - many people find Office 2007's redesigned toolbars confusing. (If you need help with Office 2007, here's Mark's help on Word 2007. Also, our current ECDL computer based training software will help you into using Office 2007 - come along to a workshop at Newton Park and we'll get you going with it)
Windows 7: early questions
Where's the 'Reveal desktop' button?
It's the small rectangle at the extreme right of the taskbar.
Windows 7 / Windows Live: Where's Windows Movie Maker?
'Windows Live Movie Maker' replaces the original software. It's not installed by default, you'll need to download it from Windows Live, or use Windows Update - it's available as an optional download along with various other tools including Windows 7's email client.
Windows 7 start menu: the 'Run' command
By default, it's not there. To enable the 'Run' command, right mouse click the taskbar, choose 'Properties' and then the tab 'Start menu'. Select 'Customise'. Scroll down and tick the 'Run' command - it will then appear in the start menu.
Other Windows 7 Questions
What happened to Vista?
It's superseded by Windows 7. If you happen to have a machine of your own running Vista, you'll probably find Windows 7 will allow you to get a lot more done and in less time.
Is Windows 7 better than Vista?
Yes. It's 'Quieter' and will also run happily on machines that were supposed to be able to run Vista but couldn't run it well. This helps its environmental impact. While the industry would like us all to go out and buy new machines every five minutes, that approach has implications. Ideally, for the most part, you don't notice the operating system your computer is running, in the same way that you don't notice breathing, blinking ...
Does Windows 7 allow me to use University network drives?
Yes, in much the same way as you do at present as well ...
Are there implications for people running Mac OS X?
Yes. Competition is good. OS X users will still be able to share files with Windows 7 users. OS X users will continue to be able to use Bath Spa network resources from work and from home. Windows Media Player and Quicktime will probably still continue to squabble on your desktop.
What's the worst thing about Windows 7
'There's several different flavours of it' is a popular choice ...
Windows 7 won't be introduced at University for some little while, but you may meet with it should you buy a new windows pc - or install it on an existing home pc. If you've a Windows computer at home, you might like to see how well it would run Windows 7: here's a Windows 7 readiness tool from Microsoft to help with this. Many existing computers will run Windows 7 adequately even if they score badly on a 'Windows 7 readiness test'. If you're installing it on an existing computer of your own, back everything up and do a fresh install, not an upgrade.
Footnote: 'Bitlocker' information, a tip, and two handy little Windows 7 tools - for semigeeks and others
Windows 7 - the 'Enterprise' version - offers improved security for data stored on a hard disk - 'Bitlocker', a built in tool that encrypts the hard disk and any information on it, and which can work together with encryption built into the computer's hardware in the form of a TPM module. 'Bitlocker' will also secure other devices such as USB sticks.
Windows 7 Resource monitor
To start this, use the 'Start orb' and search for 'perfmon'. Run the program and you'll see something like the Windows Task manager but 'more of it'.
Problem steps recorder
When you run this by typing 'psr' into the search box and running the program, you can start a recording which captures your actions along with a series of screen shots. Stop the recording and you're then offered a complete record of what you've done, captured in a zip file that you can send to others if you need help. They'll then be able to see what you've done.
The zip file itself contains a web page document complete with images.
As well as using this for problem solving, it can be useful to people writing help pages that need screenshots - it can automate the initial capture of information along with a series of screenshots.
How to tell if a machine's running Windows 7's 'Aero' interface
Select the 'Start orb' and look for the account's graphic at the top of the start menu - if it's sitting within the menu, then the aero interface ... isn't. If the graphic overlaps the rest of the screen in a slightly transparent way - that's Aero.
All before you, in this world, is smoke and shadows.All before you, in this world, is smoke and shadows. Words found on a door lintel in the garden of a house in the Cretan village of Argiroupolis. The lintel is a fragment from the city state Lappa, which occupied the same site. Fifteen hundred years later, when you use the web, from time to time you might well feel that the author was on to something. And if you work with particle physics, you'll know he was ...