Windows 7, so who's tried it?

the Interceptor

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Windows 7 and me - a troubled relationship it seems. I just gave up trying to install Windows 7 for tonight.

Prequel: I cobbeled together an older computer some weeks ago to give the Win7-RC I downloaded a try. Even before I got to the actual install menu however, I got an error message, telling me that the DVD won't boot. After some research on the internet, I found out that there is a small number of mainboards out there which can generate this problem. Of course, I am the proud owner of such a mainboard (ASRock K7S5A).

However, I found a way to alter the ISO image of Win7 with a changed bootblock, which was quite complicated. Nevertheless, I got it to work, so I was on my way installing it. Then, the install routine prompted me that 384 Megs of RAM won't be enough, and that I need 512 at least. So I borrowed a 512 RAM bar from another computer (it was blind luck that I had one at all and that it ran, since we were talking about DDR-I RAM in combination with a Duron CPU, which actually wants SD-RAM). So anyway, I finally was on my way installing Win7 when I was prompted again with an error message, telling me that certain files can not be copied.

I then tried to trick it with booting from the fixed-ISO DVD and then, before the actual installation process begins, switch to the original Win7 DVD. Unfortunately, this produced the same error at the same moment, so I gave up, thinking that this has to be some hardware incompatibility, since the chance of both DVDs being faulty on the exact same spot is nil.

Today, I tried again on a totally different machine. Got the install routine running instantly, but ran into a nasty problem: the HDD is connected by an S-ATA RAID onboard controller (note that I'm just running one HDD without any kind of RAID). Win7 says it doesn't see the HDD and asks for a driver, which of course I don't have. I find my mainboard on the manufacturers homepage, download two possible RAID drivers, burn them to a CD and serve them to the installation routine when it asks. Unfortunately, despite all my efforts in loading different INF files from said disc, Win7 still doesn't recognise the HDD. So I actually look onto the mainboard, identify the RAID controller as a Silicon Image Sil3114 and download the driver directly from the manufacturer. I burn that one to another CD and give them to Win7 as it asks. And finally, it recognises the HDD and is ready for installation.

After a few minutes, I am being prompted the same error message as earlier, saying that certain files can not be copied. I don't really understand how, since the ISO image was checked for accuracy and got a green light and I burned the original and the altered Win7 independently, but it actually seems that both discs are faulty. Now I gave up again out of frustration. I really like computers and I am very patient when it comes to curing their diseases, but sometimes, they're just plain mean. Sorry that I made you read all this, I just had to keep records for the ensuing ages. :cry:
 

thevictor390

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mount the ISO and install from Windows if you can. Worked for me on a Pentium III box with no DVD drive.
 

sephiroth99

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Here is my little story

but before, my setup. I have a nforce4 chipset with nvraid array (raid0). Please note that this chipset is not supported anymore by nvidia (no new drivers)

I downloaded the RC when it was available. It was the 64bit version. Because there was no drivers by nVidia for my chipset (and thus my raid array), I used the vista 64 drivers. Unfortunately, it didn't work, I was BSODing a lot, the raid driver was going crazy.

Now I downloaded the RTM version 32bit. For my raid, I used again the vista drivers. This time its working! I don't know if its because im on the 32bit version, or because it's the RTM, but I'm happy it's working!

It's almost a week that I'm running win7 and I don't find the need to go back to XP (except for one special program which has a strong copy protection that is activated to my XP). I really like the interface, but I tweaked it a lot so it looks more like XP. I wasn't even running a theme in XP, but I kept the aero, it looks nice :p (but I desactivated all the other graphics thingies). I'm not used a lot to the libraries concept, but I suppose it will come. Also, I couldn't try the homegroup because I'm the only one with 7 at home.

so thats my experience with 7 as of now. nothing to say against it really, but again, as opposed to Mercury, I'm not in a corporate environment.
 

the Interceptor

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mount the ISO and install from Windows if you can. Worked for me on a Pentium III box with no DVD drive.
Neat idea, but I need to have a running Windows for that, and I suppose the mounted image disapperars when the new Windows replaces the old one.
 

thevictor390

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Neat idea, but I need to have a running Windows for that, and I suppose the mounted image disapperars when the new Windows replaces the old one.

Doesn't matter. By the time you reboot, all the necessary files are copied over. Trust me, I've done it with both Vista and 7 (Vista on a Pentium III... NEVER AGAIN).

You do need to be running Windows to start with though (I threw XP on), and I don't believe you can reformat the drive (although you can do a clean installation, it copies your files to a folder called windows.old. Just delete it when you're done).
 

the Interceptor

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Doesn't matter. By the time you reboot, all the necessary files are copied over. Trust me, I've done it with both Vista and 7 (Vista on a Pentium III... NEVER AGAIN).

You do need to be running Windows to start with though (I threw XP on), and I don't believe you can reformat the drive (although you can do a clean installation, it copies your files to a folder called windows.old. Just delete it when you're done).
Interesting technique, I never knew that this would work. :)

Anyway, since I don't have a Windows running, I'm still trying to install Win7 from a DVD. As I expect the two discs I burned to be faulty, I burned a new DVD from the ISO-image (of which I'm sure of that it's flawless, the Microsoft downloader checked it after the download) and started the install routine on an older laptop today. It worked like a charm, and half an hour later, I was doing my first steps in Windows 7. Nice!

I took that DVD home with me to use it to install Win7 on the computer where I failed to achieve just that yesterday evening. So I started the install routine just to run into the same error again:
'Windows cannot install required files. The file may be corrupt or missing. Make sure all files required for installation are available, and restart the installation. Error code 0x80070017'
I googled for the error code, but neither of the supposed-to-be solutions helped me thus far. I am perfectly sure the disc itself is fine, since in worked perfectly fine on my laptop. The PC I am trying to install it on is fine, too, until yesterday, it was running Windows 2000 without a hassle. I am on my last run now, using a different DVD drive. I don't know what should be wrong with the original one, since it's a Plextor and hasn't missed a beat in its life yet. But you never know.

If this step fails as well however, I won't be very happy about it, and neither will it improve my opinion of Windows 7, which was excellent before all of this occurred.

EDIT: Okay, so the install went through now. I tried to work out why, since I have tried installing this on three very different machines now. And the only thing I can come up with is that it worked when I read the DVD with a DVD burner, and didn't work when it was in a DVD drive. Although both DVD drives I used are in perfect shape, generelly accept all discs and also this one up to the error, that's the only reason I can find. I don't know what difference that would make, and I don't see how two high quality drives (Pioneer, Plextor) can fail to read two different discs at the very same spot, but that's what it seems like.

EDIT #2: good news for a change: the mini-applications are officially awesome!
 
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Mercury

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That good to know about the DVD burners/writer issue. I'll give it a try tomorrow at work and we'll see if it doesn't work with a reader there as well.
 

prizrak

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Doesn't matter. By the time you reboot, all the necessary files are copied over. Trust me, I've done it with both Vista and 7 (Vista on a Pentium III... NEVER AGAIN).

You do need to be running Windows to start with though (I threw XP on), and I don't believe you can reformat the drive (although you can do a clean installation, it copies your files to a folder called windows.old. Just delete it when you're done).

No no format, I am doing it right now and had no option for a format. However since the partition is already NTFS it doesn't make too much difference. Windows.old is easy enough to delete once done :p
and neither will it improve my opinion of Windows 7, which was excellent before all of this occurred.
Not sure how this could be considered a Win 7 problem, this has hardware problem written all over it.
 
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smib

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Ilpav

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I will only upgrade from Vista when they can get a 32-bit OS to support over 3.5 GB of RAM.

Also, from watching videos, I can't help but notice how similar it looks to Vista (W7 looks slightly uglier, though); This is definitely not a "next generation" OS like Vista was to XP. I think it's basically Vista with some new features and doesn't eat as much memory.

My Vista Ultimate 32-Bit runs like a champ and I have not had any problems since I installed it in the beginning of 2009.

Windows 7 was made for those who didn't have powerful enough computers to run Vista.

The leap from XP to Vista was huge, from Vista to 7, minor, so I hope the next Windows OS (8?) will be like the leap from XP to Vista and will support 4GB of RAM with the 32-Bit version (or increase compatibility with 64-Bit).
 

smib

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32-Bit RAM limit is because of math, not Microsoft. Also, while Vista's running fine means upgrading to 7 is not needed, you would see some improvement. As for 64-bit compatibility issues, I don't think I've heard of any, but I am far from all-knowing. More like virtually-nothing-knowing-but-but-kinda-pretty-sure-about-some-things.
 
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thevictor390

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I will only upgrade from Vista when they can get a 32-bit OS to support over 3.5 GB of RAM.

This basically can't happen. It's a technical limitation. Technical(ish) explanation below:

A memory address can only be as large as a single processor instruction cycle. On a 32-bit processor (or in software made for a 32-bit processor) this is 32 bits or a 32-digit binary number. The largest possible 32 digit binary number is 1111111111111111111111111111111. In decimal this is (2^32) - 1 or 4294967295. So the highest possible memory address is 4294967295 bytes, or one byte less than 4 gigabytes. You can of course get around this by assigning multiple instructions to a single extended memory address, and software exists to do so, but the performance hit (takes twice as long to access memory... effectively cuts RAM speed in half) is not worth it.

Off the top of my head, please correct me if I'm wrong on this.
 
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the Interceptor

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Not sure how this could be considered a Win 7 problem, this has hardware problem written all over it.
Gentlemen, give me the opportunity to recapitulate:

I have installed Windows 3.11, 95, 98, 98 SE, ME, 2000 and XP on a countless number of different machines, and I've never run into this problem. I tried to install Windows 7 on three totally different computers (which all are in perfect shape) from three perfectly-burned DVDs. On one machine I succeeded, on two, I failed, likely because I used a DVD drive instead of a DVD burner to read the discs. Both DVD drives in question are high quality models from well-known manufacturers, and both work perfectly fine and read every kind of DVD, including burned ones such as these.

How is that problem not connected to Windows 7 and its install routine?
 
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IceBone

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Well, if the computer normally can't read burned dvds, that's your problem, regardless of the OS. If not, try to install from USB.
 

cvrefugee

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Windows 7 installs the same way as Vista, by decompressing a single image from the DVD disc (unlike any other versions of Windows). If your computers can't install Vista either then they may have a problem reading burned DVD discs like IceBone noted above.
 

wasil

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I just installed Windows 7 Build 7600 a couple of weeks back and so far all has been going good :)

Though I have mixed feelings regarding the superbar.
 

the Interceptor

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Well, if the computer normally can't read burned dvds, that's your problem, regardless of the OS. If not, try to install from USB.
Windows 7 installs the same way as Vista, by decompressing a single image from the DVD disc (unlike any other versions of Windows). If your computers can't install Vista either then they may have a problem reading burned DVD discs like IceBone noted above.
Both drives have always read any disc I fed them, including burned DVDs. Both drives still read the Windows 7 disc perfectly fine within Windows. The drives have no problem whatsoever, it rather seems like an incompatibility between DVD drives and the Windows 7 disc.
 
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