On October 22, 2009 Microsoft will be releasing their latest version of the Windows Operating System. Windows 7 promises to be everything Vista was supposed to and is also touted as being extremely optimized and able to run as quickly as Windows XP. Those XP users that opted not to upgrade to Vista will surely want to upgrade to Windows 7, but these anxious end-users should dip their foot in the pool before diving in. As with Vista, XP users really should run the checker to make sure their hardware is capable of supporting the newer OS.
Run the Microsoft Windows 7 Compatibility Check
You can download and run the checker for Windows 7 here: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=1B544E90-7659-4BD9-9E51-2497C146AF15&displaylang=en . You should also browse peripheral manufacturer’s websites to make sure your printers, scanners, game controllers and other devices will have driver support. If they do not, you might want to hold off until they do as this was a major issue with Vista when it was first released. Those users running Vista already should still run the checker, but if your devices worked with Vista, there is a good chance it will also run under Windows 7.
What You Should Do if Your System is Not Compatible?
If your PC fails to meet the minimum system requirements of Windows 7, you might be able to fix the problem with recommendations provided by Microsoft following the scan. Adding memory is an easy fix, or replacing an older sound card is also something that is inexpensive and easy to do. But if the motherboard itself fails (which is unusual), you might need to consider purchasing a new computer with Windows 7 pre-installed rather than spending hundreds of dollars replacing the motherboard.
So what should we do while we wait for October 22nd? Users should take this opportunity to gradually backup all their data. Even if you’re performing an upgrade instead of a full install, you should backup all of your valuable data onto your network, DVD drive, flash drive or external hard drive. Users should also make sure they have their current license Key for Windows. While you may not need that number during the upgrade, you should have it ready in case the upgrade goes bad and you need to call Microsoft.