Welcome to the second part of our discussion, Which Version of Windows 7 Should You Choose?
If you haven’t already done so, please read Part I for some great reasons to upgrade, before continuing.
How to Choose
Maybe you’re ready to upgrade, but are daunted by all of the different editions of Windows 7. Here is a quick rundown which will hopefully help shed some new light.
First off, it is important to note that the features for all editions of Windows 7 are included, regardless of which edition you are using. Your license key type is what determines which features you can actually access.
Windows 7 Home Premium: This edition is geared toward home users and contains some basic Windows 7 features, like Windows Media Center. Home Premium can join a basic home workgroup, but not an actual server run domain (like a business domain).
Windows 7 Professional: Created for high-end users and small-business, this edition provides all the features of Home, but with additional business features, like being able to join domains, run programs in XP mode, activate Software Restriction Policies and more.
Windows 7 Enterprise: This edition is only sold to companies with a Software Assurance contract with Microsoft. Enterprise is is packed with even more business and enterprise level features, like data encryption with BitLocker, Unix application support, the ability to run virtual machines, and more.
Windows 7 Ultimate: Contains all features of the previous editions of Windows 7. If you want to use Windows 7 without limitations, this is the version to purchase.
Which Bit is Best?
On top of all the editions, there are also two different versions of Windows 7 – 32-bit and 64-bit. However, determining which version is for you depends on your computer.
There is no point in getting a 64-bit operating system, if you don’t have a processor capable of running 64-bit.
You can test your computer’s compatibility before upgrading with Microsoft’s Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor.
Other Reasons to Upgrade
Just in case you’re still on the fence about upgrading, here are a few other reasons to think about.
Installation is so fast, you’ll be amazed. Finally, Microsoft came out with a version of Windows which doesn’t take forever to install. Typically you can be using your computer again, after a fresh install of Windows 7, in as little as 30 minutes (or less).
Student pricing allows you to purchase Windows 7 for cheap – under 75 dollars, depending on edition and school deals. Microsoft also offers student discounts for other Microsoft programs, but you must actually be a student, and your school has to participate in Microsoft’s program. Check out Microsoft’s student discounts.
It’s just better. Windows 7 is simply a superior operating system. While it might look quite different from Windows XP, it is an easier system for users to navigate, making your time on the computer enjoyable. (Writer’s note: trust me on this one; I wasn’t a big Windows or Microsoft fan until Windows 7 came onto the scene, and I’ve used all of the other versions of Windows.)
Hopefully this post gave you enough information to finally consider taking the plunge, and upgrading to Windows 7. Once you finally do, you’ll wonder why you waited so long.
Are you in love with Windows 7 because of a recent upgrade? Leave us a comment and tell us about your experience.