Microsoft has learned from its Vista release fiasco: It now says that Windows 7 will run on Vista hardware --- and that all peripherals and devices that run on Vista will also work with Windows 7.
Probably Vista's biggest problem at launch and beyond were hardware-related. Vista wouldn't run on much hardware that ran Windows XP, and driver woes meant that many peripherals couldn't be used with Vista. Making matters worse, Microsoft devised a "Vista Capable" scheme, in which underpowered hardware was certified to run only the lowest level of Vista. It's now being sued because of that.
With Windows 7, Microsoft says, that will all be different. Writing on the Microsoft Windows Vista blog, Chris Flores, a Microsoft Director working on the Windows Client Communications Team, says:
...one of our design goals for Windows 7 is that it will run on the recommended hardware we specified for Windows Vista and that the applications and devices that work with Windows Vista will be compatible with Windows 7.
He also says:
Contrary to some speculation, Microsoft is not creating a new kernel for Windows 7.
Flores also makes clear that the information blackout Microsoft has imposed around Windows 7 will continue. Microsoft in the past has been quite open about features it planned to develop for future Windows releases. No more. Details about Windows 7 are few and far between, and will stay that way.
However, hearing that Windows 7 will work on Vista hardware and related software is certainly good news for anyone who wants to keep using their existing systems, peripherals, and applications.
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