Considering Win7 release, need some precaution suggestions / advice

As of late, Ive been having annoying issues with WINXP, namely my mouse drivers not installing, windows restore not working, and a screen color correction software not working at all. With the windows 7 RC being out there, and windows 7 so close to release, Ive decided to just go straight to windows 7 but... There are some things that worry me. Before any of that, here are my current system specs.

Windows XP SP2 (32 Bit)
Inter Core 2 Duo CPU E8400 @ 3.00Ghz
4.00 GB of Ram
XFX Ati 4890 Factory Overclocked GPU
MSI P35 Platinum Combo Motherboard

I have a number of questions and concerns that perhaps you good people can help me out with.

1 - I glanced over a post earlier saying something about motherboard drivers. Do I need to worry about motherboard drivers before trying to install Windows 7 x64?

2 - Application compatibility: my current, mostly used app set is as follows : Steam, Team Fortress 2, Call of Duty 4, Left 4 Dead, Mount & Blade, Mass Effect, Teamspeak, Ventrilo, Adobe Photoshop CS2, RPG Maker 2k3, RMRecker, NOD32, Fraps.

I probably missed some, but I have a few uncommon apps at the end there, how can I go about confirming the compability of some of my more obscure programs?

3 - Hardware compatibility: I have one piece of hardware that is no longer supported or even made by Belkin. It is called the Nostromo N52 speedpad. Im thinking its about time to ditch the crutch of this thing, but will this work with windows 7?

4 - Formatting - I have my windows installation + some basic apps installed on a C:\ Partition.While most of my games and some other apps are on my D:\ partition. Should I just clear my C partition for this new operating system, or should I Just do a clean sweep of my entire hard drive?

5 - Are there any precautions I missed here? What else can I do to make this transition as smooth as possible.

Thanks for any help and opinions.
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More about considering win7 release precaution suggestions advice
  1. Plug in your Nostromo and anything else you are interested in, and try this FWIW:
  2. Twoboxer said:
    Plug in your Nostromo and anything else you are interested in, and try this FWIW:

    Thanks, a few programs seem to be not compatable with win 7, but nothing major... One question.

    I doubt a lot of people use the device Im asking about. Is it possible it still wont work in Win7 despite this report?
  3. you could try installing win7 on virtual box and see how you go
  4. Dunno, I use a pair of old Fang keypads while Twoboxing, and they work right on through to Vista and into that beta tester. That's not really Win7, I know, and not your Nostromo.

    But if its a deal breaker, do you have a friend with Win7?

    Sharft6's suggestion something you willing to try? At least that's reversible.
  5. I've read CoD4 has some problems with PB, but it seems some people have it, and other don't, I've read of loads of fixes though, it's because even balance refuses to make it easier for themselves by supporting Windows 7 now.
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