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Microsoft Delays Windows 7 Beta

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 20 comments

Apparently, Microsoft decided to hold off on releasing the latest build of Windows 7. Instead, company employees in charge of beta deployment chose to play Gears of War 2 instead, and make consumers wait a bit more just for spite. Ok, not really.

According to Microsoft, the company decided to delay the release of Windows 7's beta due to overwhelming demand and the servers' inability to handle the heavy-duty traffic. Whether or not this tidbit of news is actually true or not consumers won't ever know. If Microsoft can release faulty Xbox 360 consoles unto its unsuspecting fan base fully aware of the problems consumers would face, it should be easy enough for the company to put on a government conspiracy cloak and blame the delay on high demand.

And while it's fun to poke fun at large corporations and their methods of deception, the fact is that Microsoft posted news of the delay on The Windows Blog and is sticking to the story. "Due to very heavy traffic we’re seeing as a result of interest in the Windows 7 Beta, we are adding some additional infrastructure support to the Microsoft.com properties before we post the public beta. We want to ensure customers have the best possible experience when downloading the beta, and I’ll be posting here again soon once the beta goes live. Stay tuned! We are excited that you are excited!"

Excited is a relatively good term to use considering that a large portion of Windows Vista consumers are anxiously waiting to upgrade. But those seeking the beta now will have to wait indefinitely, for at the time of this writing, Microsoft offered no renewed release date. However, other reports released as early as this morning back up Microsoft's claims, saying that consumers wanting the new Windows 7 Beta began to flood the servers even though the release wouldn't go live until later this afternoon around 3pm EST (story).

But why are so many consumers -2.5 million in fact- eager to download the Windows 7 beta? Is Vista that awful? It seems rather ironic in a way, as the new OS is based on Vista architecture anyway, yet consumers are eager to flock to the new operating system as if Vista sent them screaming like a mob of  horrified villagers in a horror movie. Many critics believe that Windows 7 - after toying around with the beta - is nothing more than a service pack for Vista.

"I’ve been playing with the Windows 7 Build 7000 (Beta 1) for several days now, and I’ve come to the conclusion that, like Vista, it’s not a major improvement over what most users are currently experiencing with Windows XP, and is at best only a slight improvement over Vista SP1," said ZDNet's Jason Perlow back on January 1. "In a number of cases, I think they’ve gone even further down the user rejection hole."

I hope that's not the case and that Widows 7 will be the true successor to the widely-popular Windows XP operating system. Until then, consumers can download the beta and give the new installment a test drive whenever Microsoft bandages its wounded servers and reloads the massive 2.5GB beta.

More from CES 2009

Display 20 Comments.
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  • 1 Hide
    seboj , January 10, 2009 3:39 AM
    That's funny, Perlow's the only one I've heard of so far who has a less-than-positive review on 7.
  • -1 Hide
    Darkk , January 10, 2009 4:27 AM
    I've downloaded both versions of Windows 7 32bit and 64bit last night before folks overwhelmed the servers. I installed it on my VMWare machine to see what's so different about it. Right now as of Build 7000 not much except the taskbar is a little different.

    Pretty booting up screen tho.

    I think Microsoft should just drop Win7 and come out with a Service Pack 4 for WinXP to give us DirectX 10 support and others.

    Nothing wrong with keeping WinXP alive since it still works!!

    Just the GUI needs to be updated a little bit but the core OS should remain the same.
  • -4 Hide
    Tindytim , January 10, 2009 7:10 AM
    Darkkas of Build 7000 not much except the taskbar is a little different.


    You don't know what you're talking about, so just shut up. The context menus are worth the download.
  • 0 Hide
    randomizer , January 10, 2009 7:18 AM
    2.5GB? It was 3.5GB on the torrents as far as I can remember. Probably just a typo.

    EDIT: Hmm... it seems 3.15GB for the 64-bit version and 2.44GB for the 32-bit version.
  • 0 Hide
    HJB , January 10, 2009 10:23 AM
    MSDN versions of build 7000 have 32-bit @ 2,497.48MB and 32-bit @ 3,230.10MB
  • 0 Hide
    zodiacfml , January 10, 2009 10:52 AM
    there are a lot of positive user reviews on the torrents.
    probably, beta versions aren't that bloated yet compared to an official release which explains the speed of response they experience with the beta.
    yet, i hope i'm wrong.
  • -1 Hide
    bydesign , January 10, 2009 12:47 PM
    By far the best beta release by M$. I still would love to know why they install stuff that it should know that I don't have. Example I loads of things such as tablet pc stuff installed. It may work better on old configs but I wouldn't install it on an old PC other than to see what it would do. Also Aero still takes a respectable GPU, why? Linux has desktop effects that are much more impressive and can run on just about anything. While improved in Windows 7 Aero still looks slow when compared with Macs and Linux and I running a 4870x2.

    Unlike the SP1 for Vista which didn't do very much at all this seem to be the performance fix that Vista users were looking for. It's leaner and slightly more responsive. The UI layout is improved but it's still more or less vista sp2 in my book. Also this should have been 64bit only as they originally planned. By releasing both versions they will keep the waters muddy. Software devs will continue to focus on x86 while the vast majority of desktops sold will come with the 64bit version installed.

    Features like User Access Control have been greatly improved and processes like indexing are less disruptive. Those alone will change your impression of the OS.

  • 0 Hide
    noahjwhite , January 10, 2009 12:48 PM
    Yeah... they can be downloaded via torrent in about 2 hours. I'm seeding several versions myself.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , January 10, 2009 1:23 PM
    i'm signed up in microsofts connect thing, but how do you get a key? I havent been "invited" to connect yet but i can't get a key O_O and i REALLY wanna beta test legally
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , January 10, 2009 4:00 PM
    The beta is now on the official page.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , January 10, 2009 6:20 PM
    "the servers' inability to handle the heavy-duty traffic.", sounds like a lame excuse to me!

    Why don't they bittorrent it,and at the same time set up queues in their download page?
    I'm sure there are hundreds of people who won't care about uploading upto 30% of their download via bittorrent, and it would save Windows a few terrabytes on data!
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , January 10, 2009 6:22 PM
    DarkkI've downloaded both versions of Windows 7 32bit and 64bit last night before folks overwhelmed the servers. I installed it on my VMWare machine to see what's so different about it. Right now as of Build 7000 not much except the taskbar is a little different.Pretty booting up screen tho.I think Microsoft should just drop Win7 and come out with a Service Pack 4 for WinXP to give us DirectX 10 support and others.Nothing wrong with keeping WinXP alive since it still works!!Just the GUI needs to be updated a little bit but the core OS should remain the same.

    Agree fully with you, however,probably they already went over budget with XP, and fear they won't get any profit out of it anymore.
  • 1 Hide
    seboj , January 10, 2009 9:52 PM
    ProDigit80Agree fully with you, however,probably they already went over budget with XP, and fear they won't get any profit out of it anymore.


    I don't agree with either of you. OSs get updated, get over it. If XP works well for you, keep using it. The rest of us won't miss you. ^^

    ByDesignAlso this should have been 64bit only as they originally planned. By releasing both versions they will keep the waters muddy.


    You are right, they need to start force-feeding 64-bit to the unknowing public. I'm sure the release of a 32-bit Win7 is more related with WOW64 compatability issues than anything else. MS is probably waiting for the devs to catch up with 64-bit, and the devs are waiting for MS to start force-feeding it.

    My download just finished, so I'm off to the races. I wonder if Tom's will do a review of the beat?
  • 1 Hide
    DeadlyPredator , January 11, 2009 1:41 AM
    DarkkI think Microsoft should just drop Win7 and come out with a Service Pack 4 for WinXP to give us DirectX 10 support and others.Nothing wrong with keeping WinXP alive since it still works!!Just the GUI needs to be updated a little bit but the core OS should remain the same.
    No, because XP has some limitations and could be optimized. Some parts of WinXP are the same since Win 3.11... like fonts. What they should do is to change their philosophy of what is an OS. What we need is a common kernel, very compact which contains drivers, kernel APIs, DX10, registry, ..., and then all the UI would be a simple plugin which connect to that kernel, like linux. If you just want a console, a xp style ui without alpha blending or even a crazy 3D UI you will be satisfied with that OS, since you will choose what you need.
  • 0 Hide
    hannibal , January 11, 2009 8:50 AM
    The reason that win7 seems to be "less" bloated is that they leave of some programs like e-mail and so on. that you can download from windows-live or something like that so actually it is not so much smaller...
    Win7 is Vista with "new" clothes. Nothing so spectacular. This time the driver support should be better because of extra time. So more polished Vista, as it should have been.
    Yaeh I would allso like to see more modular aproach, but it has not been MS-style of doing OS... They want to segment the customer base via different windows versions, not by customising options.
  • 2 Hide
    revolink24 , January 11, 2009 1:15 PM
    The history of operating systems is based on the constant revision and perfection of existing operating systems. Allow me to give several examples.

    There are many Apple fans here that are screaming Vista at Windows 7. In what way, then, is Leopard a massive leap from Tiger? Tiger a leap from Panther?

    The explanation for these incremental releases is simple: Apple has a stable codebase with the OSX core, and now they are constantly seeking, in small ways, to make it ever so slightly better.

    The features introduced in Leopard over Tiger are nothing compared to the features being introduced in Windows 7. The Superbar is a massive paradigm shift in windows computing, take it or leave it. Vista now has a stable, reliable core codebase. Their priority now SHOULD be improving what they have, removing what they dont need, making better what they can make better, faster what they can make faster, and easier what they can make easier.

    Might I add another point for the consideration of Linux users. I have has Ubuntu as my secondary OS for quite a while, and many KDE based distros before that. And every time a new release of these desktop environments or distros was released, they garnered much praise over older versions. Until things went horribly wrong with KDE 4. KDE 4 IS a massive shift over the previous 3.5 series. But that is not appealing to the users, when instead the users said that they should have instead focused on IMPROVING their current line of KDE - not starting from scratch.

    It is even more evident with GNOME. For years, GNOME has not released a major rework of their desktop environment. Instead, they have made it sleeker, faster, and prettier over time.

    So what, may I ask, is the problem with Microsoft doing the same thing?
  • 0 Hide
    fulle , January 11, 2009 9:27 PM
    I stumbled upon the Windows 7 download last night, and downloaded it no problem... maybe I got lucky?

    Just got done re-sizing my partitions, and installing Windows 7, updating the drivers, and beta Kaspersky.

    Being a Vista user, I consider 7 a positive incimental update. So far I am enjoying improvements to the task bar, consider the start menu more clean, and was able to upgrade my Nvidia drivers through the Windows Updates without so much as a reboot. While writing this message, my screen flickered for a second, and a note popped up in the corner stating my driver was installed successfully.

    A leaner, improved version of Windows Vista 64bit is fine by me!
    -Still not digging IE8 tho. Think I'm going to install Opera in a second here.
  • 0 Hide
    deltatux , January 11, 2009 10:54 PM
    Windows 7 is indeed faster, and I like that. However, the taskbar is horrid, I actually really hate it, it's the only thing that makes me more annoyed than a BSoD because a BSoD will go away after a reboot, but this taskbar is apparently to stay...

    All in all, all the tests I've done on Windows 7 Beta 1 (build 7000) on VirtualBox says that people should be eagerly waiting for Windows 7 since it is an improvement to Windows Vista like how Windows XP was an improvement (or not, depending on who you talk to) over Windows 2000. Hence, the internal version numbers will show. Version 5.0 was 2000, 5.1 was XP, 5.2 was Server 2003, 6.0 is Vista and 6.1 is Win 7.
  • 0 Hide
    randomizer , January 11, 2009 11:06 PM
    You can revert to the classic taskbar (not sure how, but you can), but if it's just the size that bothers you, go to the taskbar properties and select small icons. It will then be the same size as it was on Vista, down to the partially cut-off start button.
  • 0 Hide
    davidgbailey , January 12, 2009 3:03 PM
    My comments keep getting deleted. Is there some sort of secret manual for Tomiquette? I even have a cool fucking avatar of myself. I'm too legit to quit.