What's New in Windows 7 Build 7048

With the hype around Windows 7, PC enthusiasts are paying close attention to each new build of the operating system in-the-making.

The latest leaked build on floating around the is 7048, which incorporates many noticeable changes since the previous versions -- especially when compared to the public beta build 7000.

Build 7048 was said by some sources to be the Release Candidate build, but we now know that it’s still in beta stages. The RC is still anticipated sometime in April.

The SuperSite for Windows has documented some of the more apparent visual changes in build 7048. For one, this build drops the Betta fish and introduces a set of nature-themed desktop wallpapers. While all are beautiful photos, it won’t be long before users will use an image of their own.

In addition to new backgrounds, the new Windows 7 build also includes 13 different sound schemes if the old Windows Default beeps and blips are boring you.

Small visual updates include new icons, a slightly altered Start button orb, revised picture viewer and the removal of the “send feedback” link in the corner of windows.

Navigation shortcuts have also been tweaked. As mentioned previously, Aero Peek is now integrated into the Alt-Tab method of switching windows -- so now keyboarders can take advantage of the new “glass” effect as well.

Perhaps the most notable change of all is the ability to uninstall and exclude Windows staples such as Windows Media Player, Windows Media Center, Windows DVD Maker, Windows Search, Handwriting Recognition, Windows Gadget Platform, Fax and Scan, XPS Viewer, and yes, Internet Explorer 8. Without Internet Explorer 8 installed, users will have to install some other browser for any hopes of accessing the World Wide Web. It seems that Microsoft is letting users strip Windows 7 down more than ever. In fact, SuperSite reports that removing Windows Search kills Start Menu Search, describing it as “painful.”

Could this be the last beta leak before the Release Candidate? Things are looking closer with each new build, and we’re just as excited as you are. What do you think is the best new feature of Windows 7?

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • eddieroolz
    I hope this is the last. Can't wait for the RC!
  • cheepstuff
    in no tine flat there is going to be some stupid jive at microsoft...
    ...or should i say M$...
  • jsloan
    windows 7 7048 screenshots


    windows 7 7048 benchmarks!

  • rooket
    I like how you can disable MSIE in Windows 7, but I just figured out how to get msn messenger to stop launching MSIE and use Firefox instead for everything. That was my big problem. It is still nice to be able to access a browser from any explorer window you have open (control panel, file explorer, etc) but all the malware and popup problems make it entirely not worth it. Although I never had any malware/virii on vista. Nothing's perfect though, they even have malware on mac osx now.
  • ossie
    the benchies that jsloan linked are indicating vi$hta-sp2/$even gets slower/ly to alpha state - aka rc in m$ slang - just applying the last strokes of make-up...
  • mdillenbeck
    The best feature will be the ability to strip down the OS to just the components you want. I also think this might make it more appealing for businesses.
  • batkerson
    And what about speed, efficiency, compatibility? Will we be able to run all those Windows XP apps that didn't run in Vista?
  • turbolover22
    Whats with ending every article lately with a question?
  • IamMark
    I'd really like to know what strides they made in improving performance. Windows XP is still considerably faster just doing basic OS type activities, such as viewing Windows logs, using Add/Remove Programs, etc. And my system isn't the culprit: Intel i7 920 with 6 gigs of RAM.
  • As mentioned previously, Aero Peek is now integrated into the Alt-Tab method of switching windows -- so now keyboarders can take advantage of the new “glass” effect as well.

    This was already possible by pressing the windows logo key with TAB.

    and yes, Internet Explorer 8.
    Take note,that without at least internet explorer 5 installed you can not visit update.windows manually, and will need to rely on the systray icon to do automatic updates, or do downloads of...

    Internet Explorer 6 SP1 can be downloaded via the download center with firefox here.