Microsoft Hardware to Take Advantage of Windows 7

Microsoft Hardware to Take Advantage of Windows 7

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Microsoft Hardware has a great set of products that work very well with Windows Vista and Windows 7. When Windows 7 hits stores this fall, Microsoft Hardware will release new software that will allow the current line-up of Microsoft Hardware products (mice, keyboards, LifeCams, gaming devices and notebook accessories) to take advantage of new capabilities being introduced with Windows 7 such as the new Windows Taskbar and Device Stage.

Microsoft Hardware will be releasing new software with a feature called Taskbar Favorites, specifically designed for Microsoft keyboards from Microsoft. This feature will give users a quick way to access the applications represented on the new Windows Taskbar in Windows 7. Taskbar Favorites will automatically map the order of applications on the Windows Taskbar to the “My Favorites” hot keys on a Microsoft Hardware keyboard such as the Digital Media Keyboard 3000. “My Favorites” hot keys are a series of buttons on the top of Microsoft keyboards (circled below).

Digital Media Keyboard 3000

And using Windows Flip, with the press of a button people will be able to see a live preview of all their open windows. This allows people to more quickly navigate between open windows and choose a desired application.

Also, all Microsoft Hardware products will be recognized and shown as actual images of the product when you open the Devices and Printers folder.

mshardware_manage

In the above screenshot, you will see that my Digital Media Keyboard 3000, Notebook Optical Mouse 3000 and LifeCam Show all show up with actual product images making it much easier to work with the hardware.

The final versions of the software for Microsoft Hardware mice and keyboard products, which will include Taskbar Favorites and Device Stage and Windows Flip support will be available June 26th at the Microsoft Hardware Windows 7 Web site. The final versions of the Microsoft Hardware software for LifeCam products will be available July 31st.

For more information, see this press release on Microsoft PressPass.

23 Comments
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  • Once more into the abyss.  Here we are again with six different versions of windows, and the two versions being discounted are the versions most people will learn to hate because they are so limited.  You would think after taking so long to release Vista and it being completely unstable pre SP1 and us not receiving the new file system and us being cheated on the Ultimate Extras that Microsour would have practically given away all versions of Win 7.  Alas this is not to be the case $319.99 for Windows 7 Ultimate full version.  Personally I have been running the Win 7 RC since it was released and I can tell you for a fact that it is nothing more than a Vista Service Pack.  The only items in it that even make it worth $60.00 are the touch screen features.  Would I even pay full OEM dvd pricing at say Newegg or some other online retailer which will probably be around $160.00 for Ultimate? NO, NO and NO again.  The biggest mistake Microsoft is making is the fact that Win 7 will run on newer hardware that Vista will not run on meaning more component sales.  The second biggest mistake Microsoft is making is the fact Win 7 will run on more older systems than Vista meaning more smaller computer upgrades.  Microsoft has the chance to be responsible for kick starting the computer hardware market sales and again they only think of their bottom line.  In short again Microsoft cheats the OEMs and the consumers.      

  • not sure best way to post "new" discussion threads... just signed up here.  I just installed windows 7 and curious how much i "should be able to do at this point".

    first my platform:

    Asus - m3a78 board

    AMD athlon 64 bit

    4 gig memory

    baseline - i have the os installed - Windows 7 RC Checked Build (x64) - DVD (English) /Includes: Checked/Debug;  05-05-2009

    installed on this webroot spysweeper.

    Problem - can't install ms office professional 2007.  was able to install microsoft virtual pc running xp so i could install quicken.  each time i try to shut down the virtural pc image i get the blue screen.  I did this since I could not install  quicken on windows 7.

    Seem very limited in what i can do.  surprised if ga is targeted for octobler.

    Also tried to install my asus hardware driver and the disk is not excepted by this os.

    ideas

  • Hey Brandon,

    Greetings after a long Time....

    I hav upgraded Win 7 to build 7201... But it is still havin problems regardin the bluetooth and safe hardware removal......

    Pls let me no the updates/news regarding the same if any.

    Also let me no whether the current build is 7201 or another....

    Regards,

    Ricky

  • LEMONed
    3 Posts

    Sorry, I really have no idea where else to go. I am reporting a bug.

    Please see screenshot: img7.imageshack.us/.../41404988.jpg

    This has been around since the first beta of Windows 7. Hope this message can reach the right guys.

  • LEMONed
    3 Posts

    Sorry, I really have no idea where else to go. I am reporting a bug.

    Please see screenshot: img7.imageshack.us/.../41404988.jpg

    This has been around since the first beta of Windows 7. Hope this message can reach the right guys.

  • There's still no flash player for Windows 7 64bit and that disables most websites. Still not enough 64bit anything, big problem!!!

  • An Open Letter to Microsoft:

    Windows XP did a great thing. It united two operating systems - the Windows 9x codebase and the Windows NT codebase (including Windows 2000). I would argue that the move to unify and standardize on one version of Windows was the primary reason for the almost-universal adoption of Windows XP by businesses, especially in the United States.

    Simplification and standardization have always been powerful forces in the technology world, but today they have become even more valuable because buyers are deluged with a flood of choices, even when they have the simplest goals. And, today, the truth is that users and companies don’t want to think about the operating system. They simply want the OS to work smoothly and get out of the way.

    For the 88% of computer users whose machines are powered by Microsoft Windows, upgrading to the latest version - or even choosing the right computer to buy - got a lot more confusing in 2007 with the release of Windows Vista because it was sold in four versions: Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, and Ultimate.

    This was one of the major drawbacks that led to the failure of Vista (I’ve previously written about the other reasons) and I certainly hoped that this would be one of the mistakes corrected in Windows 7. Unfortunately, it’s gotten worse. There are now six planned versions of Windows 7: Starter Edition, Home Basic, Home Premium, Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate.

    With the official launch of Windows 7 looming on October 22, I would strongly encourage a change of course. Flatten the whole strategy and offer a single version of Windows 7 for $50. There’s still time to get this right and doing it has the potential to greatly simplify computing for both consumers and businesses and ultimately increase Windows sales.

    The single version of Windows 7 should be based on the operating system that’s currently called Home Premium. It’s time to bring an end to the division between Windows for the home and Windows for business. While the division existed in Windows XP, and before that in the split between Windows 9x and Windows NT/2000, there’s never been a better time to end it because the gray area between the two versions is growing.

    The additional business functionality that organizations need for networking and security in large computer networks should be sold separately as an “Enterprise Feature Pack” and tied to the deployment of Windows Server (a completely separate product that is not part of the one version of Windows 7 that I’m suggesting). A lot of the additional functionality in the professional version of Windows is tied to integration with Windows Server, such as Group Policy and domain membership.

    Most sizable organizations and their IT departments are going to buy all of this extra business functionality as part of volume licensing agreements such as Software Assurance (just like they do now), so having a single version of Windows 7 wouldn’t actually be much of a change for them.

    However, it would be a major change for the 5.3 million small businesses in the United States with 20 employees or less (that’s 89% of all businesses, according to the U.S. Census Bureau). Small businesses often end up with a mix of the home and professional Windows systems. That’s because many of their laptop and desktop machines are purchased from retailers such as Best Buy and Office Depot (and often loaded with the home OS), while others are purchased online from companies such as Dell and Hewlett-Packard and loaded with professional versions of Windows.

    These small businesses don’t usually have IT departments, but instead rely on tech-savvy managers to wear the IT hat or hire local IT consultants to serve as a resource. As a result, they don’t typically have a long-term IT strategy in place and don’t always have a good idea of which version of Windows to buy on a new PC - or may not have much choice if they are buying a system at a retail location. Then they have to cobble together a network of machines with different versions of Windows as their business grows and they evolve into a larger company.

    But, small businesses aren’t the only ones who would benefit from a single version of Windows. As the line between work and personal life continues to blur, it creates a larger gray area where the needs of users can fall between home and professional use.

    Full-time telecommuters and employees who work from home part-time are both growing trends, and they involve workers buying their own PCs or using home PCs to access corporate systems. Sometimes these users even get stipends from their employers to purchase their own PCs. Should these users buy systems with the home or professional version of Windows installed? Similarly, we have companies like Citrix that are experimenting with programs that give employees a stipend and allow them to purchase their own computers rather than getting a PC from the company’s IT department. These employees face the same dilemma of selecting the right version of Windows for them. It’s time to put an end to that confusion.

    While I realize that most PCs that are currently running Windows got it pre-installed from a new computer or had it installed in a standardized way by IT, there is the potential for more upgrades than ever with Windows 7. In fact, it has the potential to be the most widely-upgraded Windows of all time, due to the sheer number of users and businesses who either skipped Windows Vista altogether or would like nothing better than to migrate off of it.

    In all fairness, the biggest problem with Vista is an image problem - as the Mojave Experiment clearly depicted. Windows 7 is a simpler Windows that actually strips out functionality and applications from Vista in order to make the OS leaner, faster, and a better fit on older hardware. Windows 7 also makes subtle changes under the hood to address some of Vista’s sluggishness and bugginess.

    As I recently wrote, there’s nothing groundbreaking in Windows 7, but the speed and stability improvements will make it an attractive upgrade if only because it does a better job of getting out of the way. With the recession slowing down new PC sales and a U.S. market highly saturated with PCs that are still very useful, the Windows 7 upgrade market could be massive - but only if it’s easy to understand for users and simplifies life for businesses. That’s why it’s time for a single version of Windows 7.

    As such, I submit this appeal in the same spirit that Bill Gates did in his Open Letter to Hobbyists in 1976.

    Jason Hiner

    Editor in Chief, TechRepublic

    UPDATED: On Twitter, Rodney Buike pointed out that Microsoft now offers an Enterprise and Starter editions of Windows Vista. That means that Vista and Windows 7 both have six versions

  • zed260
    21 Posts

    cant wait till i can preorder windows 7

  • Hi Brandon, nice article and nic to know about new Microsoft Hardware update software :)

    I faced a problem with the RC version of Windows7... in my old Intel Pentium 4 machine... the configuretion is as follows :

    Intel Pentium 4 2.88 GHz

    2 x 256 = 512 MB DDR1 400

    Asus P5RD1-VM Series Mobo with ATi- Radeon Xpress 200 onboard Graphics

    80 GB SATA HDD

    Microsoft Keyboard, Mice and all...

    Well, this is my Old machine.. but it runs Vista faster - Yes Faster!... and ofcourse Windows7 Beta1 was flying... with Aero effects turned On.. and i got a rating of 2.5 with good speed.. I was happy seeing that...

    I tried with removing one DDR from memory slot.. and the OS worked with speed of XP without Aero!!! -> Its Surprisingly AMAZING!!! ( 256 MB is an Odd choice in this era.. still it works!)

    But, the Bad thing is... When i installed the RC, and i installed the Vista driver for ATi-Radeon Display chipset and graphics driver, RC version didnt gave me the Glass Aero Effects :(

    I dont know what happed with my RC1 :(

  • lukasz....my question is a little more technical than that...by default in the 64 bit version of windows 7 the sidebar runs in 64 bit mode....my questions was asking how to get it to run in 32-bit mode.....and yes both the 32 and 64 bit versions are included

  • Tiko
    1 Posts

    I don't know were I should write about problems with Windows Media playaer in Wind7, so I'm writing here. When I'm playing DVD film from external hard disk Media player every 3-4 minutes automatically switching off from full screen mode to normal.

  • 7flavor
    352 Posts

    Taskbar Favorites, you mean Win Key+1, Win Key+2 etc? Isn't that already possible? Plus you can assign your own shortcut keys since Windows 95.

  • Sorry I repeated myself, cause there was an error on the website :(

  • HI loopyoyo

    Minimize everything else and rightclick on desktop with your mouse and select gadgets

  • Hi loopyoyo

    Minimize everything else and,

    on desktop right click with your mouse and select gadgets :D

    This is for Windows 7

  • anyone figured out how to run silverlight sidebar gadgets on 7 x64 yet? in vista you used to be able to just run the 32 bit version of sidebar and open them that way...now that they have integrated the sidebar function into the os there is no tangible way to do that..anyone got any ideas?

    just fyi...silverlight gadgets will only run in 32 bit mode..dont know why they have not made silverlight 64-bit native yet

  • I love Windows 7 RC 32 Bit

    All of my Vista 32bit drivers work :)

    I am testing it, I made a screenie on Microsoft forums :D

    I love Windows 7 :) Thank you Microsoft

    Becarfull when using WebcamMax thought

    My nickname is same on Microsoft Forums as here

  • lollht
    44 Posts

    Will new devices ever show up as an icon on the desktop or Taskbar after they are inserted?  Talking the user through finding them can be a pain sometimes during phone support.  Kills me to say it, but the way they appear on a Mac is way easier.

  • I hope they fixed two things. Can you go crack the whip and make sure they did?

    1) Added library support to the hotkeys on MS Keyboards. Intellitype wouldn't let you assign the music hotkey to the music library for example. It opened your my music folder. It should go to the libraries by default in my opinion.

    2) The annoying screen flicker/disabling/re-enabling of Aero when the magnifer is enabled in Intellipoint. This was in Vista, too. So obnoxious. Makes this once great feature completley useless. The magnifier in Windows 7 is capable of just opening right up without flicking the screen.

  • I have a Microsoft Wireless Xbox 360 Controller. I've only just discovered how excellent this hardware integrates with "Games For Windows".

    What's up with the lack of Icon for that? The "XBOX 360 Wireless Receiver for Windows" is there... but no groovy controller icon.

    Perhaps there could be an option somewhere in Windows 7 to test the buttons, or possibly calibrate if needed?

  • I love the Intellipoint software for my wireless Microsoft Mouse, its nice to see that the hardware is being backed up by quality software.  Ive had a lot of HP Printers and Logitech cameras in the past, that I have ended up rarely using..  just because the software isnt as stong as the hardware.

    So its nice to see that the Microsoft back up its hardware with good software and vice versa.

  • The updated versions of the software are generally found at the Windows 7 hardware support download page now seen at  www.microsoft.com/.../support.mspx

    The update under each catagory covers the entire model line up where you simply select the model you have during the installation. If you were using the same model keyboard pointed to there you simply select that from the list.

  • Bryan
    13 Posts

    Hi Brandon:

    Glad to hear the MS Hardware team is dedicated to enhancing its existing product lineup. Will the new software be available via Windows Update, or will users need to actively seek the download online?