Windows 7 Build 7048: Getting Closer to RC Status


It's not quite a release candidate yet, but Windows 7 beta build 7048, which leaked onto the Internet last week , provides a lot more customization options as well as numerous feature and UI tweaks . Here are some of the high points from WinSuperSite's coverage :

  • More sound schemes (13 in all)
  • New picture backgrounds (including some from Corbis Images)
  • New icons for accessories such as Paint, DVD Maker, and WordPad
  • Redesigned Start orb
  • The "Send Feedback" link is gone
  • Want to see folders, not libraries? Click your user name
  • Alt-Tab cool switch now incorporates Aero Peek  to temporarily hide windows
  • You can now uninstall IE 8 and many other components to create a "bare-bones" Windows 7 install

Digging deeper, ZDNet's Ed Bott (with whom I worked on his Windows Me book back in the day) also discovered :

  • Better ways to change icon displays in Control Panel
  • Easier to read left pane
  • More information on pen and touch support on specific systems
  • Integration with Windows LiveID
  • Windows XP-style keyboard shortcuts to Windows Explorer
  • Usability tweaks for Libraries, Homegroups, and Fonts features
  • Easier to access ClearType LCD panel tuning
  • Improved ribbons for WordPad and Paint
  • Native support for Word 2007 .docx format in WordPad
  • Windows Media Player 12 now streams to Internet and adds other improvements
  • Better terminology for backup and advanced recovery options
  • AppData and Downloads folders now included in standard backup

Should you track down a copy of Build 7048 and give it a try before the official RC hits (probably in April)? Before you decide, be sure to view the WinSuperSite Build 7048 comment thread . Short take: you might be asking for trouble, especially if you don't do a clean install.

Have you tried Build 7048? Hit Comment and tell us what you liked, and what still needs work.

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