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Am I missing out on anything by sticking by Windows XP?

With the release of Vista there were a lot of initial problems with hardware and software not playing together nicely, and so I didnt upgrade.

I have heard that Windows 7 is a lot better, but should I upgrade straight away or wait for 6 months?

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marked as duplicate by Tom Wijsman, random Sep 6 '10 at 0:29

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Installing Windows 7 RC1 gives you an upgraded operating system until August of 2010. With compatibility mode (Windows-XP) you should be able to run any XP specific software on 7.

The only advantage you'll have installing now, is getting more proficient with the new User Interface and Window Management. If you're an enthusiast and the details matter to you - then go ahead and upgrade.

Personally, based on stability and UI - I'm loving Windows 7.

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Having run the Beta for 6 months, and now I'm on the RC, I can say this:

What Windows 98SE was to Windows 98,

Windws 7 is to Vista.

Couple this with the "we wanna let it die" attitude at Microsoft with regard to Windows XP, and I think you should seriously consider switching after waiting a year or so. That year of time will give you a buffer to determine if there are serious issues, compatibility problems, etc.

So it's a "qualified" yes, but one that requires you wait a bit.

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That's what I did. I didn't love Vista so I stuck with XP (and Server 2008 as a workstation), but I went directly to Windows 7 and have been loving it. I recommend you check it out. I think the RC is still available for download.

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Wait until the first service pack.

But, the choice is yours, I still suggest waiting because that favorite application of yours may break in Windows 7.

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Windows 7 is Windows Vista, but released correctly. All the "root causes" of the pain that was Vista are gone; drivers are here, applications are by-and-large Vista-ready, most/all of the UI inconsitencies are done wit. There are some nice new features, but they aren't really OS-level mostly UI.

I've run Vista since pre-SP1, and Windows 7 since Beta. While I did just fine with Vista (I had rock solid hardware), Windows 7 has been much better. Anecedoate ahoy: in the time since I've been running 7 (about 3 days after the Beta went public) I've had one crash, one.

If your hardware can swing it, I'd suggest upgrading on day 1; I know I will be.

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Don't wait, Windows 7 is Windows Vista with some new cosmetics and a few added features - nothing has really changed from a technical standpoint that would result in the same problems as going from XP to Vista did.

The architecture is mostly the same - think of Vista to Windows 7 like going from Windows 2000 to XP.

You will most likely have some problem going from XP to Vista OR Windows 7 - none of them will be a better path from a compatibility stand-point. If you didn't go for Vista before you will have to handle the problems you might have had then, now, instead. Regardless of whether you choose Vista or Windows 7 or wait another six months...

...also, Server 2008 is Vista SP1 - just a bunch more services disabled by default - so the "Vista sucked" thing is something I never understood. I think that was just bad luck and too much bad word of mouth - it didn't actually suck at all ^^ (oh well, Aero Glass was and still is rather ugly)

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This is largely not true. –  ajm Jul 15 '09 at 22:01
    
@Andy Mikula: Having run 7 for many, many, many months now, I disagree. –  Avery Payne Jul 15 '09 at 22:03
    
Well sure, lots of basic tech did change under the hood in Windows 7 as well - but nothing that really breaks anything completely like drivers or applications when coming from Vista. Coming from XP to Vista did break a lot of stuff because of the major underlying architectural changes. That is not true when going from Vista to Windows 7. –  Oskar Duveborn Jul 15 '09 at 22:10
    
This question is about going from XP to 7. –  ajm Jul 15 '09 at 22:13
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@Avery: specific examples? I've been running 7 for seven months or so, and honestly there's no comparison, other than very superficial cosmetic similarities. Performance and compatibility-wise, it's been 1000 times better. –  ajm Jul 15 '09 at 22:15
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