Welcome!

Microsoft Cloud Authors: Lori MacVittie, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Serafima Al, Janakiram MSV

Related Topics: Microsoft Cloud

Microsoft Cloud: Blog Feed Post

Upgrading to Windows 7 – Part One

It is now one week since I upgraded my primary desktop system to Windows 7

It is now one week since I upgraded my primary desktop system to Windows 7. I had been an early adopter of Vista and had a number of problems, even an occasional BSOD in the early days. I delayed putting Vista on my school computer because it did not support Novell which is used at Dawson College where I teach. Today I upgraded my school computer and I am fully integrated into the Novell structure. Here is the what and why of what I did, part one.

My department at Dawson College subscribes to a program at Microsoft called the MSDNAA that is a subset of the MSDN subscription program for commercial developers. This gave me access to Windows 7 on August 6th. The first decision I had to make was whether to do an upgrade or a clean install.

In the days of DOS 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 an upgrade involved replacing the hard disk boot code and creating a new directory for the DOS utilities. The only time you would do a clean install by reformatting the hard disk, installing the OS, and then re-installing all your apps, was when an application crashed the hard disk so that it would not boot or you caught a nasty file/boot sector deleting virus that crashed the hard disk so that it would not boot.

Then came Windows 3.0. Finally a PC user could delude themselves into thinking they had a system on par with the Mac. Microsoft employed the concept of sharing to the OS in the form of the dynamic link library commonly known as the DLL. A DLL was meant to be a block of executable code that could be shared by many different applications so that software could look and work similarly. To ease the sharing these DLL files were stored within the Windows OS directory structure. Boy, did Bill and the gang get that idea wrong.

Many developers shipped their products with updated versions of commonly used DLL files. Unfortunately there was poor policing of this code and so the APIs of the DLLs were sometimes changed. This effectively broke any program on your system that depended on a particular version of a DLL that had just been replaced by a different developer’s product.

Another problem, one that still exists to some extent even today on both Macs and PCs are programs that don’t delete everything they placed on your hard disk. The system16 folder in Windows 3.0/3.1 would grow with every new piece of software loaded but rarely shrink when the program was removed.

It should be noted that Microsoft now advises against using shared DLLs. They are recommending as a best practice that we go back to the days of DOS when installing a program meant copying all its files into its own folder on the hard disk. This is how Unix/Linux has done it forever. A comment on my blog site from Eugene pointed out that the previous sentence is incorrect.

This led to the general rule for any power user of Windows 3.0/3.1 to reformat and re-install Windows every six months. This idea of occasionally tearing down and then rebuilding your home on the PC was looked at as a prudent form of preventative maintenance right up to Windows 2000. Old habits die hard and I still hear, from time to time, that one of my students has just reinstalled Windows XP because the system felt sluggish.

As I progressed though the versions of Windows there was no question of reformatting before installing a new OS. Even if Microsoft allowed an upgrade there would still be lots of DLLs and device drivers left behind that were incompatible with the new OS. As well Microsoft rarely deleted old OS files during an upgrade. They remained never to be used but still taking up space.

There was a time when I thought installing a new OS was an exciting event. Yes, I know I needed to get out more. But these days I have over 50 software packages on my system and I no longer have the interest or time to reload them. I make regular image backups as well as file backups so that I can recover from a catastrophe with a minimum of effort. So there really was no real choice for me, I was going to upgrade rather than do a clean install.

My home system was Vista 64. Switching from 32 to 64 can only be done as a clean install and I had done that two years ago. I inserted the Windows 7 Professional DVD and began the install process. The first screen gives you two choices, check compatibility online or install. Don’t bother with checking for compatibility online as the install choice does a compatibility check anyways. Then you promise to love Microsoft (the EULA) and then you are given the choice to Upgrade or Clean Install. I chose Upgrade.

After a few minutes I received a compatibility report. It told me I must uninstall Microsoft OneCare and I must reboot because the Windows 7 setup added some files to my Vista OS. It also warned me that iTunes would not work (I ignored this and iTunes works fine) and it also gave me some warnings about some other devices such as my Canon scanner. I removed OneCare, rebooted, restarted the Windows 7 setup, and got another compatibility report with only warnings that I chose to ignore.

The starter’s pistol fired and the installation began. On my desktop with an E8500 processor and 4 gigs of RAM it took about an hour and a half. When I did the upgrade on my office computer with a Pentium D 3.2GHz and 3.2 Gig of Ram and using the 32bit version of Windows 7 it took just under three hours.

An interesting event of note is the point at which you enter the licence number. This occurs as just about the last step. I do not know if you could rollback at this point. It almost seems like a decision made to annoy people trying to install Windows 7 with disreputable license numbers that would fail. But after the last reboot I logged in and everything seemed to work.

There was one major change I made to the way I use my computer just prior to the installation. As an old time Windows user I refused to be anything less than an administrator whenever I logged into my computer. Until User Access Control (UAC) appeared in Vista you had to switch users if you needed administrator privileges if your current account did not have them. But old habits die hard and I remained an administrator when I logged in at home and at school.

Well, no more. Just before I upgraded I created an administrator level account and then downgraded my user account to just plain user. This is a best practice that has existed in the world of Unix/Linux. Until Vista came along it was a practice that was a pain to follow through on. With the threat of Trojans and botnets lurking on the Internet it was long overdue on my part to adopt this best practice.

It has been a week at home and a day at my office but no Blue Screens Of Death (are they still blue on Win 7?). Part 2 of this article will look at the very few problems I had with existing software and drivers and how I solved them.

More Stories By Ken Fogel

In 1980 I bought for myself the most wonderful toy of the day, the Apple ][+. Obsession followed quickly and by 1983 I was writing software for small and medium sized businesses in Montreal for both the Apple and the IBM PC under the company name Omnibus Systems. In the evenings I taught continuing education courses that demystified the computer to the first generation of workers who found themselves with their typewriter on the scrap heap and a PC with WordStar taking its place.

In 1990 I was invited to join the faculty at Dawson College in the Computer Science Technology program. When I joined the program the primary language was COBOL and my responsibility was to teach small systems languages such as BASIC and C/C++.

Today I am now the chairperson and program coordinator of the Computer Science Technology program at Dawson. The program's primary language is Java and the focus is on enterprise programming.

I like to write about the every day problems my students and I face in using various languages and platforms to get the job done. And from time to time I stray from the path and write about what I plan to do, what I actually get around to doing, and what I imagine I am doing.

@omniprof

@ThingsExpo Stories
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Red Hat's Chief Archi...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Personalization has long been the holy grail of marketing. Simply stated, communicate the most relevant offer to the right person and you will increase sales. To achieve this, you must understand the individual. Consequently, digital marketers developed many ways to gather and leverage customer information to deliver targeted experiences. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lou Casal, Founder and Principal Consultant at Practicala, discussed how the Internet of Things (IoT) has accelerated our abilit...
Organizations planning enterprise data center consolidation and modernization projects are faced with a challenging, costly reality. Requirements to deploy modern, cloud-native applications simultaneously with traditional client/server applications are almost impossible to achieve with hardware-centric enterprise infrastructure. Compute and network infrastructure are fast moving down a software-defined path, but storage has been a laggard. Until now.
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
The best way to leverage your CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at CloudEXPO. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audienc...
JETRO showcased Japan Digital Transformation Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo® at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) is a non-profit organization that provides business support services to companies expanding to Japan. With the support of JETRO's dedicated staff, clients can incorporate their business; receive visa, immigration, and HR support; find dedicated office space; identify local government subsidies; get...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICC-USA, a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. ICC is a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances to meet a wide range of ...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that the upcoming DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO New York event will feature 10 companies from Poland to participate at the "Poland Digital Transformation Pavilion" on November 12-13, 2018.
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
In his keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Sheng Liang, co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs, discussed the technological advances and new business opportunities created by the rapid adoption of containers. With the success of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and various open source technologies used to build private clouds, cloud computing has become an essential component of IT strategy. However, users continue to face challenges in implementing clouds, as older technologies evolve and newer ones like Docker c...
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
Michael Maximilien, better known as max or Dr. Max, is a computer scientist with IBM. At IBM Research Triangle Park, he was a principal engineer for the worldwide industry point-of-sale standard: JavaPOS. At IBM Research, some highlights include pioneering research on semantic Web services, mashups, and cloud computing, and platform-as-a-service. He joined the IBM Cloud Labs in 2014 and works closely with Pivotal Inc., to help make the Cloud Found the best PaaS.
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that All in Mobile, a mobile app development company from Poland, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. All In Mobile is a mobile app development company from Poland. Since 2014, they maintain passion for developing mobile applications for enterprises and startups worldwide.
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
Headquartered in Plainsboro, NJ, Synametrics Technologies has provided IT professionals and computer systems developers since 1997. Based on the success of their initial product offerings (WinSQL and DeltaCopy), the company continues to create and hone innovative products that help its customers get more from their computer applications, databases and infrastructure. To date, over one million users around the world have chosen Synametrics solutions to help power their accelerated business or per...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.