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Install Windows 7 on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

The Lenovo ThinkPad X61 is still a great small laptop and was used by many companies.  It still has life left in it and you can Install Windows 7 on the Lenovo ThinkPad X61 very easily.

For my test I installed Windows 7 Home Premium With Service Pack 1 64 Bit.  Since the Lenovo ThinkPad X61 does not have an optical drive I used an external optical drive but you could probably use a flash drive as well.

I did a clean install keeping nothing and after running Windows Update there were no more drivers that I needed to install.

Despite some of these Lenovo ThinkPad X61’s coming with Windows Vista Basic, Aero Glass was enabled and supported in Windows 7.

Windows 7 on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 7 on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 7 on the Lenovo ThinkPad X61 performs very well and is up to most tasks.  It should be just fine for business use but I would advise against gaming or anything overly graphical.  Below is the Windows Experience Index.

Windows 7 Experience Index on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 7 Experience Index on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

If you have one of these around and are thinking of upgrading to a newer version of Windows I feel like you should install Windows 7 on the Lenovo ThinkPad X61 and give it a shot.

Save Disk Space by using Disk Cleanup Part 2

Many newer computers and devices have only a little bit of hard drive space.  While the cloud helps with this you can also save disk space by using Disk Cleanup.  This is part 2 I highly suggest Compressing your Hard Drive first then using Disk Cleanup.

Just a reminder to back up your data if you have not already or not done it in a long time.  No one wants to lose anything.

Before you begin you will want to update Windows as Disk Cleanup deletes backed up system files from Windows updates and from performing a Windows upgrade (like from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1).

While Disk Cleanup has been part of Windows forever it will be most effective in updated versions of Windows 7 and later including Windows RT.  This will free up space in Windows XP and Windows Vista but is not able to remove the backed up Windows update files.

If you completed the steps in part 1 then bring up the Hard Drive Properties window again and click on Disk Cleanup.  If not then just click on Start and in the search box type in Cleanmgr.exe (Start and then Run in Windows XP or in Windows 8 and 8.1 Start and then just start typing as it will search automatically).  You can also try looking in Start, All Programs, Accessories, and then System Tools in the Start Menu.

If you have multiple hard drives you will want to select the one that Windows is installed on usually C: and then click OK, this will not come up if you open Disk Cleanup from the hard drive properties window.  Once you open Disk Cleanup it will take some time looking for temporary files to delete, just wait a bit till the main window pops up from there we will configure some settings.  Once the Disk Cleanup window has opened click on Clean Up System Files.  It will again scan for temporary files to delete but this time it will also look for other system temporary files and Windows update backups.

Disk Cleanup System Files

Disk Cleanup System Files

Once the Disk Cleanup window comes back up again you will want to click on a new tab called More Options.

Disk Cleanup More Options

Disk Cleanup More Options

Now from here click on Clean Up… under System Restore and Shadow Copies.  This will delete all but the most recent System Restore point.  Wait a second or two and then click on the Disk Cleanup tab again.  If nothing happens the system is still deleting old System Restore information wait a while longer and then try again.

Disk Cleanup System Restore and Shadow Copies Clean Up

Disk Cleanup System Restore and Shadow Copies Clean Up

Once you are back on the Disk Cleanup tab make sure all the check boxes are checked and then click on OK.  A dialogue box will come up and then click Delete Files.  It will take some time but these files will be deleted.  In part 3 we will tame System Restore permanently.

Enable 24 Bit Color in Windows XP Mode With Integration Features Enabled

If you have ever used Windows XP Mode in Windows 7 you may have noticed that it only displays in 16 bit color mode.  This makes some things appear a little off on the screen and may also limit compatibility with programs that need 24 bit or 32 bit color.  Thankfully it is easy to enable 24 bit color in Windows XP Mode with integration features enabled.

To do this all you need is a simple registry setting added in side Windows XP.  First click on Start and then Run.  Type in Regedit and then press enter.  You will want to drill  down on the left side of the Registry Editor to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal Services  Once you are there click on Edit and then New and then DWORD Value.  Name the Value Name ColorDepth set the Value Data to 4 and leave the Base on Hexadecimal, then click Ok.  Finally close the Registry Editor by clicking on the red X button in the upper right corner.

Registry Setting to Enable 24 bit Color in Windows XP Mode

Registry Setting to Enable 24 bit Color in Windows XP Mode

Now you need to restart Windows XP Mode, to do this simply click on the Ctrl+Alt+Del button at the top and center of your screen, then click on Shut Down.  Once Windows XP Mode has turned off open it back up again and if you like you can check to see if it worked.  Right Click on the desktop and click on Properties and then click on Settings.  You should see under Color Quality High (24 bit).  If you do not see this you may need to make sure you did the steps correctly.

Check To See if 24 bit Color is Enabled

Check To See if 24 bit Color is Enabled

Now if you were successful, awesome and good for you.  You may notice that the text on the screen really has not changed much though.  Well we can fix that too.  Right Click on the desktop again and click on Properties and then Appearance and then Effects… then  where is says Standard click on that drop down menu and select ClearType, then click on Ok and Ok again.  This will enable ClearType Fonts and make Windows XP Mode even better to look at.

Enable ClearType in Windows XP

Enable ClearType in Windows XP

So there you go you can enable 24 bit color in Windows XP Mode with integration features enabled and enable ClearType fonts to make Windows XP Mode more readable and just better to look at.

Install Windows 7 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400M

You can easily install Windows 7 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400M and this article will show you how easy it is and give you insight on how it performs.  Your organization may have a few of these DX2400’s left around and when these machines were deployed most of them were probably downgraded to Windows XP as that was the dominant business operating system at the time.  Now Windows XP has less than a year of security updates left and a lot of businesses are looking at finally moving off of the now ancient Windows XP to something else.  Now I have written about how to install Windows 8 and 8.1 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower but many businesses have been reserved about Windows 8 however I do feel like Windows 8.1 is the best choice for businesses as Microsoft has lessened the learning curve and added many features for businesses to manage the operating system. So what about Windows 7 as that is quickly becoming the replacement to Windows XP in the enterprize.  Well I did a clean install, keeping nothing, of Windows 7 Enterprise 64 bit (however you can do an upgrade from Windows Vista keeping all your files, settings, and programs.  If you are coming from Windows XP you need to do a clean install or upgrade to Windows Vista first.

I booted off of the Windows 7 DVD and did a clean install and after the installation was complete I did not have to install any drivers, Windows Setup took care of that for me.  There were some driver updates in Windows Update so I do suggest doing that as soon as you are done installing Windows.  Below is the System Properties and the Device Manager.

HP Compaq DX2400 Windows 7 System Properties and Device Manager

HP Compaq DX2400 Windows 7 System Properties and Device Manager

As far as performance goes the HP Compaq DX2400 holds its own but I will say if you are going to run the 64 bit version of Windows 7 you might want to consider upgrading the ram to 4 GB.  I ram the PassMark Performance Test and the machine got a score of 148.7 and I also ran Futuremark’s PCMark 7 Basic which got a score of 1152.  Below is the Windows Experience Index.

Windows 7 Experience Index on HP Compaq DX2400

Windows 7 Experience Index on HP Compaq DX2400

For those of you that do not want to go the Windows 8.X route and wish to stay with an operating system that more people are familiar with but need to move away from Windows XP I think Windows 7 is your best bet and it works well on this machine.  It is also easy to install Windows 7 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400M and I highly suggest the upgrade just consider the ram upgrade if you are going to run 64 bit.

 

How to use Xbox Music in Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, and the Desktop in Windows 8

If you are using Windows 8.X, or Windows RT then you can jump right in and start using Xbox Music today.  In Windows 8.X and Windows RT, there is a Metro app that allows you access.  And it is great, but what if you are using Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, or want to use Xbox Music on the desktop in Windows 8.X?

Xbox Music replaces the short-lived Zune Music Pass and unfortunately it does not offer everything Zune did.  For Instance, the Zune Pass let you download ten songs a month that were yours for life.  Those who still have the Zune Pass can still do this now but the new Xbox Music Pass does not have this feature.  To get the ten free songs if you still have the Zune Pass you have to use the Zune desktop software. The Xbox Music Pass can be bought in both a 12-month subscription and a three-month subscription although it is not needed to stream music from a Windows computer but there will be ads every once in a while.

Users have two choices to use Xbox Music in Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, or the desktop in Windows 8, you can use the website which has all the features, like streaming, or use the Zune PC software which only allows you to download the songs (it may let you stream as well if you are subscribed to Xbox Music, I have not tested this)

To use Xbox Music via an internet browser in earlier versions of Windows simply visit the Xbox Music website and log in with your Microsoft Account (Outlook, Hotmail, Xbox Live etc.) The website will ask you to agree to the Xbox Music terms of service.  Below is a screen shot of me playing my favorite new album in Xbox Music in Windows 7 using Internet Explorer.

Xbox Music Website on Windows 7

Xbox Music Website on Windows 7

The other option is to use the old Zune PC software.  It still works with Xbox Music and you can install it in Windows XP and later.  The Zune PC software does not allow you to stream music from Xbox Music for free and I am not sure if it will if you have an Xbox Music Pass I may have to test this later.  Below you can see me playing the samples of the same album on the Zune PC software in Windows 7.

Zune PC Software on Windows 7 Showing Xbox Music Content

Zune PC Software on Windows 7 Showing Xbox Music Content

So there you go two different ways to use Xbox Music on Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, or the desktop in Windows 8.  It is nice to see Microsoft expanding support for Xbox Music.  There are even iOS, Android, and Windows Phone apps out as well.

 

RIP Windows Desktop Gadgets

I liked the idea of the SideBar since I first saw it in early Longhorn builds long before Apple had widgets.  Back then the Sidebar was just that, and in some ways reminds me of the Charms Bar in Windows 8.  (I think there could be more personalization there.)  When Windows Vista was released the Desktop Gadgets in that SideBar were so cool.  I enabled them right away and never shut them off until recently.

The Windows Gadgets were in Windows 8 up through the Release Preview but a recent post from Microsoft warns that someone could craft a Gadget that could harm your computer possibly gaining access to it.  Microsoft recommends disabling the Gadgets and SideBar in Windows Vista and 7.  I have been still running them as I have run the same Gadgets for years now.  I installed the RTM version of Windows 8 recently and I have to report that the Gadgets are gone with no way to enable them.

I am a little sad to see them go but I know Microsoft’s thinking that the Live Tiles on the Start Screen are a replacement for them.  Still farewell Desktop Gadgets RIP.

The Windows 8 Start Screen, Will it Work?

There has been a lot of discussion about the Windows 8 Start Screen and the lack of the Start Menu. So much so that there are those that want Microsoft to bring the Start Menu back. So this does beg the question, Will the Start Screen Work? Well, the first thing I say is to try it.

It should be no surprise to my usual readers that I fit in the group of a computer power user. I make Windows work for me no matter what version and feel right at home from Windows 3.0 to Windows 7. I even still remember many DOS commands, of course, being a Windows guy my favorite is still Win, but what about Windows 8.

I started using Windows 8 with the Developer Preview in September and have not since moved on to the Consumer Preview in February. The Developer Preview did knock me off of my game at first but I was quick to adapt and I liked it. The Consumer Preview makes me feel right at home, they did a great job at getting the keyboard and mouse interfaces smoothed out.

As time goes on I do believe that touch will be the primary interface for computers. I used to work for a major electronics retailer in their tech support department. One of my responsibilities was setting up new computers for customers and these new All-in-ones are really popular. They all, but a few models, come with touch screens. I will say that using the Start Menu with a touch screen in Windows 7 is a pain. It takes a lot of practice and every touch screen computer is different in calibration I noticed. Most of my other techs would just pull out a mouse and keyboard instead of fiddling with it.

I was also a long time Windows Mobile user and both of those phones were touch screens. Even here trying to use your finger to touch a menu item was at times difficult. Now Windows Mobile 6.5 was a great improvement over Windows Mobile 6.1 or 6.0 or 5.0 which I had used at some point. When my Windows Mobile 6.5 device was giving me some issues recently I really took a good look at Smartphones and was not impressed. Yeah, there was iPhone which does feel like playing whack an app, Android is the new Windows Mobile with a lot of the modding community heading that way. Blackberry feels stuck in a time warp, Nokia was non-existent in the American market (which I was upset, they are back now, yes!), and Palm had an interesting operating system but their devices were just horrible. The Chicklet style keyboard was too small and the raised plastic around the keyboard made me want to take a file to it. So I stuck with my Windows Mobile device and thought about going back to a regular cell phone or at least a feature phone. Then my roommate got a Windows Phone.

I used Windows Phone 7 for ten minutes and I knew this was love at first touch. It was so fluid and fast and really reminded me of my Wife’s Zune HD. I really actually like the Windows Phone interface better than the Zune HD in fact. I was done and knew that was my next phone. And after getting one and using the apps on it, I was sold. I just love how easy to used it is. It is many levels above and iPhone and worlds better than Android.

Now what does this have to do with Windows 8, well the Developer Preview was devoid of a lot of apps and the Metro interface felt unfinished because is was. The Consumer Preview, however, has some App Previews and the App Store is now up and running. With the apps and the revised Metro interface, I felt right at home like I am using my Phone. I can already tell and will go all in and say that Windows 8 will be every bit as great as Windows Phone. It makes my day-to-day general computing stuff easy and enjoyable. And when I get into my power user mode I still have the Desktop. I can still pin apps to the Task Bar and I can pin Desktop apps to the Start Screen. If I really want I can add a new toolbar to the Task Bar and point it at the Start Menu folder under ProgramData (I will explain this in a post later) Windows 8 for me is really the best of both worlds. It is slick, fast, fluid, and dare I say enjoyable.

So what am I using now? Well on my Desktop I still just have Windows Vista and Windows 7 as sadly I have run out of room on the desktop and am planning a complete storage upgrade on my workhorse. I also plan on making a Windows Home Server so my data is more central and my desktop can have a break. On my laptop, I am running Windows 7 and Windows 8 and I find myself spending more and more time in Windows 8.

Now as I close this rant of a post I will be covering a lot of Windows 8 material, but I will also still be covering Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, and even on occasion Windows 2000 or earlier. As for the question yes, I think it will work just fine and I am excited.

A First Look at Windows 8

Since the BUILD Conference, I  have used the Developer Preview of Windows 8. I initially installed it in Virtual Box however I really wanted to try it on real hardware so I installed it on my laptop. Here are my thoughts.

1. It’s a trip, no really it boots fast and switches between apps and the desktop very quickly. Going between the new apps and the old ones can be a bit different but I am sure I will get used to it.
2. It has some quirks, this is just a Developer Preview meaning this is not in Beta stage but rather more of an Alpha so some things do not work as expected and some things are placed weird so it takes a bit to get used to. This will mostly be worked out by the time we get to Beta.
3. One operating system to rule them all, no seriously this takes over, I have it installed next to Windows 7. When you start the machine Windows 8 boots to a point then asks you which operating system you want to boot to. If you select Windows 7 it restarts the machine and boots Windows 7 just like as if Windows 8 was never there. However, the OS selection screen is nicely done and touch first like the rest of the OS.
4. Programs are missing, but you can enable a desktop toolbar to bring most of them back, I’ll talk more about that later.

All in all, Windows 8 is very interesting and I think it could change how we use a PC forever. I can see some “Power Users” that may stay with Windows 7 or even maybe abandon Windows for Linux or even move to Mac because they do not like the new Start screen or app model. We will just have to see. For now, I am excited and use Windows 8 for much of my day-to-day browsing and computing, and even used it to write this blog. Stay tuned as I go deeper into Windows 8.

Install Windows 2000 in Windows Virtual PC

Windows Virtual PC is a great program to run an operating system in a virtual machine.  The only problem I have with it really is that it does not support older versions of Windows or Linux.  That being said you can run older OS’s in there just like you did in Virtual PC 2007.  This will not create a 2000 Mode or let you access USB devices, it will work just like it did in Virtual PC 2007.

You will need a few things for this.  First Windows Virtual PC which you can download from here, http://www.microsoft.com/windows/virtual-pc/download.aspx (Windows 7 Home Premium users select Windows 7, Professional, to download Windows Virtual PC it will install fine, also make sure you install the correct version if you are running a 64-bit version of Windows 7 then select Windows 7 Professional 64-bit.)  Second, you will need a copy of Windows 2000 (your on your own on this, I have one lying around)  Third you will need a copy of Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 and you can download that here, http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?displaylang=en&id=2994 (Yes get that version it will help later to get everything working.)  Also, you will need something to open the Virtual Server file and to extract a file from it.  For this task, I will use 7-Zip which you can get here at http://7-zip.org/

So now that you have all that, first install Windows Virtual PC

Once you have that setup, click on Start, All Programs, Windows Virtual PC and open it up.

You will see that it looks like any other window in Windows Explorer, but it has a few new options.

Click on Create Virtual Machine

Windows Virtual PC window

Windows Virtual PC window

Follow the prompts, name it what you like, I usually give it 1024 Mb (1 Gb) of ram on systems that have a total of 4 Gb.  If you have less than that just leave it at 512 Mb.

Now once your Virtual Machine is created its time to install Windows 2000 in it.

In the same Windows Virtual PC window click on your newly created virtual machine

You will see a Settings option appear next to Create Virtual Machine, click on Settings (or right-click on the newly created virtual machine and click on Settings) then click on DVD Drive

Here you can select to use the computers optical drive, or to load an ISO file from the computer’s hard drive, select the proper setting, and close the window (we will be coming back to this later)

DVD settings in Windows Virtual PC

DVD settings in Windows Virtual PC

Now double-click on your newly created virtual machine and Windows 2000 setup should start.

(Note during setup the Virtual Machine will take control of your mouse, to make it release the mouse push Alt + Control + Left arrow key all at the same time)

Now once the setup is complete and you are at the Windows 2000 desktop you may be tempted to click on Tools and Enable Integration Features in the Virtual Machine window, they will start to install but fail.  These additions are only for Windows XP and newer.  This is where Virtual Server comes in.

So why Virtual Server 2005 R2 Sp1?  It was the last version of Virtual Server or Virtual PC that supports Windows 2000.

So if you have 7-Zip installed (if not do that now) right-click on the Virtual Server file you downloaded earlier and go to 7-Zip and then click on Extract to “name of file”

This will unpackage the contents into a folder of the same name as the file, open the folder up and look for a file named VMAdditions

If VMAdditions already has a file type of .iso at the end of it, cool you’re done, if not rename it VMAdditions.iso

Now copy this file someplace where you will remember where it is.

For the last bit make sure you shutdown your new virtual machine

Go back into the Windows Virtual PC window (Start/All Programs/Windows Virtual PC)

Click on the new virtual machine that Windows 2000 is installed and click on Settings (or right-click on it and go to Settings)

Click on DVD Drive, and here we are going to load that VMAdditions.iso file.

Click on Open An Iso Image, and load in that VMAdditions from Virtual Server we extracted earlier

Loading the VMAdditions.iso file

Loading the VMAdditions.iso file

Once that’s done click OK and start the virtual machine.

If the Additions do not install right away just go into My Computer in Windows 2000 and double-click on the DVD-ROM drive, this should start the installation.

Once the install is complete restart the virtual machine and make sure to install all Windows updates.

That is it, you should have Windows 2000 running in Windows Virtual PC with some integration features loaded and working.

Once you have all your updates installed check out this Post on internet browsers for Windows 2000

 

Part 7, The Best Internet Browser for Windows 7 64-Bit

I have used Windows 7 64-bit for a while now and while I was still a little hesitant at first from leaving the land of Win32, I found myself quite impressed with what I think is the best 64-bit operating system ever.  That being said is Internet Explorer still the best in this version of Windows.  Also in 2011 there are many great Browser choices out there now, many that people are familiar with, and from different operating systems as well.  So let’s dive in and see what is good, and not so good.

1 .Microsoft Internet Explorer 9.0.1 (9.0.8112.16421 64-Bit Edition)  Microsoft really outdid themselves with this one.  This is not the IE of the past, yes IE7 and IE8 were great improvements and brought many new features to Internet Explorer, but IE9 really shines.  It is fast, quick, and very standards compliant.  The new user interface is clean but still keeps a lot of usefulness in it.  Also, a few feature is being able to pin a website to the Task Bar in Windows 7 which is like putting a shortcut to the website there so you can launch it anytime, but be able to keep a different homepage for normal browsing.  Currently, there is only a preview version of Adobe Flash for 64-bit which you can download from here, but hey Apple would say that Flash is not that important.  I have to give IE9 the number one spot in Windows 7. You can download Internet Explorer 9 from here at http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/internet-explorer/downloads/ie-9/worldwide-languages

Showing information about Pinned Sites

Internet Explorer 9 in Windows 7 64-Bit

2. Firefox 4.0.1  We have been waiting for a new version of Firefox for a while now, and it is here.  Like Internet Explorer is has a new less cluttered user interface.  Also, it now has an orange Firefox button up at the top left.  Clicking on this brings up a Start Menu-like menu with commands and options.  The user interface feels like a combination of Opera and Chrome.  What makes Firefox useful in Windows 7 is its integration with the new features in the Operating System.  Firefox 4 supports both Jump Lists and Tab Previews (however Tab Previews has to be enabled in the options)  This makes Firefox a great alternative browser in Windows 7.   Firefox 4 is fast and very standards compliant.  If you have moved from Firefox to Chrome, I may suggest you look at Firefox again and see if it doesn’t win you back.  You can download Firefox 4 here at  www.firefox.com

Firefox 4 in Windows 7 64-Bit

Firefox 4 in Windows 7 64-Bit

3. Google Chrome 12.0.742.100 Google has taken a dud of a browser and turned it into something that competes. In fact, its user interface is what has inspired other browsers to clean their interfaces up.   The sad thing is that despite it being on its 12th revision it is not more mature than it is.  The only reason this is not my number two browser for Windows 7 is that it does not support Tab Previews in Windows 7 making it not as useful since I use that feature a lot. (Come on Google, Get this done in an update)  It does, however, support Jump Lists.  Every release it does get better and better, one of the newer features that is interesting is Instant, which tries to guess what page you are typing in the address bar and starts loading it before you are done typing.  (this is not enabled by default and you will have to enable it, but it is impressive) It is fast and standards compliant making it a great contender.  If you are not using Internet Explorer or Firefox, then you really should be using Chrome, if not take a look because it will surprise you.  You can get Chrome from here at http://www.google.com/chrome/intl/en/make/download.html?brand=CHKZ

Chrome 12 in Windows 7 64-bit

Chrome 12 in Windows 7 64-bit

4. Opera 11.11 (Build 2109)  When talking about Internet Browsers, there are not many that have been around as long as Internet Explorer and Opera.  Opera 11 builds on an interesting browsing platform.  While many Netscape fans have moved to Firefox because of the relationship between those two browsers, many Netscape fans feel more at home with Opera.  It still tries to be more than just an internet browser and I would suggest any old Netscape users out there to check Opera out if you find yourself missing the old rival to Internet Explorer.  Opera supports both Jump Lists and Tab Previews in Windows 7 and has its own Tab Preview like feature, if you mouse over a tab that is not being displayed, a preview of that tab will show up below the tab (pictured below).  Opera is pretty quick and is standards compliant as well.  The interface features a red O button in the upper left side of the window. Clicking on this brings up a master menu of commands and options.  Opera actually had this button before Firefox implemented their own.  If you want a browser that is different then I suggest checking out Opera 11, wich you can do so here at http://www.opera.com/browser/

Opera 11 in Windows 7 64-bit

Opera 11 in Windows 7 64-bit

5. Apple Safari 5.0.5 (7533.21.1)  Apple has always done things differently, and Safari is no exception.  Originally designed as part of the Apple Mac OS X operating system, they have created a Windows version and have improved it over the years.  It uses most of the standard Windows interface which will make Windows users feel at home .  It does support Tab Previews in Windows 7 but not Jump Lists. (Come on Apple this is useful)  Safari supports multiple tabs however for some reason Apple hides this in the user interface.  To open a new tab you must click on the file button on the right side and on the menu that pops up click on New Tab.  While Apple’s website will say that this is the fastest browser in the world it is actually quite slow in Windows 7 compared to other browsers.  It is standards compliant however and does have some interesting features like Top Sites and Safari Reader (which is supposed to unclutter a webpage making it easier to read the information on it)  If you would like to check it out you can get it from here at http://www.apple.com/safari/download/

Safari 5 in Windows 7 64-bit

Safari 5 in Windows 7 64-bit

6. KDE Konqueror 4.5.4  I have not written about this Browser in Windows before but there is now a Windows version.  Konqueror was originally made for the Linux operating system.  Linux has been at the center of the open source community since its inception and some would say it created the open source world as we know it.  That being said a group has decided to create a port of the KDE software from Linux for other operating systems, including Windows.  The Windows version is a bit of Windows, and a bit of the KDE user interface from Linux.  It is not as fast as any of the other browsers tested, and is not as compliant with current web standards as the other internet browsers.  I also have not found out how to get it to work with Flash or Java on a Windows machine yet.  But like most things out of the Linux and open source communities, it is a work in progress.  It does do multiple tabs, but you have to click on File and then New Tab.  It does not work with either Jump Lists or Tab Previews in Windows 7 at this time.   It is interesting, and can only be installed with the KDE software installer, (no standalone installer at this point)  You can check it out as well as a bunch of other free software here at http://windows.kde.org/download.php

Konqueror 4.5 on Windows 7 64-bit

Konqueror 4.5 on Windows 7 64-bit

As the internet changes, the programs we use to view it change as well.  It is interesting now with the all the options including some from the Linux world.  We will have to see what companies and organizations come out with next to help us do our day-to-day tasks.

If you were wondering how I test these browsers, I use my trusty Acer Aspire 5534-1146 Laptop.  It has an AMD Athlon X2 L310 1.2 Ghz Processor and 4 Gb of ram.  I am running Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit on here.  All updates have been applied to Windows and all internet browsers, and I am using the latest versions of Flash, Adobe Reader, Silverlight, and Java.  All temporary internet files and caches have been cleared with the use of Ccleaner (www.ccleaner.com) and from the programs themselves so all pages are loaded from the internet and not from local cache.  For standards testing, I am using Acid3 at www.acid3.acidtests.org.  I load up everyday web pages that people use and that I use in every browser and time how long it takes from hitting enter till the page has completed loading.

Check out Part 6 for Windows XP