Open letter to Microsoft - Can we have a Windows 7 beta 2 please?

Open letter to Microsoft - Can we have a Windows 7 beta 2 please?

Summary: An Open Letter to Microsoft ... I've been running Windows 7 beta 1 for now eight weeks and I've put this beta thorough a serious workout. I've done my bit and tested the OS and submitted feedback, like I'm supposed to. I've also had, through unofficial channels, builds that have come after the official beta 1 build 7000 code, and I've tested those too. Things look like they are coming quite well. But before we jump to a Release Candidate and start getting caught up in "RTM fever" I'd like to see a beta 2 of Windows 7 please.

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An Open Letter to Microsoft

I've been running Windows 7 beta 1 for now eight weeks and I've put this beta thorough a serious workout. I've done my bit testing the OS (even loading it onto my new Dell Studio XPS 13) and submitted feedback, like I'm supposed to. I've also had, through unofficial channels, builds that have come after the official beta 1 build 7000 code, and I've tested those too. Things look like they are coming quite well. But before we jump to a Release Candidate and start getting caught up in "RTM fever" I'd like to see a beta 2 of Windows 7 please.

So far we've had one official beta and when it comes to something as big and as important as an OS, I really don't think that one beta is enough. Not only am I curious to see what progress has been made and would like a chance to offer feedback on the changes that have been made as a result of user feedback on beta 1, I want reassurances that the current issues have been solved, and that no more bugs have popped up in the meantime. After all, the beta 1 of Windows 7 shook out a lot of bugs (an awful lot of which still seem to be listed as active ...), and while most of these issues were minor, some turned out to be very serious. I don't want to get to RTM and find similar issues cropping up. I definitely don't want a repeat of the Vista debacle where I had to wait until SP1 before getting a solid, reliable and stable OS that outperformed the previous version of Windows.

I think that it's also only fair to point out that there's a growing level of dissatisfaction among beta testers on many blogs, forums and websites. Some feel that only having one beta limits the amount of feedback they can give on the OS, while others feel that bug reports are falling on deaf ears and being marked as "by design" or "won't fix" rather than being dealt with. Given how difficult it was (and how much fuss had to be kicked up) to get the serious UAC flaw that Long Zheng uncovered fixed, I have to say I find any sort of hint that feedback isn't being acted on worrying. There was far too much confusion over what was really a simple issue and I'm almost certain that if there hadn't been extensive coverage of this issue by the tech media that this flaw would have been marked as "by design" and ignored.

I also feel that the spirit of beta testing has been eroded with Windows 7. Both beta testers on Connect and the public got their hands on the beta 1 bits at pretty much the same time. Experienced beta testers aren't getting access to any new builds to be able to see progress. The Windows 7 beta test has felt more like a technology preview rather than a proper beta test cycle. Sure, with Windows 7 we got the e7 blog which gave us all a behind the scenes peek at the development process, but at the end of the day it's the code that matters. I'm worried that beta testers haven't seen enough official beta code yet to fully test the OS (and the fixes being carried out) under the broadest possible hardware and software configurations.

Getting to see a beta 2 and having the chance to see that our feedback is being acted on (as well as being able to submit more feedback) makes a lot of sense to me. If nothing else, it would be reassuring to Sure, it might push back the release data a bit, but since officially the date has always been a vague 2010, it doesn't matter.

So, how about a beta 2? It would certainly make me feel reassured that things are truly on track for a great release.

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software

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79 comments
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  • Just curious...

    You call this an "open letter", but have you sent it to anyone at Microsoft? I'm sure you, Ed, and MaryJo have an extensive list of contacts at MS.

    Just won'drin'.
    MGP2
    • I don't need to ...

      ... seriously. Posting it here is enough.
      Adrian Kingsley-Hughes
      • That's too bad, because the general look

        and feel of the comments on here is that the fanboys (of which there appear to be legions) simply love everything MS puts out, and that those users, like me, less, or not at all impressed, are in the fringe minority, and the fact that we see Windows 7 as atavistic and less than satisfactory should be completely discounted.

        As I look here (most days), I see the same ten to fifteen responders spreading the MS propaganda of nirvana, and attacking anyone having the temerity to point out flaws or be of dissimilar views.
        chrome_slinky
        • I'm curious.

          What About Windows 7 do you find to be a throwback? All OSs are built upon previous code so how is this different for Windows 7 versus OSX or Linux?

          P.S. The purpose of a talkback is to discuss the merits/demerits of the topic. What you see as an attack others might call a debate.
          ShadeTree
          • You have a point, but......

            As you have seen, many here don't really debate. A debate implies reason, facts, and honest opinions. Many responses here are attacks, not debates.

            I myself, with a few deliberate exceptions, can and will reasonable discuss the merits of these topics. The exceptions are reserved for those extreme "fanboys" who don't deserve anything more than what they dish out.

            It's sad that this site site has deteriorated to a flame war forum.
            linux for me
        • Let them spread the propaganda, it will only accelerate m$'s demise

          by removing their focus from really what needs to be done in order to stay in business for the long run.

          In the end m$'s demise can only be good to computer users, i.e., all of us.
          InAction Man
        • I think Adrian's point is that ...

          ... M$ pays attention to what he and Mary Jo write -- not necessarily what the fanfobys write.
          M Wagner
          • Agree 100%

            Funny you leaving out mister Ed Bott. I'm sure M$ pays **absolutely no attention** to what he writes.
            InAction Man
        • OK, then here's a question for you?

          Is Windows your OS of choice? If not, why do you bother coming to a blog that leaves you "less or not at all impressed"? If your OS of choice is NOT Windows, how about pointing us to some links showing you interacting in blogs of like interests? To me, it looks like you just came here to stir up the pot. It doesn't matter to me. But for the record, I DO NOT go out to Apple blogs and Open Source blogs and toss the negativity around. In fact, check out this post in a Linux blog. You should get an idea of what I do when I hang out in different interests.

          http://talkback.zdnet.com/5208-12355-0.html?forumID=1&threadID=60988&messageID=1122777

          On the other hand, when people come to MS blogs and start their bashing, well, I have no problem taking off the gloves. If you don't believe me, check the link below, which posts to a comment above.

          http://talkback.zdnet.com/5208-12554-0.html?forumID=1&threadID=61043&messageID=1125183

          Some of my better work, if I say so myself. :p
          MGP2
          • So many words to say nothing

            Quality and quantity, they do tend to display a strange correlation.
            InAction Man
          • I know I should heed my momma's sage advice from years ago...

            She said, "In a war of wits, it's not fair to pick on someone who is unarmed." But I never said I was perfect.
            MGP2
        • To chrome slinky

          Mac os x doesn't have any viruses because there isnt a big enough user base of macs to peek their interest.theres a worm out for mac osx but only one.

          With that said if you are gonna say security is one of windows flaws please consider microsoft issues updates to fix the flaw as soon as they know about the flaw. Windows xp is one of the most secure operating systems right now and I can safely say I have never gotten a blue screen of death with it.

          I am all for an intelligent non apple/microsoft fanboy discussion if you or someone else mentions a flaw not related to security.
          stevehabs
        • That's too bad, because the general look

          chrome_slinky look in the mirror i have seen you do the same thing in several other posts, I like MS BUT I am NOT bias in my opinion of the other OS'S I had A apple laptop and used it for a year didn't like and have used *nix about 5 flavors and didn't like any of them but I did try.

          IMHO Gaxxis
          GAXXIS
  • RE: Open letter to Microsoft - Can we have a Windows 7 beta 2 please?

    /signed
    r0n1n812
  • Windows 7 Ultimate -- Pay more Get MORE

    Windows 7 was turning out to be a great product. But just like Vista, here comes Windows 7 flavors. Windows 7 ultimate won't be available at retail stores and professional version will really suck because it won't include BitLocker, AppLocker, and Boot from VHD. By the way AppLocker and Boot from VHD should be present in all the editions of Windows 7. There will present only in the enterprise and ultimate editions of Windows 7. That's gonna make their enterprise customers happy but when will they learn to make customers happy? they should learn from Apple. What a money hungry and ignorant decision. I have a genuine copy of Vista Ultimate which means I will have to upgrade to Windows 7 Pro and then take out my credit card again and then go online and PAY MICROSOFT AGAIN to unlock Windows 7 Ultimate...By the time Windows 7 will hit retail stores I hope they will make Windows 7 ultimate available at retail stores or I will just move to Mac.
    shellcodes_coder
    • Money-hungry?

      "That's gonna make their enterprise customers happy but when will they learn to make customers happy? they should learn from Apple. What a money hungry and ignorant decision."

      Money hungry? Have you looked at the prices for Apple hardware lately? A RAID controller on the Mac Pro runs $800. One for a PC? $25 to $150 at NewEgg.
      Barc777
      • Greed...

        [b]Money hungry? Have you looked at the prices for Apple hardware lately? A RAID controller on the Mac Pro runs $800. One for a PC? $25 to $150 at NewEgg. [/b]

        And the supreme irony of it all - the card from the Apple store is likely to be the SAME bit of kit as the one on NewEgg...

        And don't forget - YOU are not allowed to install the RAID card on the computer - unless you feel like voiding your warranty. That task is reserved for Apple "Genuises" - and it ain't free.
        Wolfie2K3
  • RE: Open letter to Microsoft - Can we have a Windows 7 beta 2 please?

    Agree. Dugg.
    TigerhawkVok
  • RE: Open letter to Microsoft - Can we have a Windows 7 beta 2 please?

    Even better can we have a Windows Beta that contains all the needed drivers in order to work properly.I wasn't even able to get on the Internet with build 7000, so quickly deleted it. What a waste of a users time.
    nelson.robert9
    • Oh No!!!!

      How did you delete it?????
      Nsaf