About that leaked Windows 7 feature-request list...

About that leaked Windows 7 feature-request list...

Summary: Don't get too excited about the list of Windows 7 feedback that select community members provided to Microsoft -- a ranked list of which ran on Neowin.net this past weekend.


Don't get too excited about the list of Windows 7 feedback that select community members provided to Microsoft -- a ranked list of which ran on Neowin.net this past weekend.

As ArsTechnica noted (repeatedly, to its credit) in its coverage, the list will have little -- and more likely absolutely no -- bearing on what Microsoft ends up incorporating into Windows 7.

Microsoft collected feedback in December 2006 from invited participants regarding features and functionality they'd like to see the company include in future Windows releases. In July 2007, some of that feedback leaked to the Web. This past weekend, Neowin.Net posted what they said was a list from the team in charge of Microsoft's Early Feedback Program of "(what they consider to be) the top 61 suggestions to be presented to the development team of Windows 7."

On the Windows 7 request list: Everything from new entertainment packages to be delivered as "Ultimate Extras," to saving desktop icon arrangements, to more "Notify Only" options in Automatic Updates.

While the list is interesting, in terms highlighting what users want in future Windows releases, it's somewhat disturbing that this feedback seemingly will have little or no impact on what Microsoft's planning to build. ArsTechnica quotes "anonymous sources at Microsoft" who say that the itemized list " bear(s) no relationship to the actual feature set Microsoft is currently writing for Windows 7."

From other feedback, it sounds as if Microsoft's already well on its way to planning and coding Windows 7, even though it isn't slated to hit until 2010.

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Why Ask For Feedback, If You Intend To Ignore It?

    Microsoft goes to the trouble to compile a list of features that everyone wants, but they will not deliver.

    Microsoft can now say:

    "We know you wanted that new file system, to bad!!!"
    "We know you wanted security, suck wind!!!"
    "We know you wanted faster performance, Ha Ha!"
    "You get what we feed you the next time you buy a computer!"
    • Because it make you LOOK like you care

      In the modern world the appearance of doing something is more important than the
      actual doing.
      Richard Flude
    • They do?

      They've always ignored feedback?

      Any proof of that?
  • Interesting List.

    Some of the ideas in that list are relatively simple to implement, and much needed, eg.

    - Rotate JPG files according to EXIF information.
    - Various items relating to improving multi-monitor experience.

    Some aren't, e.g.

    - DirectX update on Windows Update.
    - Bring back Windows logo on startup scene.

    Finally, there are quite a alot that are already there (e.g.)

    - IE Should have close buttn on each tab.
    - Command Prompt should be improved.
    - Implement vector GUI in next version of Windows.

    By and large, this is the kind of list that could make a good Service Pack (or, if you prefer, Option Pack)
    • feature repository anyone?

      the one feature i would like to see out of MS is a software repository. then they can ship me a basic stripped down distro of windows and i can go get the features i want from the repository. you know, kinda the way Debian based distros of linux have been doing it for years. ok, so it will seem like MS is just copying the competition, but since when does MS actually innovate anything new? this way i can get the windows i want and you can get the windows you want. then everyone is happy.
      • Re

        If you are willing to pay for each feature separately I think this could be done in the near future.
  • Why surprise at Bloatfarm actions?

    It is stated here that it is "...disturbing that this feedback seemingly will have little or no impact on what Microsoft???s planning to build."

    Only someone who has spent years in an MSFT orifice could have found this surprising.

    As any sentient human being alive knows, MSFT is motivated by only one force: protection of its monopoly powers and profits. It will attempt to maintain those over and against every other objectives.

    Hello, customer preferences are of no consequence. It is all about maintaining a lock on power and ill-gotten profits.

    Customer feedback is merely a fig leaf at the Bloatfarm. When it conforms to monopoly support, okay; when not, it is to be discarded.

    As classical monopoly theory advises, the Bloatfarm will continue to defend its monopoly until it is replaced by better alternatives.

    Ballmer et al. will be viewed much as Roger Smith is at General Motors: a fool who could not do what top managers are supposed to do - see out into the future and understand what customers will want and provide the products and solutions that they will want.

    When you think of the Ballmerian regime, you will think of Xbox (profit failure) Zune (the less said the better) Vista (likewise) Windows Mobile (even on its 6th iteration, it is ungainly, clumsy [and thus so very Ballmerian] and an irritation to use. No recent product that the Bloatfarm has provided has any strength on its own. Only when linked to Bloat does it acquire strength. However, consumers are walking away from the mantra of ever more needless complexity and rush to stupidity products.

    In short, the Ballmer regime will be reviewed from the future as one of almost universal failure.

    Why should this surprise?

    Can anyone doubt that this person is inept? Would you want any of your friends, or daughters associating with or dating this person?

    Go here:
    Jeremy W
  • Culture change on hold?

    Mary Jo,

    So M$ are ignoring us again ... and Ballmer is doing his usual 'we'll beat everybody' antics. Remind me - what evidence did you have a for a culture change inside Redmond?

    My top 10 FWIW:

    1. Incorporate all backup features of WHS linked to cloud storage.
    2. New file system with reduced data loss.
    3. Remote Desktop with # connections limited only by network bandwidth.
    4. Tuning of entire OS for major performance improvements.
    5. Special tuning for solid state disk interface to give lightning fast application performance.
    6. Make sound processing work 99.99%.
    7. Improve security. That means when malware operates tell me you've stopped it - not ask me if I really meant to open performance monitor.
    8. Implement ADSL noise reduction algorithm to give 100x network bandwidth.
    9. USB3.
    10. Go on, surprise me with just one REAL INNOVATION. [Hint: harnessing the power of multiple CPU's would be good for me.]

    Did I mention user interface, or photo processing, or HD video, or games? Only touch those when you've done the top priorities, say about SP2 time.

    Marketing top 3:

    1. International download site for all SKU's at single International price, bar exchange rate conversion. I am not sorry the US$ is falling and I am not going to pay $630 for Windows 7 Ultimate. Family discount pack please.
    2. Taboo phrases: WOW, innovative-service, cutting-edge, improved-user-experience, enhanced-performance.
    3. Do not release the new version until it is ready. Win3.1, Win95, WinME, WinXP, Vista were all poor quality. No crap this time please, unless you wish to continue being pilloried.

    You're right - no need for me to get excited.
    • Agreed

      "That means when malware operates tell me you've stopped it - not ask me if I really meant to open performance monitor"


      "Go on, surprise me with just one REAL INNOVATION."


  • How about lauching Windows on time?

    For real beside writing basic for the Alair has Bill Gates ever release a piece of software when he promise?

    Microsoft issue of lately is too much promises then delaying cause they are unable to deliver or a half-ass project release like Vista.
  • This is VERY normal for ANY software company

    Nothing new here, move on...

    The fact Microsoft say they may or may not use these suggestions, is just pure normal business practice for any software company. Apple wrote the same thing in their last beta testing NDA as well. Sun, Corel, et all have exactly the same clauses as well.
  • Here is my feature list !

    I hope Windows 7 new taskbar could be easily replaced by the old Vista one. We need some text on the taskbar. Dont become a Mac, ’cause Mac usually suck.

    IE 7+8 need MUCH improvement.
    Try copying some of Opera's features.

    Add an option to allow tree viewing (with menus) (like on XP) of the folder contents of “My Docs”, “My PC”, etc from the taskbar.

    Make installing and changing the OS’s language easy.

    Add advanced registry backup/restore tools.

    Make a program that compares default registry key values with the current ones and displays the mismathes to help the user solve problems.

    Add an utility that turns off the PC screen programmatically to reduce power consumption (notebooks don’t have a screen power button).

    Add an utility that processes shell context menu extensions and “shell new” entries.

    Add some SystemInternal's tools preinstalled on Windows. If there is empty space on the Windows bootable DVD/CD you could add free tools like MSVStudio Exress, SystemInternal's tools, etc as opional installation components. They are free anyway - don't make us need to download them...

    And finally, REMOVE ::MessageBox() API calls from the shell, especially the ones in loops… I had to restart my XP because of this once…
    I got stuck inside an endless loop of poping message-boxes, one after closing another. And my desktop was frozen (I couldn’t even restart the shell !).
  • RE: About that leaked Windows 7 feature-request list...

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