Many users who upgrade to Windows 7 will notice that the good old directories and file structure from Windows XP and back is missing in action. While frustrating to some, it is a giant step forward in better handling of data. The Mac OS and Linux (and Unix) operating systems have used this method of data storage for years.
Microsoft tried to implement this In Vista but it kept getting scaled back for whatever reason. But with Windows 7 it's out of the box and here to stay. A library is a type of virtual location within Windows 7 that combines files and folders from different physical locations from all over your hard drive and even other locations.
A library is a type of virtual location within Windows 7 that combines files and folders from different physical locations from all over your hard drive and even other locations. Here's a good example of how this works. Lets say you store an invoice or proposal under each client directory. But sometimes you want to look at all invoices so you can also create a library of invoices, or group any selection of files in any way you might want to view them regardless of physical location.
So if you want to update a document in the virtual view, it replicates to the physical file in whatever location it's stored. When you create and save (or copy from another source) you can mark these files to be in any library. So for some users this is a huge advantage. Others might not even notice or be aware of this new Windows feature. But it is a big step in bringing Windows into a new file structure and maybe even a new type of operating system.
What's interesting here is the fact that with a file structure like this is Windows 7 becoming less of an operating system and more of a front-end application? Linux users have long had many different front-end desktops to choose from like KDE or Gnome, which can be used with different flavors of Linux. So is Microsoft inching its way to making Windows a desktop environment that can be used with any Linux operating system too? Or even allowing KDE or Gnome to be used as a front end or desktop environment for future versions of the Windows operating system?
Its been long rumored that Microsoft has been working on a Linux type OS that operates on any hardware (like Mac or Unix hardware). Is this the first step in an attempt at going after new markets? Offering both a separate front-end environment and a backend OS would give Microsoft access to almost any market and could also make it compatible with any software designed to be used on these other platforms.
Never underestimate Microsoft. They have a huge graveyard with past competitors buried alive. Remember when the number one browser was Netscape? Or how about when Dbase3 ruled the land? And there are plenty of other examples too of the reigning software being overtaken and passed by Microsoft.
So this latest development of Libraries might be a hot tip that Microsoft is once again on the move. They already have the minds and soles of both consumer and business users. And with Google breathing down their neck with online alternatives to their flagship Office products and even bringing out their own OS for desktops, Microsoft is certainly looking for new ways to expand their presence.
Only time will tell if bringing Libraries into Windows 7 is this is the first step toward Linux variations of Windows front end environments and backend Linux like operating systems. But nothing would surprise me about Microsoft's plans. Anyone who doesn't think Microsoft is looking for new markets and business is making a mistake, history has demonstrated that more than once.