Tuesday, February 3rd 2009

Windows 7 SKUs Made Official

Microsoft has had patchy success with its Windows Vista series of operating systems, and is banking on its next major addition to the Windows franchise, Windows 7 to turn its fortunes for the better. After having generously released beta versions of the operating system to the public, the company is gearing up for a product launch schedule. In the process, it made its SKUs (variants) of the operating system official today. The lineup consists of three variants in particular, suited for domestic deployments, with three variants aimed more towards commercial deployments, and then of course, there is an Ultimate variant that lets one have it all. The lineup for Windows 7 is as follows:
  • Windows 7 Starter Edition
  • Windows 7 Home Basic
  • Windows 7 Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Windows 7 Ultimate


The Starter Edition variant is an entry-level OS for available through OEM/OEI channels. Like the Windows XP Starter Edition, it supports up to three open applications concurrently, along with restrictions on the kind of hardware that can be used in the system. For emerging markets, the Home Basic variant serves as a mainstream platform sans all the paraphernalia of a fancy, animated Aero UI. This variant will be available only in emerging markets. The Home Premium variant adds Aero UI, multi-touch HID capabilities, and the ability of creating workgroups or home networks, along with premium applications such as Media Center. It will be available world-wide through OEM and retail channels.

The Professional variant is a super-set of Home Premium and has enhanced networking capabilities such as Remote Desktop host, domain support, offline folders, etc. It adds features such as Mobility Center (that provide system management for portable machines) and Presentation-mode making PCs boardroom-friendly. It will be available through OEM and retail channels. The Enterprise variant is available only in volume-licenses and serves as a client OS in large networks. It is a super-set of the Professional variant, and adds to its feature-set with Branch Cache, Direct Access, and BitLocker features. Finally, there's the Ultimate variant that lets you have it all, it is a super-set for all the variants.Source: Engadget
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55 Comments on Windows 7 SKUs Made Official

#1
ooiman92
I think I'm going to get the Home Premium when it comes out. No need to get any more then that, unless there's something I need.
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#2
Dos101
Are 6 SKU's really neccessary? Seems like overkill to me.
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#3
spearman914
Good to know so for people who don't use added features they can shave off some bucks for getting something like the windows 7 basic.
by: Dos101
Are 6 SKU's really neccessary? Seems like overkill to me.
Yea, i think they should take off professional.
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#4
Polarman
Windows 7 Ultimate :laugh:

A lot of people are still waiting for those not so great Ultimate upgrades.
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#5
Jakl
Why get basic if you can get ULTIMATE !!!!

Im planning to get ultimate.. Meh who cares if I dont use all the features, but hey... Atleast I will have everything lol
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#6
spearman914
by: DjJakl
Why get basic if you can get ULTIMATE !!!!

Im planning to get ultimate.. Meh who cares if I dont use all the features, but hey... Atleast I will have everything lol
It's just that the basic version will do better by helping u save money if u don't use the crappy added features. Why want everything lol
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#7
Error 404
Do they all support 64 bit as default? I'd probably buy Home Premium, but not if its only 32 bit.
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#8
Jakl
by: Error 404
Do they all support 64 bit as default? I'd probably buy Home Premium, but not if its only 32 bit.
good question... Hopefully it will just be 64bit, I see no reason why they will go back to 32bit
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#9
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
In most likelihood, barring the Starter Edition, they will all come in 32-bit and 64-bit sub-variants.
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#10
cyriene
Vista Home Premium comes in x64 so there would be no reason Win7 wouldn't. I thought I heard MS was trying to push the x64 versions a little more with Win7, especially since DDR2 is so cheap currently.
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#11
Lillebror
Windows 7 Starter
Market: Emerging markets, with new PCs only
Key features: Enhanced taskbar, Jump Lists, Windows Media Player, Backup and Restore, Action Center, Device Stage, Play To, Fax and Scan, basic games
What's missing: Aero Glass, many Aero desktop enhancements, Windows Touch, Media Center, Live thumbnail previews, Home Group creation

Windows 7 Home Premium
Market: Mainstream retail market
Key features: Aero Glass, Aero Background, Windows Touch, Home Group creation, Media Center, DVD playback and authoring, premium games
What's missing: Domain join, Remote Desktop host, advanced backup, EFS, Mobility Center, Offline Folders

Windows 7 Professional (superset of Home)
Market: Mainstream retail market
Key features: Domain join, Remote Desktop host, location aware printing, EFS, Mobility Center, Presentation Mode, Offline Folders, Media Center
What's missing: BitLocker, BitLocker To Go, AppLocker, Direct Access, Branche Cache, MUI language packs, boot from VHD

Windows 7 Enterprise
Market: Volume-license business customers only
Key features: BitLocker, BitLocker To Go, AppLocker, Direct Access, Branche Cache, MUI language packs, boot from VHD
What's missing: Retail licensing

Windows 7 Ultimate
Market: Retail market, limited availability
Key features: BitLocker, BitLocker To Go, AppLocker, Direct Access, Branche Cache, MUI language packs, boot from VHD
What's missing: Volume licensing
Its all taken from Neowin

Ill take the ultimate version anyday! I can always use the mui packs and the boot from vhd!

I think they did the versions alot better this time
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#12
Mega-Japan
lol, I just read this at ZDNet. I don't know what the deal with Ultimate is but if it's not going to be the top SKU (as I understood it), then why call it "Ultimate"?

Even if they wanted to focus on just Home Premium and Professional, they didn't have to go with the extra for. Keep it to about 4, just like Windows XP did. Not to mention these Starter Editions (or Home Basic) are kind of like a waste >_>.
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#13
oli_ramsay
Windows 7 Starter - stripped down version for new PCs only; can only run three applications at once.
:wtf: Can only run 3 apps at once? Surely that's gonna piss a LOT of people off if that's on their brand new PC.

Source: http://techreport.com/discussions.x/16350
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#14
Lillebror
its for the emerging market - they dont really need something that advanced.. yet!
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#15
ShadowFold
Ultimate for my desktop, Basic for my servers :cool:
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#16
PVTCaboose1337
Graphical Hacker
Starter edition sounds like fail. 3 apps at once! I need to watch movies, play MP3s, browse TPU, and play games. GOSH!
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#17
spearman914
Yikes!! So the Antivirus already takes up one app, internet is another one, and music in background alltogether is three!!
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#18
Lillebror
They dont really need anti virus or music in the background. Guys, the starter edition is not for people like us, but for people in the emerging markets :) So calm down
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#19
Triprift
So no real difference to Vista in that sense with Home Premium or Ultimate being the prefered flavours.
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#20
CDdude55
Crazy 4 TPU!!!
Going for Home Premium or Ultimate.:)
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#21
KieranD
ultimate is useless for my needs, home premium will do me fine, home basic will be gamer friendly tho so if its much cheaper ill get that as i have no need for some of the features

all i need is basic networking i dont want bloat
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#22
niko084
Looks like they are going to foul it all up anyways......
Good job Microsoft!

Linux and Apple will continue to bite into your sales as Windows 7 is the next large scale failure it seems...... *Consumer and Corporate Levels*
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#23
Triprift
Weel see Niko weel see i actually think ms may finally be on a winner with this one wait and see.
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#24
MAGMADIVER
I think MS has lost its mind, I think they probably need to go back to the XP days, Home & PRO... what the hell will be the difference between starter edition and home basic? and then those dumb asses wonder why there is so much confusion...and honestly what was so damn good about vista ultimate? language packs? DreamScene? well holy shit... that seems like its worth an extra $100 for features and content that were never delivered.. MS is about to destroy their credibility again with W7 aka vista done right..... I like W7, I have it installed right now, but they are going to shoot themselves in the foot if they think there will be no confusion over 6 SKUs...they deserve apple taking their market share if they cant present themselves in a competitive way...there is ONE OSX, it is simple to understand what youre getting with that. I know, I know, one can look at the feature set with the SKUs, but is that really necessary? Apple and the mac fanyaois, dont think it is, and they are getting more and more successful each and every year.
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#25
ShadowFold
Starter will not go retail, jesus.. How many of you have seen XP starter or Vista starter? I do agree on the home and pro tho. If I was in charge I would do it like this
* Windows 7 Basic - 50$ - It's Windows 7.. no special BS. Best for a gamer and basic user
* Windows 7 Premium - 90$ - Aero and other features no one else uses
* Windows 7 Ultimate - 150$ - adds +10 to your e-peen, most likely to be the most pirated version
Also I would make it 64bit only. I don't know why they made a x86 version honestly!
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