Save the Date for Windows 7 on October 22

While looking for anything to watch other than Tom Delay shake his bum on Dancing with the Stars the other night, I came across one of the new commercials from Microsoft about their upcoming release of the Windows 7 operating system. The commercial featured the cutest little spokesperson you've ever seen. Since Microsoft will be donating Windows 7 upgrades to eligible nonprofits and libraries through TechSoup beginning on October 22, this reminded me to post this little "save the date" announcement, as well as give you a heads up as to what you can expect to see from TechSoup and as we approach this launch. If you're interested in checking out reviews of Windows 7, the commercial featured a couple of interesting ones from Gizmodo and CNET, though there are many others online and they're overwhelmingly positive. If you want to check out the cute ad, you can see it here.

What to Expect from TechSoup:

  • Windows 7 upgrade products will be available for donation to qualified nonprofits and public libraries through TechSoup on October 22 – specifically Windows 7 Windows 7 Commercial ScreenshotProfessional and Enterprise upgrades (32 and 64 bit).
  • Your library can request Windows 7 through TechSoup even if you've already received a Microsoft donation this year. Microsoft is allowing organizations to place one extra order this year for ONLY Windows 7 (or Vista) up until January 31, 2010. Learn more about Microsoft's donation program through TechSoup.  
  • Our team is putting together information and resources to help make the best decisions for your organization, so check back soon for more resources to help you evaluate.
  • In the meantime, as you evaluate whether Windows 7 is right for your organization, here are a few things you should know about your current system and computers:
    • What operating system are your computers currently running, and which version (for example, XP Home versus XP Professional, Vista Professional, and so on)? 
    • What third-party software do you have that is and what is their current level of compatibility with XP or Vista?
    • Do you have a system in place for backing up your computers? When was the last time you backed up your computers and tested the restore functionality and data integrity?
    • Is your network stable and do you have the bandwidth to download other software or software patches that you might need as part of upgrading to Windows 7?
  • If you have received a donation of a Windows operating system through TechSoup that included Software Assurance (and it is still current) you can upgrade to Windows 7 for no additional cost.

We're interested, also, to hear your feedback and get your input on what types of information will be helpful to you in deciding whether and when to upgrade your systems. Share your thoughts in this ongoing discussion in the TechSoup forums.