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With the Windows 7 RC out today, and it being good for a year before expiring makes for a compelling argument to deploy it in limited production usage internally. I tested the Windows 7 Beta and was very happy with its stability and compatibility.

We do software development in virtual machines (using VMWare), so the OS isn't as critical (currently using everything from Linux to Windows Server 2008 on our developer desktops).

I have a new hire starting Monday and a 64-Bit Dual Core machine with 4 GB of RAM (More RAM on its way). I am considering installing Windows 7 on it as a test. Is it stable enough to run in a production environment? Any major concerns to watch out for?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

We're running it on some "test/dev" machines, mainly because nobody uses Vista for performance reasons and we were getting more and more bugs that were Vista only.

So yes its stable enough, but I'd double up on the backup routine "just in case". Although if you're developing inside a VM, using external source-control, then I really don't think you've got anything to worry about.

Update: See what the Microsoft Win7 team have to say...

...we know many people (including tens of thousands at Microsoft) are relying on the pre-release builds of Windows 7 for mission critical and daily work...

I guess if it's good enough for tens of thousands of people at Microsoft, it's good enough for you :)

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Oops, shame about the file permissions bug in Windows 7 RC 32-bit.… – Tim Long May 9 '09 at 7:35
a bug that's since been fixed, and being pushed out via windows update already. – saschabeaumont May 9 '09 at 7:58

There may not be an authorized path from RC1 to the final release. If you're willing to deal with that eventual disruption, or willing to follow the inevitable unauthorized path someone works out, then that may not be an issue.

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I have been using windows 7 build 7000 on my dell xps m1530 since it first came out and i have had less problems than vista. The performance is much better and overall i think its a better interface.

If you can deal with the changeover in a year i say why not.

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Won't there be a changeover no matter what? – Ben Alpert Apr 30 '09 at 22:26
Like the undead is inevitable it will happen but its the fact the in 1 years time you will have to go over every PC and reinstall, which when you invest in a company wide rollout you hope that you wont need to do it again for years at least – Shard Apr 30 '09 at 22:30

The OS is stable enough, you are just running the risk that it is not a final version (might need to reinstall later), but a lot of people start using RC products

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Win 7 beta had some network stack "issues" which could lock up an entire machine. There were also some problems with media player freezing into an unkillable state. (Restarting froze the machine requiring a hard power off)

I'll be installing the RC early next week to see if these are fixed but other than this, the performance is miles a head of Vista or even XP, especially in Office. Office SP2 also made some really big gains with Outlook and large mailboxes so I can see Win7 getting pushed out in place of our Vista machines soon.

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Don't run beta software on production machines.

That said, you said the beta was very stable and compatible, and the release candidate should be even better in both of those areas, so you can go for it if you like. Until its release, though, I'd probably stick with a more mature server OS.

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Windows 7 is not server os.. – Thomaschaaf May 1 '09 at 7:27
Actually, Windows 7 IS a server OS. In the beta phase, there was Windows 7 Server, I think that's going to be released as Windows Server 2008 R2. – Tim Long May 9 '09 at 7:38

"YMMV", "Don't run beta on production", etc.... Having said all that. DAMN YES, IT'S READY!

I've got technical users (devs, IT, etc.), non-technical users (product managers), and, um, my mom, running on Win7 and they all love it! It's a rock!

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