Windows 7 RC1 finally appears

Redmond, Washington – Microsoft has today made the Release Candidate of Windows 7 available to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. General public availability will follow on May 5 at the Microsoft Download Center.

New features in the release candidate include remote media streaming, Windows XP Mode and a beta of the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. A number of enhancements have also been made to existing features based on feedback from beta testers, including enhancements to the Windows taskbar and improved functionality for touch screen machines.

“Listening to our partners and customers has been fundamental to the development of Windows 7,” says Bill Veghte, senior vice president for Windows business at Microsoft. “We heard them and worked hard to deliver the highest quality Release Candidate in the history of Windows. We have more partner support than we’ve ever had for an RC and are pleased to say that the Windows 7 RC has hit the quality and compatibility bar for enterprises to start putting it through its paces and testing in earnest.”

The updated minimum system requirements for Win 7 now state 1GHz or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor, 1 GB of RAM (32-bit)/2 GB of RAM (64-bit), 16 GB of available disk space (32-bit)/20 GB (64-bit), DirectX 9 graphics device with Windows Display Driver Model 1.0 or higher.