The Office 2007 ‘ribbon’ infests Windows 7?


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In all the hoopla about the upcoming Windows 7, one point is likely to annoy many Office 2007 users -the much maligned ribbon will appear in the new operating system.

In all the hoopla about the upcoming Windows 7, one point is likely to annoy many Office 2007 users -the much maligned ribbon will appear in the new operating system.

Both WordPad and Paint have been mostly unchanged for several versions of Windows. With Windows 7 they both get an Office 2007-like ‘ribbon’ interface.

Windows 7 - Wordpad with ribbon image from The Office 2007

 

Windows 7 - Paint with ribbon image from The Office 2007

 

In addition, the software development tools for Windows 7 include contents to let developers make their own ribbons for their applications.

Aside from that Windows 7 is ribbon free – Explorer, Control Panel and menus have some changes but no ribbon in sight.

Microsoft continues to be convinced of the worthiness of their ‘Fluent UI’ and will put it into other suitable applications. Suitable should mean that the ribbon is deployed on document style applications, in other words programs that need a large screen area for display/editing as well as many commands and features. Word, Excel and Powerpoint are obvious examples of this type of program. OneNote is another though its lack of ribbon is a notable omission from the 2007 version.

The public beta of Windows 7 is now available for anyone who wants to try it.

Windows 7 will run all Office 2007 exactly the same as on Windows Vista and Windows XP.

Microsoft’s servers have been laboring to keep up with demand. It might be tempting to replace the despised Vista with Windows 7 but keep in mind that it’s test software. There is likely to be problems with the operating system and so you should not install it on a machine you use regularly. Microsoft rightly says “If you’ve not used beta software before, please read the warning messages and make sure you know what you’re getting into.” We recommend installing it on a virtual machine from like Microsoft’s Virtual PC or Vmware’s Workstation alternatively try a dual-boot setup.

Microsoft says that Windows 7 won’t be sold to the public until 2010 but few people believe them. The unpopularity of Vista alone gives the company reason to get a new version out quickly. The early reviews are generally positive with the overall feeling that Windows 7 is mostly what Vista promised to be but never was.

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