Windows 7 Starter Edition Removes 3 App Limit But Still No Flip3D

Microsoft is pushing the idea of netbooks (they call netbooks “small notebook PCs”) running Windows 7 Starter Edition once Windows 7 becomes available. There was a lot of push back on this idea because Starter Edition was limited to running 3 apps simultaneously. However, according to the official Windows 7 blog, this limitation is no more…

Let’s talk about Windows 7 Starter

This is good news. However, you should be aware that Windows 7 Starter Edition is still missing a number of features compared to other Windows 7 editions. The big one for me is that it does not provide Aero Glass graphical effects. If you had told me this a year or two ago, my response would have been “so what?” However, there are two Aero Glass features that I’ve been using frequently on my netbook that I definitely do not want to lose:

1. Flip 3D: A perspective view of open Windows enabled by pressing Windows-Tab in Windows Vista or 7. I never used this in Vista. But, for some reason, I use it frequently on my netbook running Windows 7. It may have something to do with the fact that I run most apps in full window mode on the netbook which is something I do not do when using larger displays.

2. Taskbar Previews: Hovering over a task bar app tab pops a temporary translucent Windows showing that app in a larger view. You can easily focus on that app for further work or let it fade back down.

I would definitely recommend installing something other than Starter Edition on a netbook just to get these two features.

Other features missing in Starter Edition like DVD playback, the lack of Windows Media Center or XP Mode is less important, in my opinion, because most current generation netbooks lack the hardware to support these features. This, of course, is changing as more powerful netbooks emerge that provide features like HD video playback and hardware virtualization assist.