Windows 7 Starter Is Limited, But Runs More than 3 Apps Simultaneously
Article by George Norman
On 02 Jun 2009
Precisely one week ago we were reporting that Microsoft may remove a limitation from Windows 7 Starter, mainly the one that says you can only run 3 apps at the same time. Back then we could only go by Paul Thurrott’s exclusive info, and as such we took the information with a grain of salt. Now the salt has washed away as Microsoft has come out to officially announce that the 3 apps at a time limitation will indeed be removed from Windows 7 Starter.

“Based on the feedback we’ve received from partners and customers asking us to enable a richer small notebook PC experience with Windows 7 Starter, we’ve decided to make some changes compared to previous Starter editions. For the first time, we will be making Windows 7 Starter available worldwide on small notebook PCs. We are also going to enable Windows 7 Starter customers the ability to run as many applications simultaneously as they would like, instead of being constricted to the 3 application limit that the previous Starter editions included. We believe these changes will make Windows 7 Starter an even more attractive option for customers who want a small notebook PC for very basic tasks, like browsing the web, checking email and personal productivity,” explained Windows Communications Manager on the Windows Client Communications Team, Brandon LeBlanc.


The thing to keep in mind is that Windows 7 comes in 6 different flavors, and out of the array of OS versions Windows 7 is has the least features. Here is a detailed (and pretty long) list of features you will not get to see in Windows 7 Starter:
- No Aero Glass effects, which means that you can only use opaque themes like “Windows Basic”.
- You cannot modify the default desktop background, the window colors and the sound schemes.
- You will have to log off in order to switch between users.
- No support for multi-monitor systems.
- No DVD playback support.
- No Windows Media Center (which means you cannot watch recorded TV and other media).
- No Remote Media Streaming.
- No domain support for business customers.
- No XP Mode.

As you can see, Windows 7 Starter is pretty drastically limited. The good news is that if you have a netbook you do not necessarily have to use Starter to power it, because netbooks are capable of running all Windows 7 versions. Brandon LeBlanc again: “All editions of Windows 7 have been optimized to run on the broadest range of hardware ranging from small notebook PCs all the way up to high end gaming machines. Windows 7 Starter should not be considered “the netbook SKU” as most machines in this category can run any edition of Windows 7. Many of our beta users have installed Windows 7 Ultimate on their small notebook PCs and have given us very positive feedback on their experience.”

Tags: Microsoft, Windows 7 Starter, Limitation
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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Windows 7 Starter Is Limited, But Runs More than 3 Apps Simultaneously
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