Windows 6.1 or Windows 7

As found out by some beta testers this week, the official name of the next windows release will be called Windows 7. The problem though, is that internally, and for compatibilty reasons, it’s actually Windows 6.1

Yep…a service pack, minor update, whatever-you-want-to-call-it. It’s an update to Vista.

If you go into your command line (start, run, cmd.exe….or start and stype in cmd.exe) then type ver, the version of your current version is displayed. In the case of Vista, right now it is 6.0.6001.

The name game started with Windows 3.0. Following it was Windows NT which was code versioned as Windows 3.1. Then came Windows 95, which was code versioned as Windows 4.0.  Then, Windows 98, 98 SE and Windows Millennium each shipped as 4.0.1998, 4.10.2222, and 4.90.3000, respectively. So we’re counting all 9x versions as being 4.0. That’s also why they looked basically the same, and programs made for 95 worked just fine under Millennium.

Windows 2000 code was 5.0 and then Windows XP shipped as 5.1, even though it was a major release they didn’t’ want to change code version numbers to maximize application compatibility. Strangely enough, software for the 9x line ran quite good, but there was a glitch with a couple of programs and that is why you have a compatibility edit option under the properties of a file or program.

That brings us to Windows Vista, which is 6.0.  But this one was major, MAJOR release as some of us have found. Aero, Sidebar, crashing programs. All of it. And now they’re spoiting Windows 7 as our next logical significant release and 7th in the family of Windows releases. The issue with it is that it is coded as 6.1…just like 98 to 98SE (4.0 to 4.1). Some change.

Between XP continuing to get life extensions, it seems that many users are hanging on to XP for dear life until they absolutely have to. This means that when 7 finally hits, its going to be a shocker for most.

However, for us Vista users, there probably won’t even be a noticeable change, except one such as the change from 95 to 98.


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