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Windows 7 - Hints and Tips

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Frankman View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Frankman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Windows 7 - Hints and Tips
    Posted: 03 December 2009 at 02:33
A number of recent threads have sprung up over the past few months since the release of Windows 7. The information in these threads has proven to be very useful to members, so I asked gmiller (Gary) to consolidate this information by putting together a piece about Windows 7 (Gary came to my attention when he answered a number of members' questions here on the forum.)

And so, here it is! Courtesy of Gary Miller (thanks Gary )

As a computer consultant and photographer who has been using Windows 7 regularly since the very early beta editions I find myself happy to report that this operating system is the best prepared product release that Microsoft has done since Windows 98. It is probably the most stable system they have released since DOS and, with just a little getting to know it, it is extremely user friendly with great features and power. As I now have some experience under my belt with numerous installations using both clean and upgraded installs and using it with common photography software maybe I can condense a few things to help some others through their migration decisions and choices.

If you are considering upgrading and existing computer the first thing to do is to download and run Microsoft’s free Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. This will tell you in quite a bit of detail how you computer may fare with an upgrade, how your pc matches up to minimum requirements and what software/hardware you may be running that could have potential issues. It will also tell you if your computer is capable of running the 64 bit operating system.
here

DEVICES: Some devices (printers, scanners, etc…) may not have Win7 or Win7 64 bit drivers available for them. HP is trying to get all their multi-function printers supported but are saying it may be a month or so before they are all ready. The advisor should help identify these but it would be wise to investigate at the manufacturers website for Win7 driver downloads on questionable devices. Many of these will still work fine with simpler Win7 drivers but may not have all advanced features available. As a general rule you should download the latest drivers from the manufacturer rather than using the ones that came on your CD supplied with a previous operating system. For the most part I have been pleasantly surprised how few issues there have been on this front. Much better than Vista. Here is a link to a Compatibility Center at Microsoft where they have a pretty comprehensive listing along with links to drivers.
Compatibility Center:
here

As a general rule if your computer is running Vista, it will run Windows 7 better. If your Windows XP computer is capable of running Windows 7 and has at least 2 gigs of RAM it should run faster with it than it did with XP. While minimum requirements state 1 gig of RAM, you really should have at least 2 gigs to get full benefits.

If your computer is capable of running the 64 bit version you should definitely do that. This will require at least 2 gigs of RAM along with a 64 bit processor. With a 64 bit OS you can run as much RAM as your motherboard allows. 32 bit will only give you just over free gigs. Your photography programs will love you and, if they are not yet, they will be 64 bit soon as will many other intensive applications.

XP UPGRADE: If you are currently running Windows XP you will need to do a ‘clean’ install. In other words back up everything and be prepared to reinstall all software program and data. While there are other ways to do it, this really should be a complete wipe and fresh format of the whole hard drive to let Windows 7 set up the partitions and drives in the way it wants to. There is a migration wizard on the CD that can help with this which I will talk about below, however it is crucial to do a full mental inventory of everything you have that is important and how to find it to back it up and then what software do you and don’t you have your CD’s for.

XP or Vista Home editions will not upgrade to Win7 Business/Professional/Ultimate. Win 7 Home Premium is your best bet for this upgrade. XP or Vista Pro will upgrade to any version.

VISTA UPGRADE: If you are currently running Vista and it is happy and running well on your computer you can do a ‘simple’ or ‘overlay’ upgrade and the new OS will install over the old Vista and your data and programs will stay intact. Some new printer/device drivers may be needed but for the most part it is pretty seamless. If your Vista installation has ghosts, problems and/or a lot of junk on it now you would be well advised to consider doing a ‘clean’ install such as upgrading from XP requires. This is a little more work but it is the one way to absolutely guarantee that all the garbage will be gone when you are done.

VISTA 32 bit to WIN 7 64 bit UPGRADE: This is only possible by doing a custom ‘clean’ install of your Windows, backing up all of your files and reinstalling all of your programs. This cannot be done with an automatic overlay install.

MIGRATION WIZARD: There is a really slick Migration Wizard on the installation CD that will help you back up and transfer all your personal files and settings to an external drive or DVD. It will pick up a lot of things that you would not think of and sometimes maybe more than you had intended if you aren’t reinstalling everything that you had. A caveat with this is that if you store personal data in unusual spots it may not be intuitive enough to find some of it. If you are wiping your drive backup redundancy is very wise. You run this first on the old PC, it will create a file ( can be pretty large ) that you put on a transfer media and then you will run it again after Win7 has been installed on the new setup and it will ask you for the file, importing everything and putting it in place for you. Very trick.

SOFTWARE CD’s and Keys: Make sure you have all of your software ducks in a row for a fresh install. This means CD’s and Registration Keys/codes. If your software received updates since the time that you first installed it you will need to do those again. You will need to make sure that your Anti-Virus version is Win7 capable, maybe downloading the latest from the net. Make sure that you remember your email files and address books if you use on computer email programs. Not necessary for webmail such as hotmail, gmail, msn, etc…

RESTORE POINTS: When the new OS is up and running like a spanking new baby be generous with creating restore points as you start loading the system up with drivers, programs and data. This will allow you to backtrack if something goes wrong. Easiest way to do this is to go to Help on the Start Menu and type in Restore Point and then follow the directions to Create a Restore Point.

EMAIL: Outlook Express is gone. If you need (or would like) a built in email program and don’t have Outlook you should probably download Windows Live Mail free from MS as it is not installed as part of the OS. Without this you lose your right click option to send photos by email. You may want to consider the downloading the Windows Photo Gallery at the same time for a quick JPEG viewer as it is part of the same install package.
Mail/Photo Gallery and more…:here

SONY IDC Software: DO NOT INSTALL FROM THE ORIGINAL CD! Some folks have had major problems putting an old version on Win 7. To reinstall Sony IDC suite you should make sure to download the latest version from esupport.sony.com rather than using your original CD, especially on 64 bit Win 7. I am not aware of any major issues with the latest version 3.0 on Win 7. Create a Restore point first for safety. There is also a .ARW RAW file thumbnail previewer for Windows that should be downloaded too. Links below:
IDC Image Data Suite Update download (Pick your OS and camera model!):
here (Update: When you download the IDS software from the sony site, move the application to your desktop and run it from there (close all other apps). It seems to dislike running under Firefox.
RAW Windows Thumbnail Viewer - Frank)
here

LIGHTROOM 64 bit: If you were not 64 bit with your previous installation, download the latest version 2.5 or 2.6 and it should install as a 64 bit application for you on the fresh install. Actually, you may enjoy trying the new beta version 3.0 which is free to the public until its unknown release date.

CS4 64 bit: CS4 should be reinstalled if you want to take advantage of 64 bit if you were upgrading from Vista 32 bit.

OTHER PHOTO APPS: Most all seem to run on it fine from what I have been seeing on the forums. I have heard of some incompatibility with some plug-ins with CS4 64 bit and issues with other camera specific apps, but it should be green lights for the Sony Minolta gang.

FAQ - You will find the answers to many more questions that I may not have covered here at the Windows 7 FAQ page
here

In short, upgrade thoughtfully and carefully with a little planning and it should be easier than you might think and it certainly should be worthwhile.

END OF ARTICLE

Frank's Footnote:
Thanks again Gary!
Members are invited to add any information that will assist other members. (Let's keep it to Win 7 and please let's not go off-topic ):

Frank

Edited by Frankman - 19 February 2010 at 09:16
*** Sony A850 * A700 * Minolta 5D and other stuff ***
 



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bengeo View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bengeo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 December 2009 at 11:35

Frank/Gary,

That's very good.

One point to add - you can't 'downgrade' from Vista versions to Win 7 versions. e.g. I have Vista Ultimate and to install Win 7 Pro I have to do a clean install.

If you have CS4 and you're doing a clean install don't forget to deactivate the license first. I assume the same applies to Lightroom.

Andy
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ABramley Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 December 2009 at 14:24
One thing to add - when you install Win 7 you get 2 DVDs. I assumed that one of them was the installation DVD and one was full of extras, like you get with the Office CDs.

Nope, one of them's 64bit, the other is 32bit. Make sure you read the tiny little note at the top right edge to install the one you want - otherwise you'll be reformatting less than 20seconds into your Win 7 experience
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Post Options Post Options   Quote drumsavant Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 December 2009 at 09:36
I am having a problem with Windows 7 64bit and my sony A700... It won't read from it? I managed to figuare a work around - to change the USB connection from "mass storage" to "PTP" wich is painfully slow. I also noticed on the windows 7 Compatibility list that the Alpha 350 IS NOT compadible in 64bit but IS in 32bit??? No listing is there for the Sony A700

In XP I used to just plug in the a700 and wait for a folder to pop up and drop and drag the files but something with PnP on my system is stopping it??? anybody else?

Thanks,
Mike
α700 ~ TAM17-50/2.8 ~ TAM70-200/2.8 ~ TAM90/2.8 ~ MIN50/1.7 ~ SIG10-20 ~ HVL-F58AM & F36AM ~ My Flickr
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Post Options Post Options   Quote dilettante Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 December 2009 at 12:31

Frankman, I think you just volunteered to be official Dyxum Windows 7 tech support :-)

Thanks for the useful info. After initial problems installing Win7 64, I've found it good too.
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Frankman View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Frankman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 February 2010 at 09:15
dilettante - your gratitude is misplaced. You should be thanking Gary (Miller). He's the one who compiled this excellent article.

I've added a small bit of text to Gary's original article. Today when I reinstalled Win 7, all went smoothly until I came to IDS. After an hour of swearing and cursing, I stumbled across a "fix". When you download the IDS software from the sony site, move the application to your desktop and run it from there (close all other apps). It seems to dislike running under Firefox.

Cheers, Frank
*** Sony A850 * A700 * Minolta 5D and other stuff ***
 



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Post Options Post Options   Quote Pathway Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 February 2010 at 09:44
Good stuff here.

I can vouch that the Sony software install from CD IS NOT a good idea.

I ran it in all the 'correct' comparability modes but it still destroyed my image and I had to start from scratch.

Thanks for pulling this together.

O.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote OniFactor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 February 2010 at 05:22
http://www.fastpictureviewer.com/codecs/

useful image viewer for using windows explorer and live gallery to organize and view .raw images.
Cam Lewis
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Bass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2010 at 00:30
I have probably overlooked something extremely simple but I can't get IDC to work. I have downloaded, via the links Frank listed in his original post but they won't run; or appear to be updates only (not original disc software).

I have W7 Professional 64. It is a new PC, so no other OS is installed - it came with W7 64 from the factory. I am hesitant to load the original discs, from the mention of problems in the original post.

Could anyone point me in the right direction on how can I load IDC and open A700 RAW files on W7 64 Prof? Thanks!
MB
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Bass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 April 2010 at 17:52
Originally posted by Bass Bass wrote:

I have probably overlooked something extremely simple but I can't get IDC to work. I have downloaded, via the links Frank listed in his original post but they won't run; or appear to be updates only (not original disc software).

I have W7 Professional 64. It is a new PC, so no other OS is installed - it came with W7 64 from the factory. I am hesitant to load the original discs, from the mention of problems in the original post.

Could anyone point me in the right direction on how can I load IDC and open A700 RAW files on W7 64 Prof? Thanks!


I am still not able to download and install IDC. They are updates, from what I can see, and the original disc is required?

Anybody got IDC to work on 64 W7, via the downloads, without the disc?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote outback88 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 April 2010 at 11:31
@Bass, no l gave up after 2 attempts. , l brought DXOpro, but the new Adobe "lightroom3 beta2" seems very good.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Bass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 April 2010 at 15:05
Steve, Thanks for your reply. I thought it was just me

I have tried out LR 3 Beta; I like the results, just getting used to the workflow. In the mean time, I have used Bridge and CS3 ACR, which I like.

I miss Picture Motion Browser though. It's not everyone's cup of tea, but I've used it for years now and like it.

Frankman - maybe part of the article needs amending? If you can't use the original disc and the downloads won't work without it, then it might save people trying?
MB
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Post Options Post Options   Quote k9tales Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 April 2010 at 01:59
I have had Photoshop CS4 Crash in the middle of 'smart sharpening'. I'm running 64 bit. Although both on installed on my HP Windows 7 Professional.

Photoshop also crashes when sending an edited file from Lightroom 2 to
'edit a copy in PS'.

I've had other PS crashes as well, but these happen the most and often.
Very frustrating. I've looked for fixes to no avail.

Any ideas?
thanks,
Lynn

Edited by k9tales - 11 April 2010 at 02:00
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Post Options Post Options   Quote KonicaA3 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 December 2010 at 18:03
Where can I find the Minolta MRW codecs for windows?
Sony A77ii | Sigma APO 75-300 F4-5.6 | Minolta 70-210 F4 | Tamron 18-250 F3.5-6.3 Di |Minolta 35-70 F4 | Minolta 100-200 F4.5 | Sigma 18-125 F3.5-5.6

http://www.flickr.com/people/imagesbykeith/
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