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Product: Windows Millennium Edition
Company: Microsoft
Website: http://www.microsoft.com/windowsme
Estimated Street Price: Full Version: $209 - Upgrade Version: $109
Buy Windows Me Now - Low Price
Review By:
Byron Hinson & Julien Jay

Introduction

Table Of Contents
1: Introduction
2: Installation & First Boot
3: Goodbye Dos?
4: GUI (Graphic User Interface)
5: Multimedia
6: Internet
7: Core Enhancements
8: Games & Gaming
9: Support Tools
10: Networking
11: Conclusion

A few months after the successful release of Windows 2000 in full flare, Microsoft unveils the brand new consumer focused edition of Windows, an evolution of Windows 98, named Windows Millennium Edition. This new version is, according to Microsoft, the ultimate evolution of the Windows 9x OS family and carries the build number 4.90.3000. Indeed future Windows releases should be based on the NT kernel.

The Millennium edition of Windows is aimed to help PC home users to enter into the next millennium with a big bang as Microsoft has focused its efforts to make Windows Me the user-friendliest, easy-to-use and multimedia-rich operating system of all the time. Windows Me has been developed and tested by Microsoft numerous months to ensure its reliability but does it have what it takes to make you want to pay out more money for a operating system that may well be too similar to Windows 98 and Windows 98 SE. Read on for our comprehensive review of this new operating system, Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (WinMe). Here is a list of most of the features that make up Windows Me (Note that these features are written on the MS Press release, not our write up):

Digital Media:

  • Edit, catalog, and e-mail your home movies
    Windows Movie Maker makes it easy to transfer home movies to your computer. You can edit audio and video sequences from analog and digital cameras, VCRs, or the Web, then create home-video shorts that you can e-mail to friends, relatives, and colleagues. You can also store hours of video on your hard drive, instead of on the shelf.

  • Store, manipulate, and organize pictures on your computer
    Without any additional software, you can import a picture from a digital camera or scanner onto your computer. And before you save anything onto your hard drive, you'll be able to preview all your photos and delete the ones you don't want.

  • Play your favorite music and listen to the radio online
    With one player, experience the most popular streaming and local audio and video formats. You can organize and catalog your media, then easily transfer your play lists to portable devices. If you tire of your music collection, listen to any of the 3,000 Internet radio stations worldwide. You'll also be able to revamp the look of your Windows Media™ Player into everything from a shark's head to a television.

  • Transfer pictures onto your computer in two easy steps
    Without any additional software, you can import a picture from a digital camera onto your computer. And before you save anything onto your hard drive, you'll be able to preview all your photos and delete the ones you don't want.

  • Immerse yourself in dynamic 3-D and surround-sound
    DirectX® 7 intensifies the sights and sounds of all your games, delivering the ultimate realism in ambient gaming. Microsoft® DirectX makes Windows-based computers an ideal platform for running and displaying each element of any multimedia composition including full-color graphics, video, 3-D animation, and surround sound.

Home Experience 

  • Learn everything about your operating system, fast
    Integrated with online support, the Help and Support system in Windows Me is a comprehensive, Web-based resource that provides tutorials, tours, answers, and solutions to common problems and questions. If you get Windows Me preinstalled on your computer, your manufacturer may also include system-specific support in the Help and Support area.

  • Your critical files are always safe
    The System File Protection feature in Windows Me prevents erroneous system file deletion.

  • Return your computer to its original settings
    If you make a mistake with your settings and want to return your computer to a time and day when everything operated perfectly, simply activate System Restore. When you restart your computer, it will operate as it did prior to any problems.

  • Install the latest hardware, worry free
    You'll appreciate no-error installation and the start-to-finish guidance of the Windows Me wizards. When you install Windows Me, it automatically loads all the Universal Serial Bus (USB) and IEEE 1394 software drivers. Then, when you install a new USB or IEEE 1394 device, Windows Me will find the appropriate driver and automatically install it for you. Wizards guide you through the installations, and Windows Me instantly configures most devices so you don't have to restart your computer or tweak your settings.

  • Quickly find what you need on every menu
    The Smart Menus in Windows Me get to know how you work. They prominently display the programs and applications you use most often, and keep lesser-opened menu items out of site but readily available. That saves you time you would otherwise have spent searching your menu's contents.

  • Be assured that your drivers will work with new hardware
    For your protection, the Windows Me development team has worked with industry partners to ensure that drivers—the software that makes devices work with your computer—are designed and tested to work with Windows Me. When you hook up a new piece of hardware, Windows Me runs a driver check to make sure it is digitally signed and capable of working on your computer.

    The latest system updates are regularly delivered to your desktop
    For your machine to work at peak efficiency with the latest hardware and software, you'll want to update Windows Me from time to time. Windows Me is designed to deliver critical updates directly to your desktop from the Windows Update Web site. You'll receive the most recent service packs, system files, device drivers, and new features as often as you like.

Online Experience

  • Browse the Internet quickly and easily
    Internet Explorer 5.5 provides the best support for Web browsing, with powerful search capabilities, faster performance, and easier printing.

  • Communicate using Web-integrated e-mail, messaging, and news
    Outlook® Express lets you send and receive e-mail, access your Hotmail® account, join newsgroups, view your online contacts, and send instant messages—all from one convenient place on your desktop.

  • Send instant messages
    MSN™ Messenger lets you know when your friends are connected to the Internet, so you can exchange instant messages, chat in real time with several friends at once, or hold a video conference using NetMeeting® conferencing software.

  • Have online video conversations
    Using NetMeeting 3.1, you can participate in video conferences, collaborate on files, and share information over the Internet or a local network.

  • Play games on the Internet
    You'll find Internet-ready versions of popular, classic games like backgammon, hearts, spades, and checkers. One click gives you instant access to online opponents from around the world.

Home Networking

  • Create a home network
    The process of setting up your home network is simple when you use the step-by-step instructions provided by the Home Networking wizard.

  • Share a single Internet connection
    Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) lets you share a single Internet connection among multiple computers in your home, even if they are running Windows 95 or Windows 98.

  • Use multiple networking technologies
    Windows Me provides support for multiple types of home networking technologies, including Ethernet, wireless, and homePNA, and lets you view these networks through a single interface.

  • Share computing resources throughout your home network
    Windows Me automatically detects printers, folders, and other resources on your home network, and allows you to easily share these and other resources among the computers on your network.

  • Incorporate Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) devices
    Windows Me is the first operating system to implement UPnP networking standards, making it simple to connect all kinds of high-tech appliances, gadgets, wireless devices, and computers to your home network.

  • Connect to the Internet securely
    The new TCP/IP stack in Windows Me provides improved stability and security on the Internet.

 

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