Edition Comparison...

Windows 7 was officially released in 6 editions, closely resembling those found for Windows Vista.
NOTE: Each edition contains all features/capabilities of editions listed above it!


Starter:
Audience: Preinstalled on qualifying Netbooks only
-> Netbooks must not exceed a single 2GHz processor, 1GB RAM, 250GB HDD or 64GB SSD, and 10.2 inch display.
-> Cannot be customized with backgrounds, sounds, themes, et cetera.
-> Excludes DVD playback, multimedia streaming, et cetera.
-> Does not support Fast User Switching (multiple users logged in simultaneously).
-> Does not support the use of multiple monitors.
-> Does not include Aero Glass or any advanced interface features.
-> Only available in 32-bit (x86), not 64-bit (x64).


Home Basic:
Audience: Emerging Markets Only
-> Removes netbook-only restriction.
-> Can be customized with backgrounds, sounds, themes, et cetera.
-> Supports Fast User Switching (multiple users logged in simultaneously).
-> Does not include Aero Glass or any advanced interface features.
-> Excludes DVD playback, multimedia streaming, et cetera.


Home Premium:
Audience: Average home users
-> Includes Aero Glass & advanced interface features.
-> Features easy network management.
-> Includes Windows Media Center & multimedia support.
-> Includes multi-touch support & handwriting recognition.
-> Includes premium games & DVD playback/creation.


Professional:
Audience: Business and professional users
-> Features enhanced domain networking capabilities.
-> Includes system backup over a network capabilities.
-> Includes Encrypting File System (EFS).
-> Features Location Aware Printing.
-> Features Presentation Mode.
-> Features Windows XP Mode (integrated Windows XP virtual machine) for application compatibility.


Enterprise:
Audience: Enterprise volume subscribers only
-> Supports Multilingual User Interface (MUI) packages.
-> Features Bitlocker (provides full hard drive encryption).
-> Features DirectAccess (provides corporate network access).
-> Features BranchCache (decreases network access time).
-> Features AppLocker (prevents running of unauthorized programs).
-> Offers ability to boot from virtual hard drives (VHD files only).


Ultimate:
Audience: All users
-> Same as Windows 7 Enterprise, except available via retail & OEM licensing.


Key Notes:
1.) Starter edition can now run unlimited applications simultaneously and is available worldwide, but is only found on netbooks.
2.) Home Basic edition is now available only in emerging markets rather than on low-end computers in primary markets.
3.) Windows 7 restores the Professional edition, replacing the short-lived Business edition introduced in Windows Vista.
4.) Ultimate Extras, introduced but quite limited in Windows Vista, have been eliminated from the Ultimate edition.
5.) Windows 7 is available in N and KR editions in accordance with European and South Korean legislation.
6.) Most users only have three editions to consider: Home Premium, Professional, and Ultimate. All others are limited market only!


John