Windows 7 is Really Windows 6.1

windows 7 is really windows 6There has been quite a bit of debate recently on why Microsoft named Windows 7, Windows 7. There have been, in fact, a dozen or so versions of Windows released over the years (not including the multiple SKU’s per release).

As you can see from the picture above, Microsoft’s internal version number for Windows 7 is version 6.1. Ha!  You can see this for  yourself if you are running Windows 7:

  • Start
  • All Programs
  • Accessories
  • Command Prompt
  • type ‘ver’ and hit enter

Tada! 🙂

The real two-fold reason for the name, according to Paul Thurrott, is purely marketing. Firstly, Windows 13 (an arguably accurate number) would never fly for obvious reasons. More importantly, Microsoft is about to abandon naming software by year (eg: Office 2003) because consumers have had the misapprehension, for example, that Office 2003 wouldn’t run on a version of Windows released before 2003 or after 2003 (eg: Vista). The truth is, Office 2003 will run on any version of Windows released after XP and likely for many years to come.

Hence, the next version of Office is going to be Office 7. Though, frankly, won’t this lead to the same consumer issue – the thinking that Office 7 won’t run on any version of Windows before Windows 7?