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Windows 7: Up and Running by Wei-Meng Lee

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Chapter 5. Essential Applications

Another of the longstanding Windows traditions that Windows 7 abandoned is that it contains fewer bundled applications than its previous versions. For example, Microsoft Mail will not be available when you install Windows 7. Similarly, Messenger will also not be installed when you install Windows 7. Instead, Microsoft offers a suite of essential applications as a separate download. Doing so allows Microsoft to have separate release timelines for Windows and these essential applications. It also allows them to make these essential applications more easily available for earlier versions of Windows.

In the first part of this chapter, you will first see how you can install the suite of essential applications from Microsoft free of charge. We will then look at the suite of built-in applications that ship with Windows 7.

Windows Live Essentials

Windows Live is the brand name for a set of services and applications offered by Microsoft. Broadly speaking, Windows Live is made of two parts: Windows Live Services and Windows Live Essentials. Windows Live Services refers to hosted applications/services that you can use over the Web. A good example of a Windows Live Services application is Hotmail; another example would be MySpace. Windows Live Essentials, on the other hand, refers to a suite of applications that users can download and install on their Windows computers. Examples are Messenger, Mail, and Photo Gallery. This section will focus on Windows Live Essentials. ...

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