Installing Windows 7 on My Dell Laptop

win7For that last few months I’ve been running the Beta version of Windows 7 (the next release of the Microsoft Windows Operating System), on my Dell D610 laptop. I found that the beta version was quite stable, and ran quite well for me on my Dell laptop. Unfortunately, this beta version will expire soon (within the next few months), so Idecided to download the recently released “Release Candidate” of Windows 7 and reinstall it on my Dell D610.

The basic installation went pretty smoothly, however, I had to hunt around on the Internet for the correct drivers for my D610 running on the new Win 7 OS. Luckily, I found a nifty utility called DriverMax which will scan your system and tell you if your current drivers are up-to-date with what is recorded in its online database. Running DriverMax allowed me to identify more current drivers, download them, and install them. Everything seemed to be working correctly, except the installed video driver didn’t have a setting for the 1400×1050 native resolution of my Dell D610 laptop.

After searching around again, I found a posting by someone who had the exact same issue with his D610. He suggested the following:

  1. Go to the downloadcenter.intel.com and download the latest Windows XP drivers for the Intel 915GM/GMS 910GML Express Chipset Family.
  2. Install this driver by running it in “Windows XP Service Pack 2 Compatibility-Mode”. To do so, right click on the downloaded driver file and select “Properties”. Then, select the Tab labeled “Compatibility” and “Run this program in compatibility mode for: (Windows XP Service Pack 2)”

After doing this an re-booting, you should be able to set the screen resolution to 1400×1050. Once I did this, my 3-year old Dell D610 Laptop was running pretty quickly with the installed 2 GB of RAM. This Candidate Release will expire in June 2010, so I’ve got about one year to use this seemingly stable software until I need to go back to Windows XP, or get the official release of Windows 7.

If you want to test it out, you can download the RC release from this link.

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