Installing and Running Windows

Windows 7 is the latest version of the Windows operating system for personal computers. Unlike earlier releases of Windows, Windows 7 is hardware-independent and ships on media as a modular disk image.

Thanks to Windows 7's new hardware-independent architecture, all editions of Windows 7 support both 32-bit and 64-bit hardware. This means that every product edition can be used with computers that have either 32-bit or 64-bit architecture. Microsoft provides separate installation media for 32-bit computers and 64-bit computers.

Thanks to Windows 7's modular disk image, all editions of Windows 7 ship on the same media. This means that you can use any Windows 7 media disk to install any Windows 7 edition. The product key you provide during installation is what determines the edition and the features of Windows 7 that are installed.

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