I like to call myself an advanced noob, so doe's it have to be a full install or can I upgrade?
When is this due for release or MS just toying for years like they did with Vista and then just end up with pretty much a pretty new resource grubbing interface?
They're already in Beta. There won't be a second beta after this, they have already moved on to RC (Release Candidate). You will see Windows 7 on the store shelves and on the new PCs before the holiday shopping season in 2009 (at least that's the objective and it seems like they are on track to achieving this goal).
So what is this OS suppose to give us that would make us want to finally drop XP Pro or even Vista.
Unlike its predecessor, Windows 7 is intended to be an incremental upgrade with the goal of being fully compatible with existing device drivers, applications, and hardware. Presentations given by the company in 2008 have focused on multi-touch support, a redesigned Windows Shell with a new taskbar, a home networking system called HomeGroup, and performance improvements.
Bill Gates, in an interview with Newsweek, suggested that the next version of Windows would "be more user-centric." Gates later said that Windows 7 will also focus on performance improvements; Steven Sinofsky later expanded on this point, explaining in the Engineering Windows 7 blog that the company was using a variety of new tracing tools to measure the performance of many areas of the operating system on an ongoing basis, to help locate inefficient code paths and to help prevent performance regressions.
Current betas have been reported by CNET as working faster than Windows XP and Vista and beat Windows XP/Vista in 3 out of 4 tests