FINALLY! I got a machine together - not all the parts I wanted - but good enough to get Longhorn on it. Final piece was the DVD drive. I did a clean install of Longhorn. I was quite interested in how the install process would proceed. So I will detail it out as much as I can for those people that are strange and love these details (like me).
First off, there was no blue install screen where you would see the default drivers and such being installed. The first things requested was a page where I had to enter in the Longhorn Product Key. I requested the Product Key from the beta page as asked from “the goods” package that I got at PDC (on another machine). I had to supply my contact information (including a required phone number) and was in the end supplied the key. The web page stated that the key would only last for 180 days. So I am wondering how long the Longhorn OS will last on my machine. Not sure. Also I am wondering how many times I can use this key. Can I install Longhorn on 10 machines in my house or not? Is it for unlimited use within those 180 days? Not sure again.
After this, I was asked to choose some settings. For instance, the drive I wished to install this OS to and other details. It was interesting it didn't notice that there was only a single and empty drive connected and it came up with no options for where to install it, so I had to click on a link and point to the hard drive for it to install to. After selecting the drive to install it to, I left the option of English as the default and it was interesting that I wasn't able to select the time zone (stuck on Pacific Time Zone). My thoughts were that development wasn't far enough along to allow me to totally customize the install at this point. After making my selections, I clicked a button to continue the install process.
From this point, there are only two screens during the install process. The first is shown here (sorry, it is a photo):
On this screen, the install is going on. Through three steps. The time stated in the right hand corner seemed to be pretty accurate. There was no change to the screen (such as what happens with W2K or WXP) and the progress bar just moves along to the right:
Wishes: At this point I really do wish I knew what the heck was going on with the install. I wished for some type of DETAILS button or something in the lower right corner which I could click and I can see a rush of command line install information happening - it makes me feel a little more involved in the process. Though, someone like my mother wouldn't care for such information - I definitely would. For example, when I install Visual Studio .NET - I actually DO watch the parts that are being installed in the descriptions.
In the next step, the following screen appeared:
HEY - back was the old trusted time keeper! Turning away to let me know that the computer is “thinking” (hasn't this been around awhile). It let me know --- hey man, this is Windows. I did like that there. So at this point, I am assuming that the OS is doing exactly what it says it is: trying to detect my hardware. I think my computer is kind of slow or something, because although it says that it should only take 10 minutes, it took around 30-40 minutes.
Wishes: Again, I wish there was some detail button here and I could see and understand what it was doing.
I walked away and came back to this beautiful screen:
I LOVE THIS! .... Beautiful OS and installed!