Difference Between Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate

Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate are two editions of the six original Windows 7 versions realized by the Microsoft Windows Operating System. Unlike other versions, the benefits of these two are most feasible for IT techs and not for every home user.

However, there are several differences between the two butone of the main differences is that the Professional uses file-based encryption whereas Ultimate edition uses both file-based encryption and BitLocker encryption level.

Windows 7 Professional vs Ultimate

The main difference between Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate is that the Ultimate edition can boot files from the Virtual Hard Disk (VHD) but the Professional edition cannot.

Windows 7 vs Professional and ultimate

The difference between Professional and Ultimate edition also lies in the fact that Ultimate is designed to be more advanced with 35 MUI language packs and Applocker benefits than Professional.

Both Professional and Ultimate are equipped with additional controls such as access to joining windows domains and Group Policy, serving host from a remote desktop, and advanced backup options which make them stand out from the Windows Starter, Home Premium, and Home Basic.


Comparison Table Between Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate (in Tabular Form)

Parameter of ComparisonWindows 7 Professional EditionWindows 7 Ultimate Edition
Microsoft support extended uptoJanuary,2020January, 2015
Encryption typeFile based encryptionBitlocker encryption level and File Based encryption
ApplockerNot PresentCan block software from running, Applocker technology included
BranchcacheNot PresentOptimization technology available
Virtual Desktop InfrastructureNot presentEnhanced VDI facilities made available
VHDCannot boot files from VHDCan boot files from VHD


What is Windows 7 Professional?

Windows Professional is one of the six windows 7 editions that were launched by the Microsoft Windows Operating System in 2009. Professional, as the name suggests, is especially beneficial for the IT maestros who can avail the additional assistance once upgraded.

Windows 7 Professional is not available in the retail stores but one can upgrade from even the basic through the Windows Upgrade Anytime portal. Professional can support a memory of 192 GB and has the capacity to support 2 CPUs.

Professional is also equipped with the Presentation Mode feature to enable uninterrupted usage and Location-aware Printing for accessing printers that are located within the appropriate vicinity.

It also allows the user to join windows domains and have more control over the system through advanced features of Group Policy which is particularly beneficial for network administrators. Another alluring aspect of Windows Professional is that it allows the user to run Windows XP SP3 within Windows 7.

However, the support for Professional ended in January 2020, it continues to provide advanced services such as Advanced Backup and Restore options making it easier to retrieve lost files. Windows defender in Professional edition helps provide more security from viruses and malicious software.

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What is Windows 7 Ultimate?

Windows 7 Ultimate was also launched along with 5 other editions of Windows 7 in 2009 by Microsoft Windows Operating System. Unlike Windows Home Premium and Starter, Ultimate edition is most popular amongst the tech guys for its numerous additional benefits.

The Ultimate edition covers all that is included in Windows Professional and much more. For starters, Ultimate has both File-Based Encryption and Bitlocker Encryption which adds more to the security.

The Ultimate edition too supports a maximum of 192 GB memory and functioning capacity of 2 CPUs. It is enabled with Presentation mode, Location-Aware Printing, and Advanced Backup and Restore options just like professional.

However, this versatile edition of Windows 7 Ultimate also includes the benefits of easy switching between 35 MUI language packs and advanced features to block malicious software run through Applocker property.

The Ultimate edition also has Branch cache optimization technology for easier file access over the wide-area network and also allows direct access to Virtual Hard Disk or the disk image without the interference of the host.

Additionally, it helps keep the user connected while travel through phone enabled by Direct Access feature and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure especially designed for network administrators.

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Main Differences Between Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate

  1. The Ultimate Edition can boot files directly from VHD without host interference while this is not possible in Professional.
  2. Windows 7 Professional only have File-Based Encryption while Ultimate has both File Based and Bitlocker Encryption enabled.
  3. The Ultimate edition is equipped with Applocker features while this is missing in Professional.
  4. The Direct Access feature is only present in Windows 7 Ultimate and is not included in the Professional edition.
  5. The Ultimate Edition also includes a Wide Area Network Optimization facility with Branch Cache which is not present in Windows 7 Professional.
  6. The Ultimate edition allows access to 35 MUI language packs that are also missing in the Professional edition.



Although the additional benefits of both Professional and Ultimate editions of Windows 7 have been deemed practically useless by the home users, both these editions are heavily applauded among the IT professionals and network administrators.

Both Professional and Ultimate have been proclaimed for providing access to remote desktops with especially curetted features that make work easier for the host and the client alike. Additionally the features of Domain Join and Group Policy help level up the work for a tech guy.

However, the main difference between these two editions is that Ultimate edition has direct access to files from Virtual Hard Disk and enhanced Virtual Desktop Infrastructure which are missing from Professional edition.

The difference between the two editions is also that Ultimate edition provides even more security with Applocker, that blocks software installation access and Bitlocker encryption which is based on the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).

The functions of Branch Cache and Direct Access make the Ultimate edition smoother and more effective which is also a notable difference between the two editions.

Although Ultimate edition is somewhat different than Professional with its advanced access facilities and higher level of security, Professional is not any less effective. Both these editions are also facilitated with Dynamic Disk support and Location-Aware printing along with all that is mentioned above to make it even more high-tech.

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Last update on 2022-09-24 / Amazon Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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