Will Windows 7 Include Fax and Scan?

I’d been using Windows Fax and Scan for years to send and receive faxes from my desktop computer. When I switched from XP to Vista, I made sure I got an edition that had it. But now I’m worried about Windows 7. Will Microsoft’s newest platform have my favorite fax function?

Many business and home-based computer users are big fans of a longtime Windows feature called Fax and Scan. The software allows the sending and receiving of faxes from the computer desktop (including from Outlook or the Windows Address Book), as well as the ability to scan documents and images and then organize them.

With the January 2007 release of Windows Vista, the Fax and Scan program and function was included on the higher-end Business, Ultimate, and (optionally self-installed) Enterprise editions, but excluded from the Home Basic and Premium editions. Disappointment and costly “upgrades” followed.

Now, with Windows 7 set to be released on Oct. 22, 2009, some are wondering if Microsoft will hear the cry of Fax and Scan fans and return the function. There wasn’t a lot of sympathy for Fax and Scan loyalists at the time, perhaps because so many have moved to the increasing simplicity of Internet faxing.

Good news! Windows Fax and Scan is back with all versions of Windows 7. According to Microsoft’s official Windows 7 web site, the program “turns your PC into a fax machine” if the computer is equipped with a fax modem or connected to a fax server. “It can send and receive documents just like a standalone device,” Microsoft promises.

Launch Windows Fax and Scan from the All Programs menu and follow the prompts to send a fax.

Do you have a question about faxing? Send me your fax question.