It's not looking good for Sony Vaio owners who were looking to get their hands on a hot, fresh release of Windows 7 - Sony has disabled hardware virtualization in their laptop range, thus rendering Windows XP Mode in Windows 7, and many other Virtual Machine Based products, such as VMware and Virtualbox pretty much useless.
Sony claims that they are disabled for "security" reasons - which doesn't really seem to make any sense; Sony has also said that they will re-enable hardware virtualization on "select" laptops from the Vaio range. XP Mode isn't really a hugely adopted feature, but it's pretty upsetting for Sony users who had intended to use it, or wanted to use virtualization on their machines.
Xavier Lauwaert, an executive at Sony explains that "..we have received very little if any requests to enable VT technology up until very recently." and goes on to say "In addition, our engineers and QA people were very concerned that enabling VT would expose our systems to malicious code that could go very deep in the Operating System structure of the PC and completely disable the latter.". Xavier also goes on to point out that "the Z series will not be part of our VT-enabling effort. Indeed, we will focus on more recent models."
Windows 7 has been Released to Manufacturing (RTM) - and is currently available on MSDN/Technet and will be Generally Available on October 22nd, worldwide.