Orchard 1.7 released with lots of new features. You can check out my blog post on what's new in Orchard 1.7 for a list of the new features. I'm personally excited about Orchard Workflow and Media Processing since developing custom workflow activities and image filters is a fun way to extend and customize Orchard. Orchard developers will find the Orchard 1.7 upgrade process very similar to the previous versions. You can read all my Orchard Tutorials as well as follow me on Twitter, Google+, and RSS for information on Orchard CMS and Orchard CMS Development.
Orchard 1.7 Release
Orchard 1.7 has just been released. I was expecting it a few weeks ago based upon discussions that happened at the Orchard Harvest Developer Conference in Amsterdam, but Orchard 1.7 has a lot of cool features that take time to finish. Because there are so many big changes, I suspect we'll see a version 1.7.1 released "soon" and a version 1.7.2 as well at some point.
You can download Orchard 1.7 on CodePlex either as a website or the full source code. I'm not sure of the timing, but you will also be able to download Orchard via the Web Platform Installer, Webmatrix Gallery, and even the Windows Azure Gallery at some point (if not already).
Orchard 1.7 Features
Always consult the release notes for Orchard to learn the specific features as well as any tips and recommendations when upgrading to new versions of Orchard. It doesn't appear that the 1.7 release notes are available yet (updated: here are the release notes for 1.7), but I'm sure they will be available soon. I blogged about a lot of the Orchard 1.7 features if you are interested in what's new in Orchard 1.7. You can always check out my Orchard Tutorials, too.
Orchard 1.7 Upgrade
The Orchard 1.7 upgrade process is very similar to previous version upgrades, with just some new steps to help you migrate the Content Picker, Media Library, and Taxonomy Module. You'll also want to migrate to the new Output Cache Module in Orchard which can be done separately from the Orchard 1.7 upgrade module.
Orchard CMS has a pretty difficult learning curve, but I have been developing Orchard Modules, Orchard Themes, and Orchard Websites full-time for 3 years. If you need help, please don't hesitate to contact me!