If I remember correctly, my version of Win 7 has been running without problems - touch wood - for quite a while now so it is a while since I last had to do this, what Havachat has said is quite correct but in Win 7 it only works for folders of the type you are looking at.
For example, if you are looking at a folder of photos - JPGs - and you set it it to 'List' view then all your folders of JPGs will be in list view. But if you then switch to a folder of DOCs you will have to do it again, and then all your DOCs will be in list view. And so on, and so on.
Annoying, but that's my experience with Win 7.