What Do You Really Think Of Windows 8? [We Ask You]

Ads by Google

what do you think of windows 8The release of Windows 8 is approaching fast, with the latest Microsoft operating system due to arrive in October 2012. This isn’t your typical Windows release however, with Microsoft changing things up considerably in an effort to keep Windows relevant in what Apple has continually referred to as the post-PC era.

Windows 8 has been redesigned from the ground up, and it will work on both desktops and tablets. This strategy of trying to please everybody with the same product isn’t guaranteed to be successful, with the very real danger that Microsoft will instead please nobody. With just a few months left before Windows 8 arrives in stores it’s time to find out what you, our loyal MakeUseOf readership, really thinks of Windows 8.

This Week’s Question…

What Do You Really Think Of Windows 8?

what do you think of windows 8

This question comes in three parts. Firstly, we want to know what you truly think about Windows 8. Does it have any chances of succeeding in a big way? Will it see conversion rates near to XP/Windows 7 levels? This is your chance to truly vent about Windows 8, whether you love it or hate it. Do you wish the naysayers would give their flappy jaws a rest until the final version can be sampled?

We also want to know your thoughts on Microsoft’s overall approach. It was clear Microsoft had to do something to be a part of the growing tablet market. Doing nothing really wasn’t an option. But is the company’s strategy sound or could they have gone a different way in order to stay relevant in the face of an ever-evolving marketplace? Would separate tablet and desktop editions of Windows 8 been a better fix, for instance?

Ads by Google

Last but not least we want to get down to the details. If you have tried Windows 8 in one of its pre-release forms then tell us what little things you like or loathe. Is there a particular aspect of Windows 8 that grates on you and will continue to grate on you for ever? Is there a new feature you think Microsoft has excelled in adding? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Drawing Conclusions

All comments will be digested to form conclusions in a follow-up post next week where we will detail what ‘You Told Us’. One reader will be chosen for the coveted ‘Comment Of The Week’, getting their name up in lights, the respect of other readers, and 150 MakeUseOf points to use for Rewards or Giveaways. What more motivation than that do you need to respond?

‘We Ask You‘ is a weekly column dedicated to finding out the opinions of MakeUseOf readers. The questions asked are usually open-ended and likely to start a conversation. Some are opinion-based, while others see you sharing tips and advice, or advocating tools and apps to fellow MakeUseOf Readers. This column is nothing without you, as MakeUseOf is nothing without you.

Check out more about:

92 Comments - Write a Comment

Reply

Alderman

My last laptop came with that dog of an OS “Vista”. After 6 months of frustration, I re-formatted my HD and installed “XP”.

I stayed with that until my laptop bit the dust; then faced with ” 7″ and it’s unknowns, I held off for several months.

I let my friends test this new OS. I now have a new laptop with Windows “7” and am happy with its features.

After the “Vista” fiasco, I will always wait until the new OS has been proven.

Sounds like some of the older features in previous OS’s are being removed and features suitable for touchscreens added.

As my machine has no use for these new features, I will hold off til this laptop dies in all likleyhood.

Dave Parrack

Vista was fine after Service Pack 2. Windows 7 is better though, I must say. I’d say it’s sensible to wait and see with Windows 8. There’s no real impetus to upgrade.

Tom Sobieski

The laptop I’m using right now came with “Vista” causing “Vista Sucks” chants. After about 6-7 months, however, it REAlly wasn’t that bad, and anyway, I installed UBUNTU.
“After the “Vista” fiasco, I will always wait until the new OS has been proven.” Fine, but you could test drive it yourself.

ChrisRS

WIndow 7 was actually Vista release candidate 1.

Reply

Achraf Almouloudi

It is really an annoying thing that the next Windows would be such as bad one, as Windows is an production system while tablet devices are for consumption, so Microsoft could never success doing it but it was better if they created a new OS for smartphone and tablet devices like Google and Apple do and work hard getting it perfect, in fact they will please nobody with their mix .

Dave Parrack

They have Windows Phone for phones, but tablets are their own breed apart. You think Microsoft should have three OS’s on the go then, one for desktops, one for tablets, and one for smartphones? Interesting :)

Achraf Almouloudi

As Windows Phone is not really successful I believe it would be better to kill it and create something modern just like iOs and Android that would get the love of users, and integrate it on Smartphone and Tablet devices .

Christian Cawley

Have you tried Windows Phone?

“I believe it would be better to kill it and create something modern just like iOs and Android”

Hmm, clearly not. WP is far slicker and much more modern than iOS. Let’s face it, iOS is still sporting the same UI as it was FIVE YEARS AGO. And it’s been looking tired for the past two years.

Android has shown iOS the way to go with ICS and Jellybean, but describing Windows Phone as not modern is missing the point completely.

kenny

the windows phone platform is in no way good. its horrid.. and the sales clearly show that its not even close to the usability of IOS. And its going to die, right after windows8 metro becomes the worse IDEA microsoft developed sincei Microsoft Bob.

Christian Cawley

Kenny, sales in no way equate to usability. That’s like saying that price of a meal is in direct proportion to the size of the fork.

Are you aware of the “Smoked by Windows Phone” campaign? This basically proves that WP is fast, intuitive and ideal for completing common tasks faster than other platforms.

(http://www.microsoft.com/windowsphone/en-us/cmpn/smoked-by-windows-phone.aspx)

IOS usability has fallen by the wayside in recent years – by all mean stick with it, but you’ll find yourself playing catchup in the near future if you don’t wake up and pay attention…

VS

I use WP 7.5 more than a year now and I love it.

Charles

I think two at least. There are fundamental differences in the way people typically use a desktop and the way people typically use a tablet or smartphone.

First off, there are the obvious physical differences. Trying to create an OS that meets the needs of both someone sitting at home with a keyboard and mouse on a large screen and a portable user without keyboard or mouse and a much smaller screen is not a good idea, in my opinion.

Secondly, the way people use these classes of device are very, very different. You don’t see a tablet or smartphone user (usually) with 15 web pages open at the same time, copy/pasting into a word processing app while chatting on 3 IM networks. The same way you typically don’t see a GPS navigation suite running or a phone call being made on a desktop. There is some crossover, sure, but I posit that smartphones and tablets are much more inherently single-tasking than a more traditional PC. I think that smartphones and tablets have much more in common with each other than with desktop-style traditional computers.

So what we have here is MS trying to make a one size fits all OS that works well for 2 very different platforms. I’m not so sure that is a good idea. I can easily imagine cases where it could work, because of the way people are using that particular machine (think remote control for your home theater, for instance), but in general I think it is better to have one OS for the keyboard/mouse style traditional computer, and another for the ultraportable, mostly single-tasking, touchscreen device market.

In the case of Windows 8: personally, I just don’t see what is there for me as a desktop user, except tighter integration with MS cloud services which I may or may not want. But from what I have seen, it looks very nice for tablets and smartphones and should work well on both.

Reply

Ryan Shanklin

Personally I think this move on Microsfts part was inevitable. They are seeing very little growth in the mobile market as of now and I believe they feel the only way to make an impact is to go all in by incorporating mobile into their coveted OS. Whether this is to be a succes is yet to be determined but it is interesting none the less. My feelings toward this approach are mixed. I feel it will be a fresh idea many will love while some power users will merely not be ammused by this idea. For me I am a little worried. I remember when Zune was released and I loved it. I still use it to this day but the service never got much atention. I think what might happen is most users will simply treat the metro interface as a feature and mainly use the normal desktop they are so use to. But maybe we are all wrong to be worried. Soon we will know wheter this was a good idea or, well, a horrible one.

Dave Parrack

That’s an interesting thought, that the mainstream may embrace Windows 8 but the dedicated Windows users will hate it for being different. Early sales and responses from people finding Windows 8 on their new laptops and desktops will tell us how Windows 8 will do in the longterm.

Tom Sobieski

Sorry, so sorry. Back in the day, the first Windows was such a innovation, it became the de facto OS for the world. This time, it’s similar circumstances.
II’m not saying it will be an unquallified success, but it does have the potential to be.
I wish them luck, my hero has always been Bill over Steve anyway

Dave Parrack

I prefer Gates too. He’s a proper geek, whereas Jobs was a showman/perfectionist.

Reply

Ben

Back in the early 90s, the majority of software people used was DOS based and so most people spent the majority of their time at the command line, and would start Windows (by typing WIN) and use it when/if necessary.
It wasn’t until Windows 95, that things had changed such that people spend the majority of their time in Windows, and so Microsoft made it so Windows 95 booted straight away bypassing the command prompt.

The experience of running a DOS-based app under Windows at the time was just as “jarring” as running a desktop (non-Metro) app under Windows 8 is now. But just as before, as time goes on and more Metro software is written, and more touch-based hardware comes to market, it wont be an issue because people will naturally start to spend more time in the Metro environment (and it is pretty good!).

The issue for me right now, is the fact that you’re forced into the Metro environment when the reality is that 99.9% of the work I need to do, and probably will for the near future, requires the Windows desktop.
I just wish that I could choose which environment I see by default, desktop or Metro. Microsoft’s biggest mistake IMHO is that they’re forcing people to use Metro and I really think that such a dramatic shift, requires a much more gradual transition.

Dave Parrack

That’s a great insight, Ben, thank you. You do have to wonder why Microsoft didn’t make Metro optional, but perhaps they know the only way to shift so many people over to it is by forcing it on to the majority of users.

Ben

I think the comparison with DOS/Windows and Windows/Metro is particularly relevant in the enterprise/business scene.
It’s going to take, as it did with DOS, probably the better part of the next decade or more for businesses to move their apps into the Metro environment, so it just makes sense for Microsoft to provide some user control over which environment they see by default.
But Metro is really awesome, and as people see that and want that, that consumer pressure will hopefully drive the transition from the old desktop a lot faster

Dave Parrack

I like the Metro UI, but only on the right device in the right context. The fact that man businesses are still using XP and IE6 suggests you’re right about the length of time this shift will take.

Charles

Ben: Do you really think that they WILL migrate their apps to the Metro environment? In the case of DOS to Windows the advantages and gains were pretty obvious to most people and it still took the better part of a decade for it to happen. What do you think the carrot is in the case of Metro that is going to bring about a similar business application switch switch? What advantage is Metro providing at a business/productivity level that will entice them to move business applications over?

Jonny

I agree with you Ben, likewise I spend 99% of my time either on the Desktop or my browser… as for tiles, I use my XBox and 99% of the time I use one tile that contains Netflix or YouTube … I find the tiles more of a visual thing than anything else … I am much faster typing the application name (via launchy) or spotlight than I am finding the right tile..

kenny

First of all I must start out and say windows 8 is pathetic and it will fail big time. My predictions over 20 years have never been wrong. To dispute what you say, you are comparing 2 different things. A command line environment, and a GUI. and a well designed UI, with a horribly designed UI (metro). Metro is badly designed, its not user friendly, its ugly…. they were inspired by their work on a phone.. all these will lead to people sticking on to windows 7, everyone will be laughing about windows 8 (accept the fanboys), and when windows9 comes out they will have to make a “corrected” version of windows, just like windows 7 was a corrected version of windows vista… which back then I was telling everyone that it would e a flop. Reading some peoples comments about liking windows8 makes me wonder about their ability to comprehend very basic stuff. To give you a simple example, if I was to hire a computer tech, and he was to tell me that he liked windows8, he would not get hired, because its clear that he lacks basic comprehension skills.

john walsh

LOL I agree entirely ,
This was my experience of win 8 testing on a slave drive on both a i7 desktop with a 24″ screen and a 15″ lappy both with SSDs ( not that that matters a lot)

Who the F….. invented this load of rubbish , you would think after the vista experience micro soft in the head would have worked out how to make a good operating system like “win 7″ for instance
I actually grew after a time to like Vista especially after SP2 and would have kept it had win 7 not come out, this is the OS they asked everybody to try out and suggest things
This 8 rubbish doesn’t fit my lap screen, needs to be scrolled backwards and forwards to see anything , difficult to get to even do something as simple as going to my comp without having to go through the metro first and if you put anything on metro as a short cut it lists every category of the programme.
It’s lost Aero and looks like Win 3.1, plain ugly, even the colours are bawdy and ridiculous without the aero interface.
despite all the bad press I tried Vista but was pleased of course to see win 7 this mess even after playing with it for 3 days on a laptop decided that it was a giant leap backwards, if it doesn’t bomb then I moving over to Apple which is a company I basically think is a arrogant, but I am beginning to think they have a point

Reply

Spencer

I expect Windows 8 will succeed. When it’s released, it will become the first major non-Smartphone OS with touch. And it seems to me that keyboard entry is a massively inefficient means of interacting with our devices. The future is in touch/gestures/voice control. The future is in easier, quicker, grander forms of interactivity and Windows 8 is taking the first step down that path, again, for non-Smartphones.

In this vein, it seems pointless to criticize Windows 8 at this point. Most of the systems running the preview are not touch-enabled. Consequently, the OS cant’ be used in the way in which it was designed. If, when Windows 8 is married to touch-enabled hardware, it performs poorly, well, then we can smack the heck out of it, but until then…

Finally, our minds should always be open to the new. It’s great to participate in these sorts of ambitious products. Caring about whether or not it will succeeds seems, to me, to be the equivalent of being asked to root for the players or the owners in a labor dispute in professional sports. It doesn’t matter. The experience and the extent to which it works for you is all that matters, to us. The rest is Microsoft’s problem.

muotechguy

So we all need to get new computers in order to get a useful computing experience now? That’s horrible. How about making an OS that uses existing hardware more efficiently? Wouldnt that be nice?

Laga Mahesa

But then the partners would take a hit on their income. That won’t do.

Dave Parrack

You’re spot on that touch/gestures/voice controls are the future, but it’s a future that isn’t yet ready to be exploited. Strange as it may be to say but Microsoft is ahead of the curve on this one. That may be a problem for the majority who still use keyboards day in, day out.

Charles

But imagine the hilarity if everyone was dictating their emails and documents everywhere. Anyone who has ever used voice recognition software can attest to the sometimes horrifying things that will come out of that software.

john walsh

its never pointless to criticize anything especially MS OSs besides this OS Win 8 makes the debacle over Vista look pretty pointless as that was actually in the end after SP2 a good operating system.
this thing looks like some hacker has taken an android phone and rewrote the code for a PC and lost half the good bits on the way

Reply

Adekunle

Once you are able to get used to the changes,e.g. the start menu, you can easily navigate through the OS. I believe it is ok. I love it.

Subtracdditor

I agree, I love the new menu. The speed of Windows has improved vastly. For instance, want your to check your E-mails? Hit the windows key, type ‘mai’ or even ‘ma’ then hit enter, bam. Instant E-mails. You don’t even have to wait between the pressing of the windows key and beginning your search.

Reply

Akash

I am using windows 7 in my PC and i am pretty happy with it.I also downloaded the windows 8 preview in my PC. It looks good ! but for a tablet !,
I don’t think that it suites PC that much.But it’s great for touch interface!

Reply

Prashanth Hegde

Windows 8 introduces some really cool feature set in its offering. Like built-in javascript and html5 support right out of the OS, absence of legacy crapwares, smart management of metro apps to save battery and computing resources etc.

I have used Windows 8 release preview and it’s very well performing. No crashes, fast startup, out-of-box support for all devices and so on.

Desktop performance is great, and metro is great – albeit there are some design issues with Metro, like the two versions of IE, hard-to-find settings and context menus.

It will definitely take some time getting used to the new elements, but for an OS, its performance, stability and efficiency is the deciding factor. Performance and stability were the key to WinXP and Win7’s success.

With that in mind, I think Windows 8 will succeed, but I think it will see adoption much slower than Win7 or WinXP. But as long as Win8 does a good job in what it’s supposed to do, it will be accepted by the public.

Dave Parrack

Windows 8 is by all accounts faster, more secure, and more able than any previous version of Windows. But the enforced Metro UI is overshadowing that.

Prashanth Hegde

I agree. But per my opinion, this feeling is temporary and stays until we get used to it. Once the OS starts evolving and people start getting used to the new interface, people will no longer complain.

It’s the transition that’s unpleasant.

Personally, I think Microsoft should hear people screaming that they want an option to turn off the metro as an option – albeit hidden option. And I also would like to see the start orb back!

john walsh

NO it will bomb and MS will revert back to a win 7 improved style of platform with some minor reference to touch and apps to avoid total embarrassment

Reply

Sriram Gopalakrishnan

For Fast

PsyMan

I am hoping that by the time they bring out the final release, they will allow the Metro interface to be used as a switchable feature, I am sure it is a very good interface if you don’t mind waving your hands around a lot but the humble mouse and keyboard has stood the test of time for over 40 years now and requires so little effort to achieve so much that I find it hard to contemplate using a touchscreen in a working environment. Tablet/phone yes but on a monitor? Nice novelty feature but pretty impractical for long term use. That aside, change is inevitable and once we get multitouch monitors embedded in to our desktops it may just prove to be a winner. (even if it does involve a lot more effort than a mouse)

Reply

Bob Henson

Your first question is easy to answer. It has about as much chance of achieving serious market penetration as I do of flying (and my power to weight ratio is very, very poor). Its uptake will be limited almost exclusively to phones and tablets. Anyone who is forced to try it by buying a PC with it pre-installed will probably take it off and replace it withl Windows 7 if they possibly can. Enterprise customers won’t touch it with a bargepole, it is so inefficient and/or downright impossible to use. As a secondary issue, I think there is a fair chance that the current fad for toy tablet computers will soon die out – in which case there will be no market for Windows 8 at all.

Your second question – did Microsoft have to go down this route – is also easy to answer. Yes. However, as you suggest, it absolutely had to be via a separate version – whilst a PC version might work on a phone or tablet, the cut down phone/tablet version will never work on a PC.

Your third question is slightly harder to answer in view of space constraints – there are so many things. However, it’s easy to pick out the main reason why it will never be voluntarily used on PC or by Enterprise customers – in one word – Metro. I doubt it will be good on tablets either, but since it cannot be removed from Windows 8, it will be the one main reason for Windows 8’s rejection by most potential users. It can be partially hidden, but it requires 3rd party software to do it even semi-successfully. The remaining reasons may turn out, in the end, to be more important than Metro when (if?) users try to get down to basics – in the effort to make it small enough to fit on tablets Microsoft have stripped out many functions which enterprise customers will demand – they’re already well documented so I won’t try to list them.

Final conclusion – sell your Microsoft shares now!

Dave Parrack

I disagree on the tablet form factor. I think it’s going to grow exponentially from here on out. Not for enterprise customers but for mainstream consumers.

Why do you think they decided to go with one version for every device?

Ooh, that’s a harsh conclusion. I think Microsoft is looking good for the future, but it needs to start listening to feedback much more than it is at present.

Laga Mahesa

Microsoft does listen to feedback. Their corporate partners, not us. Microsoft has been that way since the beginning – home/desktop users are the icing, the cake is corporate. They’re only now going all user-centric because they have to – Apple is sapping beneath their walls through the end users and BYOD… the foundations are starting to weaken and they’re having to sally forth. All their knights are waving their swords and Microsoft has to demonstrate their new ‘gun’ at least once so they know how to use it.

Reply

doodle

I had a chance to play around with a Windows 8 tablet. In one word it is “awesome”. I found the OS to be very intuitive and flexible. The part I liked best is the way applications have been handled. The native apps are integrated so deeply that you get different interfaces of the same app on different screens. Normally in other tablets / OSs, you need to be in an app for it to run at its true potential and if you want to work on some other app, you need to get out of the app completely or let the previous app work on the background (like Music apps). In Windows 8, apps take different UIs basis the screen you are on. Win8 gives one an option to use the complete app or have it neatly aligned to one side (not a widget mind you) while you continue working in some other applications. The short form (for lack of words) of the app works exactly like the full app – the only difference being that some unwanted features (like display of album art in Music apps) are done away with.

I use iPad and have used quite a few Android tablets. The touch interface delivered by Windows 8 is just breathtaking. Everything is at a touch of a finger (not five fingers at a time!). The way one can switch between OS home screen and the apps by sliding a finger across the screen is fantastic.

What I think?
Tablets – Windows 8 will be a success. However, it needs to be seen if Microsoft and OEMs manage to hit different price points.
Ultrabooks – Users will see a lot of value in what I call convertible ultra-books, those where the screen can be detached from the keyboard and be used as a tablet.
Notebooks – On non-touch devices, I don’t think Windows 8 delivers a great experience. It might not appeal to enterprise customers. A small chunk of retail customers may go for it.

Dave Parrack

Great comment. It’s very telling that you prefer Windows 8 to both iOS and Android on tablets. I haven’t yet sampled Windows 8 on a tablet so I bow to your experience.

Reply

doodle

(reformatted)
I had a chance to play around with a Windows 8 tablet. In one word it is “awesome”. I found the OS to be very intuitive and flexible. The part I liked best is the way applications have been handled. The native apps are integrated so deeply that you get different interfaces of the same app on different screens. Normally in other tablets / OSs, you need to be in an app for it to run at its true potential and if you want to work on some other app, you need to get out of the app completely or let the previous app work on the background (like Music apps). In Windows 8, apps take different UIs basis the screen you are on. Win8 gives one an option to use the complete app or have it neatly aligned to one side (not a widget mind you) while you continue working in some other applications. The short form (for lack of words) of the app works exactly like the full app – the only difference being that some unwanted features (like display of album art in Music apps) are done away with.

I use iPad and have used quite a few Android tablets. The touch interface delivered by Windows 8 is just breathtaking. Everything is at a touch of a finger (not five fingers at a time!). The way one can switch between OS home screen and the apps by sliding a finger across the screen is fantastic.

What I think?

Tablets – Windows 8 will be a success. However, it needs to be seen if Microsoft and OEMs manage to hit different price points.

Ultrabooks – Users will see a lot of value in what I call convertible ultra-books, those where the screen can be detached from the keyboard and be used as a tablet.

Notebooks – On non-touch devices, I don’t think Windows 8 delivers a great experience. It might not appeal to enterprise customers. A small chunk of retail customers may go for it.

Reply

Koshy George

I feel that windows is dead for the PC, but I think the pro version will be a great Tablet OS and RT will be crap.

Reply

Bern

I have tried both of the trial versions of Windows 8 on several machines of differing horsepower and have the following opinions:

Windows 8 will have a great penetration rate, due to the fact that it will be the default system on most new machines and Microsoft is aggressively pricing upgrades. The system runs well, especially once you tweak it the way you want.

I despise Metro- it looks like something I would have been running in the days that hercules graphics cards ruled the screen. My first tweak was to get the machine to boot directly to the desktop, and my second was to recreate the Windows 7 start menu. Microsoft is obviously trying to force everyone to learn Metro to get a foothold in the phone space- good luck with that. The tech enabled are going to stay with Android, and the rest with Apple. I am patient and willing to learn- I had great success with Vista on several different machines and really liked it. That said, MS has burned me twice on phones- once on Windows Mobile, and once on Windows Phone (bought a Samsung Windows phone for my non-tech wife) and they literally orphaned the phone the week later by announcing Windows Phone 8 software will not run on older systems. I will never again buy another phone with MS software on it, and I will always advise everyone else not to as well. Fool me once, shame on me, fool me twice- well, you get the picture.

The tablet was obviously in Microsoft’s plan, but I expect the real target is the phone. They may have moderate success with the tablet, but unless they do something really bold, like buy both a phone manufacturer and provide carrier service so they have a true vertical Monopoly they will fail at phones.

Dave Parrack

That $40 upgrade price is pretty damn good.

There are rumors Microsoft wants to buy RiM… that would be interesting.

Reply

ksavai

Windows 8 is the 1st attempt to go for same OS for tablet as well as PC, Idea is great but I think windows 8 is little pre mature may be for microsoft or for end users. It will take some time for everyone to get used to. I will be waiting for Windows 9.

Another reason I am totally satisfied with Windows 7 and nothing in Windows 8 appeals me to get it so I will wait for sometime and not just in that boat in August.

If you see history microsoft tend to give alternate version of OS their better work. So let wait for Windows 9 :)

Dave Parrack

If it takes a one whole version of Windows for Microsoft to get it right I fear it may be too long. The market is changing at one hell of a pace right now.

I’m satisfied with Windows 7 too, and that could make a huge difference.

Reply

UD98

Honestly, unless MS will let you default to the desktop, and replace the start button, windows 8 will be horrible on any desktop or laptop. But on tablets like the surface, or hybrids like the ideapad yoga, win8 will be formidable.

Reply

Bill from Warwick

I have no use for tiles on my computer. Where the hell is the start button that leads to my personally organized start menu?

Reply

Jon Butler

I’ve been using every pre-release version of Windows 8 since the developer preview was released late last year. Generally speaking, I’m pretty much in love with it. It’s by far the fastest, leanest version of Windows to date, and I’m a big fan of the spit-and-polish changes like the new Task Manager and the file copy dialog details — that alone has helped me understand which of my microSD cards were the worst performers. I think there is a lot of promise with the Metro Start Screen and the introduction of live tiles, but it’s still a bit of a bipoloar implementation on a desktop. As much as I love some of the Metro apps, I *do not* want to run them full screen! Let me run them in a window! Why in the world do I want a full-screen IM client on a 24″ monitor?!? This bipolar disorder slips into more dangerous territory, too — take Windows Update as an example. There is no longer a systray notification icon, no bubble to tell you you’ve got updates waiting. These notification now ONLY appear in the Metro lockscreen — if you’re a home user that never locks and rarely logs off, you will never, ever see that you have updates waiting. I was able to at least automatically update Windows Defender by setting up a scheduled task (otherwise those only come through Windows Update) but it’s still an enormous oversight for desktop users that I’m pretty sure is going to lead to more unpatched machines.

As much as I’m more or less digging Windows 8, there is no way I’m going to recommend my family upgrades. My aging parents will get lost and completely misunderstand the difference between the desktop and Metro … it’s already taken me two years to get them comfortable with Win7. :)

I applaud Microsoft for finally taking the leap and trying something bold. I think in time it will prove to be the right move, particularly in the mobile space. I just hope that the desktop space also succeeds, and it’s going to take a bit more cohesion between the two lives of Win8 before it does so.

Dave Parrack

You love it but you wouldn’t recommend it to people less comfortable with computers. I think that’s a problem right there.

Reply

Joe Joiner

I think that Microsoft have good intentions for the new OS, but they’re not going about in entirely the right way. Why push to get rid of desktops/laptops when not everybody wants or needs a tablet? Why not simply create a desktop OS with tablet capabilities, rather than the other way round?

Dave Parrack

I can only assume they think tablets are going to grow to be the dominant form factor. Which is a big gamble.

Reply

Tom Sobieski

Frankly, I can’t wait. All the naysayers can just bite me

Reply

Ben

I think Windows 8 will change the personal computing landscape dramatically. For good or bad we have yet to see…

Reply

shaurya boogie

I think it is a bad one without the start menu and it sucks!

Reply

Ben

From a software a developer’s perspective, having the same OS on different hardware (phone/tablet/PC) will certainly make porting apps easier.

Reply

Reý Aetar

to stay upto date one must upgrade ms knows what they are doing ;)

Reply

Tommy

I have been running Windows 8 daily ever since the consumer preview was released. Honestly, I must say that at first I was totally intrigued by the metro interface and Windows store. I thought that it was such a good idea and incredible concept. The idea of kind of “merging” the smart phone type world to the desktop pc is ausome.The more I used it though, I realized that I started using the standard desktop more and more often. Therefor, I think its a great idea but im not too sure if it is suitable for desktop pcs or not. I think that it has a huge learning curve to it and that when it is launched, it will have the same outburst that facebook has everytime they change anything. People dont like change.

Dave Parrack

“People dont like change.” Never a truer word has been said.

Reply

Sean A

I think that Windows 8 is a nice idea for the non-average user with a touch screen monitor. If you have a touch screen monitor or are planning on installing it on a mobile device with an ARM processor, it to me is an annoyance with the new metro layout.

Reply

rshewmaker

If they just named it Windows Tablet things would be understood. Windows 7 resides in this version but Microsoft decided they wanted to hide everything that’s familiar (Start & Power options). They bombard you with apps and behind the scene updates, syncing, and other hacking opportunities. What I hate the most is that when you do finally find the way to power down the computer it will continue to communicate with the internet.

Dave Parrack

By calling it Windows Tablet they would have been limiting their market, effectively telling everyone other than tablet owners to stick with Windows 7!

rshewmaker

Don’t you think the same thing applies for Windows phone? I was just saying it seemed a little unnecessary to rename it Windows 8 when it still seems like 7.

Reply

Collin

I think that such a radical redesign in one version upgrade is a mistake. It will turn non tech-savvy users towards the more familiar desktop format, either sticking with their current OS, or switching to Apple. Perhaps if it was integrated incrementally, as Apple is doing with iOS and OS X, it would be more palatable, but if Microsoft makes such a huge change in one stroke, it won’t set well. The interface is so different from what people are used to that many users simply won’t be able to handle it.

My impression with both the developer and consumer previews of Windows 8 is that it would work great as a tablet operating system, but it doesn’t work with a mouse and keyboard. I fully support integration between a tablet and a computer, but it simply doesn’t work to tack an interface designed for a touchscreen onto a mouse-and-keyboard system. Ideally, there should be two versions: one for computers and one for touchscreen devices that share as much code as possible, but have interfaces that are appropriate for their own platforms. This way, developers would be able to write one program with two different graphical overlays, instead of two sepereate programs.

I do have to say that Microsoft have done a good job marketing Windows 8. I have seen TV ads that introduce the new interface, and Microsoft is also offering a $15 upgrade to anyone who buys a Windows 7 computer from now until Win 8 is released.

Dave Parrack

Yours is one of many comments calling for two different versions of the OS. Will Microsoft listen?

Killer B

The problem with having two different versions of the OS is that the market will choose what they’re most comfortable with: no Metro. No Metro = no app store for Microsoft. Windows Phone share is abysmal (as much as I LOVE Windows Phone), and Microsoft doesn’t want that happening with their shiny new tablets. They’re “Trojaning” Metro to the Desktop, which is not unlike Sony “Trojaning” Blu-ray into the PlayStation 3 to increase Blu-ray market share. Despite Sony taking major hits in initial sales (the PS3 launched at $600 US, remember?), the strategy worked.

Reply

thefreshness

I installed the last 2 previews on my dell studio and i believe the improvements they have allowed us to test so far show that the os will slightly change the path of windows computing. I think that so far it is has a decent balance between a low footprint and adaptability of their basic structures, but why wasnt the metro ui developed by ms earlier (maybe along side the xbox 360). Thinking about simplicity and depending on price i may not upgrade to the full version very soon after its release.

Reply

Jon

My opinion of Windows 8? I’m running the latest prerelease copy. All it is .. is this.

They’ve replaced the “Start Menu” with a “Start Screen”! That’s it. Oh .. of course I’m sure that some of the programs have been updated and it does start up faster.

All they did is move the “Start Menu” to a “Start Screen” .. eliminated the “Start Button” and now you have to find out how to get from application to application. What are the ‘hot keys’ now? Underneath .. it’s more of Windows 7 .. that’s all.

Dave Parrack

Windows 7 with a new skin then?

Reply

Jim Nagy

With Windows 7 Microsoft upped the ante with appearance and stability. In Windows 8 they are dumbing it down, reducing graphic appearances in favor of faster performance on tablets and other devices. They are ignoring the desktop user. Do they think everyone is going to do their jobs in Corporate America on their cell phones? or tablets? Unless they enable a shortcut or release a version for the old traditional desktop/laptop user, people will not make the switch.

Reply

Justin Strunk

Ahhh… I think, of course, you’ll have two categories… those who use Metro (the apple/tablet community) and those who use what is now Windows Explorer, or the old school windows desktop.

We’ve got to stay on track that its still a preview phase. Microsoft is most certainly paying attention in these crunch months… and the release previews are pure genius. Get all the kinks/wants/needs out of the consumer feedback BEFORE it ships.

I hear alot of people griping about the lack of standard controls missing in Metro… like a “X” button to close a window, or having to drag menus to close them, or drag up a intro screen to get to the login screen. Most certainly, Microsoft is hearing these points of feedback… I would expect Metro to have far more standard PC keyboard/mouse controls by the time it ships to appease that community… maybe even the current START button for the standard desktop. If not immediately, shortly thereafter.

However, people keep saying “OH!!!! BUT MY PC IS NOT A TABLET! METRO HAS NO PURPOSE HERE! THE CONTROL SCHEMES ARE TOO DIFFERENT!”

Thats because noones thinking outside the box. Sure, in its current preview form, its more tailored to touch screens, but outside from from providing a universal feel to each of their devices interfaces… We’re not talking about touchscreens on all of them. For Xbox and PC… we are looking into Kinect-like features. Now the Xbox already has the Kinect. And I know they are working on v2 as of now.

So I would expect to see not so much “touchscreen” or trackpad “gestures” as the main reason for Metro on Win8 for the PC… but an eventually kinect-like periphreal… where we can just interact with metro with the flick of our finger. It’s been known that Microsoft is releasing a Kinect release just for the PC. Now, instead of releasing 27″ LED monitors to gunk up with fingerprints and such… why not make a monitor with a kinect sensor built into the bottom or top of it? Or a laptop screen for that matter?

I think thats the real goal of Metro.

Dave Parrack

Kinect is going to be a big part of Microsoft’s future, but it’s not ready for what you’re describing quite yet. Sadly.

Reply

InkKnife

I think that a single GUI for both tablets and desktop/laptops is an extremely bad move. Apple has it right. An OS designed to compliment the environment you are working in, iOS for touch, OSX for everything else with some sharing of elements between and solid compatibility between environments.
The argument that “touch is the future” is true to the extent that is where the growth will be but there will remain a billion or so desktop computers in the world, none of which will benefit from Metro. If all of a sudden motorcycles became massively popular it would not mean that car manufacturers should start replacing steering wheels with handlebars.
I think the reason MS is forcing Metro to the desktop has everything to do with MS’s envy seeing Apple racking in the bucks selling stuff thru the App Store and nothing to do with delivering the best desktop experience. They will also profit from advertising on the desktop.
Touch is where MS needs to be developing but they need to do it the right way, which they most emphatically are not. Apple and Android will continue to eat p the mobile market while MS will continue the aimless wandering they have been doing ever since Gates stepped down.

Reply

Spencer Vincent

Looks great but yet to use it in depth.

Reply

Matt

While I finally made the transfer to Windows 7, and am happy I did so, I am curious to see whether or not Windows 8 is a functional OS or just a flashy representation of Microsoft’s struggle to compete with Apple. The biggest concern I see, which I assume to be obvious to rest of the community as well, is the consideration for business use and practicality.

The past era of Windows OS provided (for the most part) a streamlined approach to accessing applications for the functionality you need. However, I am wondering full-heartedly as to whether or not we will see a business-centric version of Windows 8 and how much different it will be from 7, if at all. It is overly apparent they are acting on social media and clouds to launch this OS to the level of success we saw with XP and 7. It is this assumption that leads me to ask the question “If this entire OS is centered around social media and integration with people’s daily lives, are you even focusing on business needs anymore?”. It may seem overzealous of me to think they forgot us altogether, but it’s hard to see the OS preview and think “good Lord, how are we going to use this at work?”.

Every functionality that makes Windows 8 appealing to the general public would have to be stripped out. The only tile I saw on the desktop during their preview videos that would even be remotely allowed in the majority of workplaces was Outlook. I guess it may just be their marketing strategy, but it almost seems that for a company who has such an immense hold on business infrastructure today, they are leading business users away from what they need and what they are used to. I acknowledge the need for change, and am sure Windows Server will remain prevalent in the workplace. I just don’t see how this “fun” looking, completely social media-geared operating system will suffice on business workstations around the world. Maybe it’s just me…

Reply

Matt Robertson

While I finally made the transfer to Windows 7, and am happy I did so, I am curious to see whether or not Windows 8 is a functional OS or just a flashy representation of Microsoft’s struggle to compete with Apple. The biggest concern I see, which I assume to be obvious to rest of the community as well, is the consideration for business use and practicality.

The past era of Windows OS provided (for the most part) a streamlined approach to accessing applications for the functionality you need. However, I am wondering full-heartedly as to whether or not we will see a business-centric version of Windows 8 and how much different it will be from 7, if at all. It is overly apparent they are acting on social media and clouds to launch this OS to the level of success we saw with XP and 7. It is this assumption that leads me to ask the question “If this entire OS is centered around social media and integration with people’s daily lives, are you even focusing on business needs anymore?”. It may seem overzealous of me to think they forgot us altogether, but it’s hard to see the OS preview and not think “Good Lord, how are we going to use this at work?”.

Every functionality that makes Windows 8 appealing to the general public would have to be stripped out. The only tile I saw on the desktop during their preview videos that would even be remotely allowed in the majority of workplaces was Outlook. I guess it may just be their marketing strategy, but it almost seems that for a company who has such an immense hold on business infrastructure today, they are leading business users away from what they need and what they are used to. I acknowledge the need for change, and am sure Windows Server will remain prevalent in the workplace. I just don’t see how this “fun” looking, completely social media-geared operating system will suffice on business workstations around the world. Maybe it’s just me…

Reply

Nathan Vringd

Windows 7 is actually the best OS I’ve ever used. The more I see 8 coming, the more I think I will still stick with it a few years more.

Reply

Gian Singh

windows 8’s metro ui looks horrible

Reply

Shawn Ashree Baba

I can’t wait for Windows 8 to release.

Reply

George Klein

I am an advanced non professional user of computers (digital photo restoration, digital audio remastering etc. all for myself), who likes good quality software.

After so many releases of Windows operating systems like Win95, Win98, Windows Milennium, Win XP first relelase, Windows Vista, which could be classified as “garbage”, in April 2009 I switched to Apple computers using MAC OSX operating system.

Based on the previous windows operating system releases one can expect Windows 8 to be full of bugs.
Even it will have no bugs at all I will never switch back to Windows.

Reply

Igor Rizvi?

I like the idea that it wont hog up so resources as win7 features,and multithreading improvements.Im still a little doubtfull about fully crossing to future win8 liek i crossed from xp to win7..will see

Reply

Clayton T. Toth

I do not like Windows 8 at all. It seems to have lost it’s traditional interface, start menu, desktop, ect. I would prefer to stick with Windows 7 no matter how much pizazz Microsoft says Windows 8 has to offer. I like my menus, icons, desktops, wallpapers and browsers. Windows 8 looks like a cheap knock off of the ipod. Come on Microsoft, you’re better than Apple why do you have to compete with them?

Bottom line is this, if you want to keep/gain more customers don’t release Windows 8 with this dopy tablet-like structure.

Reply

esch

I would love to see the next iteration of Windows, following Win7. It is the first time that an OS has actually increased productivity for me and the people that use the systems I set up for them. And the increase is DRAMATIC.

But the Win8 iPhone BS is terrifying. I love the style, but the functionality is simply the opposite of useful. Totally and completely unacceptable in every possible universe for anyone who uses their computer to accomplish actual work.

My very favorite thing about Win7 is that it is the first time I have used an OS that tries to make the OS as little a part of the experience as possible. The less I notice the OS, the better!

I can set it up Win7 to be essentially invisible. Just my nice 27 inch monitor, a clean, crisp background image and NOTHING on the desktop. But on the toolbar, I have all the functionality I could ever need. For work computers, I set them up with the server locations and local folders relevant to their job in the top right hand-corner. Server along the top edge, local on the right edge. Recycle at the bottom right, semi-invisible. Very unobtrusive and tidy.

But Win8 is the OPPOSITE of this. It’s immediately in-your-face with tons of the type of crap I immediately uninstall and delete when I get a new phone.

The worst part of the function of Win8 is the style of Win8 (ie Metro UI) because it FORCES you to muck about with crap before you get started working.

I will not install Win8 until someone hacks it so the Metro UI is not even part of the startup. Just boot me STRAIGHT to the productive part of the OS please. Don’t dally about to look up the status of flowers and their scents on the way.

Reply

Jake

I tried windows 8, I HATE IT!

I used it for about a week and ditched it. If they make it so it will load up right onto the traditional desktop and include a start/windows button then I would be happy.

Also it shouldnt have the metro UI running in the background, its ugly and uses to much memory for nothing. i noticed it using almost twice as much ram just being idle as windows 7 does.

Also im not sure if it was because it was the RC but the loading icon for windows 8 was some poorly desgined ugly fish ( Very unprofessional) if that is the actual loading icon for the consumer release then that is just plain stupid, it looks awful.

Basically give it the option to look like windows 7, with a start button and no Metro UI running in the background, dont be a resource hog and ill upgrade to it.

Other than that im sticking with Windows 7 until the next version of windows comes out, because it always seems that every other version of windows is great.

Reply

Eserpess Eserpess

Personally I needed to reformat my computer and I had to choose an operating system, as i did not have axcess to windows seven i was forced to jump to windows 8…Personally it looks like a google phone. its missing some key components that I personally LOVE about all windows OS. The thing is Microsoft has kept upgrading from windows 95, the thing id they got feedback from each OS every release and they base their new product with that information on mind, and thats the problem it seems like theve just chucked it out the window (lol) and forgotten about it, its nice that they want to do something new but at least try and stick to one specific audiance, if they try to please everybody thell end up pleasing no body.

Reply

Scott

Won’t work for me without a local Email program like Outlook express. I don’t put my infomation out on Hotmail or anywhere else like Twitter or google mail I want an on your operating system email program that connected to my ISP

Reply

Ben

I think it’s fantastic! I don’t know what the fuss is about. It’s lean and it’s incredibly nippy on my laptop. On Win 7 it booted in 40 seconds, on Win 8 I can be completely ready on the desktop in 8 seconds! That’s faster than my friends SSD powered Mac.

Good work Microsoft!

Reply

john walsh

Who the F….. invented this load of rubbish , you would think after the vista experience micro soft in the head would have worked out how to make a good operating system like “win 7″ for instance
I actually grew after a time to like Vista especially after SP2 and would have kept it had win 7 not come out, this is the OS they asked everybody to try out and suggest things
This 8 rubbish doesn’t fit my lap screen, needs to be scrolled backwards and forwards to see anything , difficult to get to even do something as simple as going to my comp without having to go through the metro first and if you put anything on metro as a short cut it lists every category of the programme.
It’s lost Aero and looks like Win 3.1, plain ugly, even the colours are bawdy and ridiculous without the aero interface.
despite all the bad press I tried Vista but was pleased of course to see win 7 this mess even after playing with it for 3 days on a laptop decided that it was a giant leap backwards, if it doesn’t bomb then I moving over to Apple which is a company I basically think is a arrogant, but I am beginning to think they have a point

Your comment