Will Windows 10 Make Productive People Even More Productive?

Tina Sieber 01-10-2014

In its much anticipated San Francisco Threshold event this Tuesday, Microsoft introduced the new version of Windows. To the surprise of the tech community, Microsoft was able to keep a secret: the name of their new flagship is Windows 10.


The event focused on Enterprise customers and no definite release date or pricing information was shared. Mid 2015 was mentioned as a time frame for the completed Windows 10 launch.

Key Facts About Windows 10 Technical Preview

The Technical Preview will be available via Microsoft Insider starting October 1st. According to the notes of Paul Thurrott, the preview will install as an upgrade in place over Windows 7 or 8.x. Since focusing on Enterprise customers, the Technical Preview will not contain new consumer features, such as IE 12 or novel media apps.

Contrary to previous leaks, a Consumer Preview of Windows 10 will follow in early 2015. In its April 2015 BUILD conference, Microsoft will reveal more about the development story and consumer features. Meanwhile, the Enterprise preview gives consumers a glimpse of what to expect from Windows 10. While Microsoft focused on the needs of Enterprise users in its launch event, this article will highlight implications for average users.


Windows 10 Technical Preview Fact Summary

  • At the event, Joe Belfiore showed off Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 9841.
  • Technical Preview available starting October 1st via Microsoft Insider – sign up here.
  • Technical Preview will install like an upgrade over Windows 7 or 8.x.
  • Technical Preview will not contain novel consumer features.
  • Charms bar still there, but will change eventually.

Windows VP Joe Belfiore presents a more detailed preview of Windows 10 in the video below.

What’s New In Windows 10?

Briefly, many speculations about the new Windows What Can You Expect From Windows 9? Threshold Rumors Summarized In a few weeks, Microsoft will release its first official preview of Windows 9, code-named Threshold. Let's see whether this new Windows incarnation could meet your needs. Read More were confirmed, including the return of the Start Menu, virtual desktops, and windowed mode for modern apps. But there is much more!

Microsoft stressed how much the different user experiences mattered to them and thus introduced features to address them. To make sure they really meet the needs of their users, the new Microsoft Insider programme will collect feedback from everyone testing the Windows 10 preview. At the same time, they will continuously be rolling out new features.


Continuum & One OS For All Platforms

Windows 8’s modern interface created a major backlash. Desktop users across the board didn’t appreciate the flashy tiles, the lack of a default boot to desktop option, and the disappearance of the Start Menu. Microsoft responded and slowly the most demanded features with Windows 8.1. In Windows 10, they go a step further and expand on a feature they already introduced with Windows 8.1 Update Windows 8.1 Update Is Here! What It Is & How To Get It Now Curious about the latest Windows 8.1 Update or not sure what this is about? KB2919355 is a cumulative update that comes with useful features. It can also be removed in case it causes issues. Read More ; i.e. changing the interface depending on the type of hardware attached.

Windows 10 will run on any kind of device, including phones, tablets, PCs, workstations, and servers. Thanks to Continuum, the interface will change depending on the hardware. When you remove a mouse or keyboard from your touch device, the OS will adapt instantly. On phones, Windows 10 will not offer a desktop view.


Start Menu With Live Tiles

As seen in previous Windows 9 leaks Windows 9 Leaked Screens Revealing Known Unknowns Windows 9 is dropping its veil. Recently leaked screenshots give an unprecedented insight into what we might expect from the latest iteration of Windows. Read More , the new Start Menu will support live tiles.

Windows 10 Start Menu

Thankfully, they didn’t forget about the much loved search feature How To Search Better & Faster On Windows 8 Windows 8 search features are quite robust once you get used to them. You can use modern and desktop approaches to search your computer and the Internet. Find out more! Read More within the Start Menu. It’s back and now lives both in the Start Menu and on the Taskbar.


Windowed Modern Apps & Snap Assist

One reason why modern apps were such a big annoyances on a desktop computer was that they ran in full screen mode. Windows 10 natively supports windowed mode for modern apps. Windows Store apps will now open just like desktop programs, including title bars and opening on the desktop.

The Snap Assist feature will allow you to snap up to four apps next to or on top of each other. Windows will make smart suggestions as you’re trying to snap an open window.

Virtual Desktops & Task View

Making multitasking easier is a key concern of Windows 10. As mentioned previously, Windows 10 will allow you to create additional desktops, i.e. virtual desktops, that allow you to separate tasks. You can then switch between open windows and desktops using Task View.

Task View is similar to the ALT + TAB keyboard shortcut Get More from Windows 7 ALT+TAB App Switching: Tricks You Didn't Know About There’s more to Alt+Tab than just pressing Alt+Tab to switch between windows. There are a variety of hidden keyboard shortcuts that make the Alt+Tab switcher quicker and easier to use. There are also ways to... Read More or the WINDOWS + TAB Aero feature, both found in Windows 7, which allow you to switch between open windows. In Windows 10, Task View will also support virtual desktops.

Windows 10 Task View

Keyboard Shortcuts In Command Prompt

Next to the name, this was the biggest surprise. Microsoft did indeed update the command prompt A Beginner's Guide To The Windows Command Line The command line lets you communicate directly with your computer and instruct it to perform various tasks. Read More ! It will now support common keyboard shortcuts, such as CTRL + V for pasting, SHIFT to select text, or CTRL +SHIFT to select by word.

Are You Excited To Try Windows 10?

That was Windows 10 in a nutshell. We will be covering it more in-depth once the preview is available. Go ahead and follow our Windows category or the Windows 10 tag.

Meanwhile, here is the full video of yesterday’s event.

Which new Windows feature are you most excited about and will you try the Technical Preview?

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  1. ChiJoan
    October 4, 2014 at 2:58 pm

    For curiosity has M$ made the test period longer, really 30-90 days aren't enough time to really test it between the other duties and customers I have...Thank goodness others share their knowledge with it ;-) Really, Linux has longer support for trial versions, too.
    Joan in Reno

    • Tina
      October 4, 2014 at 4:52 pm

      The Windows 10 Technical Preview will expire on April 15, 2015. You have more than 6 months to test it thoroughly.

  2. James
    October 3, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    So skipping the hype the main features are that we've now got Win 7 with some widgets in the Start menu (rather than just on a desktop) and virtual desktops that have been around for years in Linux - and that's pretty much it!? The other things are just minor tweaks. What have all those MS programmers been doing for the last 5 years? They could've have bought a couple of utilities from others and added them into the OS in a week to do the same thing!

    Seriously it's starting to get sad (boring). Bring back the wars between Win vs MacOS vs OS/2, etc when new releases were exciting and innovative in their ways to operate a computer.

    • Tina
      October 4, 2014 at 4:51 pm

      I think Continuum, the universal app store, and with that the outlook that Windows 10 and its apps will work across multiple devices is pretty cool! The implementation does take a lot of development effort. If Microsoft could turn this into a smooth user experience, it would be extraordinary!

  3. Gurugopal
    October 3, 2014 at 4:30 am

    I installed it on HP Slate 500 which carry atom processor. Works good. Speed and no problems for drivers except 2 which were installed in comparable mode. Great battery life, speed and with good touch.

  4. likefunbutnot
    October 3, 2014 at 12:02 am

    It's pretty much just Windows.

    Performance seems identical to Windows 8 on the same hardware across the sampling of Vista-era laptops I tried and on up to a modern LGA1150 i3 desktop. 2GB RAM seems to be acceptable for basic office-type computing, just as is has been since Vista was released. 1.5GB is unpleasant, just as it has been since Vista was released. I'm surprised at how trouble free the upgrade installation was. I didn't have a problem either time I tested it.

    The Start Screen appears to be completely gone with no option to put it back. That's a bit of a disappointment for me since I actually kind of like it as a 10' interface. There also doesn't appear to be any modification to the default set of Modern-Style Windows applications. The Charms bar likewise seems to have vanished. PC Settings is still sadly a fact of life, so I guess Firewall and VPN options won't be migrating back to Control Panel any time soon.

    Once I got it up and running on current hardware, the userland distinctions aside from the new Start Menu are very minor, at least between Windows 8 and Windows 10. I had a problem installing a Canon multifunction copier and with an Epson All-in-One, but I didn't experience any crashes or problems with my normal applications, even on a single-core Netbook.

    So far, there's nothing that's really grabbing me to make me say that this version is better than Windows 8, but I haven't really poked around at the management functions yet, either.

    • Tina
      October 4, 2014 at 4:46 pm

      Thanks for sharing your experience. I think it's quite cool that it works so well, despite being a Preview. Maybe Microsoft has done something right after all.

      Regarding the Start Screen, it's disabled on desktop computers, but it's possible to enable it via the Taskbar. Right-click the taskbar, go to Properties, switch to the Start Menu tab, and deselect the check box to "Use the Start menu instead of the Start screen", and click OK to confirm.

      The Charms bar should also still be there, but hot corners have been disabled. Have you tried the keyboard shortcut WIN + C to open it?

  5. Arun Kumar
    October 2, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    In the start menu is divided in to 2 parts left side minimalistic item list and right side cluttered metro menu look (which looks like a toy store) remove the clutter make Windows 10 productive for god sake get rid of live tiles.

    Rest of the stuff snap assist, virtual desktops, keyboard short cuts in command prompt, Task views should have been in WindowsXP or 1 version above that. I have been using all that stuff since decade from third party desktop app for windows enhancement. I was not expecting this from new windows version. What really new on the table.

    Why don't you make Windows crash proof/fool proof even if I shuffle any system files or modify system files on windows. Why don't you separate files and folders of OS and Programs different then the files and folders of users (I.e make OS and Programs hide, unreachable to users). Why is auto tagging not present in OS. Why is IFTTT concept not available on windows so that trigger of one program can activate function of other program. Why is search based on content (grep) not yet available?

    I am windows user not a fan, I appreciate that windows have improved over years, but I am expecting more. One last problem whenever wifi network is not unidentified on latest windows, which windows automatically detect. If the problem is not fixed we sometime have to reinstall windows.

    • Jason
      February 12, 2015 at 6:55 am

      What do you mean by auto-tagging? Is there software that can do this?

  6. Sourabh
    October 2, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    Multiple workspaces! Finally!
    Can we get a better command prompt, something like bash? Please? And maybe a package manager? I'll throw my Linux out if that happens.

  7. Timothy Davis
    October 2, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    I've been running the Tech Preview since the moment it was available. So far I am actually impressed, running it on an older HP laptop (Core2Duo 2.4Ghz, 4Gb Ram, slow 5400rpm 120Gb HD). It boots fast and runs reasonably well. They way they integrated the store apps with the desktop is a great sigh of relief. It has crashed once (installing VS2013 while backing up files and writing a CD) and seems like explorer crashes every time I power off.

    The visual style is a cross between 7 and 8.1 and the start menu is back.

    • Tina
      October 2, 2014 at 6:26 pm

      Great to hear it's working well on older hardware. Thank you for sharing, Timothy!

  8. Del
    October 2, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    Once again, they arrogantly ignored customers,even enterprise customers,and had to retreat, or lose billions.Open sourse is making them uncomfortable,thus the many lawsuits.Notice they ARE making an enterprise version and will no longer thumbing their noses at worldcorp.

  9. abdo
    October 2, 2014 at 9:35 am

    heeeeeeeeeeeeeeelp me

    • Tina
      October 7, 2014 at 6:27 pm

      What's your problem?

  10. Digga4
    October 2, 2014 at 8:56 am

    I can not afford windows 7 on a disability pension so why would I want 8 or 10

    • Tina
      October 7, 2014 at 6:27 pm

      Windows 10 will be very cheap, possibly free, at least for Windows 8 users.

  11. Sammer
    October 2, 2014 at 7:29 am

    i'm typing this from Windows 10 :)

  12. KT
    October 2, 2014 at 12:50 am

    I was just wondering how to throw away $100+ and waste a bunch of time the most effectively, then Microsoft solves my problem for me! Throw in the bleeding edge hardware needed to boot it up, the lame secure boot bios, and all the security holes and I think they've got something.

    • Tina
      October 2, 2014 at 4:50 am

      If you bought a retail version of Windows 8, chances are you'll be able to get the final version of Windows 10 for free. For OEM versions, including Windows 7, rumor has it that it will be a very cheap update, like $20. Meanwhile, the Technical Preview is free.

  13. Dan Smith
    October 1, 2014 at 10:55 pm

    I had no problem with Windows 8. I learned how to use it very first day I got it. I am trying out the preview right now. For sure It will be a lot more easier for the people with a learning disability, which is most of the complainers. Loving the new changes and look. Looking forward for the release in 2015.

  14. likefunbutnot
    October 1, 2014 at 10:53 pm

    I just downloaded the ISO. I'll probably install it on some systems tomorrow. A lot of the things I'm interested in won't be terribly exciting, but I'm specifically going to be looking at the desktop Hyper-V client and whether there's been any changes to the default set of modern-style applications or the integrated SkyDrive client.

  15. WindowsIs N'tThatGreat
    October 1, 2014 at 9:36 pm

    Virtual Desktops? #AppleDidItFirst

    • Daniel Escasa (@silverlokk)
      October 2, 2014 at 11:32 am

      Virtual Desktops? #AppleDidItFirst

      No, Unix did it first

    • Wykedengel
      October 2, 2014 at 1:37 pm

      Sorry but #LinuxDidItFirst

    • Chris
      October 2, 2014 at 2:01 pm


  16. dragonmouth
    October 1, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    "Will Windows 10 Make Productive People Even More Productive?"
    Only if Win 10 is way more secure than previous versions.

  17. Meena Bassem
    October 1, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    Seriously, they now update the command prompt? they haven't done that from windows XP or even before.
    was it that hard?

    • Ashok Kumar
      October 2, 2014 at 9:18 am

      What is your problem exactly, that they updated it or they updated it after this long? Seriously.. People these days try to find something to bash off anything.., grow up..

    • Meena Bassem
      October 7, 2014 at 8:27 pm

      i'm talking about the "took them so long" thing.
      i don't know how long exactly, but they haven't updated it for about 10, or even 20 years. now they update it.....
      was that update so hard to do a long time ago?

  18. Scott
    October 1, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    I'm excited. I've been a Windows user for decades and to be honest, I generally enjoy playing with the new features they include. I didn't mind the Modern UI, and I didn't really miss the Start Menu, but I appreciate that MS is trying to create a better product, and I'm always happy to play with it. Not sure if I'll play with the Tech Preview yet, it will depend on my available hardware, but I've used the last 3.

    • Tina
      October 2, 2014 at 4:48 am

      This is a rare kind of appreciative attitude towards Windows, one I often find hard to maintain. Thanks for your comment, Scott!

    • StijnJo
      October 2, 2014 at 8:00 am

      I have the exact same idea about it. Will try the TP though.

  19. Bill Martin
    October 1, 2014 at 6:04 pm

    OOh! Lets wet our pants over virtual desktops (ripped off from Linux which has had them for nearly 15 years) And WOW! a menu button! I can't wait to give Microsoft 3 figures of money for that. Of course I'll need a new computer to run it. Oh and a day of my life to update it. Oh and a support contract to deal with the inevitable breakdown after two weeks running it. And wait, I'll certainly need to spend £50 on new antivirus software.

    Anyone who buys this is a mug and deserve everything they get.

    • Tina
      October 2, 2014 at 4:45 am

      Windows 10 will run under the same specs as Windows 8, which isn't that bad; they are pretty similar to Windows 7 requirements actually. Plus, it should work better than Windows 8 on non-touch devices since they are trying to appease desktop users.

    • Daniel Escasa (@silverlokk)
      October 2, 2014 at 11:29 am

      virtual desktops (ripped off from Linux which has had them for nearly 15 years)

      Make that 26 years. That's how old X11 is

    • dragonmouth
      October 2, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      " it should work better than Windows 8 on non-touch devices since they are trying to appease desktop users."
      The operative word here is "SHOULD" but will it? With each Windows release, Microsoft promises us that some feature SHOULD work better than it did in previous versions.

  20. Carlson Mccovick
    October 1, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    Microsoft is probably going to run into trouble just like their counterpart( Apple). It's been only a year and a couple of months since Win 8 was released. They have to give consumers time to effectively transition and become familiar with Win 8 before releasing Win10.

    • Tina
      October 2, 2014 at 4:43 am

      It will be another year until Windows 10 gets released officially.

      The Technical Preview is mainly meant for businesses to test whether this will work for them and provide Microsoft with feedback. A Consumer Preview will follow in early 2015.

  21. Randy D.
    October 1, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    What happened to Windows 9?

    • James
      October 2, 2014 at 4:46 pm

      They decided to call it Windows 10 instead... Three reasons come to mind...

      1) It helps distance this release from any stigma associated with those who strongly dislike W8...

      2) It helps emphasize MS new paradigm for Windows as a All In One OS solution that will be usable on everything from IoT devices to your desktop and even the XBox One...

      3) One could factor that the Preview release, since it will continue to evolve and be updated monthly... Basically, MS will be applying updates equivalent to W8 to W8.1 but monthly instead of annually and thus impose years worth of changes over the coming months... So, you can basically say the preview is 9... Especially, since people can use it as their OS until 10 comes out...

    • Jon Smith
      October 3, 2014 at 2:30 am

      7, 8, 9