back to article Windows 8 'bad' for desktop users - Gartner's one-word review

Analyst firm Gartner has chosen just one word to describe Windows 8 for desktop users: “Bad”. Research Director Gunnar Berger put the imminent OS through its paces in a five-part review which found that Windows 8 is pretty good when used on touch-screen devices. Microsoft loaned Berger a Samsung slate device and he found that …

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Anonymous Coward

Re: History repeats itself

Android doesn't lock you in. If you want to use other 'appstores', you just untick the setting.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: History repeats itself

AlbertH. Classic rant. Almost entirely factually incorrect as I would expect from a public sector employee though.

Anyhoo, Microsoft made $21.76 billion profit last year. Is that what you mean when you say that they are 'losing money at a significant rate'?

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Gold badge

Re: History repeats itself

"How long before Ballmer starts to wonder if there are still some people around who can program a start menu from scratch ?"

Ballmer will never do that. His successor might, but googling for Classic Shell is likely to be less effort. Alternatively, his boss might start wondering if there are still some people around who can milk a monopoly (coz MS *are* still a near monopoly on the desktop) without ripping its udders off.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: History repeats itself

"Corporations are beginning to "bite the bullet" and consider the possibility that M$ isn't any solution. As Android, Chrome and other similar OSs mature, they become ever more effective on the desktop. There is now a build of Libre Office that runs flawlessly (and very quickly) on ICS Android!"

Simply untrue. I wish that it were the case, as I have a couple of Android 4.0/4.1 devices, but Libre Office for Android absolutely isn't ready for prime time yet. To engage in such hyperbole for the purpose of platform advocacy is simply a bit pitiful. There is enough interesting stuff happening around Android right now to obviate the need to make stuff up.

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Re: History repeats itself

"It's either ignorance or stupidity which leads you to the belief that the desktop OS has been abandoned."

Ditto. At least in multiple YouTube videos there is Desktop application, which seems to be well sufficent for all people needing "legacy UX". For example here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VnsHmVs1UA

Altough the black tile "Start menu" from task bar seems to be missing in latest reviews. For example here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yw_0e7JV2Vg

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Thumb Down

Re: History repeats itself

Have a downvote for your comment about public sector employees.

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FAIL

Re: History repeats itself

"Anyhoo, Microsoft made $21.76 billion profit last year. Is that what you mean when you say that they are 'losing money at a significant rate'?"

Obviously you missed this...

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/07/20/microsoft_posts_first_ever_loss/

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Stop

Re: History repeats itself

@AlbertH - clearly you've shown yourself to be utterly clueless... or ignorant. "is just more shiny nonsense stuck on top of the same old broken, rotten core." is rubbish considering that WinRT (which is what underpins the new Metro desktop) is the NEW way of progamming for Windows - WIn32 (which underpins the Desktop) is effectively depreciated, so no, it's NOT on top of the same broken, rotten core.

The Desktop paradigm is depreciated for Windows, that's a fact. You can still program for the Desktop using Win32 APIs, but you'll be missing out on the tablet market (as ARM tablets can't use Desktop apps and Desktop apps on Intel tablets aren't going to look too good on a tablet) and Desktop apps will look decidedly old hat up against Metro apps and the ability to communicate with live tiles, to name but a few.

Fact is, Windows 8 is a transition from the old Desktop and programming model and paradigm to a whole new one.

Get used to it.

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Re: History repeats itself

"M$ have lost the plot. They haven't had a truly viable product for years, and with each month they fall further behind."

Windows 7 has been very well received. If that's not recent enough for you, Azure is doing quite well and seems to be growing. If that's not recent enough for you, Server 2012 has some fantastic new features and is being very well received indeed. Particularly by those interested in virtualisation.

"The much-vaunted "surface" was shown to be an expensive joke"

How? Where? By who? You? Again, a lot of people like the look of it, reviewers seem optimistic and as far as I know prices haven't even been announced. Now that we've seen Office 2013 and know what is meant by "Office Preview" on the WindowsRT version, and it's pretty much the full office as far as 90% of the userbase are concerned, it looks like it's going to fly off the shelves if the pricing is even remotely sane.

"Windows Vista, 7 (and now 8) is just more shiny nonsense stuck on top of the same old broken, rotten core"

You plainly know very little about this, then.

"The programmers with any clue left M$ ten years ago when the marketers took over running the company"

Anyone who writes an operating system - whether Linux, Windows or Mac OS is worth some respect. It's not an easy task at all. You sound like someone who has never even ventured into Systems Programming.

"M$ need to realise that there's nothing cheaper than free"

Actually there is something cheaper than free - paying up front for what you find most suitable and making it back in increased productivity and staff costs. I use Linux for all my servers, but I use MS Office and Windows 7 for my business work. When Win8 comes out, I shall probably get a hybrid with a stylus for taking notes and sketching out diagrams for people. Partly because I like Win8 but also because I can hook it into existing Windows infrastructure neatly and take advantage of things like secure document management and cloud-based user profiles and security models to control it lock it down. These are big plusses for the corporate world.

"- even the most naive user now knows that a significant part of the cost of his store-bought computer is going to Redmond."

So tell me how much of the cost of a £400 laptop goes to MS and how you know this. And exactly what constitutes a significant part of the cost of a £400? Acer have a policy of refunding £20 for unused Windows 7 Starter edition. If you give them the computer, they will remove the OS and give it back to you plus refund. Big manufacturers do not buy their copies of Windows retail! Besides, you pre-suppose most buyers don't want a discounted copy of Windows coming with their computer. Do you think they'd prefer getting a blank PC and then going and buying a copy of Windows themselves without the benefit of the manufacturers bulk-bargaining with MS? Or do you suppose most users would be happy installing Ubuntu? Ubuntu is fine, but if you're going to rant about this, back it up with figures and think about what most users would like, not just people with an obvious bias against Microsoft such as yourself.

Companies are not football teams. They are companies and they sell you things if you give them money and don't if you wont. It is silly to take sides as if they are your friend and cheer or hurl abuse at the 'rival team'.

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Re: History repeats itself

"Obviously you missed this...

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/07/20/microsoft_posts_first_ever_loss/"

You should read your own article though. It points out that it's the result of spending $6.2bn on trying to take over the company aQuantive (thankfully it was a disaster as we don't need MS developing a major stake in the advertising business) and of having to defer another half a billion in profits for legal reasons. Your article, and I quote, says: "this quarter may be the Redmond-haters' last chance to gloat."

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Anonymous Coward

@Test Man

Downvoted for not knowing the difference between deprecated and depreciated.

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Big Brother

Re: History repeats itself

"I work in Government - we simply do not want to give Redmond another penny. We're taking steps to ensure that this happens. M$ keep promising "free" gifts to us, but we now resist - their largesse is entirely bogus. M$ are now losing money at a significant rate - they have a vast array of overpaid executives and even more underpaid programmers who don't give a damn.

M$ are several years behind the curve, and continually fail to understand the market, the wants of users, the need for REAL security (NOT possible on any type of Windows), and how to get a small, efficient OS working in most environments. They are hampered by legacy code (that's undocumented but essential), by ineptitude and the "Too Many Chiefs" syndrome."

Oddly enough, do a s/\M\$/government/g and you just described most businesses' and taxpayers' attitude towards government.

I'm not passing judgment; there ARE good people in government. However, ...

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FAIL

Re: History repeats itself

Of course Win8 is an epic fail. Its tiled UI and lack of proper multitasking harken back to Windows 1, back in 1985. What an abomination that was. It was featured on the DEC VAXmate, a major-league disaster of its own.

But MS doesn't have much competition on the desktop, other than themselves. Win7 will kill Win 8 the same way XP killed Vista. They could of course listen to customers and make 8.5 work better on the desktop, rather than demand Metro. Or they could double down and hope people give up the features they need because only tablets are k3wl and Steve B wants you to pretend you have one.

What other competition is there? MacOS only runs on one vendor's designer hardware, and it's a cult item with a rather specialized set of available software. Great for video editing, nonexistent for GIS, lame for games, and weak on many business applications. Linux is a server OS that after 20 years remains three years away from being useful on the average person's desktop. RHEL on the desktop is how a nerd writes and tests server code. Ubuntu is how a nerd talks down to people.

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@Matt

"No. There is competition if you are talking consumer users, but the enterprise isn't interested in Linux desktops in any great number, and definitely not in Apple."

I'm not too sure about that. Quite often people stick to what they have decided on but when something drastic happens, such as this, there are plenty of companies which will revise their IT strategies. Only to learn that a lot of their information regarding competition is outdated and that the competitors also made advantages.

I'm not into Apple at all but was still impressed with this: A friend of mine who is fully Apple minded told me how his MacBook at some day didn't work as it should any longer. As such he re-installed the OS.

On Windows this means getting hold of the installation media (that is: if you were lucky enough to actually GET installation media and didn't forget to put it somewhere safe) and after you've done that reinstalling the lot. Whoops; where is that serial key again ?

On Mac (note: this is as it has been told to me): You connect your Macbook to the Internet, it contacts Apple main repository, /verifies the hardware as authentic, and you can go right ahead with the re-install process. Straight from the Internet.

How's that for userfriendlyness?

I don't know Apple, I don't keep up with all this. But if they managed to provide even more of these features which could also make Enterprise usage a lot easier then yes; I think Apple could be a player to fear.

Don't forget: even the whole MS Office 2010 suite runs perfectly on Apple as well which is in most cases the key issue when it comes to office use in the Enterprise.

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Silver badge

Re: History repeats itself

@AC: No, the loss came in the last financial bookyear of 2012 where they grossed in a netto loss of +/- 450 million while the same period last year got them approx. 4 billion profit.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: History repeats itself

" Show me another tablet OS which doesn't lock you in to their App Store"

Errm, Android.....

You untick the option, and you are free to roam whereever... No rooting required. The fact you don't know that means the only clueless jackass here is YOU.

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Headmaster

Re: History repeats itself

... WIn32 (which underpins the Desktop) is effectively depreciated

The Desktop paradigm is depreciated for Windows ...

I believe the word you are groping for is "deprecated", not "depreciated" <sigh>

The point you are making may be a correct point, but I cannot fail to see it as a Bad Thing (TM).

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Thumb Down

@AlbertH. Re: History repeats itself

>BSD kernel - it's getting old and tired, and has reached its limits.

OK, I can safely disregard the rest of your comments then.

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Re: @Matt

"On Windows this means getting hold of the installation media (that is: if you were lucky enough to actually GET installation media and didn't forget to put it somewhere safe) and after you've done that reinstalling the lot. Whoops; where is that serial key again ?"

Win8 works in a similar way to the Mac. There are a couple of options built in - a soft re-install that will keep your app settings and what you have installed, etc. And a hard re-install which is essentially a reset to how it was when it arrived.

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Megaphone

Re: History repeats itself

Your post was clear but I can't help but feel that your implication is that the new paradigm is the better one. It _is_ a new paradigm but I do not necessarily think it is a better one.

As some have pointed out, one big motivation seems to be the desire to funnel people through Microsoft's marketplace so they can be like Apple and get a cut of everything. Another is the need to compete with Apple in the consumer space.

It would be very nice if there was a real backlash (though effected how I do not know) against MS for Windows 8. Not because they should be punished or, like some posters, I want the world converted to Linux, but because I want them to take customer feedback seriously. The stock response to any criticism about new interfaces is always the same mix of meaningless 'statistics' like increase in efficiency or deployment cost savings and reduction in TCO, glossy images and words about new features and changing the way you live and bringing your virtual world together, and dismissive comments about the 'vocal few' who just don't want to change.

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Coat

does this mean he slated it on a desktop? (gets coat, slinks out)

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Anonymous Coward

> does this mean he slated it on a desktop? (gets coat, slinks out)

But on the plus side Steve Ballmer isn't off his tablets....

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Holmes

Well Duh!

Anyone with have a brain was saying that when the first screen shots came out!

I don't mind the idea of Windows on a touch screen, it actually looks pretty good, and I look forward to trying it... but damnit leave our desktop alone!

I don't know why everyone is so obsessed with "replacing" the desktop... There is something to be said for a nice comfortable office chair, a nice desk, and a big ass 24" monitor. The current Windows 7 UI is very nice, very easy to use.

Why on Earth anyone would want to replace their nice desktop with a big screen with a tiny little fondleslap is beyond me... supplement, sure it's great, best device for each job... but not replace...

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Re: Well Duh!

what I need is a system I can touch while sitting on the can

desktops are simply obsolete

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Re: Well Duh!

Along with punctuation?

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WTF?

Re: Well Duh!

Good for you. Now what about the rest of us who sit at a /desk/ to get our daily job done?

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Re: Well Duh!

You should try working from the can too. I make sandwiches in the morning and then just sit on the can 9-5 straight without moving. Real productive, it's Agile.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Well Duh!

Not all of us have shit jobs.

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Re: Well Duh!

I never understood the need for anything while on the can. My bowel movements take an extremely short time, to be honest, often less time than a number one..

That aside, desktops are far from obsolete. I have a perfectly powerful laptop with a 1920x1200 screen, so I could compute anywhere! Would I bollocks, though, because I can sit in my huge armchair with multiple monitors filling my vision, and enjoy the sheer power I get from a desktop at a much lower price point...

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Re: Well Duh!

Tell that the the 100s of millions of users who use a PC professionally. Some will use laptops, and tablets, but I'll wager the bulk of them use some sort of desktop PC.

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Gold badge

Re: Well Duh!

"I [...] just sit on the can 9-5 straight without moving."

You can get special chocolate for that, you know.

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Re: Well Duh!

sounds like a highly inefficient system to me!

You must waste an awful lot of time each day simply travelling between the desk, the can and the fridge. I used to be a travelling salesperson so I have a keen eye for minimizing such inefficiencies.

Tell me this - why aren't there tables in front of cans? Every chair has a table, but no can has one. Ever needed to put something down while using the can? Where do you put it? on top of the tank? sure, but it doesn't balance so well and there's no much space, plus it is inconveniently placed behind you. Come on lets have proper tables in FRONT of the can. There's one for Dragons Den.

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Joke

Re: Well Duh!

Behind you?! I think you're doing it wrong: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reverse_Cowgirl_(South_Park)

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WTF?

Re: Well Duh!

"My bowel movements take an extremely short time, to be honest, often less time than a number one.."

You need to get your prostate checked then. Or stop taking the laxatives.

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FAIL

Re: Well Duh!

"Some will use laptops, and tablets, but I'll wager the bulk of them use some sort of desktop PC."

You haven't been paying attention then: 75% or so of ALL PC sales over the last few years have been laptops, not desktops. Offices cost money to fill and run; why spend money on big, fat, desktops when a cheap laptop will do the job just as well, and use less electricity?

And those laptops now tend to come with multi-touch capable touch pads. (The ones found in most of Apple's laptops are made by Synaptics. You may have heard of them.)

THAT is why Microsoft is moving away from the mouse, which was always a terrible input device. Most RSI is caused by the mouse, not the keyboard. I haven't bothered using one in six months now and my carpal tunnel problem has thanked me for it.

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Go

Re: Well Duh!

Oh really? You let others (human and machine) have that much control over your life? There are times I don't want the rest of the world in my space. Not to be confused with MySpace.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Well Duh!

Who said anything about big fat desktops? All-in-ones are all the rage now. And these have basically laptop hardware and PSUs so I doubt there's much difference in power consumption. And if you want to avoid filling an office, where are your employees actually going to sit? On their sofa at home?

The ergonomics of laptops are crap. In a comfortable sitting position your hands and eyeline are usually fairly far apart, so joining the keyboard and screen together is never going to be a great idea. Never mind the cramped, limited-travel keyboards. Touch screens are OK for tablets, but when you actually have to start lifting your arm up to poke a screen at eye height their appeal fades.

If your job involves typing stuff on a computer all day, you don't really want a laptop (even less so a tablet).

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Go

Re: Well Duh!

And become a charter member of Hemorrhoids R Us.

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Go

Re: Well Duh!

Write your "bowel time" statement down (or print it) and read it on your 65th birthday. Times will change .... times for all things.

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FAIL

Re: Well Duh!

Because if it has a keyboard and a mouse it can still be more efficient to use those features. Moving your hand away from such is a serious pain.. especially if you keep your screen pushed away like I do... That's why I always use a full sized keyboard and mouse when I know I'm going to be sitting for a while in the same location.

Also some people hate having to wipe greasy fingerprints off of something so fragile as a laptop screen.

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Re: 75% or so of ALL PC sales over the last few years have been laptops

Well, Duh! again:

Laptops are 75% of all sales for the last few years because in addition to having a 20-30% premium over desktops, they also last at most 3 years whereas your desktop is expected to last 3-5. Give me a count of the number of devices in service at your standard enterprise and you'll see a completely different story. And that's what we're focused on here: enterprise.

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All-in-ones

I don't think all-in-ones are likely to be the rage in office environments. A few years ago I spent too much money on a big monitor for my home PC. More recently I've been working in offices where I have two, three or four small screens - the very opposite of the all-in-one. I sit here wishing I hadn't wasted money on that big screen.

You're right about laptops, though.

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Re: Well Duh!

"I never understood the need for anything while on the can. My bowel movements take an extremely short time, to be honest, often less time than a number one.."

What's the rush? Take some time and relax in the one place you can actually get some peace...could change your life ;)

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Re: Well Duh!

useful #2 advice all round guys, thanks

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This post has been deleted by its author

This is a joke...

I really wish you guys would stay on topic ffs - this thread was supposed to be all about bowel movements! I see absolutely no reason to bring up computer hardware! Jeeze!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I haven't bothered using (a mouse) in six months

I've not used a mouse for years - trackballs, OTOH ...

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Re: Well Duh!

@Ian Yates: also known as AC Slatering.

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ac%20slatering

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Re: Well Duh!

"What's the rush? Take some time and relax in the one place you can actually get some peace...could change your life ;)"

I agree. Was always very quick until I discovered I could use my phone (or tablet) to sit there sorting out all the crap in my inbox, deleting / filing as appropriate etc. Sure I could probably be out quicker if I didn't but it's more relaxing not to rush in and out besides, no-one bothers me in there and I get the added benefit of getting back to my desk to find my inbox much less cluttered!

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Thumb Up

Re: 75% or so of ALL PC sales over the last few years have been laptops

Good point - your average road warrior probably burns through laptops a lot quicker than a desk-bound office drone gets their PC replaced.

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