back to article Windows 8: Download it, then speak YOUR brains

Got any plans next weekend? Cancel them. Tell your partner to finally catch up with those old university friends, get a cat sitter in, and order a pizza. This week sees the eagerly anticipated first release of Microsoft's Windows 8 to those outside the Redmond circle of friends. Windows 8 is, according to bullet-headed …

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  1. Drefsab

    trying it now

    I just grabbed the x86 and x64 versions. I dont think I will be liking it having read up on the new UI etc but I need to learn my way about it for work reasons (you know some idiot will install it on his laptop and then expect me to fix it all).

    Will stick it on an VM though I think as I dont think its good enough to replace a good solid stable and fast windows 7 base.

    1. Studley

      Re: trying it now

      You probably should've waited a day - currently there's only a Release Preview available, the final (RTM) version is being released to MSDN/TechNet tomorrow.

      I've been using the Release Preview in a VM with limited success - mostly because VirtualBox isn't brilliantly compatible with Win8 yet (guest tools are flaky, and - even with 4GB guest / 8GB host RAM - it chugs like a mofo when switching in/out of The Interface Formerly Known As Metro). Dual-booting may be a stabler alternative, though like you, I'd rather not have its ungodly juices dipped too deep into my system.

      1. TonyHoyle

        Re: trying it now

        I found it Ok on VirtualBox - not brilliant but usable. That's with a core i7 running off SSD though

        .

        OTOH I found metro so annoying it didn't stay around long.. will load this release to see if they've fixed some of the issues (and always worth learning it a bit, even if it'll never be my main OS).

      2. Preacher
        Thumb Up

        Re: trying it now

        TIFKAM - The Interface Formerly Known As Metro, better name than the original.

      3. Wize

        Re: trying it now

        "...I'd rather not have its ungodly juices dipped too deep into my system."

        Upvote for that alone.

        Going to be a VM for me too. CBA setting up a dual boot and risking this splattering my normal boot drive with some nasty incompatible files.

        I'll have to fix some machine at some point. Or at least explain to someone how to work the new interface.

        Plus, I want to make sure any software I've written still looks normal and works on it.

        1. MrT

          I've tried Windows 8...

          ... and my first impressions were probably Frank Spencer, Orinoco the Womble and Bod ...

          1. MrT

            Re: I've tried Windows 8...

            ... but this and other comments are now adrift to one degree or another because the article title has just been changed from "...give us your first impressions" to "...speak your brains".

            Brains(*): Sure, Mr Tracy, but can you give me some sort of a steer? I like to work to a specification...

            * not mine though

        2. Anonymous Dutch Coward
          Happy

          Ungodly juices: Re: trying it now

          That's a new keyboard you owe me!

          +1

          1. dssf

            Re: Ungodly juices: trying it now

            He owes me a new keyboard and TWO nostrils.....

      4. Cameron Colley

        Re: trying it now

        Running fine under VirtualBox on Linux here and will go fullscreen on either monitor with no slowness noticed. Seems to use less CPU time than Ubuntu as it happens.

        Don't get me wrong, it's horrid, but since it may be forced upon me I am playing.

        1. BobChip
          Linux

          Re: trying it now

          I've done the same. Works "fine" on VirtualBox / Ubuntu, assuming that what I see is how it is supposed to work in the first place. Yes, it is horrid, and from where I stand I find it to be unusable as an enterprise desktop. Quite apart from the as-yet-uncalculated cost of switching to touchscreen, when we have excellent high end monitors in service already.

          Won't be recommending, won't be buying.

      5. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        1. RICHTO Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Re: trying it now

          Windows 8 is much faster than Windows 7. Especially for 3D graphics....I get notably higher 3D Mark ratings....

      6. boltar Silver badge

        Re: trying it now

        "mostly because VirtualBox isn't brilliantly compatible with Win8 yet "

        Can someone explain to me how a VM can be incompatible with an OS? Surely if it just emulates standard hardware it should be OS agnostic and any x86 OS you install should run using standard drivers?

    2. h4rm0ny

      Re: trying it now

      If you can, dual boot it. I tried one of the earlier ones in a VM (Virtualbox) and found the VM software didn't handle full-screen / edges of the window very well. Using it normally, it's been fine. Better than fine, in fact. I use it as my preferred OS over Win7 at the moment. It's been plenty stable enough so far and everything I installed on Win7 has installed fine on Win8 that I've tried so far.

    3. Keith 72
      Happy

      Re: trying it now

      I am trying the RTM version now. This is the first time I've run it on tin, I've tried the previews in VMs before and I'm very impressed. I don't usually trust upgrades, I like to do a clean install instead, but this upgraded my Win7 to Win8 very smoothly. I have to log in now using my MS live account to get into my old Win7 account, but that's ok. My Win7 installed games work fine after the upgrade, so why Win8 would force game devs onto Linux is beyond me. Mind you, I'd like to see more games on Linux, so who cares?!

      Maxivista doesn't work on Win8, so I'm back to two screens. Hopefully they'll get that sorted out, because Win 8's better than Win 7 on multiple screens - a taskbar on each screen and different desktop backgrounds - so I'd prefer to be using 3 screens.

      I've got Hyper-V on my laptop which is awesome and will be a real productivity boost.

    4. NomNomNom
      Trollface

      Re: trying it now

      This new Microsoft software is bloody brilliant! I showed it to my wife and kids and they are extremely excited. Everyone I know is raving about it so hard!

  2. Senior Ugli
    IT Angle

    windows LOL

  3. wowfood

    Maybe

    I gave it a try during the first release and was honestly less than impressed. I might give it a second try now that its further down the line, but I don't have high hopes.

  4. revdjenk
    Thumb Down

    I already have an impression...

    ...and have Linux on "sticks" to rescue those who wish to escape the 'horror."

    1. N2 Silver badge

      Re: I already have an impression...

      Me too, I dont see why I should learn a new operating system every time MS releases windows, I'll stick with what works.

  5. HMB

    Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

    I honestly don't see Windows 8 as an upgrade.

    Windows 8 is aimed at people buying new touch-enabled hardware. It's the only way it shines. Microsoft knows this.

    1. TonyHoyle

      Re: Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

      This. I don't think they're seriously expecting people who use windows for a living to suddenly install an experimental UI (We'll probably have one for support purposes - we even have a vista box.. but that's it). This release is for new hardware - mainly their surface tablets and possible future touch enabled laptops.

      1. Spearchucker Jones
        Paris Hilton

        Re: Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

        It's popular to slam Metro at the moment. Not sure why, but I suspect that the tech community (the source of the slamming, given that the silent majority has yet to see W8) has a Windows/Microsoft axe to grind. I've been using Windows 8 on my Samsung Series 7 slate since the first preview was made available. Since then it made it's way onto my laptop and, when the release preview came out, onto my desktop.

        Windows 8 has melted into the background. I don't even notice it anymore because I'm either busy in EMACS, Visual Studio, Word...

        The only criticism I have is that the slate gave me the annoying habit of touching my non-touch desktop monitor.

        Paris, because I hear tell she likes being touched.

        1. big_D Silver badge

          @Spearchucker Jones

          No, I have no MS Axe to grind. I like Windows 7 and use it on a desktop with multiple monitors. I generally have multiple windows open, mainly with reference material or research I need to produce a document, presentation etc. or reading documentation in one window whilst programming in another.

          The "Modern"-UI makes a lot of sense on a tablet or a very small screened notebook. The apps I've seen so far don't seem to make much sense on a multi-monitor 27" desktop. For example, in Windows 7, I have Solitaire open in a corner of the screen and play a couple of moves whilst waiting for another task to finish. In Windows 8, it is full screen and the graphics (at least on the preview) seemed to be rendered for a small, low-resolution screen. Having huge poorly rendered playing cards taking up a complete 27" monitor was ugly and looked stupid.

          The Contacts app was similar. In Outlook, I can look at a contacts details, whilst writing a letter etc. In Metro the "card" takes up the complete 27" screen and is pretty useless. At best, I could split it 2/3 1/3 with another app, still not very useful, it only needs to take up a fifth of the screen, at most.

          I like Metro on my Windows Phone 7, it works very well. The Start Screen works well in Windows 8. But not being able to resize and move the apps around on a multi-screen set-up is a huge leap backwards to the days of MS-DOS. As I said, Metro / Modern UI makes a lot of sense on small devices, but it doesn't make much sense in its current form on the desktop.

          Some applications, like Lightroom or video editing suites, which tend to be used full screen, even on large displays, might benefit from the simplified interface, but I don't see it being a benefit with a majority of the applications I use today.

        2. Paul Shirley

          @Spearchucker: sure you know which way the bias points?

          "I suspect that the tech community (the source of the slamming, given that the silent majority has yet to see W8)"

          For a change I sort of agree with you. The vast majority of unbiased observers have indeed not tried Win8 yet and we can only guess what will happen when they do.

          Now convince me the biased minority that have bothered installing and trying Win8 are not mostly Microsoft fans, eager to try the latest shiny. Because I don't believe many with an anti MS agenda will have bothered unless their job demands it. Just too disruptive for most, even techies.

          Comment on Win8 is indeed biased, with epic levels of very amateur astroturfing everywhere I look mixing with kneejerk anti-MS reactions. What I don't see *many of* are endorsements I actually believe read as genuine. It's a biased pool but I believe it's biased toward Win8 more than we'll see from the wider public.

          Launch time is going to be interesting.

        3. Blitterbug
          Unhappy

          Re: Windows/Microsoft axe to grind...

          Tired of seeing these comments. Couldn't be further from the truth. Many of us are hard-core Windows enthusiasts who were pretty damned excited to try the previews when they first came out. But then some of us were left gaping at the screen after half an hour or so of trying to stop it booting into the bloody start menu.

          Personally I found the tile apps looked quite nice, but some had nasty usability issues and some ran disgustingly slowly. Yes, I know the games were only tasters, but 1fps or less, on a 2008-era laptop? Not encouraging. 'Course, I didn't know then they were glorified Widgets. Hmm. Then of course I scrolled right (as has been noted ad-nauseum elsewhere) to find the horrendouns mess where everything seems to be stuffed at the same level of heirarchy, on the same start screen.

          etc, etc...

          And no, no axes to grind. If anything, I wanted to be able to shove Win8 right down the 'h8t0rs' throats as an 'I told you so', but now I'm just fecked off with the whole thing.

          1. NomNomNom

            Re: Windows/Microsoft axe to grind...

            "Many of us are hard-core Windows enthusiasts who were pretty damned excited to try the previews when they first came out. But then some of us were left gaping at the screen after half an hour or so of trying to stop it booting into the bloody start menu."

            I am calling BS on this. Windows enthusiasts? wtf

        4. BobChip
          Big Brother

          Re: Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

          Quite right. It - the UI - IS being slammed by the tech community, because they have had the opportunity to try it, and are making it abundantly clear that they do not like it.

          The silent majority will doubtless make their views heard when they have tried it. Except that they will not have the opportunity to try before they buy. They will meet it out of the blue for the first time when they buy a new PC and switch it on (thereby accepting the EULA). After which it will be too late. In any other business area a marketing strategy like this would be seen as a con trick, and would warrant reporting to Trading Standards.

    2. big_D Silver badge

      Re: Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

      I gave you a up vote, but you are only partially correct.

      Windows 8 brings some very nice enhancements to the desktop as well, especially under multi-monitor set-ups.

      But I agree, that I don't see "Modern"-UI apps being of any advantage on a traditional desktop - it takes away from the strengths of a traditional desktop / notebook PC; namely the ability to have mutliple windows open and visible at the same time.

      That said, I do like the Windows 8 Start Screen, with its live tiles.

      1. AlbertH
        Coat

        Re: Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

        Woohoo! Microsoft have finally (almost) achieved the level of functionality of KDE3! They're only eight or nine years late...

        Metro (or whatever it's called this week) is truly horrible - even on a touch screen. The base OS is just the same old crap with a bit of new shiny on top - there's a surprise. It's fairly stable (only crashed twice in the first hour), but it's certainly not suitable for business use, looks dreadful on netbooks, and the touch interface is flaky as hell. All my users migrated to KDE4 as soon as it was stable, and they certainly won't change.

        Looks like yet another expensive MS failure. Their stock price is already in the toilet - it's going to be subterranean if this carries on.

        The latest Office is badly broken too, so their two biggest cash cows are no unsaleable. Shame....

    3. kb
      Thumb Down

      Re: Windows 8 isn't aimed as an upgrade

      You nailed it friend, I've tried DP and CP (haven't had a chance to slap RTM on my test bed yet) and frankly the ONLY nice thing I could say about it was "it might be nice on a tablet" but on a desktop? Yucky, just awful. Maybe if they'd give us a way to kill Tile_UI maybe, but with the horrible Tile_UI (try installing more than a few programs and it becomes a fricking mess, worse than any start menu they've ever had) its a no sale for me. I'll probably pick up a copy of Win 8 pro since its only $40, just in case i run into a program that actually requires Win 8, but otherwise i'll be skipping it.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wake me up for the "Balmer Bites the Bullet" edition - Window v8.5 that gets rid of Metro.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ballmer bites the bullet?

      You're assuming that Ballmer still has a job at Microsoft when that happens.

      1. boltar Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Ballmer bites the bullet?

        "You're assuming that Ballmer still has a job at Microsoft when that happens."

        Balmer will be there until the company goes bust or someone attacks him with a chair. Any management talent the company had left years ago. Now its just a load of me-too sychophants with balmer sitting at the top crapping on everyone below. They're completely devoid of any original ideas - what exactly is that billion dollar Microsoft Research dept producing these days? - and are simply trying to re-implement iOS badly. Even Jobs wasn't stupid enough to put iOS on a 27 inch monitor but Balmer probably thinks Jobs missed a trick and now the idiot is trying to do it.

  7. Lee Dowling Silver badge

    We trialled the previews with a view to using them in the school I work in. We had Windows 7-compatible, brand-new touchscreen PC's.

    We disabled touch (kiddie security issues with being able to use shortcuts to do things they shouldn't). We need a way to disable Metro. That was about our only thought above and beyond what we thought of Windows 7. The closest we got was to make the Metro screen have only one icon, desktop, which took you to the desktop. If we bought 8 (we've already skipped Vista and 7, but we feel it's now either 7 or 8 or nothing for another three years), we'd need to buy that utility that puts the Start Menu back to how it should be.

    Really can't work out why MS can't give the customer what they want, when it ties them more into the MS way of doing things, they scream out for it, and it costs nothing to implement. Obviously, they just don't want our business, so we already try our hardest to avoid giving them money as much as possible.

    1. dharmaseal
      Linux

      One Size ...

      Apple and Microsoft building one-size-fits-all AND you will abide? I suppose it's the new philosophy. W7 isn't so bad, but ML is in the cloud. There are plenty of Linux distros to chose from, for personal use. For work, I'll play on an etch a sketch if they want to pay me.

    2. Keith 72

      Do you disable keyboard access too while you're at it? What security issues are of concern soley with touch input?

    3. Bakunin

      "We disabled touch (kiddie security issues with being able to use shortcuts to do things they shouldn't). "

      Mind if I ask what that security issue is? Just curious.

      1. Blitterbug
        Happy

        Re: Mind if I ask what that security issue is? Just curious.

        Bakunin et al:

        If you've worked with IT deployment in any school in the UK, his comments would make perfect sense; even if there is *no* security issue at all with having 'unauthorised' apps present on the start screen, IT policy is inevitably dictated by the non-techy faculty suits. They say things like 'We can't have X, Y or Z available to the students'. Arguing common sense doesn't cut it.

        Now idiotic as this may often be, a good OS allows this flexibility one way or another. It may be via an easy tweak of a Control Panel applet, or manual registry tweaks, or rolled out as group policy settings via a domain server.

        But when you can't do what the boss wants, that's not good. Plus you risk sounding like a whiney, excuse-laden PFY.

    4. Lusty

      re:Lee Dowling

      "we'd need to buy that utility that puts the Start Menu back to how it should be."

      The tile interface IS how the start menu should be. Disabling it will mean that you're teaching kids an outdated interface and put them at a disadvantage when they enter the world of work since we are installing Win8 at many, many companies with the new interface.

      FWIW I recently installed a whole secondary school's IT after a rebuild and think the whole touch screen thing is nonsense too. We gave the kids touch screen Vaios and they got on fine. IMHO the only thing schools need is a lower IT budget!

      1. Richard Plinston Silver badge

        Re: re:Lee Dowling

        > you're teaching kids an outdated interface and put them at a disadvantage when they enter the world of work

        You seem to think that training kids to be consumers of a specific product is a good thing. Well it is good for indoctrination. But it is like teaching them how to order at McDonalds because that is how they will eat when they leave home.

        In any case it is unlikely that Windows 8 will be what they will do when they find work. It may be WinXP, or 7, or 10, it may be Ubuntu or OS/X. MS have been through WIMP, Ribbon and now Tiles. Next year they may have something entirely different, especially if Metro fails.

    5. DJGM
      Facepalm

      @Lee Dowling

      "If we bought 8 ... we'd need to buy that utility that puts the Start Menu back to how it should be."

      It's Classic Shell you're looking for - http://classicshell.sf.net/ - no need to buy it ... it's free!

  8. b166er

    I have a really good monitor and I'm not buying a new touch friendly one, just so I can use Windows 8.

    Are there any GOOD options out there for capacitive overlays?

    1. h4rm0ny

      You don't need a touch-device for Win8 at all. You can do pretty much everything with the same amount of clicks / mouse movements / keyboard shortcuts as you can in Win7. I've found very few cases where it takes more.

      1. AlbertH
        Thumb Down

        More brokenware

        You really do need a touchscreen to use this mess. It's truly horrible - touchscreen or keyboard / mouse. It's more than slightly unstable, too. It's slow, bloated brokenware.

        But what else would you expect from a marketing-led software company?

        Game Over M$ - Epic Fail!

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: More brokenware

          "You really do need a touchscreen to use this mess. It's truly horrible - touchscreen or keyboard / mouse. It's more than slightly unstable, too. It's slow, bloated brokenware."

          This is basically crap. First off, I've used Win8 for over a month as my primary OS without any touch interface at all, just keyboard and trackball. Give me a few examples of what you think I can't do without a touch-screen that I'd be able to do on Win7 without one.

          More than slightly unstable? I haven't had a single crash. Not saying it can't happen, but my experience and the experience of others that I'm aware of is that it's very stable indeed.

          "It's slow, bloated brokenware"

          And yet all the performance metrics show that it actually runs faster than Win7. Maybe you think that is "slow, bloated brokenware", but I don't think most people do and this is demonstrably quicker than that.

  9. K Silver badge
    WTF?

    LOL.... El Reg should do stand up comedy..

    After all you must be joking?

    In all seriousness though, I usually rush for the download link, but Windows 8 is just CRAAAAAP! I'm actually more excited about the paint cracks on my wall!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: LOL.... El Reg should do stand up comedy..

      Yep it's totally fecking shit. Having much more fun with Opensuse 12.2 RC.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Windows

    Let's have a Windows party!

    Just like we did for Windows 7 (following Microsoft recommendations of course)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gyas7BrbUFY

    ( insert many Unicode U+1F388 ballons here )

  11. CatoTheCat
    Gimp

    I would rather eat my own head.

    Deep fried of course.

  12. phr0g
    Thumb Up

    Been using on my laptop since the consumer preview.

    I like it. The "metro" screen I treat as a full screen start button. Works exactly the same but with extra functionality imo. ie, click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops. Or use one of the ones that I have sitting as a link. I even like some of the free apps that come with the new UI.

    Biggest bonus, I can reboot and be typing in a search box in my browser within 30 seconds. It was at least 3 times that with Win7.

    It also feels quicker.

    I will be taking the opportunity to upgrade cheaply when the full version hits.

    1. DutchP

      just give it some time, I'm sure Redmond will fix that awfull snappiness eventually, just like they managed with every other windows version so far

    2. Wild Bill

      "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

      Windows 7 already does this? Without having to clicking anything (Windows button -> type)

      (also Launchy provides the same functionality for those still on XP)

      1. Wild Bill
        FAIL

        HAVING TO CLICKING?

        how embarrassment

        1. Frumious Bandersnatch Silver badge

          Re: HAVING TO CLICKING?

          Would you like to change your Internet service providings?

          It's 3 times faster than your current providings!

      2. h4rm0ny

        Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

        "Windows 7 already does this? Without having to clicking anything (Windows button -> type)"

        That works exactly the same on Win8 as well.

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

          Got to love this place. Someone complains that you can't click the Windows key and type the program that you want, they get votes up. I post a single line in reply pointing out that you can do this on Win8 exactly the same as on Win7 and in come the down votes. Bias > Truth, apparently with some people, apparently.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

        And it is still the same in W8, Windows Key -> start typing... except you get better search functionality.

        Spend less time slagging it off, more time actually trying it.

        1. Annihilator
          Thumb Down

          Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

          "And it is still the same in W8, Windows Key -> start typing... except you get better search functionality."

          Erm, yes, that's the point. The OP sold it as "additional functionality" of a start menu, when it's existed since Vista. It's not new, and it's not a benefit of Metro.

          Plenty of us have tried Win 8, and I don't think we're wrong if we think it's got potential for being a good tablet OS, but not for touch-free machines.

          1. h4rm0ny

            Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

            "Erm, yes, that's the point. The OP sold it as "additional functionality" of a start menu, when it's existed since Vista. It's not new, and it's not a benefit of Metro."

            It's the part where they go on to say that they can do this "without having to clicking" (sic). They were responding to (checks subject of discussion) someone who said they could click in the corner and type what they wanted by saying they didn't have to click in Windows 7. Kind of strongly implies that they think in Windows 8, you do. You're reaching here.

            Besides, it would be a complete strawman to pick on some random feature that is the same in both OSes and loudly complain that it's not an advantage when to the best of my knowledge no-one has been billing that feature being a selling point.

            1. Annihilator

              Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

              @harmony "to the best of my knowledge no-one has been billing that feature being a selling point."

              Except the person who started this thread in the first place?..

              "Works exactly the same but with extra functionality imo. ie, click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

              In summary they said "I like Metro, because it's like a big start screen except it's better because I can have links and type the name of a programme" - not much of a selling point...

              1. h4rm0ny

                Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

                "Except the person who started this thread in the first place?.."

                Okay. So someone was saying that this was something they liked about Win8. Didn't notice that. But I was only posting to correct someone who thought that you couldn't use the Windows key in Win8 as you could in Win7, which you can. The whole thing about it not being a selling point was a point that someone else raised.

              2. phr0g

                Re: "click the corner, type the name of the program I want and up it pops"

                Jesus H.

                The point is, the start menu isn't "missing", it just looks different, and has added functionality, such as an app store and the ability to use it nicely on a touch screen. And even on a non-touch screen, some of the apps are rather nice. Dare I admit it but I like the recipe app in glorious fullscreeniness.

                The only real difference is that there isn't a physical button.

                Amazing I got downvoted just for liking it too. MS haters, iSheep? who knows?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ah .. so you're the one

      I have been wondering ... they say that no matter what horrid fetish you can think off, there will always be one on the internet who likes it .

      www.metrolovers.com is still free

      (although searching for metro lovers also brought this: http://www.torontosun.com/2011/12/13/the-subway-sex-that-gagged-the-world )

    4. Davidoff
      Thumb Up

      You're not alone!

      I'v been using the CP on my laptop and later on one of my desktops, and even when I didn't expected it I really like the new interface. As you say, what-has-been-Metro is nothing than a large Start Menue, so I didn't actually find it hard to move from Win7 to Win 8 (and it shouldn't overwhelm anyone with at least half a brain). Sure, there are some oddities (after all, it's a brand new interface) but overall I have to say Win 8 has been a very positive experience for me. Hyper-V integration is great, too, as are many of the other improvements (like task manager or the new file copy dialogues).

      I also tried Windows Server 2012 Essentials and the new Hyper-V Server 2012 RC, and I have to say I'm really impressed. Server 2008 R2 was already very good but 2012 is another huge step forward.

      I'm sure that because of not agreeing with the mob the cattle on El Reg will certainly downvote me. I'm pretty sure had "Metro" appeared on Linux then people would discuss the positives and negatives, but just because it's done by MS it's of course all crap. However, outside of El Reg (in the real world) the feedback of those who have actually used Windows 8 (instead of repeating stuff they read on the webs omewhere) is mostly quite positive.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: You're not alone!

        I disagree about people hating Metro just because it's Microsoft. I'm sure that's true for some OSS purists, but there are other reasons not to like it. I float between Linux and Windows. If it wasn't for a few things (Photoshop being the biggest one), I'd use Linux full-time.

        I will probably play with the latest Win 8 preview in a VM soon, as I do support Windows in my job. Before Metro came on the scene, Unity had already made its debut on Ubuntu. There are some similarities between it and Metro (like typing the name of an app you need), and I absolutely hate it. I've switched to the Xfce version (Xubuntu) of Ubuntu, as it has more traditional menus.

        Maybe I'm in the minority, but I find the notion of having to type an app's name problematic. Being the geeky type, I have dozens and dozens of apps installed on my PC. Some of these I use daily, and typing the name isn't a problem. But what about the many apps that one runs infrequently? Often times I can't recall the name of a specific app I need but if I look through the program menu I'll recognize it when I see it.

        If a less commonly accessed app isn't discoverable, it becomes a lot harder to find. I tend to organize my menus into major categories (like Graphics, Utilities, etc) that make it quick and easy to find stuff. The Metro interface seems to buck my organizational habits.

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: You're not alone!

          "Maybe I'm in the minority, but I find the notion of having to type an app's name problematic. Being the geeky type, I have dozens and dozens of apps installed on my PC. Some of these I use daily, and typing the name isn't a problem"

          I strongly suggest you try it yourself rather than trying to work out how it functions from other people's comments. You don't have to type the name of a program. You can just click on it with the mouse. It's just that you *can* type the name if you want. Just as you could in WIndows 7. It's my normal way of launching something in Linux too and has been long before Unity (which I don't use). I've been using Alt+F2 in Linux for years. Mice are for moving windows around, imo. ;)

        2. DvorakUser
          Linux

          Re: Unity

          Unity still has the standard sorting - typing the name is just an additional way of getting to the program, just like in W7/W8. To get to that sorting, though, you have to go through a few steps.

          1. With the Unity launcher open, click on the "ruler/pencil/pen" icon to get to programs.

          2. Click the "Filter Results" toggle.

          3. Choose the category/ies you need

          4. If needed, click the toggle for "Installed apps"

        3. BobChip
          Thumb Up

          Re: You're not alone!

          I rather agree with you. I dislike Metro (or whatever it is now) for what it is and how it works, not for who makes it. We also use Linux as our primary OS, but I had to have a look at Win 8 just in case.

          As for Photoshop, take some time to get your head around GIMP. It may not have the Adobe cachet, but it does the job phenomenally well. You can also run it in a Win environment if you want to, but it is a lot quicker in Ubuntu.

          My "problem" software is Corel Draw, but it is only a problem in as much as I have to run a virtual Win XP session in order to use it. You could do just the same with Photoshop, but note that some Photoshop versions work perfectly well under Wine if you would rather do it that way. Check it out.

          The OS is becoming increasingly irrelevant - it's the software that does the work.

      2. TonyHoyle

        Re: You're not alone!

        Except it's *not* a large start menu - it's flat, not heirarchical. Try enabling the administrative tools menu and watch as your screen turns into a complete cluster fuck.

        To get to most apps you have to click on the bottom middle of the screen (which you have to find out by accident... whoever thought that was a good UI should be shot. I hope MS have put proper icons in the right places in the final release rather than this 'click randomly until something happens' stuff) - where it brings up a list of applications in apparently random order.. again, not sorted into their correct folders.. and, for good measure, not using any of the application icons... they're all document icons (another thing I really hope they've fixed).

        TBH I'm bloody glad I don't have to be one of the support guys on this - it's hard enough for some people to handle start menu -> all programs -> company -> support without having to search a completely flat namespace where your support icon could be *anywhere* and might clash with another companies support icon.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: You're not alone!

        Kind of comment you expect from someone who doesn't see how pathetic it is trying to avoid downvotes by childishly prejudging anyone who might disagree with you.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: You're not alone!

          Astroturfers. It's part of their job.

    5. foo_bar_baz
      Happy

      Good on you

      Loving the downvotes you get for liking something from Redmond. Or liking something they don't like. Boo!

      I hear Microsoft have put effort into streamlining the OS, so it's not just faster boot times but faster operation in general. That's progress.

  13. DutchP
    Thumb Down

    Seriously?

    I don't know of anybody eagerly awaiting this....Win 8.

    Even my son, who is a total Windows fan will give it a miss because he thinks it's unnecessary, irrelevant and pig-ugly.

    I'll spare you my own, rather prejudiced (having switched to Linux a few years back) opinions.

    But I do wonder where on earth this "Eagerly awaited" comes from...

    1. dubno

      Re: Seriously?

      It's eagerly awaited by those who hold shares in popcorn industry.

      The flamewars on various forums will be epic

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    One OS too far

    It's ok thanks, I'll pass on this...

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    how I see it panning out....

    If you don't like the non-existant-start-button-hot-corner loading Metro/Modern tiles garbage, you'll just have to try Classic Shell or any other freeware that restores sanity - or start your apps via shortcuts on the classic desktop or pin them to the taskbar. Then it's more or less like Win 7 and the Metro/Modern new rubbish won't bother you most of the time.

    I can't see the Metro/Modern full-screen touch nonsense catching on with business app developers whose users live in the classic desktop all day, want overlapping multiple windows etc.. .especially if the New Way apps can only be distributed via a new MS AppStore. I think/hope/expect MS will be seriously dissappointed on that one.

    And with luck, the remaining Rest of the World who have managed so far not to realise why most of us despise MS tactics, will understand at last what a dick move this new interface was - forcing it on us and doing their best to make it impossible to circumvent.

    1. Big_Ted
      Facepalm

      Re: how I see it panning out....

      ".. .especially if the New Way apps can only be distributed via a new MS AppStore."

      MS have already stated that enterprise versions of Win8 will have the ability to "side load" apps so that inhouse apps can be written and deployed.

      As to dick move, making a look and feel for phone, tablet, laptop and desktop is more likely to get the approval of non techie directors than 3-4 different interfaces. Add to that the costs of supported one set of integrated devices on your system as apposed to 3-4 different OS's and this could be what MS are looking at rather then comentards posting in forums that only they go to.......

      1. Doug Bostrom

        Re: how I see it panning out....

        "MS have already stated that enterprise versions of Win8 will have the ability to "side load" apps so that inhouse apps can be written and deployed."

        And there's no problem with the notion that MS is moving the window of "normal" OS behavior to "here are the new, tighter caveats under which you may create or obtain software to be installed on your computer, restrictions you did not ask for but rather we are imposing you, unasked."

        Amazing how people's concept of what's normal and acceptable can be slowly and subtly shifted beyond any recognition.

        Do a mental exercise, imagine it's 10 years ago and Microsoft was launching whatever it was they launched back then. With that announcement, they drastically restrict how you may obtain software, where you may obtain, dictating even that you'll pay for the "privilege" of loading "unapproved' software at all. Would you have been ok with that?

        Apple is author of the real-world implementation of this evil, of course. Goes to show that "think different" doesn't always mean "think well."

  16. Zippy's Sausage Factory
    Trollface

    If Windows 9 is blue, is this red?

    I seem to remember the last OS that had colour themed editions was OS/2 Warp. I wonder if Windows 8 will do as well as that did...

  17. adam payne Silver badge

    Hopefully there's a switch to classic mode option some where for the UI.

    1. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      BURN THE HERETIC!

      (why on earth would you want a classic look?)

  18. thondwe

    Windows 9

    Should return the Start Menu and move the "Modern UI" active tiles to the TaskBar instead???

  19. Jess

    How long does it last?

    I used the Win 7 preview until it timed out.

    1. Studley

      Re: How long does it last?

      The Developer/Consumer Previews time-out on 15 January 2013. The Release Preview will time-out on 16 January 2013.

      Whether you feel able to use the preview until then, that's another story... sounds an awful long time to me.

      1. Jess

        Re: How long does it last?

        > Whether you feel able to use the preview until then, that's another story... sounds an awful long time to me.

        There is that. A previous preview got deleted very quickly. But a lot of the time I use windows (XP) via RDP, so it'll be interesting to see how it works. (I also fancy a 64 bit OS)

  20. damien c

    Until there is a way to get rid of that tablet interface I am not even touching windows 8 regardless of what MS do.

    I would rather loose out on being able to play all my games and move to Linux than turn my pc in to a tablet.

    1. Big_Ted
      Devil

      Yeh right........

      Until the next outing from your favorite title is only available on Windows or a console at which time you will put it as a dual boot on the PC.....

      Its only a big start button for fucks sake, not the complete UI. don't use apps and stay on desktop and you will forget its not 7 almost stright away......

      1. Doug Bostrom

        Re: Yeh right........

        Or, more precisely, you'll eat the dogfood that is put in your dish by your master, once you're sufficiently famished.

        "It's only a big start button..."

        Put another way, "it's only a big turd you didn't want, need or ask for, in the middle of your screen. Get used to it!"

    2. Robert Grant
      Coat

      "Until there is a way to get rid of that tablet interface I am not even touching windows 8 regardless of what MS do."

      But then you won't be ABLE to touch it?

  21. James 132
    Meh

    Hmm

    I want to like it. Competition is a good thing; it drives innovation. I do think (based on the preview) that there's been too much compromise in some of the design fundamentals: If MS wanted a tablet UI they could and should have designed one separately; 8 feels like two different ideas that simply don't converge for the desktop user.

    A keyboard and mouse are still a fantastic way to get input to a PC, and are well suited to human dexterity. Touch is a solution to a packaging problem that works really well, but pretending it is the better way to do things is a bit daft.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

    Speaking as someone who installed Windows 8 at least twice over the past 6 months and proceeded to rip it off again and go back to Windows7 within less than 1 day...

    I really couldn't see the point of Windows8 thought it was all about touch, and wondered why had they f**ked up Windows 7 which was actually now really stable for me.

    That was until I found a couple of my colleagues who were using it everyday had become real converts to the new way of life so I thought I must be missing out on something here. I decided to spend 20 mins with them so they could walk me through how they use it, how they have it all setup. I then went and did the same, this time I decided to stick with it for more than a day.... that was over a month ago. I am now completely converted and have no intention of going back to Windows 7, cant wait to get my hands on the RTM bits.

    I thought the start button thing would annoy me, but I don't even notice its missing now, I realise that I only used to use it to bring up the search box anyway which is still achieved by clicking the bottom left hand corner and bringing up the start screen or by pressing the windows key. With regards to putting the mouse in different corners of the screen, again once you have used it for a couple of days it becomes second nature and all makes sense.

    The Microsoft guys have actually put some thought into it, and once you understand what they were trying to achieve it all makes much more sense and you actually enjoy using it... and yes, I am talking about with a mouse and keyboard. I cant wait to give it a go on a tablet or touch enabled laptop.

    If you just want to be a troll or follow the 'its cool to hate M$' crowd then you carry on and enjoy your XP or Linux laptop, I am sure you will have many more happy years together. But if you have not tried it, or did so for a day and thought 'screw this' I would say give it (another) go, but make sure you invest some time in learning about the new experience and don't just try and think of it as mangled Win7, if you get it... it will be worth it!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      Re: Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

      Interesting. We've seen EXACTLY THE SAME arguments for WP7, and it still is a major failure and a pita to use for anything too complicated for a featurephone. "Try it out, learn the new, enlightened way, you'll love it after you drink the kool-aid for a few weeks."

      Is that a script, a press release, or is it really your experience? Because it is such a blatant copy of the WP7 zealotry that one wonders. Or maybe it was you all the time, first evangelizing for WP7, nor for W8.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

        "Interesting. We've seen EXACTLY THE SAME arguments for WP7, and it still is a major failure ...." - and in the same vain, its also those that haven't actually used one that slag them off, whereas the majority of those that ACTUALLY own one like them!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

          So you're saying "Buy it, you might like it".

          And what, sell it at a loss when you don't? Throw it in the river?

          Shove it up someone's arse?

          1. h4rm0ny

            Re: Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

            "So you're saying "Buy it, you might like it". And what, sell it at a loss when you don't? Throw it in the river? Shove it up someone's arse?"

            There is a free preview available at the moment. You can use this without any risk to your finances or the backsides or those who know you.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              @h4rm0ny

              AC was citing WP7. And I've tried the preview. And I've just DLed the WZOR RTM to see what the final version's like.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @h4rm0ny

                I'm not going to go into this at any length, which would be repeating what others have already said. Okay, I installed the RTM this am. I just got back into 7 and deleted it. If it boots any faster than Win7 on this SATA-600 RAID0 setup, the difference is too small to notice.

                I want the option of a Classic UI. I want the Start Menu, and the way I want it, like I have done since Windows 95, because that is the way to me it is intuitive, as opposed to grating. There is no 'getting used to it'; there is what works for different people, depending on a whole spectrum of personality types, and possibly even disorders. You know something? I can't abide the sound and feel of my footsteps in thick snow; it is up there with squeaky balloons or scraping fingernails down a blackboard (if such things even exist anymore!). Some people aren't bothered by some or all of these things, and I've never heard of _anyone_ else bothered by scrunching snow! To fail to appreciate this I suspect falls somewhere on the autistic spectrum. Plenty of others have said what is wrong with the 'Metro' interface and I'm not going to repeat it here, but it grates!

                The deliberately removing the option of a Classic UI is more crass than Mozilla's removing the xpinstall functionality from about:config.

                I'll grant it is only slightly annoying spending too long trying to figure out how to restart or shut the fupping thing down.

                Presumably a bug is the fact that, once enabling the piss poor excuse for a menu from the 'file explorer' (sic), you apparently can't disable it (which one would want to having discovered how weak it is).

                Here's a good one! In the Group Policy Editor is an option to use a different 'file explorer' (sick), so I pointed it at Explorer.exe in the Win7 volume - after which the desktop simply wouldn't load! Now, I don't recall seeing that option before, so it looks like a new one for Windows 8. I had to get Task Manager up to run Disk Management in order to set the Win7 volume active and get back to here.

                Those who know me will know how scathing I've been over the years about Linux distros and Windows 8 appears to have caught up with Linux! I guess at MS these days that's what they're trying to replicate. With Linux you'd have to boot to a command line to restore the desktop, which whether one is or isn't capable of doing so, the fact that you have to is a game ender. But I'd rather have any Linux distro over Windows 8. I feel like I must've gone through the looking glass. I would install Kubuntu to the now empty disk space if I didn't have to jump through hoops to get it to install to a RAID array.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

          Enough of highfalutin about 'the majority of users like it'. We'll see what happens at the next Microsoft earnings call.

      2. RICHTO Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Win8 for those that bothered to learn about it...

        WP7 doubled its market share in the last year, gained the world best mobile phone manufacturer in Nokia as a sole agency, and reached 100,000 apps faster the IOS or Android. Not bad for a V1.1 OS.

        WP8 comes out next month. I wouldnt count your chickens on WP being a failure until that hits the market....

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Windows

        @jbernardo

        "Interesting. We've seen EXACTLY THE SAME arguments for WP7, and it still is a major failure and a pita to use for anything too complicated for a featurephone."

        I don't quite agree there. Yes, WP7 certainly has its limitations, but also plenty of stronger points as well. For example I can easily use it to logon my Window servers through use of the ConnectME application. Full RDP support, even allows for file transfers.

        Using SSH to logon to my Linux servers? No problem either; using the 'The SSH client application. Works pretty fast, good keyboard and both applications can keep running under the lock screen.

        I'd say those are specific issues which I don't see people do too easily on a feature phone.

        And to be honest.. Although I don't quite like the commercials the most you hear about the WP7 setup is that it "smokes" the competition when using social media.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Windows

    No need to wait.

    I don't even need to download it to give any first impressions. Because my first impression is simple: "Not worth the download".

    Fooled me once with the developer preview which was IMO very underwhelming. Fooled me twice with the customer preview which IMO was evenly matched when it comes to the underwhelming part. I won't be fooled again, thanks.

    My main gripe with Win8 is: take away the new "Windows 8 user interface" which was formerly known as Metro and what do you have left ? I don't see anything remotely interesting to bother with Windows 8 since a lot of the enhancements seem to be mere eyecandy or icing on the cake.

    Quite frankly I can miss the inflexibility and bothersome crap which is Metro like a toothache. Why would I bother with this?

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: No need to wait.

      "My main gripe with Win8 is: take away the new "Windows 8 user interface" which was formerly known as Metro and what do you have left ?"

      It boots faster. Also runs faster. They've refined the built-in software RAID and you can actually do chkdisk drive repairs on a volume whilst it's mounted. It's better for multi-monitor (handles different sized monitors more comfortably, better thought out in how you can manage them - e.g. I no longer have to move my mouse pointer all the way across two or more 24" monitors to get to the "Start" button. It neatly integrates with Cloud services (and that's not Skydrive in my case, I'm setting up a private cloud). It's got a superb performance management tool. It's got a built in File History tool to go back in time on files. There's streamlined profile management with far greater granularity over what is and isn't allowed, e.g. if you want to set up accounts for your children (site whitellsting, usage limits, monitoring, etc.). For businesses, you can install software based around an authentication key so that when they are connected to your VPN or on site, the software is "installed" and when not, it is invisible. In fact, the BYOD work they've put into it is really nice all round. Better default IPv6 handling. They've re-written a lot of the graphics handling so you get better performance and on laptops, it uses less power. They've redone various parts such as the File Manager (no more faffing around when you want to show Hidden files - you just flip them). The Task Manager is now something far more impressive. The Security Essentials stuff is now no longer a separate thing you have to go and get but something built in. Native SVG handling...

      Not sure what you're interested in. But basically there's a lot of refinement and new things in Win8 and it's going to be the platform going forward. The new UI is obviously the most visible part, but it's far from the only part. And you did ask.

      1. RICHTO Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: No need to wait.

        Dont forget secure boot also - which further widens the security advantages of Windows over OS-X and Linux.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Windows

          @RICHTO

          "Dont forget secure boot also - which further hinders the installation of other OSes as OS-X and Linux."

          There, fixed that for you ;-)

          1. RICHTO Silver badge
            Mushroom

            Re: @RICHTO

            No it doesnt - Microsoft MADE it a requirement that you must be able disable it for those running legacy OSs.

      2. Stuart Elliott
        Thumb Up

        Re: No need to wait.

        Yes, but what did the Romans ever do for us ?

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Windows

        @h4rm0ny

        Thanks for your extensive response, appreciate the time you took.

        So, lets see...

        Faster booting - This is a bit of a hack because in fact the OS uses a section of the disk where it hibernates the OS then simply re-activates that part. Quite frankly; I can do the exact same thing on Windows 7 is I tell it not to shut down but to hibernate. The 'runs faster' is also disputable considering how much options and eye candy they stripped from parts such as the desktop. If I minimize the visual effects (turn off aero, animations, translucency) I can get my Win7 to run a whole lot faster as well.

        chkdsk repairs on a soft-raid volume while its mounted - I can do that with Win7 as well. Unless of course its the system volume, but quite frankly I don't see being able to perform repairs on a mounted and used system volume as an enhancement. I consider this a major risk factor instead.

        Multi monitor - Can't comment there since I only use one. What I can say is that it could be expected considering that they've limited the features severely in other areas. Think about running two "TIFKAM" (The Interface Formerly Known As Metro) side by side. Can't be done on lower resolutions, even if those are still pretty common for Office use.

        Cloud services - What does "integrates neatly" exactly mean? If I want to I can easily setup my Win7 Explorer so that it can directly access stuff as SkyDrive, S3 buckets and dropbox if need be (mostly using Webdav btw). Within my Office environment I already have the option to directly store documents on SkyDrive.

        Performance management tool - Does it really? All I saw are more bells and whistles. And if you're by any chance referring to the "Windows Assesment and Deployment Kit ('ADK') then yes; this is new in Win8. But don't be fooled; A lot of these tools come from the Windows Performance Analysis developer center which, you guessed it, is also fully available on Windows 7.

        Better yet, and this is why I described this as mere "bells and whistles" earlier: hopefully you do realize that most of these "new features" have been long available with the PowerShell environment? (which is IMVHO the number one admin kit for Windows these days). For an example check out this quick TechNet post on PowerShell system performance analysis.

        Windows 8 added more bells and whistles to make it easier to access, but its nothing really new.

        File history tool - Uhm, that has been around since Vista. Check properties, then "Previous versions" tab. Better yet: the Win8 "feature" requires an external drive or network share to work (its disabled by default) whereas this feature in Vista & Win7 is on by default and doesn't require anything extra. Talk about taking a step back in user friendlyness!

        Profile management - Enter Windows 7 professional. Its not possible on the home editions, but the pro has no problems with this. In fact; I'm using Win7 using a regular (non-admin) account myself. This can be further enhanced by using the policy editors. Once again; long existing features which have only been made easier to access.

        Software based on authentication keys - Idem on Windows 7. Takes external tools to setup though but its doable. Especially considering that Win7 already provides native support for stuff such as RFID security cards.

        IPv6 handling - Ah yes, it favours IPv6 over IPv4. True, read many stories about this.

        Better graphics - Its still the drivers doing all the work.

        Better performance - So far I'm not a believer. Also see an earlier point about performance aspects in Win7.

        File Manager & hidden files - Yes, I can see the advantage there as well.

        Security Essentials - Once again agreed; also a very good enhancement. Many virus scanners drove me completely nuts so I eventually started using these as well, works like a charm.

        So summing up the main enhancements which I can see are better IPv6 support, easier option to check for hidden files in the Explorer and the inclusion of security essentials.

        Needless to say but for me its by far enough to consider an upgrade. Which is basically what led to my earlier comment. I'm under impressed because many features are already available but seem to have been made easier accessible.

        I can't consider "easier accessible" to be a new and exciting feature tbh.

        1. h4rm0ny

          Reply (Part One)

          "Thanks for your extensive response, appreciate the time you took."

          No problem. I am always happy to debate with someone who is open to it. You've gone through my list and identified why a number of the advantages are not of interest to you. That's fine. I listed some of the things I could think of from the top of my head because even though you may not need something, it's useful to many others and makes the point that Windows 8 is far from just a new UI which is kind of where you were coming from. That said, I'm rather amazed you got from the long list I wrote down to

          "So summing up the main enhancements which I can see are better IPv6 support, easier option to check for hidden files in the Explorer and the inclusion of security essentials."

          In all honesty, it makes me want to ask if you can honestly say with your hand on your heart that you weren't trying to dismiss things from my list. No offence meant. But anyway, to answer your own points...

          "Faster booting - This is a bit of a hack because in fact the OS uses a section of the disk where it hibernates the OS then simply re-activates that part. Quite frankly; I can do the exact same thing on Windows 7 is I tell it not to shut down but to hibernate"

          You've not quite got how it works - it is different to hibernation on Windows 7. In Windows 8, they have separated out the hibernation of the kernel from the application space. My main workstation has 12GB of RAM and I run a lot of programs sometimes. Even if I close my applications down in preparation, it still takes a while to hibernate my machine. Shutting down and re-starting Win8 is not the same as Win7 hibernation. It takes the kernel and some essential parts, and hibernates that. The result is that it shuts down and restarts like lightning. The point is that on Win7, hibernating doesn't save me any time over just shutting the machine down. Win8 is simply massively faster here and Win7 hibernation doesn't compete.

          "The 'runs faster' is also disputable considering how much options and eye candy they stripped from parts such as the desktop. If I minimize the visual effects (turn off aero, animations, translucency) I can get my Win7 to run a whole lot faster as well."

          Again, you're arguing that you can by doing certain things *make* Win7 as fast as Win8 is by default. It's still a big advantage for many. Though your premise isn't quite right. Win8 also performs faster at non-UI tasks, but I'll address that later otherwise I'm repeating myself.

          "chkdsk repairs on a soft-raid volume while its mounted - I can do that with Win7 as well. Unless of course its the system volume, but quite frankly I don't see being able to perform repairs on a mounted and used system volume as an enhancement. I consider this a major risk factor instead"

          Firstly, I didn't say carrying them out on a "soft-raid". I just said a mounted volume. That can be any mounted volume and yes - including a System volume. You're comparing it to Re-syncing etc. in Win7. That's not what I'm talking about per se. I'm saying that when you have a disk fault (you must have seen those blue screens where it says "Checking Disk 43% complete" after a power-failure or disk failure). These can typically complete in under two seconds now. That's even faster than my Debian system. And yes - it is useful to be able repair a system disk whilst running, depending on what services your machine is running.

          "Multi monitor - Can't comment there since I only use one. What I can say is that it could be expected considering that they've limited the features severely in other areas. Think about running two "TIFKAM" (The Interface Formerly Known As Metro) side by side. Can't be done on lower resolutions, even if those are still pretty common for Office use."

          I'm really confused as to what you are referring to here with "can't be done on lower resolutions", so you're going to have to clarify. I think before that you're saying that you think Multi-monitor support is better because of lighter load due to the lighter UI. I suppose that could be a factor if you have a very low-power machine, but it's really nothing to do with it. I'm talking about actual changes, not performance. E.g. when I have three 24" monitors set up, it takes a long time to move the mouse over to the "Start" button in Windows 7. In Win8, I can easily access it by the mouse (as well as the program tabs) on any monitor. Ditto for the settings menu (which you don't have in Win7 as such). I can easily configure different backgrounds for the monitors, it handles different resolutions of different monitors simultaneously whereas in Win7 that can be problematic. It's all round significantly improved. You say you only have one monitor, fine - not a plus for you, but many of us are used to using multiple monitors these days - particularly developers who want to use VMs for development or testing, but also graphics professionals, people who want communications in one window (mail, VoIP) and work in the other.

          (continued)

        2. h4rm0ny

          Reply (Part Two)

          "Cloud services - What does "integrates neatly" exactly mean? If I want to I can easily setup my Win7 Explorer so that it can directly access stuff as SkyDrive, S3 buckets and dropbox if need be (mostly using Webdav btw). Within my Office environment I already have the option to directly store documents on SkyDrive"

          Hard to put my finger on it. I guess whilst what you list as things you "can" do, they're all things that are streamlined and really, really easy for the casual user to use in Win8. E.g. when I click Save, it has panels for whether I want to save locally, online and very visible and easy control over who I do and don't want to share things with, all from within the program and OS. It's just... slick, really. All feels very natural and under your control. All I can suggest is that you try it. For corporate use, it's *much* easier. You can configure the cloud and its permissions very easily for any systems you deploy. But that's getting into Server 2012 so I'll stop there.

          "Performance management tool - Does it really?"

          Yes. Really. I don't know what you're calling bells and whistles, probably things like the colour coding on processes so you can see their resource levels at a glance and the way you can pull up online descriptions of a process so you can identify what it is, but those things are useful even if they're only time savers. But there are also things that aren't just time savers, like grouping the processes by application, by type; or handling 64 logical processors and the heat map. Even a real curmudgeon has to concede this is cool.

          And yes, you mention the Assessment and Deployment tool. Maybe it does incorporate stuff from elsewhere, but I'm fine with that. It's a powerful performance tool that is now mainstream and has an API so people can build useful tools on top of it. So what if it's an iterative improvement rather than something completely new - most things are built on something else. This comment is my answer to how you can do some of this already in Powershell. Sure, and I'm comfortable on Powershell because I grew up on Bash. But you use this to dismiss things as just "making it easier to access" (your words), but that's a really good thing in itself for everyone who isn't you or me.

          "File history tool - Uhm, that has been around since Vista. Check properties, then "Previous versions" tab. Better yet: the Win8 "feature" requires an external drive or network share to work (its disabled by default) whereas this feature in Vista & Win7 is on by default and doesn't require anything extra. Talk about taking a step back in user friendlyness!"

          No, trust me. I have used the new one, and I get the strong impression from the number of misunderstandings that you are primarily looking up information on this second hand. It is easier in Win8, no doubt about it. Also doesn't impact other running processes whilst it's active either like previous versions. I'm not sure if you have to use it with an remote or external volume. I think that's just the (rightly) recommended approach. I can't check as I'm not on the Win8 one at the moment. At any rate, I don't personally know anyone who ever used the Vista history functionality. But with the Win8 one which is much more user-friendly, they will.

          1. h4rm0ny

            Re: Reply (Part Two)

            "Profile management - Enter Windows 7 professional. Its not possible on the home editions, but the pro has no problems with this"

            Again, you're not actually familiar with the Win8 functionality. (I am currently in Win7 Pro as I type, incidentally). The Win7 controls let you set some basic time limits, control games by rating or title and allow or block specific profiles.

            In Windows8, you can monitor the complete activity of the user, select from convenient drop-down lists for web-site categories, communication types allowed (e.g. social networking, chatrooms), stats reports on how the child used the computer. Basically everything you could possibly want to make your kid hate you.

            "Software based on authentication keys - Idem on Windows 7. Takes external tools to setup though but its doable. Especially considering that Win7 already provides native support for stuff such as RFID security cards."

            Again, you're comparing a car from the 1970's with a modern one and saying you can do the same things, ignoring that it is so much easier and more elegant in the newer ones. If you're corporate, you build the software into the users profile on your network and set the permissions. They bring in their laptop and plug it in - program installed. They disconnect and go home - the program was never there (figuratively speaking).

            "Better graphics - Its still the drivers doing all the work."

            And the OS determining what work they do. This comment more than any of the others, suggests to me you don't actually know much about this area. For HTML5 and SVG rendering (which forms a core part of the UI in Win8), it can render pages up to 400% faster than WIn7. Check out this video and note how much faster and more smoothly it scrolls though a web-page. Also they've worked on JPG and PNG rendering. Notice how in the video, Win8 goes through a lot faster.

            Video

            None of this is directly attributable to the graphics drivers. It's OS level stuff.

            "Better performance - So far I'm not a believer. Also see an earlier point about performance aspects in Win7."

            Well pretty much every bit of testing I've seen from the Benchers says otherwise.

            I'm out of time now. So let me just say that I think you asked a loaded question in the first place by saying 'apart from the UI, what actually is there?' I've answered that question and shown there's actually a lot in there. And there are probably lots of other things I hadn't thought of. I've just remembered that hand-writing recognition is supposed to be improved (which is great for the upcoming stylus machines) for example. I'm sure there's more. But the new UI has a huge amount of good stuff both in it, and in assisting developers in getting the most out of it. You can use HTML5 and Javascript for your program interfaces, there are APIs to handle menuing and graphics at different screen sizes and resolutions manually. It's more secure (particularly for example the new Web applications model in Office over the old chunks of VBA).

            Okay. I'm done. How open-minded are you feelling or did you read all the above with a mental check list of how you could counter any points I made. ;)

  24. Mr Temporary Handle

    We'll grab a copy of the RTM for much the same reason as Drefsab. It's something we may need to interact with at a client's premises. But unless it's changed drastically since the last tech preview we will be advising clients to avoid it like the plague.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

    It's Modern UI and you KNOW it

    1. Lee Dowling Silver badge

      Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

      Metro.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

        As Metro as Steven Sinofsky's fashion sense.

        Redmond haute couture.

    2. Dana W
      Trollface

      Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

      Ah you whacky Metrosexuals.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

      'Modern' is a laughable misnomer for Bob 2.0.

      And you know it.

    4. Peter Johnstone
      Coat

      Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

      It's shit and you know it.

      There, fixed that for you.

    5. Stuart Elliott

      Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

      Jehova ! Jehova ! Jehova !

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Larry

      Agreed.

      We should all be calling it TIFKAM from now (as seen earlier in this thread, and I don't refer to my post btw).

      "The Interface Formerly Known As Metro".

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: STOP SAYING METRO!!!!!!!!

      Metro, Metro, Metro! And of course, Windows, Windows, Windows!

  26. Capitan crunck
    Megaphone

    2 camps

    To me it is beginning to look like there are 2 camps emerging

    1)people who have given it a blast and love it

    2)people who think it sucks Donkey D**k but have not tried because "it's that Microsoft Pish"

    I have been using it for a while now i love it !!

    My advice is give it a blast and say if you don't like it why not just "this tile stuff is rubbish"

    also please keep in mind it a desktop OS so running it in a VM is never going to be the best way to see it

    davidk

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 2 camps

      I've given it a 'blast'.

      http://i47.tinypic.com/34eakwl.png

      http://i46.tinypic.com/2chswaq.png

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 2 camps

      3) People who have tried it, and found it to be an utter piece of turd.

      1. Peter Johnstone
        Thumb Up

        Re: 2 camps

        3.5) People who have tried it, and found it to be an utter piece of turd, and switched to Linux or Mac

    3. Lee Dowling Silver badge

      Re: 2 camps

      My productivity dropped when I tried to do my normal work on it. What more do I need? Fancy anecdotes? Factual benchmarks? Finding some reason for it? No. It dropped, and I couldn't get it back to XP-levels even with a hell of a lot of messing about.

      Hell, compared to a properly organised XP "classic" menu, it takes me twice as long to find a program using the silly narrow-down search when I have hardly any programs installed at all. I need to get to dialogs inside control panel and other weird places and get there a lot on a lot of machines that may be configured differently and get there every time, consistently. I can't. Same reasons I rejected "Unity" or whatever it's called on Ubuntu. That, similarly, saw a single test and then went into the bin. Ironically, I now use Ubuntu LTS for server text-mode-only installs and Slackware for desktop installs.

      I don't use the Metro interface. At all. I spent more time trying to get rid of it than I did using it (and you can't get rid of it permanently, which is literally a one-line code enforcement at MS for no sensible reason). Just because others might find it useful, I just find it getting in my way and making even more things take even more clicks to do than before (and I even tried it on a touchscreen!). Guess what? People work differently. You might love Metro, to me it's an extension of everything I hate about modern "desktops". I'd rather have an ugly, blocky, square, bland interface than all that junk. Hence why people call it "Fisher Price", etc. Yeah, looks really pretty. But I can't get used to using it and never have since XP.

      Windows 8 boots fast and shuts down fast, that's about it. Everything else is just natural evolution (e.g. driver support built-in for more things, new types of technology support, etc.) and is pretty much Windows 7. The number of boots/shutdowns I do is absolutely minimal since standby became a stable solution in XP, so even the boot times mean NOTHING any more (and if I was that worried, I'd use an SSD).

      Productivity costs. I don't *want* to train on an interface. I want it to work. When I do train on an interface, I expect to see the gains in productivity. I haven't, since XP. In fact, since then every Office and Windows has made me less productive. Ribbon toolbar and contextual junk is NOT FOR ME. I can't stand it. I want to turn it off. I hate suggestions that LibreOffice might try to go that way in the future. It's stupid and ridiculous and kills my productivity with unpredictability. But MS can't be bothered to give me an option and tell me I "must" do it this way.

      These interfaces GET IN MY WAY. They STOP ME INTERFACING in certain ways. They MAKE INTERFACING DIFFICULT. No amount of training provides consistency in some parts of the interface (i.e. the narrow-down search changes depending on what you have installed!). Dialogs that I've been able to get to in two-three clicks for years (and not got in anyone's else's way) I now have to know magic incantations for, or go around the houses in non-obvious ways to get to the same point.

      I can't remember what I was doing but it was something quite trivial like checking an IP address, finding a MAC address and then changing it to a static IP to do something. It took me longer to figure out than imaging the machine had. And it was such a convoluted way around because MS just wanted to hide that information and options from the administrator user. Hell, I know you don't tinker with that every day, but when you do it's nice to be able to find it.

      Technically, Windows XP through to 8 have been good. They run pretty much the same programs, work on lots of hardware, each has their niggles but they get the job done technically. Usability-wise, they get worse and worse (and now Ubuntu is following suit). If you cater to the dumb user, you'll only get dumb users. Dumb users rarely make the call on what gets installed across sites or in companies of hundreds of employees, because they DON'T have to manage the machines and do the things that technical people do.

      Honestly, from a personal perspective, I still use XP for purely usability reasons. If I'm "forced" onto other OS in the future, I'll just go Linux, because I *can* configure it how I like, use what start menu I like, use what desktop environment I like, and use an Office suite that doesn't force me to use ribbons and other rubbish (even if I have to stick with an old version of it). It's literally that important that I be able to get to options, right-click menus (which seem to have disappeared in Ubuntu's new interface, for example), technical details, etc. that I will sacrifice Windows compatibility for it. Work is a different matter but the same things will affect the same decisions.

      Now, I work in schools, so also a problem is "small children". Get your child to run a program that's not on the desktop. Hope they can read and type the full, correct spelling of the program because otherwise you'll have to clutter their desktop with EVERYTHING they want to use! Get them to all write a letter as a group. They will ALL end up with different menu options in Office depending what stage they get to. It's not ideal.

      Seriously - turn off the "#ifdef METRO, splat_metro_screen_over_desktop", re-enable the old Start Menu for those who want it, and get rid of any transparency, side-bar (god, that's annoying, especially when you hover near the right on a touchscreen), and all the other crap.

      My desktop and start menu are my program launch interface. This destroys them. The other junk just pops things up unnecessarily all the time and gets in my way (hell, I had to answer a question about which browser I want to use on first logon now, as if it wasn't obnoxious enough when they pushed that through Windows Update). Gimme a desktop that's "dumb" and inactive. It shows me program icons, runs those programs when I click them and gets the HELL OUT OF MY WAY so I can use what I bought the machines for - running programs. Every time you hide something away, you are getting in my way. Every time you don't show full options, you are getting in my way. Every time there's ANOTHER step in the way I do things, you are getting in my way.

      Seriously, the first person to bring up a minimalist interface on something that can run Windows apps will be a billionaire. I want to choose what happens on my own desktop (i.e. NOTHING should pop up and steal keyboard focus EVER). Apparently, that's not allowed. And, until it is, I won't be using it.

      1. Dickasso

        Re: 2 camps

        Lee Dowling: Emerge Desktop + Launchy + VistaSwitcher + xplorer2 = any version of Windows*, made minimalist. (*I haven't tried 8 yet, but why would I?)

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The irony is

    the irony is that if metro (sorry larry) actually takes off and people do love it then you can bet the UI will magically appear in Linux distros very quickly

    especially since most UIs in the Linux distros and apps all look like 'Microsoft version of app -2 releases or more' .. lets start with open office or whatever its called these days, its like using office 97 the only thing missing is clippy

    the rag it lit ----> now throw!!!!!!

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: The irony is

      And there's no reason Linux shouldn't copy it. Linux has always taken good features from other OSes and incorporated them, along with adding its own good stuff. Standing on the shoulders of giants, etc. All these OSes influence and drive each other to improve. What will be really funny is when Apple copy things from it. There's a certain core of Apple users that will really struggle with that.

      1. RICHTO Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: The irony is

        That's true - Linux has been playing catch up with Windows for years - especially with kernel features.

        1. Kobus Botes
          Flame

          Re: The irony is

          BIG DUMB GUY 555, is that you?

          You are as bad a Microsoft shill as BDG was a troll.

          1. Kobus Botes
            FAIL

            Re: The irony is

            Sorry, my previous post was meant for RICHTO, not the OP.

            <--- On my part.

          2. h4rm0ny

            Re: The irony is

            "BIG DUMB GUY 555, is that you?"

            I think it is - smells of troll. In either case, the same sort of inflammatory, divisive statements. I wonder if El Reg can check the IP addresses or something?

  28. Graham Triggs
    FAIL

    First, second, third impressions...

    You want my first impressions? Well, I downloaded the consumer preview, and the release preview, ran them both inside VMs, and if that wasn't enough recently reformatted an unused laptop and experienced it with full hardware acceleration, etc.

    So, you want my impression? OK, to put it simply, it's the worst experience I've ever had using a computer.

    Initially, my experience was hampered when running in VMs, because of it's reliance on hot corners / edges. But even when I give the computer over to it entirely, which made it easier to use the hot corners, it was still painful.

    Things that should be obvious to reach - settings menus, switching 'tabs' in IE, etc. - all require weird, magical gestures that can't be reproduced reliably.

    And the not-called-Metro applications? Hideous. A complete destruction of productivity thanks to not being able to task switch between them, and just the way they work is perplexing (see previously mentioned IE's interface.

    Windows 8 is not going anywhere near my production machines. It's utter garbage. I'll stick with Windows 7 as long as possible, and if necessary move to either Linux or MacOS before I ever go near the Windows 8 UI.

  29. Should b Working
    Trollface

    So many microsoft-phobes

    I'm seeing lots of "Windows 8 is rubbish because I hate Microsoft, even though I haven't used the OS yet but someone told me it was bad" posts.

    Try it before you trash it.

    Flame and downvote away.

    1. Dana W
      Meh

      Re: So many microsoft-phobes

      We don't hate Microsoft from lack of experience with them, or out of some idea that its fashionable to hate them. We hate Microsoft from decades of familiarity and use.

      Its the old "Familiarity breeds contempt" And another round of being told that that THIS time its going to be different is getting big laughs because they always say it, and its always horrible. We have been down this road before and we know the destination all too well.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So many microsoft-phobes

      Still not as many astroturfer shills such as you, who get into a pissy fit when it is pointed out that your emperor (Microsoft/Windows 8) has no clothes.

      "How dare you tell the truth you Microsoft hater/basher!"

      1. Should b Working
        WTF?

        Re: So many microsoft-phobes

        AC because you have no claim to make, just insults?

  30. jason 7 Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Windows 8 is fine.....

    ...once you manage to get past 20 years of muscle memory.

    I've never used the Win Key till now. Started off with a 512K Fat Mac in 1988 with a mouse and been a mostly mouse user ever since. I switched to PCs in 1993.

    Hoykeys????

  31. Antoinette Lacroix
    Joke

    I canceled the cat sitter, ordered a pizza, upgraded to FreeBSD 9.1 and put the cat in front of Win8. She stared at the screen, wiggled the mouse, said 'meow'", which sounded a bit like 'pants', and walked off.

  32. Shocker-z

    I found it very clunky in the way of the feel of it, nothing seemed obvious all hidden away and here and there bits and bobs.. When i read that Windows Server 2012 is going the same way my immediate thought was "well i don't think people will go with it, they'll probs skip it and wait for the next as 2008 is nice and solid"

    To me Windows 8 feels and sounds like a Windows ME/Vista version where it'll get replaced by a proper version shortly after (Read today that Windows 9 is planned for release next year!)

    Just my 2 pence anyway

    Liam

    1. RICHTO Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Server 2012 doesnt have a GUI by default , and shouldnt be run with a GUI unless absolutely necessary anyway, so what the GUI is liike wont be relevant for most users...

  33. PaulR79

    MSDN, TechNet keys?

    There seem to be at least a few here with those subscriptions that don't intend to use the Windows 8 keys. I'll happily take those off your hands :)

    Partly serious, partly joking. I'd take Windows 8 for free, I wouldn't buy it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: MSDN, TechNet keys?

      " I'd take Windows 8 for free, I wouldn't buy it." - That's what I thought about Vista. I still have the free copy. Used Vista through most of the beta program. Went back to XP after. Got the free Vista copy after Win 7 was out and had XP, 7 and Vista installed. Eventually I thought wtf am I keeping this on here for and deleted it. I found Vista interesting in the beta period, but once that was past loathed it. But nothing like as much as I loathe that Metro interface. I like XP and 7.

      I like KDE too, and loathe Gnome.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    a couple of points

    1. that article was truly disgusting.

    2. how much is MS paying to install and test. oh wait, i'm not a sellout POS!

  35. IGnatius T Foobar

    absolutely unusable

    This is quite possible the biggest piece of garbage Microsoft has ever released. The "modern" UI is completely unusable on a computer with a mouse and keyboard.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. RICHTO Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: absolutely unusable

      My 3 Year Old manages to navigate Metro just fine.....

  36. bdam
    Mushroom

    Can some bookie give me odds of Blamer being out by Christmas?

    Well, it is 2012. If the world does survive, m$ will forever mark it as the beginning of a very undignified end for them.

  37. SteIMG
    Meh

    It's alright

    It's look very nice - and aside from being a bit buggy is fine.

    The only real comment is the lack of a 'Start' button to launch stuff is a huge pain. Switching back to the "Metro" to open a new window each time is a pain. Probably too much of a pain for me to upgrade my work pc to it.

    At home it's OK -- and my wife likes it.

    Good for tablet type usage - the lack of a start button pretty well rules out business usage.

  38. Doozer
    Black Helicopters

    Shutdown (eg power off...)

    Without looking at a manual, without using a touch screen, without using the 'power' button to completely shutdown (power off) the system, I had eight members of staff try some simple tests.

    1 - Power up the test system and log on

    - Everyone passed

    2 - Open IE

    - Everyone passed

    3 - Goto traditional windows desktop

    - Techie staff all found it, admin staff struggled but got their.

    4 - Perform shutdown (eg power off not hibernate)

    - admin staff all failed, Techie staff all failed apart from two - one used CTRL ALT DELTE and the other googled how to do it.

    This is not ready for me to drop onto desktops, if I did deploy this I would be marched out of the office and the *rap kicked out of me.

    I have it on Virtualbox, the performance is better than my Windows 7, but I have just realised that I cant run the version of Pervasive SQL that we use on it. So its a no go (Not MS's Fault...) Gives me breathing space though.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Shutdown (eg power off...)

      Are you a care in the community employer?

  39. Greg Fawcett
    Big Brother

    Try a REALLY new OS

    import Ballmer

    Ballmer.emit("This version of Windows is the most %s Microsoft has ever released" % random.choice("important", "innovative", "valuable", "incredible"))

    Ballmer.think(random.choice("for my stock options", "forces a wacky UI on users", "making customers pay all over again", "that loyal customers put up with being treated as thieving bastards")

    Our company escaped the MS ecosystem five years ago, and have never looked back. Apart from their complete lack of ethics, the level of control MS insists on just keeps escalating. Your PC? Har har... you may have paid for it, but MS owns it.

    Our PCs use 100% of their power doing what we need them to do. Windows PCs spend most of their resources checking you haven't pirated anything, that every action you take isn't infecting it, reporting back to Redmond, and popping up annoying windows when anything slightly unusual happens so MS can cover their bums by saying "well you agreed to that so don't blame us for allowing a rootkit to install itself". We're way more productive, and spend much less on hardware, support and licensing.

    So rather than download Win8, why not download and try a really revolutionary operating system? The only thing you have to lose is your shackles.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Try a REALLY new OS

      "Our PCs use 100% of their power doing what we need them to do. Windows PCs spend most of their resources checking you haven't pirated anything, that every action you take isn't infecting it, reporting back to Redmond, and popping up annoying windows when anything slightly unusual happens so MS can cover their bums by saying "well you agreed to that so don't blame us for allowing a rootkit to install itself". We're way more productive, and spend much less on hardware, support and licensing."

      Hmm, got caught with your pants down not actually paying for your windows licences did you? ;-)

  40. The Jase

    Free

    Do free quality testing for MS only to have the OS die on me when the beta expires? No thanks.

    Let me keep the OS and I might just help you out...

    1. yossarianuk

      Re: Free

      You have the choice of 100's of OS's you get to keep for free here

      http://distrowatch.com/

      No trailware / shareware / freeware crap here - just open source software.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Free

        "You have the choice of 100's of OS's you get to keep for free here"

        I think everybody on this site knows about open source software, that doesn't change the fact MS are still blagging free beta testing and then ripping the product away when they're done.

  41. Alistair MacRae
    Unhappy

    I had a go last month

    I just didn't like it.

    Nothing was in the right place. Nothing was intuitive. I kept on having to Google where everything lived.

    Maybe this is because I have the old windows style so deeply ingrained since having used windows forever but this just feels wrong.

    It's like they're forcing us to do it a certain way so they can unify the Phone, Xbox and Computer OS in there new releases.

    I'm happy with 7 so maybe I'll wait till 9 is out. Every other OS release is good. Same with Star Trek movies :P

    1. Richard Plinston Silver badge

      Re: I had a go last month

      > It's like they're forcing us to do it a certain way so they can unify the Phone, Xbox and Computer OS in there new releases.

      That is exactly what it is. Consultants have told MS that desktops have stagnated and the growth is all in mobile where MS almost does not exist. Instead of existing users buying replacement Windows machines or new users buying them, they are using that money to buy iPads or Androids.

      Were MS to create a new iPad/Android like UI it would take a year or two to get into the market so they took the WP7 UI. They identified that the problem with this UI (and that WP7 failed to sell well) was that most are unfamiliar with it. The answer was to make Metro "the most familiar UI" then users would demand it on their phones and tablets. Forcing it on the desktop users would make 300million users love it by Christmas.

      Actually I think they forgot that it wouldn't magically appear on Windows 7 machines, or perhaps a critical, unavoidable service pack will fix that.

      I recall once a Jazz musician was being interviewed. He wanted to have a band that went around the schools to play Jazz concerts to the whole school because he thought that if you played Jazz to people they would get to love it and demand more. He is wrong, forcing it down their throats would just make them hate it more.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Richard

        "He is wrong, forcing it down their throats would just make them hate it more."

        While I agree with your story and conclusion I disagree that this also reflects on TIFKAM; its not the enforcement part which makes people dislike TIFKAM with a passion. In fact; the method of enforcing stuff has always been the way Microsoft worked. Even the start menu was basically enforced upon us at one time.

        Of course with the minor exception that if people wanted to they could still fire up 'progman.exe' and return to the previous interface of icons and groups. But even so; they couldn't easily work their way around the start menu. With normal usage they'd need to use it to start the shutdown process..

        The problem with TIFKAM is merely that instead of enhancing functionality and workflow it actually hinders it when used on the desktop. That is the big deal.

  42. Big_Boomer Bronze badge
    Boffin

    Not the worst

    but not the best either.

    I've been playing with Win8 Release Preview (build 8400) for a couple of months now.

    If yer running it in VirtualBox then there are some fixes for the screen size/res issues.

    Works fine with a Mouse & keyboard but does require a head change to account for the "touchscreen" design of the interface.

    In terms of performance it's as fast or faster than Windows7 for all apps I've tried, including Office 2010, an ancient version of PaintShopPro, and Fallout 3.

    No SSD, but I do have Quad Cores, 8Gb and fast HDDs.

    The VM was given 2 CPUs and 4Gb RAM.

    Would I buy it to replace Win7,... no.

    Is it better than WinXP, yes but you need to recalibrate your head.

    Is it better than Windows XP Tablet Edition,... F**K Yeah! :-)

    As a tablet OS I would still choose Android first, then iOS, then Win8.

    I guess I'll just have to wait and see how it is on a Surface tablet.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Windows

    Maybe not so bad afterall?

    Now, I'm pure speculating here mind you...

    When looking at the Visual Studio website it obviously announces the availability of version 2012 quite strongly, of course this is fully tied into TIFKAM (look further up this thread). But the VS 2010 section is also still available (microsoft.com link). Better yet; I can even buy VS 2010 if I want to, right now from Microsoft. Usually those older versions tend to disappear rather quickly as far as I know.

    So now I'm wondering: how likely is it that Microsoft is going to keep both Window environments around; both Windows 7 /and/ Windows 8 ? Maybe using Windows 8 as a new product specifically aimed at touch and 7 as the Windows we all know and love ;-)

    Its not as if they didn't go here before. I still recall a time where we had both Windows NT and Windows 98, which eventually "merged" into Windows XP.

    Quite frankly if Microsoft would come up with such a strategy, and I don't even care if it would be a "fallback" or "exit" strategy, I think the whole Windows 8 "ordeal" could be much less intrusive than I have assumed it to be so far.

    I know its much too early to speculate, but alas.

  44. yossarianuk
    FAIL

    HAHAHAHAHA

    Complete and utter retarded crap. Far Far worse than I was expecting

    It actually makes Ubuntu unity look like a usability dream.... (its that bad)

    Think I will stick to KDE so I can actually have a usable fast desktop, although E17, LXDE,XFCE,MATE,Cinnamon are all better than Windows8. (some of them are better than win7 imo)

    Its almost like they have chosen the very worse parts of gnome3+unity, bundled them together then shat on them.

    *F*ail with a capital F

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Devil

    Currently trying Win 8 Enterprise in VMWare View.

    Jesus.

    I predict in the near future a GPO template release for 'Enterprise Customers' that:

    * Disables ME(tro)

    * Returns the Start Menu

    ...either that or 'Windows 8 Desktop' becomes a thing, or we just see Windows 9.

    I'm sure it's great on a tablet, but in the Real World we have to run this stuff on desktops and it's just not going to happen really.

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows 8 is Fast and Fluid

    Just like diarrhoea.

  47. Mectron

    100% pure Weapon Grade Balonium. This is MS downfall..... combine millenium + vista and sprinkle windows 95 window style and you get a T@rd that can't be polish. yes i have tried it..... and evenff or free, i don't want it. (i am not alone. the second it was avaible i was able to d/L at fulll speed from technet, neaming very low trafic)

  48. Jim-234
    FAIL

    Ugly like crazy

    After downloading and installing the RTM edition of of Windows 8 Professional I have to say that it looks downright ugly, from the initial install boot up all the way through and when running

    It looks quite possibly worse than Windows 3.1 if that could be done.

    Big solid block letters on solid backgrounds and settings menus that take up the whole screen with no option to reside with solid block colours?

    Somebody could argue that they made it all stripped down to make it run fast, but that's kind of stupid considering that my Samsung Galaxy SIII has a UI that looks 100 times better and runs fast on basic hardware.

    If this is how they plan to compete with Apple / Android they are going to fail so badly, the people who will be using it on fondle enabled devices are not going to be impressed by styling that looks like one of the first attempts to put a GUI on a Linux subsystem.

    I actually like windows 7 very much and think the UI is quite useful and looks decent.

    Hardend IT users may not care anything about how "pretty" and visually appealing the UI is, but if Microsoft is trying to go after the great unwashed masses who want to fondle fancy looking shiny things this is going to totally bomb out. People would like to see pretty and cool when they fondle their new toy to show it off.

  49. Smartypantz
    Pint

    dum and dummer for dummies

    "So you think you got the grips on dum? Nobody dums it down lower than us, our target group are the 10 year old retards! Just click (or spit or rub your genitals) on the pretty pictures and the incredible bing machine will take you to your dreams!"

  50. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Doesn't matter what people think, anyone who post something positive on THIS site will immidiallty get several thumbs down by linux users.

  51. jaycee331

    I wish I could be bothered....

    But I'm not. Await feedback. Await SP1. Deploy.

  52. Dynasty
    Thumb Up

    Windows 8 isn't that bad...

    Since the release of W8P on technet, I've installed it on a half-decent desktop machine to see what it's like compared to a virtual machine, and to be honest, after using it I find it quite good.

    Don't know why people are slating it and saying it's all for touch screens and it'll fail on sale, the mouse can do most the work and fair enough there's a few new keys you need to press but hey, change is what IT is all about, good or bad, or how are we supposed to progress?

    1. Doug Bostrom

      Re: Windows 8 isn't that bad...

      "...change is what IT is all about, good or bad, or how are we supposed to progress?"

      Not change for the sake of change, and progress is supposed to be an arrow pointing in the "better" direction. The "Modern Metro Monkey" interface is absurd for anything but a phone, diagonally-challenged display or food pellet motivational experiments with lower primates and the alternate desktop looks almost exactly like Mandrake ca 1999.

      But the world needs optimists, so good on you.

      1. MysteryGuy
        Unhappy

        Re: Windows 8 isn't that bad...

        > and progress is supposed to be an arrow pointing in the "better" direction.

        Exactly. If a new OS were equal in ease of use and productivity, but required an great deal of re-learning, then I would argue it would already be a failure because it gave no benefit for the cost.(Why expend effort to at best remain where you where?)

        Having used Windows 8, I think it is actually worse in many ways (for desktop use), and requires a great deal of effort relearning how to do things.

        So, I count it as a double fail because it is costing you time and reduced long term productivity to convert to an inferior system...

        I like Windows 7 and really wanted Windows 8 to not be the hideous thing it turned out to be...

        1. Richard Plinston Silver badge

          Re: Windows 8 isn't that bad...

          > So, I count it as a double fail because it is costing you time and reduced long term productivity to convert to an inferior system...

          But you are missing out what all the benefits are: once you have converted to the new UI you will _demand_ that it be on your phones, tablets and XBoxen; you will want to buy all your software and games from the appstore so they work in the Metro way; you will want to subscribe to Microsoft cloudy services so that all your devices, and your car, TV and Microwave (and you will want all of them) will talk to each other.

          Now all those benefits may be to Microsoft and not to you, but they are benefits.

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    Tried the consumer preview...

    ... ended up installing a start menu replacement.

    Found it pretty much like windows 7, except with the tiles touch paradigm, which we all know doesn't work too well with point and click.

    Everything I threw at it worked, well, exactly like windows 7.

    I finally hosed it and installed Ubuntu 12.04 (running dual boot ubuntu/ hackintosh)

    Being a sad OS geek, I had to try it - god knows why, should've been doing something more productive.

    Right now, aside from testing, I can't see any reason to use this on a mouse/keyboard driven desktop unless the performance boost lives up to the hype - will wait for benchmarks.

    I'm fairly sure, reasonably soon after release, some clever biscuit will find a way to disable 'microsoft modern ui formerly known as metro'

    It remains to be seen how effective it is in a touch environment - will microsoft, after years of trying and failing, get it right?

    Or will it be a case of "works great, where's the apps?" - just like the ill fated HP WebOs tablet.

  54. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They knew where they were going...

    ...otherwise they would have avoided calling it Windows HATE

  55. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Win+R

    Nobody seems to have mentioned whether the Win+R (Run) shortcut still works? I've dual booted Linux/Windows most of my life and live off of Alt+F2/Win+R, so long as that works, I'm not too bothered.

    Answers on a run-dialog shaped postcard?

  56. Mr Young
    Coffee/keyboard

    ...must be too old for this shit?

    Today I witnessed my 13 year old prodding the Windows key to toggle between desktop and tiles -does it really work like that? What is all this fanboy/girl shite you speak of?

  57. dloughlin
    Coat

    I'll get my coat..

    If you ignore the "modern UI" and look at the rest of the OS Windows 8 is a big improvement over Windows 7. It's significantly faster for a start, better multi monitor support, the ribbon UI in explorer, consolidated file operations, ISO/VHD mounting in explorer, defender has AV built in, the are some cool networking improvements, the lock screen, updated taskmgr, Hyper-V, ARM support in the RT version, USB3 support, WDDM 1.2 etc etc

    There are some major and stupid issues with metro (or whatever its called today) though...far to many things are hidden, the all apps screen is a complete mess and shutdown/sleep/restart is way too hidden.....

    But overall I'd rather run Win8 than Win 7, and the first start menu screen with all the live titles is great.

    Plus from an enterprise perspective it's going to make deploying and managing tablets a piece of piss. No more iPad nonsense!

  58. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Win8 no longer honours hosts file?

    And in other news it turns out that you can no longer rely on the hosts file in Windows 8 to keep you safe from bad websites. If you add sites such as facebook.com or ad.doubleclick.net then these will be automatically removed from the file for you.

    After all; everyone needs to see those adds, right ?

    Original story was found here (ghacks.net link).

    If Windows can automatically remove entries from this file (which is also heavily used by adware removal programs such as Spybot) then this routine can also be abused by hackers to re-instate some of their web sources.

    Another brilliant addition in reducing Windows functionality and making it less secure in the process.

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: Win8 no longer honours hosts file?

      Good or bad, there's no conspiracy here. It's part of Windows Defender which is on by default on Windows 8. Some malware runs a local webservice and redirects traffic to certain sites (e.g. facebook.com) to itself. If you add an entry to the hosts file that, e.g. redirects facebook.com to localhost, then Windows Defender will spot it and remove the redirect as it thinks it is a phishing attempt.

      Very, very few of Windows 8 users will want to put in redirects for sites via the hosts file, but if you want to do this, you can disable Windows Defender and it will leave your hosts file alone. You will want to install your own anti-virus rather than the free one in that case.

      It might be that if people kick up a fuss about this, MS will change Defender to not interfere, but then that makes things less secure because Malware could potentially re-direct traffic through altering the hosts file. (If you have permission to edit the file, and there exists the sort of user who will click agree to any downloaded program, then malware can edit the file).

      That's why it's there. Your suggestion that it is so that they can force people to see "those adds" has jumped the gun. As has that gigantic "FAIL" icon. I begin to wonder how much you are actually *wanting* to find flaws in Winodws 8 by this point.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @h4rm0ny

        I think you're missing my point a little.

        This routine changes (protected) system files. A routine running with system credentials specifically aimed at maintaining the hosts file. That's a huge risk; because if that routine gets compromised (and IMO that's only a matter of time) how long before malware will start changing hosts so that "www.microsoft.com" points to some malware website, or worse? Without the users realizing this of course. Also the fact that it chooses to bypass settings such as setting the file up with r/o.

        Although current malware (Win7 / Vista) could attack the hosts file as well, there is no guarantee that they can succeed. Either due to privileges or the fact that the file can be protected.

        And sure; Win defender can be turned off, but how many end users would do that? Heck; how many would realize the potential risk this gets them?

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: @h4rm0ny

          "I think you're missing my point a little."

          Well the main point I was addressing was that you wrote a post about how you thought MS were trying to stop people from blocking ads, so I explained in detail why it was very much about something else (security).

          Regarding the below however:

          "This routine changes (protected) system files. A routine running with system credentials specifically aimed at maintaining the hosts file. That's a huge risk; because if that routine gets compromised (and IMO that's only a matter of time) how long before malware will start changing hosts so that "www.microsoft.com" points to some malware website, or worse? Without the users realizing this of course. Also the fact that it chooses to bypass settings such as setting the file up with r/o."

          Okay - software changes system files all the time. Even "protected" ones. Your OS wouldn't be much good if it couldn't or didn't do that. This actually happens all the time. It's not even new to edit the hosts file. Anti-spyware and anti-virus software already does this. And specifically as I explained in my post, malware already does this. If you the user have the capacity to edit the hosts file, then potentially malware can and real world examples of such malware exist in the wild. If you believe that it is new for software to edit the hosts file, then I'm afraid I have to tell you that this is not new to Windows 8. You already have this. It's just that you've only noticed it now because MS have added new security features that have made you aware of it. Yes, these features can be inconvenient to people who edit the hosts file so that makes them either good or bad according to your needs, but they do make the OS more secure.

          "Although current malware (Win7 / Vista) could attack the hosts file as well, there is no guarantee that they can succeed. Either due to privileges or the fact that the file can be protected."

          This is not theoretical. It happens. Any of the Qhosts family of viruses (e.g. Win32/Qhosts.L will do so. As pointed out, if you the user can edit the file from within the OS, there is always a possibility that Malware could.

          "And sure; Win defender can be turned off, but how many end users would do that? Heck; how many would realize the potential risk this gets them?"

          How many users would turn of Windows Defender? As many or more as are likely to edit their hosts file.

          Maybe you don't like that MS have enabled Windows Defender by default - that's fine, maybe it's not suited to your needs. But you can turn it off *very* easily and the vast majority of users benefit from it being on by default. If you turn it off, then it's no different to having not installed it in the first place, just as you can not install it on Windows 7 if you wish.

          Will you accept that you were wrong to make a big post about how MS are trying to stop you from blocking ads and that this actually makes sense?

    2. hplasm Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Win8 no longer honours hosts file?

      No Surprise! HOSTS is quite a standard file, and everyone knows how MS feels about standards.

  59. takuhii

    If the security in Windows 8 is represented by this elastic band, how tight would you like this elastic band to be? Tightness 1, Tightness 2 or Tightness 3 ???

  60. James 132

    Trying it again and the penny has just dropped: They're trying to get rid of desktop Window management, aren't they? It certainly feels that way. This is the iOS approach: You don't go back; you go home. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the Metro applications. I'm sitting in metro apps wondering how the hell to get back to anywhere, before remembering to recall the start screen.

    Whatever the intent, It produces a rather odd user experience.

    I'm trying but it just doesn't flow. At all.

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