"New ways to do familiar tasks" can we have: "Familiar ways to do new tasks" please?
Microsoft has decided to backtrack on Windows 8 and loosen the Metro straitjacket the new OS applies to the traditional desktop. This U-turn is being described by commentators as Microsoft’s ""New Coke Moment" – where a business drops a brand-new flavour and reverts to the trusted and loved old recipe following a backlash from …
So you think a Mac is to a PC what a BMW is to a Vauxhall?
More like what a plane is to a car...
Had to switch back to WinWhatever after years on a Mac, first reaction is: why is the mouse frozen? Huh, is the machine dead? Working on a Mac is so fast and swift...
Too bad it's too expensive for me to use it at home. But my archlinux is also much more responsive than Win7. So yes, I can't afford the plane. Neither the BMW (too posh anyway). But their affordable solutions as well 8^)
"So you think a Mac is to a PC what a BMW is to a Vauxhall?
More like what a plane is to a car..."
And as the plane is useless on the road, the Mac is useless for any real computing tasks... Nice multimedia features though, but even they are governed and limited by the bitten fruit...
"> Just buy a Mac and that will happen.
Then you will have new ways of doing less."
Thankfully, my Win7 laptop is still going strong and should continue to do so for some time, but if I did have to buy a new computer, a Mac is a ludicrously silly solution - it won't run the software I need to use most, so it would indeed be a new way of doing less.
In order to run the software that I need to run, I'd have to use the Mac to run Windows, in which case I might as well have saved some money and bought a Windows computer in the first place.
"In this case the advice was not for you."
Comments posted in a public forum can attract responses from people other than those who the original comment was aimed at. And in other news, the pope shits in the woods.
"Carry on using your Windows, that's all!"
I'd rather not, thanks. It's a case of needs must.
"Microsoft’s 'licences sold' numbers include copies of Windows sold to PC makers, so they tell us what the channel has been willing to buy or what volume customers have swallowed rather than what’s actually being deployed on new machines."
I'd argue 90%+ of 'licenses sold' are sales from MSFT to PC makers with 10% accounting for direct sales to consumers.
The 90%+ doesn't give any indication as to
(a) how many of those PCs are actually sold to an end user,
(b) how many that are 'sold' to an end user are returned,
(c) how MSFT prices its Win7 licenses to PC makers vs. Win8 licenses.
(a) not many - given the slowdown in PC growth and the poor profit results of the big PC makers,
(b) a lot of Win8 machines being returned,
(c) Win7 license cost >>>>> Win 8 license cost so that PC makers are compelled to buy Win8 or face no profit margin on a Win7 machine.
It's all academic, really, because this whole Win8 episode has been a failure for MSFT of epic proportions. All that shareholders' money wasted on software (ie. Metro) that no-one really wants.
Win8 = EPIC FAIL.
i am supprised there are only 238 comments about this debacle. I saw it before win8 came out....let's get rid of the start button...oh the only thing that is central to windows the only reason i installed it was because you could get $15 licenses and free up some win7 licenses then change it to start at desktop and install a start program....my money was only to get more win7 disguised as win8
What would be an interesting figure to find out is how many of those licences have had their downgrade rights enacted, so they're actually used to license a Windows 7 / Windows XP install.
While Win8 is far from perfect I don't think some peoples blinkered attitude to change helps, especially when it comes from those of us who should be able to handle it. Having got my head around the new ways of doing things I much prefer Win8, and found for most customers simply spending a little time to familiarise them with the new ways of navigating, shutting down etc removes most of the concerns they have with it.
But why the hell should I have to learn a new way to use the OS if I am perfectly happy the way it worked before? I work for a living and not in the computer field, so why the fuck should I have to waste my time learning new bullshit with hardware that doesn't have touch-enabled screens. It's the "My way or the Highway" approach that Microsoft took with Win8 that pisses me off so much. Why the hell not give us a choice to have a start button or get rid of those gawd-awful tiles when I first boot up. I have no need for that kind of crap and don't want to be bothered with going through yet another learning curve for features I don't need.
I have no objection to learning new *better* ways to do things. I managed the move from MSDos to win 3.1 to '95. '98, XP and even Vista/7
They each brought an improvement to the functionality.
BUT Win 8 (and the cursed Office ribbon) have never provided any useful new functionality. Instead they provide irritating barriers to making MS products work for me.
Yet MS have plenty of improvements that need to be made. Things like the error messages that give no information at all. Or the times that Windows Update tells you to click on an update's link for more information, then takes you to a generic page, Or the add autocorrect function in Word, which still places highlighted text in the wrong box, putting the highlighted text in the "change to" box, and not the "change from" box.. Or a sensible Start menu that makes sorting into/out of "programme groups" easy and logical (rather than removing it).-someting that has been left virtually unchanged since Win 3.1 .
The list is probably endless.
Instead they give us silly boxes that hide our programmes away . And hidden controls that suddenly make things happen by accident..
I'm one of those who has bought a license for Windows 8 Pro. I bought a shiny new laptop (and I had the choice, Windows 7 or Windows 8) oodles of memory, a fast processor and Windows 8.
What a mistake.
As soon as I log in, I press 'Win+D' to get to the desktop.
My wireless doesn't log in to the network unless I'm at the desktop, I can't find some of the programs I used to use, like Paint or the calculator unless I type the names into the search bar, the damn touchpad thinks that I want to open the settings widget or whatever it is that brings up the clock whenever I swipe my finger across the pad...
Need I go on?
The Start screen is a hodge podge of different sized tiles, with every program I've installed appearing there, most of the time, more than once. No apps seem to work when I download them from the Windows store (to be fair, that may be my fault)
I've tried to like Win 8. I got it deliberately to try and like it, but it is just a mess. I'm now 4 months into Windows 8 and I wish I'd stayed with 7.
Oh, the laptop doesn't havea touchscreen, and will soon be connected to a telly as my monitor. Tell me again how good Win 8 is as a touch driven device when I'm 10 feet away from my telly?
The number that Microsoft has, which we don't, is the number of Windows 8 activations versus the number of Windows 7 activations. By now they should have a very good idea how many systems shipped with Windows 8 never boot it, how many boot it for a day or a week and then get "downgraded", and how many excess Windows 7 activations in the period (as opposed to Windows 7 "sold").
Where I work, the ones that don't get nuked to Windows 7 the moment they are unpacked, get nuked to Linux.
Sinowsky lived by telemetrics, and may have died by telemetrics. Good riddance.
BTW to anyone at Microsoft reading this ... WE TOLD YOU SO!
That is the thing.
The problem is not huge sales of Windows 7, nor huge downloads of Linux, nor even huge sales of Macs.
The problem is lack of PC sales, and those PCs just happen to have Windows 8 on them.
These PCs would not be selling no matter what OS they had on them, overwhelmingly companies and individuals already own perfectly adequate PCs.
People have adequate PCs so they're spending money on stuff they do not yet have adequate versions of (smart phones and tablets).
We have just got one at work, and it is driving our support chap mad, he cannot find anything, TIKFAM just gets in the way, classic shell will be going on as soon as it can connect to our server. Our last 4 Windows 7 PCs were set up in minutes in comparison.
As an aside, I converted a home PC to dual boot with Linux, now I do not know the OS I am just trying it out, and I am sure it was easier to set up for a Windows user. My next test is Wine. After that we are going to try it at work.
So when you get Windows users hating it and wanting to migrate things are bad.
I have tried using Win 8 too, and I have been a solid MS user from the days of DOS. While I have had issues, more or less, with previous Win releases, this is the first Windows version ever that actively gets in the way of what you are trying to do.
Vista forced me to look seriously at Linux, and I have been using both XP and Linux for the last two or three years. Looking back at my recent usage shows me that I now defaulted to Linux for about 90% of "boot ups". I use only one bit of software - Corel Draw - which has to run in a Win environment. There are open source alternatives to almost all the MS software I used to use - eg Open Office, Evolution for mail and calendar - and of course they are free.
Win 8 has now settled the question for me. My primary OS is now Mint 14. Wine, which comes bundled with Mint, will run a lot of basic Windows software perfectly well, and for Corel I have installed Virtualbox (free) and an old copy of XP (internet connection disabled of course) and the whole setup works beautifully.
The agonising MS updating process is the final nail in the Win coffin. Linux updates cover both the OS itself and can also update installed software at the same time. All of this seamlessly and quietly in the background, without endless nag screens and repeated reboots.
Why on earth would anyone want to stick with Windows now?
At a basic level, Xara is a viable alternative to Corel / Illustrator. It is a very powerful package and I have had a serious look at it. Unfortunately there comes a time when you need certain features / capabilities where Xara is a bit weak. A lot of what I do is more related to CAD than illustration, and Corel's layering, dimensioning and measurement capabilities are first class. I have been a Corel user since V2 (with windows runtime built in - DOS days!) "The best software in the world is the software you know best."
Also, with Virtualbox, it is essentially the same as starting any other native application. It appears on your Linux desktop almost as fast as a native app, provided of course that you stop Win from logging on to the internet and calling home for more junk.
Maybe someone in the MS Development office should post this quote from your post on the wall:
"The best software in the world is the software you know best."
It galls the *nix users that for the moment that's still Windows, but if MS remembers that quote and leverages it instead of aping whatever the current trending fad is, they remain a power player for as long as they want. Forget it like they did with Win 8, and one of these day it WILL be the *softies who are galled that the *nixes are the software people know best.
It was a different bit of Windows software, but this was me a few years ago, and the solution was the same, down to the VirtualBoxed XP not allowed near the internet for that one program.
I gave up with Vista, so I have managed to avoid the costs of Win7 and Win8, but my final question is the same.
Stupid is as stupid does!
Also, consider the corollary as expressed by certain irreverent military types, "If it's stupid but it works, it ain't stupid!"
If Windows 8 worked, maybe it wouldn't be so stupid. The brilliant MS chieftain ignored how people use computers:
"But the former Windows chief's problem ... was that he emphasised process over people. He built a version of Windows based on data and theory without actually understanding how people used Windows."
That's just plain stupid.
Ubuntu was the leading Linux distro until a corporate chief tried to force the Unity interface upon the complaining masses; the result was a mass protest and user flight.
Linux Mint elected to offer a choice of reworked, reincarnated, user-friendly desktop interfaces. Users flocked to it. If it's stupid but it works, it ain't stupid!
>Unlike WindblowZE, there is a cure for Unity: sudo apt-get install gnome-session-fallback
Not any more, not after the gnome teams recent efforts simplifing nautilus. Now it is sudo apt-get install xfce4 with the added advantage that it works across multiple x screens. Thank goodness there is choice in the linux world and we don't all have to follow Microsoft over the cliff.
"The new user and out-of-box experiences which are missing end customers' expectations are being reevaluated and crowsdsourced in an inclusive way (with the opinion of all actors being on the table) so that divisive perceptions can be managed, unaligned expectations improved and the multi-focused user interface adjusted to the customers' needs and wants, thus clarifying the overly aggressive interpretations of trade partners and evaluators about this company's rollout of its latest, vastly improved iteration of its flagship product."
With Windows 8, the system seems to work very well 'under the bonnet'. It's just TIFKAM and the other UI changes that pose the main problem. While these interfaces arguably work quite well on touch-enabled devices, they don't work as well on the traditional desktop.
I think that if Microsoft gives users the option to keep the traditional UI elements, they will be on to a winner.
To be fair to Vista, one of the biggest problems it had was the fact it was super bloated compared to XP, and people will still shipping 512MiB RAM + Vista. That recipe lead to swapping all day.
They also introduced DWM, at a time when DirectX 9 cards weren't super common, crippling the UI speed compared to XP if it wasn't enabled.
Actually, yeah, you're kind of right. It was an OS not built for the common machine at the time, so I guess it did suck "under the bonnet" to that end. Oh, and things like file copies sucked. The fact it kept every window in memory twice.
Oh screw it, I guess Vista was a mess.
It is a big difference though.
There's nothing wrong with Win 8 that couldn't be fixed by bunging on a start menu. Well I guess there's also the confusion between Metro and non-Metro programs like IE, and where your emails open up. But it's basically all down to changing a few Register settings and bunging a start menu on. i.e. not being arses and giving your customers the choice they want.
I'd also suspect that had they had the thing set up exactly as now, but with a simple switch so techies could put it into Windows 7 mode/Classic mode and hide Metro, then it would have been very successful. It would have got good reviews, and not pissed off all the techies. But still, most users would have been perfectly happy to just use it how it came, and so MS would still have been able to follow their dream of getting the Metro UI familiar with loads of people. If Sinofsky wasn't wiling to play ball, then they should have realised the mess when they shuffled him out the door, and done something. It's not as if they didn't have 9 months of beta test data to tell them the geeks hated it. And that feeling has percolated to some normal users, who tell me that Win 8 is rubbish.
Vista was different. It wasn't all Microsoft's fault. Sure it was bloated and it took a service pack to fix some slowness. They never fixed the bulk file copying bug. Try to copy a few hundred small files, and it will take hours, do them in chunks of 20, and it'll be over in minutes.
But there were also problems with OEMs dumping shit hardware - partly MS fault for allowing Vista Capable stickers I suppose (like HD Ready in TV land). Also a lot of the problems were down to lazy manufacturers not producing drivers. I got a Vista PC nine months after it came out. With a Soundblaster card. They'd still not written their Vista driver, it came out a month later. So that's 10 months from launch, add in the 6 month beta and the 6 months between the beta program ending and MS actually launching. And as a partner, they'd have had early Alpha access too. So they'd taken over 2 years. I know MS changed the driver model, but it's not like they didn't warn people. And put loads more of them into the OS as well.
Vista was a cock-up, but MS copped a lot of unfair flack for other people being crap, and had the excuse that they were trying to be as compatible as possible and re-write everything. Windows 8 is a bullet in the foot. Entirely self-inflicted. Even after they saw the problem they've still taken over a year to admit they fucked up. Which is truly rubbish. And that's even after dumping the exec responsible into the corporate piranha tank. Ooops!
There ate several start button add ons, and I would suggest its the first thing to install after you hook up to the internet.
The other real pain is that everything that used to be a neat sub menu entry is now an effing great tile. I mean a simple install of gvim gets you six new totally useless tiles on the start screen.
Still on a touch screen the new UI makes a lot of sense. Time will tell whether having one OS for itsbitsy phones and mega workstations is inspired or merely "brave'.
I do hope the linux community and system builders take advantage of this cockup. For the people to get the interface they want they can go buy a computer, download a fix to correct the interface (not something a non-tech would want to do in my experience) and then deal with the oddities of windows 8. Or they could install linux mint.
I am a firm believer that the right OS is the one that does what you need and then it is choice of what you want. Until 8 is fixed this would be a great time for PC makers to offer alternatives. And if people want to be adventurous and not have a start menu then they could trial destro's.
This is pretty much bang-on IMHO, I've got two laptops at home that I use a fair bit and when the drive died in one last year I took the plunge and installed Win 8 on it rather than it's original OS of Win 7. In "under-the-hood" terms 8 is brilliant, it installed really quickly, picked up alomost all the hardware and boots and runs very quickly. TIFKAM really, really doesn't work in a traditional mouse and keyboard setup though. Give it me on something like the Surface Pro and I can imagine it being brilliant but on a laptop or desktop? No thanks.
The frustrating thing is that offering a choice of "Win 7" mode out the box would have had me giving 8 a solid thumbs up!
"TIFKAM really, really doesn't work in a traditional mouse and keyboard setup though. Give it me on something like the Surface Pro and I can imagine it being brilliant"
I see this idea bandied about everywhere, the hypothesis that TIFKAM is great for touch but not for mouse + keyboard. Where I work we have a Windows RT tablet (Asus I think) for testing purposes. It looks lovely, but it's an absolute frickin nightmare to use. TIFKAM is arguably even worse on a touch device than on a normal PC. I know this is only anecdotal (and I'm no fan of Win 8 in the slightest), but on the occasions I've used it I actually find it far easier to navigate with mouse + keyboard than touch.
>There's nothing wrong with Win 8 that couldn't be fixed by bunging on a start menu.
If you mean 'so that you can completely avoid TIFKAM' I agree.
I think TIFKAM itself has other issues besides the start-menu.
The total store-only-apps lockin, the Kindergarden flat graphics, the low-resolution, the gestures on mouse controlled systems, etc. etc. all rub me the wrong way.
No, the underpowered machines were just the excuse. I built a system with a Quadcore, 8G of RAM, a Raptor drive, and a kick ass video card for gaming. It still sucked. Mostly because the drivers weren't there for 32-bit let alone 64-bit, and without the drivers, nobody (including the high end game companies that should have been eating it up) was writing software specifically for it.
At one point the Vista drive failed and I rebuilt the system on Win 7. Still using it today and I think my original build was about 6 years back.
If you've ever thought the windows registry sucked. The first transition to 64bit in xp and vista used registry redirects, err reflection, to give different results depending upon if the registry call was performed by 32 or 64 bit code, add to that the first real use of winsxs (windows side by side for OS files) Its no wonder Vista was a dog, performance wise.
Thankfully they dropped reflection with win7. Since MS use winsxs for code signing I cant see them removing it from the os files. So if the manafests get stuffed good luck having the os work. (I can fix the files, I can fix the registry, but not the manafest digital signatures they seem to be signed to the pc )
Read up about either system and if you dont think they're dumb, for please vote me down!
Well, let's see how MS deal with picking up their poop. In the case of Vista they issued W7, and expected users to pay again to replace a faulty product. Yeah, there were service packs, updated drivers and the odd bug fix, but in essence if you bought Vista, Microsoft expected to hide behind the EULA, and should you want to have a working, modern copy of Windows you could pay all over again.
Whilst many will be expecting MS to fix W8 with a service pack, I'm less sure that's the way the beast is moving. Things like Orifice 365, and other pseudo cloud/SaaS offerings make me think MS will currently be struggling less with the software, and more with the business side of whether they can make users pay for 8.1. If they balk at doing that for 8.1, I'm sure that's only temporary, and future service packs will be chargeable.
Microsoft still dominate productivity software and desktop OS, and will do for years, but their arrogance, incompetence, profiteering and misjudged innovation look to be slowly killing them. It had all of the feedback it needed during the public beta phase, and it simply ignored it, presumptiously telling the customers that it knew better than they did, lambasting PC makers for not making the hardware, and distributors for not shovelling the 5hit onto corporate customers. The idea of embracing touch for new formats was good innovation - the misguided bit was to to try and foist it on everybody. The idea of a common code base across devices was good innovation - the misguided bit there was to persist with the huge, bloated and antediluvian code base of Win 32, when a ground up new build was needed.
And all those things make me suspicious of Microsoft's claims to be ready to fix the faults of W8 - this is not a contrite company; it is not a listening company; and it is not a company with any respect for its customers or business partners. I fully expect some token changes in 8.1 like a half baked start button (that doesn't even do what the current third party add ons do), but I doubt they'll completely eliminate those rubbish "apps".
"W9 will no doubt use a new experimental UI that does away with the screen"
Nah - that will be Windows 10 by the "alternate releases" rule. Relabelling Windows 8 as "8.1" won't be a marketeer's choice - that makes it sound like a minor "plus" add-on. Possibly they could do a go-faster label like "Windows 8 SE"?
For a fairly close approximation ssh onto a machine in Australia and then back to a machine in the UK. Repeat until the character echo appears no faster than a quarter of a second after you type it, and often longer. This is what life was always like, in the days of 110 baud acoustically coupled modems.
(I've still got one at home in my loft. It needs an old bakelite standard-issue Post Office telephone to couple it to. And probably new valves and capacitors and rubber bits by now. Nice polished mahogany box, though! )
"I did once interface a teletype to a C64 over the ttl level I/O, but we moved to a house in town and I had to get rid of it."
When I was at school, a school mate who was living with my family for a year (his family had moved to America) had an ASR-33 teletype. We disassembled the paper tape reader and hacked the hole sensors to make a parallel printer interface that we plugged into an Acorn Atom (his, I think, mine already had a printer attached!)
Nah; I think 8 is their WindowsME moment: deride 16/32 bit Windows all you want, but for the time and given the software that ran on it, Win98 was OK. Then along came WindowsME and its endless parade of problems.
8's problems aren't specifically about its stability, but the perception exists that 8 is bad because of no start button, booting to metro, and no Aero Glass.
Had been thinking about getting a laptop for my younger son for a bit and when I saw an etailer with a very good price on the sort of thing I was looking for plus it had windows 7 on it (they seemed to be shifting old stock at a discount as the current version with win8 was £100 more!) I jumped.
I left it too late to get new laptops from my favourite brands without W8. So my XP laptop users are getting secondhand Dell W7 business laptops. There seems to be a fair number coming on the market with first generation Corei5/i7 cpus. The sturdy business models don't seem to have suffered the high fatigue rate that my nephew experienced with the much flimsier domestic ones.
they seemed to be shifting old stock at a discount as the current version with win8 was £100 more!)
That's not the reason. On Toshiba's price-list the Windows 8 systems are cheaper than the same hardware pre-loaded with Windows 7, by about £50. Methinks if you buy a Windows 7 one you are paying Microsoft for a 7 license and for an 8 license. On the other hand, if you buy the 8 system, you have to spend hours "downgrading" it, and you'd probably be on your own if you were to need support from Toshiba for a software issue.
I actually use Windows 8, despite my fevered gnashing that I'd never touch it... in the end I thought it hypocritical to bash it without having actually using it. Either way, my main PC uses Start8 as a replacement for TIFKAM... the laptop uses ex-Metro... I still don't get on with it, why does my scroll go sideways?! I just find ways to make it unnecessary to hit the Start button, that is all! Apart from some default customisations, like text size, being a bit silly on a 27", the internals (and I'm not including the GUI in that) of Windows 8 are an improvement on Windows 7, and once you set up Windows Explorer the way you want and hide the ribbon you'll never actually see it and have a nice large area to display files, bigger than 7.. and not that way they cheated in the screenshots. You really do need to really polish it, and extend it yourself to get anything out of it.... which is the problem. By default, it's utter trout.
Once you've installed a start menu replacement, fixed the file extensions, fixed the font sizes, fixed the explorer, defaulted the task manager to advanced, etc, etc, it genuinely is a rival for Windows 7. It's just you really have to work at it.
Fixing things like the Start button, hopefully a classic Start Menu, booting direct to desktop would be a real start. The default file associations need to be forced to desktop programs if you set it to default to desktop as well imo. At least they are making a few steps in the right direction, hopefully with Sinofsky gone we can heard them in a better direction.
Right, here's my bit of tin-foil hattery:
So, Linux desktops have never really taken off 'cos it's so difficult to get it to be 'nice', like the Microsoft Windows environment (other excuses may be available). So, Microsoft, in a far-sighted attempt to avoid accusations of anti-competitive niceness, decide to level the playing field by producing a system that you have to put effort in to if you want to avoid those pesky WTF moments. But if I've got to do that, then...
What we have here, people, is simply MS's way of trying to persuade the great unwashed that there might just be another way. Which will, naturally, lead to increased competition in the marketplace, to the betterment of mankind and happiness all around. So in fact Microsoft's introduction of a bit of a dog's breakfast of an OS is simply an altruistic attempt to make us all happier.
Yup, reckon that's it!
Maybe, maybe not.
Working at the support sharp end, as it were, I deal with a wide variety of different capability levels. The effort of getting some users out of Windows XP and onto Windows 7 is proving difficult enough, but you need to remember that these end users aren't necessarily trained IT folk. To that end, you tailor their experience to match their expectations and abilities, even if it is just a matter of putting a "Click this first", "Click this second" regime on the desktop. In that respect, and being a user of more than one operating system environment, the OS in use is immaterial.
Where the problem lies is when a user is used to running a system in a certain way and suddenly finds that it won't do it anymore. To that extent, there are desktop GUIs on Linux that can be easier for a seasoned non-IT user to work with than W7 or W8, for example KDE which, in its current guise or in the previous guise, looks a lot more like XP than any of its successors. As for being "messy", don't knock it until you try it. It might have been messy back when I was still working with RedHat 5.2 (alongside Windows 98), but that was a long time ago now.
So please be careful of your FUD. Make sure that it is up to date at least!
And raise you a tinfoil umbrella...
Microsoft are actively trying to exit the OS market because they don't need it any more. If they can push more users onto Linux, the OEMs will start offering it preinstalled and more software will be ported across or offered via the cloud, including MS' own offerings. Once Windows has been replaced by Linux as the ubiquitous desktop OS, MS will reveal the diabolical reality - their oft repeated claims that Linux infringes its intellectual property are really true! OEMs will be picked off one by one, just like Android phone makers, until they're all paying a licence for every Linux PC they sell. MS gets a revenue stream without the cost and hassle of developing/marketing/supporting an OS.
I'll get my tinfoil coat...
The Win8 internals are an improvement on XP in some respects, they finally got network and USB performance good, equalling where the house Linux PC and NAS servers have been for years. It uses RAM a lot better.
In other respects all that's changed is what triggers mysterious slowdowns and outright stalls and the File Explorer is more broken than ever. My install is riddled with compatibility problems, with apps, drivers and codecs, if they added a big 'run EVERYTHING in XP compatible mode' it would save me a lot of time. HyperV is broken on my AMD board, it looks like it works but subtly breaks BDA support.
After all these months tweaking problems Win8 is *near* the uptimes I had with XP. That's not something Microsoft should be proud of.
"Once you've installed a start menu replacement, fixed the file extensions, fixed the font sizes, fixed the explorer, defaulted the task manager to advanced, etc, etc, it genuinely is a rival for Windows 7. It's just you really have to work at it."
Isn't that the way with most new things - in order to make sense of them you try to relate to the earlier product.
Saying that , I keep meaning to bung on a 'start menu' thingy to see if it is any easier or if I've got used to desktop/tiles really quickly. It's certainly meant me going back to using hot keys more than before which sort of makes things easier.
New Coke did allow Coke Cola to change the recipe for the classic Coke by replacing the sweetener with the cheaper High Fructose Corn Syrup. They would not have been able to do that because people would be able to easily do taste comparisons if the New Coke buffer zone was not in place.
That's got a touch of urban myth apparently :)
See what Snopes says
"In 1980, five years before the introduction of New Coke, Coca-Cola had begun to allow bottlers to replace half the cane sugar in Coca-Cola with HFCS. By six months prior to New Coke's knocking the original Coca-Cola off the shelves, American Coca-Cola bottlers were allowed to use 100% HFCS."
"It reckoned OEMs weren’t turning out enough PCs, tabs and hybrids with fast enough processors, big enough memory or the necessary graphics acceleration."
Kind of like blaming an F1 engine manufacturer for you car's poor performance because the engine only produces 800bhp instead of wondering if a racing car should actually weigh 6 tons?
I'm not a fan. I actually like skeuomorphism. But I agree with some comments above about W8 being better "under the bonnet". The beta I tried was certainly super fast to boot and use. But I think for practically all power users, TIFKAM just gets in the way.
I'm interested to know if the fast boot time is the time until you see the "desktop" or the time before the HDD light stops flashing**.
In my experience* if you tried launching a program within two minutes of booting it all went to shit.
*I only have XP and have not used it for months.
**on my five year old laptop Ubuntu 12.10 takes 28 secs.
On my dual boot, Win8 v XP: boots to desktop in 45s v 60s. Then takes another minute or so before either actually responds to input. So a tiny (zero orders of magnitude) speed up and the same 'pretend to be ready' trickery we've got used to.
Of course you may have set XP up really badly or let it decay. Most people do ;)
I can't give you any solid figures as it was some time ago, but I remember being impressed by it enough to remember it over a year later! And that was compared to Windows 7, both of which are significantly faster than XP to boot on modern (5 years or younger) hardware.
It's much improved. Once at the desktop, or TIFKAM whatever application you want will just start. No more faffing around getting coffee after pressing power, then again after entering a password.
This is all very nice, but I only boot my PC once a day, thereby saving me nearly three whole minutes. Those three minutes are lost quite quickly when I have to go back into TIFCAM for whatever reason (such as opening a file I've not changed the default application for to a desktop equivalent). Likewise it feels "faster" in use, but against that is the new Office with bizarre animations that make it feel slower, such as the cursor in Word that can't keep up with me and I hate the way that the active cell in Excel has to animate across the sheet to the new active cell. I can only assume that's to aid a touch device in some way, but it's darn annoying.
This mess could be significantly improved by a simple installation option of "do you want things to default to a desktop application where one exists?" answer "yes" and it sets it all up for you. Then, boot to desktop rather than TIFKAM. Can all the touch crud where no touch device is detected. Job done.
I'm not fussed about the start button as all of the stuff I need is on the taskbar anyway, and pressing start gives me the long icon list similar to (wait for it) "launcher" in OSX, which nobody has a problem with.
Customers bring their new laptops to me to remove the manufactures crud. I have a new Acer Aspire here now with an i5 and 4GB memory and it is slow. 8 minutes to remove Wild Tangent games. There is also all the 'Bing' crud to remove now. The start button is still there it is just spread all over the desktop. Before I installed the usual apps like LibreOffice, I looked at the winsxs folder ... 7GB.
The bloat and slowness would be my main complaints if I had to use it.
Balmer is doing well here, he gets to sell the same stuff twice like he did with Vista and Seven.
Win 95 was good, providing you did a fresh install, not an upgrade and stuck rigidly to 32 bit programs (and DOS programs). Any win 16 stuff messed it up, badly. (And avoiding early pentium machines was also needed.)
You missed out Windows 2000 which was good.
XP was the most hideous pile of crap for the first few years (as were windows 3.x and 98) After lots of fixes they became usable, then reliable. (You could argue that the same happened to vista, but the renamed it and sold it again.)
Well, MS also renamed Win98 and sold it to us again as ME. Both Win98 and ME would freeze, and then when I restarted them, they would freeze during boot. Fun times.
Yes, Win2k was good, based on NT...and that was developed into XP...and Win7 did a good job of emulating that kind of UI. I tried Vista because the work laptop I had at the time had a license for it...and it flatly refused to activate, so I used Fedora instead.
Windows 3.x - OK, 3.11 for Workgroups much better.
Windows 95 - hmm OSR2 good
Windows NT - 3 not so good, better by 3.51, 4 better by SP6
Windows 98 - Not bad, SE good
Windows ME - WTF!
Windows 2000 - good, better after SP1
Windows XP - Good after SP1/2 depending who you speak to.
Windows Vista - pants until SP1 when it wasn't bad and the drivers had caught up.
Windows 7 - Good
Windows 8 - pants, if you can't get on with the interface. Otherwise pretty good.
MS can't even keep to their own good/bad release cycle myths!
your definition of good is far different from mine.
Win 3.0 was a nightmare to admin. Text files everywhere, 3.1 was better but not by much. Novell made it quite palatable though. Windows 95 was ok, much better when SP1 brought in dial up networking though. Nt4 was a horrific beast. Drivers were the main problems. windows 98 was a better alround solution, that and the fact norton ghost came out about the same time helped ENORMOUSLY on rollouts.
Windows 2000 was a godsend, I LOVED 2k. Server 2003 was an upgrade along with XP. The staple of many companies and it wont surprise me if quite a few companies still use server 2003 and XP as staple backbones. It still works as a combination - if not a bit long in the tooth.
Whilst vista was shit for many reasons, server 2008 (same core) was fantastic - there are probably quite a few companies still running 2k8 (rather than R2 based on W7). 2k8 also let you install client side extentions on XP making all the new shiney CSE work (well mostly) on older XP - you could bypass vista! R2 was ok but brought a few issues with it for some people, plus IIS 7.5 had a few issues too (the old 32/64 bit emulation). Server 2012 seems ok to me (win 8 core), the powershell improvements have been good).
Yeah, the service packs are critical to the successes. OSR2 was the only version of Win95 that was good; it was Win98 without the crud. And, as you say, XP didn't get good until after a couple of service packs had been applied, and the obscure "point" releases were the best versions of 16-bit Windows. You can even track that behaviour back into DOS. In ten years time we could all be eulogising Windows 8.11. Microsoft have got just enough of a clue to get there in the end, 50% of the time.
@ISYS: "I would love to know how I ended up with four thumbs down"
Very simple: you suggested that at least some Microsoft products were anything other than terrible. So that'll be automatic downvotes from:
- Bob Vistakin
- Barry Shitpeas
Enjoy your pint
Not sad, expected. Since I expect it, I'm occasionally surprised when he makes a thoughtful non-MS bashing post.
Although I do have to admit I sometimes wonder how much per post he gets paid by monkeyboy. Because I can't think of anything PR related that looks worse for *nix advocates than an Eadon post.
@ISYS although I didnt vote either way I guess you got downvoted because you are wrong. You missed crucial milestones in any of the OS's (some got better after a service pack, others we tripe all the way through), you missed 2000 - arguably the biggest jump of all the windows versions (the previous ones were veneers on the top of the previous release) 2000 was the pivotal burying of "DOS" and included a FAR easier to admin 2000 server along with an easier way to licence (arguable I know but it did help clarify a fair few issues). Dont forget sysprep, probably the single reason 2000 was rolled out over 98 so fast.
You include NT but fail to state which version and fail to mention the other server OS along the line i.e. vista might be shit on the desktop but was damn good as server 2008 and brought a lot to the table over 2003 (except search!). Whist windows 7 fixed many issues that vista brought along it could be argued that server 2008R2 was half hearted in many ways and forced upon people who had very good 2008 setups (yes KMS i'm looking at you).
Nice notion of good/bad/good/bad etc but it doesnt work.
They have reached a point where Windows, in particular V7 (and one could argue XP) are simply "really very good" and as such as are likely to become a victim (in the future) of thier own success.
The fact is, that as a general purpose OS, windows 7 (and even XP - heck even Win2000 was really nice) is really really good, and, because of that, there's little incentive to use anything else.
If Microsoft's "market" for new editions of Windows is through hardware sales (new PCs, laptops etc with Windows pre-installed) then they are also going to be a victim of that too. Modern PCs and laptops are *really* good these days, and again, there's little incentive to upgrade until they physically break down.
Lastly, just how much can you really change Windows and make it 'better'? I think it's naturally reached a point where you can't really innovate it that much anymore. Anything else is just bling. The one thing they *could* do is change the filesystem (like they were going to do with Longhorn, remember that?) to a database. The idea was that things like folders and file paths would become meaningless; you could just "query" the file system whith an SQL like syntax and get the files you need. Physical location would be irrelevant. But they never delivered on that on. I'm still waiting after all these years.
The idea was that things like folders and file paths would become meaningless; you could just "query" the file system whith an SQL like syntax and get the files you need. Physical location would be irrelevant. But they never delivered on that on. I'm still waiting after all these years."
For the way that *I* work, and store and organize, and access my data, files, file paths, and folders will never become "irrelevant". (I understand that you are not necessarily advocating this and are only pointing out something that was supposed to happen.) What will become "irrelevant" for me is any OS that omits files and folders, that requires "cloud integration", that adheres to the "software as a service" scam, well, you get the picture, I am sure.
This is one of the many reasons I don't like applications like iTunes which force you to work in certain ways with Albums, Genres, playlists etc. I sort my music into folders depending on various things (sometimes it's dates - for DJ tracks, sometimes it's albums, sometimes it's genres) and I have an MP3 player that allows me to play back using this format as well. To reorganise this into playlists and so forth would be a mammoth task.
Databases have their place but I think it would take some getting used to, if trying to move away from a standard filesystem format which is tried, tested and generally works.
That being said, I use GMail and barely do any e-mail sorting. I can find any e-mail I need from the last few years practically instantly. This pleases me immensely.
A file system that allows you to apply organisation structures but also instant search would be very nice indeed, but would probably require some serious adjustment from a user perspective. That said, many people are used to using iPads and so on and are completely "protected" from the underlying file system!
Personally I agree with @ForthIsNotDead. Windows is a great operating system overall, and is definitely unrivalled in the workplace for management etc.
Was it, or was it just a UI abstraction that worked like a desktop search e.g. Unity Dash? Because I'm pretty sure the underlying OS is going to want a hierarchical file structure, regardless of how it's presented to the user.
And f***ing virtual folders that aren't where the sodding documents really are. Becasue they pretend your stuff is in a sensible place when they are really stuck down below witt the settings.
It's the IT equivalent of putting your briefcase on top of the engine and telling you it's in the boot (trunk for Americans)
"The one thing they *could* do is change the filesystem (like they were going to do with Longhorn, remember that?) to a database. The idea was that things like folders and file paths would become meaningless; you could just "query" the file system whith an SQL like syntax and get the files you need. Physical location would be irrelevant."
And I'll tell you exactly why *that* doesn't work. A couple of evenings ago I was attempting to retrieve a load of specific songs (MP3's) to make 10 hours worth of compilation CD's. Some stored on my laptop, some on my old desktop and some on my partner's laptop. The ones on my PC's were easy to find, for years I'd always used programs like DB PowerAmp to rip music and set it up to save in the format of Music/Artist/Album/01_Artist _SongName.mp3. Everything was exactly where I expected to find it.
My partner on the other hand, had been an iTunes and Windows Media Player user. She could find all the songs fine searching in the iTunes or WMP libraries, but most of the time we had very little idea where things were really lurking in the recesses of the hard drive. As I was compiling all the files on my laptop and was networked into her machine to copy them over, my machine couldn't read her PC's 'libraries'. I was reduced to straight file system searches (which also relied on bloody iTunes naming files sensibly) and the whole thing was a massive pita.
I hate the 'libraries' way of doing things, whether it's within the Win7 file system, iPods & iTunes, Android's media player/gallery or whatever. I don't mind a media player or gallery giving me a nice straightforward list of my media, but I object when that actively obscures the underlying file structure in a way that stops me seeing what's going on behind the scenes.
I like win8 as it is and I personally think that MS have chickened out a little replacing the start button already...
My laptop doesn't really reboot, so its almost always at the desktop, if its not, then a large tile (showing a picture of my desktop) takes me to it...
If I wish to launch a program that isn't pinned to the taskbar I go to the bottom left and click - much like I used to with the start button... then instead of navigating a small tree to find my desired application I click a nice big icon.
My gripes lie with the disjointed way that proxy settings are reflected across the system - TIFKAM, windows update and other settings dont always reflect the settings in internet settings, requiring netsh importing, which is a bind...
windows q and rhe bottom left+right click are tools that I sorely miss on win7
As for my users... when confronted with win8 well, there is confusion, but like most things they have grumbled and then just got on with it... for good or bad, change happens and humans adapt... its only a few cosmetic changes, not replacing the keyboard with a sliding block puzzle block device inscribed with Klingon!!!
[Battlestations! Brace for incoming downvotes, and don flameproof trousers...]
I quite like the ribbon.
When I was an Excel power user, ten years ago, it might have annoyed me. But now I only pootle around in Office using the basic stuff it's quite convenient. It's mostly no worse than knowing that you had to click on the insert menu to stick a graph in. I suppose it's easier for some people to search through a list than to look through a big pile of grouped icons, and it does take up screen space - but for the new user I strongly suspect it's easier, and for the general user it puts the stuff they use most in easy reach.
Again though what MS should have done was put a nice easy switch in. Then new users would get the more friendly ribbon, and power uses and people who hate change would get what they'd always had. It would have cost them very little to do. Just like having an optional Start menu in Win 8.
Funny how all those people using that argument against the Ribbon have never found out that you can minimize it to show only tab names and still work with it - since when you mouse over a tab name the Ribbon shows that tabs' content.
I am not a Ribbon fanatic, but I do have to use 2010 like practically all business users (I'd rather stick with Office 2000 - it has more than I need already). It rather galls me that people stay fixated on this non-issue of Ribbon size instead of bashing stuff that really needs bashing.
"Funny how all those people using that argument against the Ribbon have never found out that you can minimize it to show only tab names and still work with it - since when you mouse over a tab name the Ribbon shows that tabs' content."
Not funny at all. We had to wait several years before Microsoft's usability experts realised that such a thing might be a good idea. Give it a few more years and perhaps they'll realise that they could replace all the graphics with purely textual command descriptions. Then, as the sun begins to swell into a red giant, they might have the inspired idea of using an underlined character within the text to indicate the keyboard shortcut for each command.
@Ken Hagan: "We had to wait several years before Microsoft's usability experts realised that such a thing might be a good idea."
You were able to collapse the Ribbon since beta versions of Office 2007, nobody ever had to "wait" for that at all.
And I still defy anyone to explain how the arrangement of even the "Tools" menu in Office 2003 is even close to being more logical or usable than the Ribbon. As someone who still has to use it at work, the old Office interface is painfully difficult to work with compared to the new one.
The really interesting figure would be how many of the Windows 8 Pro licences sold on a machine have been downgraded to Windows 7 Pro?
I can say EVERY machine we have sent out has been downgraded. They may have had poor sales on licences, but I'd imagine the actual use of Windows 8 (Professional) would be substantially lower.
So, this people think forcing user toward a model based on "a single (MS approved, adware based, heavily sandboxed) application at time" is educating users that are currently accustomed to multiple applications at time, some free, some Open Source, distributed as the author likes and not requiring MS approval?
Well Ballmer, if you start from no product as Apple and Google and roll out a sandboxed, dictatorial store based, single app at time, in application ads laden environment, you may succeed and be praised being it better than nothing... You may even end creating a brand new market and quickly monopolize it.
But if you start from an environment where MS approval is not required and you impose it, you'll p1ss off developers, if you start with users accustomed to multiple windows and say it is legacy and the future is a single full screen app at time (like in DOS...) people will laugh at you, if you stubbornly refuse to improve touch on Win32 to roll out a maimed competing api like RT that is barely capable to accomplish what was done on Windows 1.0, the world will midll3 finger you.
You cannot compete ruining what your product has better than your competitors! You should focus on what your competitors does better: improve touch on Win32, roll out a good app launcher in Win32, deprecate ridiculous low screen resolutions careless oem pushes on ridiculously sub-par products, support accelerometers and GPS, integrate sim card by design (no more ceezy chinese drivers please!), and please take an iPad in your hands and understand why people prefer handling it rather than a cheap squeaky plastic PC with multicolor leds flashing in your eyes by design when you try to watch a movie in your dark room.
That is what just happened to Windows 8, a slightly improved Windows 7 stubbornly hidden by Microsoft after a Windows 1.0 like user interface, by design getting all the way in user's workflow, and commercially marketed as if the good 7 part is dead and the future is a reinvented wheel not better than mid-80's games user interfaces.
I didn't have a choice regarding when I got a new laptop. My Acer did in its motherboard and the replacement would have cost more than this new laptop did...otherwise I would have waited to see whether Win8 was any good.
I have since cooked "secure boot" and installed Windows 7 again :)
Ok this one will probably be downvoted to oblivion.
I use Windows 8 on three machines daily, 2 for work and one for home use. All three are multicore machines with SSD boot drves, all three were previously Windows 7 and all three perform better and more reliably under 8. I actually had to go and google a windows 8 BSOD to see what it looked like, never seen one. Boot times are ridiculously low, much faster than 7 and TIFKAM is history as I have boot to desktop and Startisback installed. I'm not a novice user and I delve into the nether regions of hardware/drivers/registry whenever required. The reorganisation of aspects of the W8 interface, whilst initially irritating soon disappears when you get used to it, as we all had to do in almost every version of windows since 1.0 (that one was installed, messed with and immediately consigned to the trash). TIFKAM should have been an option selectable if you had a touch screen, I wonder what the reception to 8 would have been if M$ had done this instead of forcing its use on everyone.
Beer for those who read it all.
Tried the Beta, tried to like it .... gave it to my son, he tried to like it
last 2 PC purchases were from DELL who sell Business laptops with default of Win7.
Will not even consider W8 on it's current form. It will have to be an upgrade of W7 appearance before we consider it.
and................. MINT looks better and better all the time , even has Aero type effects
I use several Win8 systems and not had any problems either. No problems with drivers or need to fiddle with registry. I don't reboot often and rarely find myself out of the desktop so mostly business as usual on the desktop same as Win7. Personally couldn't care less about the start menu but some people apparently do so agree it was pendantic of Microsoft to insist those who care install a third party utility.
Some apps like many games work well fully screen whatever the size of the display so Windows store apps are a step forward for some purposes (not a touch thing, a well written WinRT app will be fine with keyboard/mouse). So TIFKAM has its uses.
However. I don't know if Microsoft has actually proposed a scenario where multitasking desktop apps are replace by TIFKAM full screen style modes of working. Some people seem to believe that is the direction of Windows despite the fact that one glance of a calculator running on a 30" screen is a reductio ad absurdum.
But [Sinofsky's] problem - which ultimately became Microsoft and Windows 8's problem, was that he emphasised process over people. He built a version of Windows based on data and theory without actually understanding how people used Windows. It was no wonder people got confused and we have arrived at where we are today.
Meanwhile over at Apple hardware designer Jonny Ive has been given god-like control over software UI design.
What'll be the results of that decision, I wonder?
The telemetry is arguably just a smokescreen they used to justify an existing plan. If they noticed the problems interpreting the data Sinovsky would have ignored the problems and ploughed on, because Win8 is about owning new markets, not making Windows better.
My stats would show that 90% of launches are double clicked documents in File Explorer. Should the entire UI just become a File Explorer... of course not. The next 7-9% are pinned apps on the start bar or desktop. Microsofts claim is the remaining 1-3% of launches from my Start Menu are insignificant. But in reality they're launching from my Menu because I might only run an app once a month (or even once a year), these are the 100+ tools so infrequently used pinning makes no sense, that would overflow any flat organisation on limited screen space - especially if every link is a tile. These are the tools that fit perfectly in a hierarchical menu tree like the Start Menu.
Apparently my substantial use of drag'n'drop is also wrong, bypassing Windows awful file selection dialogs. But full screen apps in the shiny Metro world makes it unusable so clearly I'm doing something wrong. Just can't quite work out why taking advantage of multiple large screens to improve my workflow is wrong...
MS choose to pretend that infrequent use means a feature has no value. They're completely wrong. But removing desktop features isn't about usability, it's about bludgeoning their way onto phones and tablets through monopoly abuse, not value to end users.
I think you have a very good point.
Isn't the telemetry the "Allow Microsoft to capture data to improve Windows" stuff that we techies all switch off when setting up a machine? If so, then the telemetry is mostly collected from people who've had to figure it all out by themselves. How do you get on the internet? "Well, I press the start button and type in INTERNET and press that big button with the arrow." Hey Presto! Internet Explorer opens. "I type in word prosessorator and press the button" Voila! Word opens.
So Sinofsky came up with an interface that worked against the way that most of us actually worked, but he didn't know, because we techies were all hiding from Microsoft's prying eyes.
Unless everyone at MS was very naïve and taken in by all the hype, I'm sure this must have been part of the plan all along. I suspect someone high up knew that the only way to get metro out there was to ignore all their existing customers and release windows 8 as a "dead end" while they decided on a more sustainable plan for the future.
Whether they actually have a sensible plan for future releases is anyone's guess. I can't personally see any future for touch screen laptops or for metro on the desktop.
A better conspiracy theory is that someone high up knew that the only way to get Sinofsky out (of) there was to give him unlimited rope. Microsoft's behaviour these last ten years makes sense as a largely hidden but bloody war of corporate politics amongst executives who have been gifted with a monopoly so secure that it doesn't matter what they release.
"Unless everyone at MS was very naïve and taken in by all the hype, I'm sure this must have been part of the plan all along. I suspect someone high up knew that the only way to get metro out there was to ignore all their existing customers and release windows 8 as a "dead end" while they decided on a more sustainable plan for the future."
You give the Microsoft "brain trust" way too much credit. A much simpler (and more likely) explanation is that they are isolated, arrogant, clueless and ignorant.
I honestly still can't see what all the fuss is about, Windows 8 works fine for me and I hated that damn start button. My laptop (which had Windows 7 on it) is quicker to boot up, more stable and runs all my work programs quicker. 2 days getting use to a larger different type of "start menu" and I'm okay, panic over...
We really do need to find a way of navigating our operating systems without massive folder lists and key combinations. People complain that Microsoft is not creative enough but the moment it makes a bold different move, people complain.
Like those who want rid of the ribbon interface the windows 8 haters would have us all doing keyboard finger gymnastics and mouse races through menus and folders. A potential solution to our obesity problem (whilst increasing incidents of RSI) but not sadly making it easier to use our Operating Systems....
If you don't like it go and use some silly Linux flavour and enjoy your command line/bloody awful GUI somewhere else.
"[...] am I the only one finding these comments hard to read with the mahoosive orange Office 365 banner surrounding the content?"
Try using Firefox with the AdBlock plug-in. Has speeded up my browsing by not having to wait for adverts to download and render. It has also removed their visual distractions.
Also available for Chrome may I add...
I relatively recently became an Adblock convert after Google's profiling went crazy and decided I was single and aged 65+, and started showing me endless adverts for 'mature dating' (and I do mean *mature*). All attempts to opt out from their targeted advertising made no difference at all, so I went the Adblock route. They can incorrectly profile me all they want now, I'll never see their crap ads anyway :)
I installed a licenced copy of windows 8 pro on my thinkpad x61s, installed every update available. Installed a single app - avgfree and I had 8 BSOD's in two days.
I re-installed it, did the upgrades, installed defender instead of cvg and the BSOD's continued.
I then nuked it and put fedora18 back on.
I wanted a windows machine as I have another thinkpad and didn't really see the point in having two almost identical OSes.
Using win8 was fairly painful, as the UI makes no sense unless it is on a tablet or a telephone, so they are right to vista it. Whether I'll try blue when it comes out in another question.
There is something wrong with your laptop then. It simply doesn't BSOD for anything except dodgy hardware. The fact that Fedora is running well on it suggests that Fedora doesn't use a hardware function that Win8 does.
Did you look up any of the BSODs, to see what caused the problem? Or did you just say "this is rubbish, I'm off back to Linux?"
Yes I did, and they were different BSOD's each time. The laptop has been running constantly, only using sleep mode for the pas couple of years, running various virtualisation technologies, xen, kvm, vmware workstation and also the one from SUN that the name escapes me. I managed to run lots of windows flavours on this host for testing apps and running other scenarios.
The machine has never crashed before, yet with windows 8, it would BSOD just idling. Also ran memtest86 over night and other diags. Never an issue found.
So it is not a hardware issue, is a shit OS.
Correction - I don't actually remember what the BSOD's were, so cannot say for sure if they were the same. I seem to remember the bitmap being difficult to read as it was not at all clear, but it was a freshly installed machine with all updates and no apps installed, this should not crash - since MS provided all the software.
Windows 8 went down twice, both times when I tried to install internet security softare on it. The first time I had to reinstall it...the same day I bought tha laptop. The second time was a couple months later, with a different internet security...
I now have Windows 7 on here, and will shortly be installing Fedora 18 to dual boot.
I recomment you wait for at least a year and see what comes of Blue. That's what I'll do this time...
I have the same problem with most Linux distros on my PC. Windows 7 just works.
Probably is a driver issue in both our cases, but those things can take a long time to figure out.
I only installed Linux just to see what the fuss was about. But it kept locking up my PC. To get any real work done I have to use Windows 7 anyway. I need to use real Microsoft Office, and several other engineering programs that only run in Windows.
Our IT department has forbidden the use of Windows 8 until Microsoft fixes the GUI to make it desktop friendly. They gave it to a few users and a trial basis and the results were a disaster.
Hey, did you know … ?
I got a touch screen ‘puter and I tried Windows 8 on it, and I just hate it when I have to rub my fingers on that draggy-plastic surface, you know? So I got this, like, idea that hot dogs are a lot like fingers, so I got a pack of hot dogs, but not the frozen ones, you know, but, like, the really nice tactile, soft and squeezy type hot dogs? And I put some paper napkins on the keyboard 'cause I got the touch screen so I don’t need the keyboard?
And I found, like Wow! I can flop and flap and flip them icons with the end of the hot dog on that touch screen, and them icons follow like little kittens … and all afternoon man I got so much browsin’ and stuff done! I only wore out three of them hotdogs doing the Windows 8 slap and drag thing, so that left the others in the pack for lunch. Man that screen was a mess! But you know, I licked it all off and it was delicious! And then the napkins on the keyboard was only a little gooey so they made a good face-wipe, and I gotta tell ya …
Man, you gotta get Windows 8 and some hot dogs!
The initial statements coming from Redmond that "the vendors didn't get it", which also included members of the Partner network like myself, was something I didn't quite appreciate.
Now, I realize it's all business and when looking at my position I get what I pay for (I have a free subscription to the Partner network, simply because my company isn't big enough (yet >:-) ) to justify a subscription plan). But even so this doesn't feel right; when it comes to Windows 7, Office 2010 (and partly 2013), .NET and their server line of products I'm actually quite a believer. Its why my company often sells these kind of products.
But the thing is; I'm not a fan because we're talking Microsoft. I'm a fan because this stuff works for me, and I think it can work for several of my customers as well. Within this context I'm not a Windows 8 fan, at all. Its a completely flawed design in my opinion.
And what does Microsoft do? Basically tells the world that "I didn't get it".
I realize it's all business, I shrug and move on. But how many actual fans of their products who also didn't like Windows 8 have they pissed off with this? People who like Windows because it's Windows and also got stuck in the awkwardness that was Metro?
Fool me once (Vista); shame on you. Fool me twice (Win8); shame on me. Fool me three times?
"But how many actual fans of their products who also didn't like Windows 8 have they pissed off with this?"
A WHOLE bunch! Ones that went to iOS or Android tablets, Macs, or Linux. And these folks will NEVER be coming back. Basically, Windows 8 was the final straw. Windows 8 finally caused enough pain that people said fuck up, bit the bullet, and bailed on Windows. Windows 8 has triggered the beginning of the end for the Windows franchise in the consumer market place.
I hate this meme. Christ it needs to die. How about we stop doing this alternating junk and just evaluate each thing as it comes.
Frequently ignored is the fact that Windows 2000 (NT5) came one version before Windows XP (NT5.1), and yet both were IMMENSELY successful, and well liked.
Those people who say XP was shit day one are talking nonsense, too, I remember using it. It really did take a couple of service packs to be decent, but it was no shitfest compared to 2000 that some seem to choose to remember. Features like Zero Config Wireless helped rid the world of a million different wireless UIs, the built in image viewer was a very welcome addition, and so on. God help me if anyone says "Fischer Price" or "Tellytubby" UI, because you know full well there was a classic option.
Microsoft's incredibly deep pockets and almost unique capacity to (almost) single handedly energise or depress the tech sector make it seriously dangerous since it now misses a lot more than it hits. The rapid pace of tech developments allows companies to amass vast cash piles on one or two great early ideas from when they were lean and hungry, then spend whittling the pile down while producing serial dross. The problem is they still so dominate that they act as dead weight on real change, and use their muscle to prop up fading glory.
The capitalism of the last century's industrial era is just far too slow on its feet to reward to the good and allow the bad to fail without damaging overall progress. Something has to give or most of the tech sectors cash is going to be sitting around shoring up ever slowing mediocrity and stifling genuinely useful, world changing progress for the sake of milking the last drop from the has been cash cows.
I'm very much a 'right-click and see what it's got' user but W8 seems to have a reluctance to pop up a right-click menu.
I rarely used drag and drop on the recycle bin to delete but it's now quicker than waiting for the right-click menu to arrive (no, I need the other hand for a mug of tea)
"""The Sinofsky way placed complete and total faith in telemetry data culled from how users interacted with Windows to build a "perfect" version of Windows that bore no resemblance to reality."""
Bullshit, I call all that bullshit.
They calculatedly and deliberately tried to replace the traditional Windows interface with a sort of universal interface geared towards creating their own wallet garden.
And this has backfired 100%
Obviously it is easier to blame it all on Sinofsky, but he did what he was asked for.
"They calculatedly and deliberately tried to replace the traditional Windows interface with a sort of universal interface geared towards creating their own wallet garden.
And this has backfired 100%
Obviously it is easier to blame it all on Sinofsky, but he did what he was asked for."
Isn't that all we really wanted? 7 polished to a mirror shine? I know that's what I hoped for.
I actually have no problem with Microsoft's idea of a "wallet garden" (wonderful phrase), but they should have looked over at Mac OS X. An App Store, for applications on your desktop. As you were always used to.
They should have had an optionally invoked touch and full screen interface - "Apps" in their "App store" could be marked with "tablet mode capable" or something. So you pick the tablet style ones you want, press some universal key combination for "tablet mode" and then boom, something like Metro, only not all encompassing.
An OEM could choose to ship with "tablet mode" as the default, so it shows apps that support it first in the list when you search.
Essentially, Microsoft needs to look long and hard at both Start8 and ModernMix, and realise that's what they should have done all along.
I have rolled out 40+ win 8 images to our existing and new hardware, integrated it with our existing AD and other than a few of our older users (who insist on classic shell) have had no major issues. Sure IE 10 group policy requires the same hacks as IE9 before the policy packs were updated. But this is nothing new and should be expected by most long term Microsoft support personal.
Every time a new OS comes out there is always a teaching period and a few paradigm changes that always take a while to get used to. Windows XP vs 7 is a paradigm shift and Windows 8 is as well vs any of the other MS releases. If you can't deal with it, cop out and use the classic shell - Or become a socialist and buy a MAC. At least there is a choice with MS. Also your not paying for a designer brand built in China on mondern day slave labour marketed as the best thing since floppy disks.
You could also try open source? But I also have to say, you get what you pay for. Even google isnt really open source. I mean just because you can download and compile some code doesn't make it truly open (Much like Apples core Unix). It needs to be a community driven and collaborative piece of software (Firefox/Linux) to be truly open source.
People hate change - I think it's time for people to take a few minutes, learn something new and get over it. It's actually OK.
They're complaining because they have not experienced what you experienced.
Looking at recent desktop and laptop sales numbers they have not had your experience because they have not tried due to lack of purchasing even computers for pilot trials. (A polite way saying most of us lack your first hand experience.)
People want to blame Windows 8 for lack of PC sales, but if it was the reason punters would be buying Macs of Linux machines. So it isn't. PC sales are down to the PC market maturing and market saturation setting in.
The almost universal advise given to people moaning about the metro start sceen is "hit the windows key and type the first few letters of what you are trying to run" was his aim to increase that percentage in Windows 8?
The Win 7 start menu is shit. I am not surprised people turn to search for the less often used programs. Click on 'all programs' to get a scrolling list the size of which depends on the start menu displayed history setting then manually expand folders in the list to finally see what you need to click on. Go back to all programs and it doesn't even remember where you were or what was expanded.
Anyhow its all bollocks. Win 8 has Metro and the App store to force it on Microsoft's captive desktop market to promote its use on fondleslabs and phones. It is shit for the desktop and usability judgements should be restricted to the small form factor touch devices it and the Apps was designed for.
Win 8 should have shipped with a small hammer so people know what to do when it tells them to 'tap here'.
"The Win 7 start menu is shit. "
Indeed. I install classicshell on ALL Windows 7 systems I configure for my clients, and configure classicshell with a prebuilt configuration XML file that provides the highly efficient XP foldout menus and other nice optimizations.
Touch screens have been tried before. The research, conducted almost thirty years ago, concluded that desktop touch screens were ergonomically harmful resulting in 'gorilla' arm fatigue. Several major players HAD touch screen systems utilized mainly in education and testing. They ALL ultimately failed because of user complaints.
There wasn't the hardware or software 30 years ago to do relevant ergonomic testing for desktop modes of use for multitouch we are looking at nowadays so hardly relevant.
I remember some of those early touch systems in kiosk applications and of course the idea of using them to replace keyboard and the newfangled mouse was laughable at the time, no need for extensive research.
"Are you suggesting the addition of multitouch magically makes holding arms out easier to endure?"
The natural use of a desktop touch screen would be flat on a desk - or at a slightly raised angle as used by draughtsmen or similar occupations. They might need glass protection - as frequent cleaning may damage softer materials.
It's hard to see how fine positioning would be achieved without a stylus. However gripping one for prolonged periods would give rise to the same fatigue experienced with pens or pencils. Picking it up when switching from typing on a physical keyboard would be less easy than just grabbing a mouse.
The arm fatigue problems in the past were due to CRT screens invariably being vertical. Those touch screens also gave rise to skin problems on fingers - attributed to the effects of static electricity.
"The arm fatigue problems in the past were due to CRT screens invariably being vertical."
So your solution for accountants and CAD/CAM designers (for example) is to lay their two vertical 42" screens down horizontally and then hunch over them all day, exchanging the neck and shoulder damage induced by vertical touchscreens for neck, shoulder AND back damage induced by horizontal touchscreens?
I think you're missing the big issue: with horizontal screens comfortably within reach, where would I put my coffee?
Come to think of it, where would the keyboard go? Or would I be swapping a cheap physical keyboard for wasting expensive screen estate on an inferior touch version...
I have used it for a few months now, and I one day looked over at a colleagues Windows 7 laptop and realized: we're being made to put up with a clumsy and tedious new UI that doesn't look or feel nearly as refined and professional as Windows 7. TIFKAM looks more like Vista IMO. I have installed Windows 7 and I am happier.
Microsoft has to learn this lesson and learn it now, because their customers may not put up with a third Vista. They can try that, but they may just wake up to a shock one morning when their sales are in free fall and can't be pulled up because people are sick of their arrogance. Ballmer will throw many chairs that day...
Computers should work for people, not the other way around. And don't require expensive hardware upgrades TO RUN A DAMN OS. The OS is merely an enabler of computing, not an application that helps people improve their lives.
In general you go to a new version of Windows along with going to a new computer.
Why would anyone update the OS on their computer to a new version when it was already had a good OS?
The only valid reasons to ever install a new version of Windows are:
1. The existing version is lousy (Vista), or
2. You've added new hardware that is incompatible with the existing version.
3. The new version has a new feature that is so attractive you cannot live without it.
From what I have seen, the hardware support in Win 8 is actually much better than Win 7 IF you are using rather recent hardware. If not, there are still some improvements. In fact, I have used several Win 8 drivers in a Win 7 operating system and they work just fine.
That may open the door to hybrid Win 7/8 possibilities kind of like http://www.mdgx.com/upd98me.php where Axcel216 was keeping Win 98 alive by merging newer files with it. Mostly worked quite well and was fun back in the day.
We almost all agree that the Win 8 GUI sucks rabid monkey butt.
The logical conclusion to all the complaining is that "Blue" will resolve that issue at a minimum by putting a different "skin" similar to Classic Shell into the mix.
That's why the call it a "Shell" as it's no big deal to put a new shell on these operating systems and they've been doing it since XP.
Personally, I have used Classic Shell on Win 7 for quite a while and see no reason to change to Win 8 so I'm waiting for Windows 9 at this point.
This whole debate is just a misunderstanding by the press.
Microsoft is speeding up Windows release cycles, so this isn't a quick fix being brought forward, Windows blue was always going to be coming sooner rather than later. Apple does more frequent released of OSX and Microsoft has been trying to move to this system.
If Bill Gates was still at the day-to-day helm of Microsoft I doubt TIFKAM would have made it to market in its present form. (Same too for the Office ribbon interface.) But the penny-wise, pound foolish Wal-Mart crowd led by Steve Ballmer rarely, if ever, actually touch new products or use them on a daily basis. Oh sure they saw the new interface in numerous meetings, demonstrations, and powerpoint decks. But use it? That's for someone else.
Sinofsky was the perfect fit for the Win8 job. MS execs love to cut corners, do things forever more cheaply and they love numbers. Lots of numbers, mountains of numbers, numbers 24/7. Sinofsky leveraged the automated testing techniques prevalent throughout the industry and applied them to design. His telemetry generated massive amounts of irrefutable data, quickly and efficiently. Best of all, the automation reduced or practically eliminated those profit corroding human labor costs. Huzza for the shareholders! Executive bonuses all around! Sinofsky was a genius and heir to the throne. Until of course he wasn't and someone had to take the fall.
Oh, and the revamp is not called BLUE - its BLUTH. At a meeting, soon after Win8 for the desktop was released and hordes of numbers rolled in - Ballmer: "I've made a terrible mistake". Followed soon after by: "Sinofsky - You're fired". Surprised it wasn't called Trump.
MS should have made Metro a hidden feature that requires unlocking for one version of Windows.
That does two things:
1. Allows them to see if it is a good idea.
2. Gets hobbyists and professionals interested in making the effort to adopt it.
Still, I think Metro would have been doomed anyways and it is good to see MS waking up to that fact.
Lots of blame laid at the feet of Sinofsky and Ballmer, but there's one person in particular who's responsible for the Ribbon and Metro in Win8--Jensen Harris. If you've seen the guy speak, he clearly imagines himself as a Steve Jobs-type who's reinventing user interfaces and knows what's best for users. After the backlash to the ribbon I don't understand why he was given a position of influence in Windows and not fired.
A Mac for the missus who's laptop had died and was demanding a new machine.
There I am in PCWorld looking at all the laptops available and 2 issues persisted.
1. they all had windows 8
2. unless I wanted a large laptop they were all 720p screen resolutions.
point 2 I could just about live with as they were well priced but point 1 stopped me with every single one I looked at no matter the price.
After Apple tax I'm now significantly poorer but the nagging sensation in my ear has gone :)
"The Sinofsky way placed complete and total faith in telemetry data culled from how users interacted with Windows to build a "perfect" version of Windows that bore no resemblance to reality."
Looks like it means that Windows phones home with a lot more data than has ever been admitted to before.
I've been using Metro/Win-8 since it came out and while it's true that it's front end menu entry system is different, the fact is it's not that different from previous versions and is going to work a hell of a lot better in a touch environment than Win 7 style interfaces. I have no reason to love windows at all but realistically, once you start using the new interface, it's OK.
I suspect most of the moaners don't actually use Win-8 at all.
"I suspect most of the moaners don't actually use Win-8 at all."
Ah, and oldie but goodie. Let me publish the full list of MicroShill talking points to save you the effort:
1. Anyone who says they don't like Windows 8 has never used it.
2. Anyone who doesn't like Windows 8 is stupid.
3. Anyone who doesn't like Windows 8 is "afraid" of change.
4. I've upgraded my 8 year old laptop that has 1 GB ram and 80 GB HD with Windows 8 and it runs 10 times faster than with XP.
5. I bought a Windows 8/Window RT device for each and every member of my family and they ALL simply LOVE it!
6. Windows 8 is EXACTLY like Windows 7, only better!
7. Metro UI is REALLY the same as the Start Menu.
8. Poor acceptance of the Windows 8/Windows RT/Metro UI is all the fault of the "Apple Fanboi" and "Windows 8 hater" writers and blog posters. Their negative comments are what have caused the average non-technical consumer who never reads these web sites in the first place to stay away from Windows 8 in droves. If only the "press" had given Windows 8 a "fair" shake, it would have been a roaring success (even though the public doesn't read the tecnical press in the first place).
9. I'm a business consultant and ALL of my business clients have been clammering for Windows 8 and they ALL just love it when I install it and they now realize how much FUN computing can be!
10. I'm in IT and NONE of our employees have trouble learning Windows 8, and they LOVE it!
11. You must be old!
12. My 75 year old mother and my 5 year old girl are running Windows 8 with no problems.
13. You are obviously a troll!
The core OS in 8 is great. Fast, stable and generally blood brilliant. The issue is that damned abomination TIFKIM. Heck, I own a WinMo phone, and I can't even tolerate it on a desktop or laptop.
An operating system shouldn't ever get in the way of you doing the work you want to do, it should help you do that better, not get in the way. A good example of how utterly backwards it is, is how the hell does a user print from Mail or even IE in it? is it on the lil ... button like on the new look Hotmail? nope. Is it on the charms bar? nope. Quiet simply they forgot the print command and it's now only accessible from Control-P...so hang on, this is a touch based OS which to do a basic feature such as print you need a keyboard and a history of old control key commands.
Am I using 8 on my desktop. Yes...why? because the core OS is as said above very good. But I am using Start8 to avoid all signs of TIFKIM. While in 8.1 MS is making steps in the right direction with the mention of booting to classical desktop and things. The current rumor mill has it that the Start button is still going to be missing and TIFKIM is still going to be the default start menu. It's not a step far enough, and currently the idea mix for ease of use and productivity is through a Start menu application like Start8.
Watch out for a change in the wind coming from Redmond as others talk about Windows 8 in terms of "challenges", "lesson learned", and "new opportunities".
should be interpreted as The SHIT has hit the fan, run for cover now!!!!!!!
Now, just how do they save that cluster fuck called WindblowZE 8???
Looks like, sadly, Microsoft may have banged the first nail in the coffin of the traditional computer. From now on the mass market will be phones and tablets and any of us that want to do real work will have to buy one of them specialised gizmos with a keyboard, and pay the associated premium for specialised hardware.
I am reminded about an earlier time before mice were everywhere. In those days the "pointer" was a light pen (remember those). I saw a screen based workstation that had one "new fancy" (for the time) lightpens. The people in the hospital (where it was used) had gotten used to it to select things and edit fields (it might have been character entry based, I don't recall). One thing that I did notice was that they had a hand rest for the monitor. This obviously was due to user complaints for having to reach and point on the screen (as touch screens do now). At the time I believe (this might have been over 20 years ago) I commented about the arm rest, and asked "why". The response was that they couldn't use the tab key to switch from field to field on the entry form, so they HAD to use the light pen and it was very tiring after a shift (pre-cursor to carpal tunnel syndrome?).
Now if the people at Microsoft had been FORCED to use their new interface to generate those reports in Word, or Excel, there might have been a different choice. As it stands now, Touch for a desktop machine, isn't going to happen. EVER! OSHA might even have a say in this!
An interesting use of 'telemetrics' that I am sure will someday be included in some textbook as an example of how NOT to gather statistics. Sinofsky's FIRST error was only using a data set derived from telemetric data, instead of actual observation. (A sort of self-selecting data set of rather strange people...) His SECOND error was assuming that the set of data derived from people using searches was somehow meaningful.
Well now they've made a right mess of their flagship product. Nice job lads!
The solution is simple. Fork the product. Make a Win 7+ for traditional markets and a separate Win Metro for the world of touch. Let each evolve separately as Apple has done with iOS and OS X.
The current Frankensystem is and epic fail.
It could have launched from somewhere near the start button and enabled easy buying and installing software. A bit like Steam but better integrated.
As far as a mouse goes, I can cover the entire screen and accurately select and move things about while only moving the mouse 2 inches in either direction with my arm resting on the table, why would I want to go waving in the air delicately touching a 22 inching screen, whilst my arm is held in constant muscle tension, that's stupid.
Have they even tried to use a touch screen on a PC (that is about half a meter away from your chair) for several hours? not only does your back start to hurt, but also your arms get tired VERY quickly, its all in all a VERY uncomfortable solution. They should've thought of that earlier.
MS do this every time, they release something very different and everyone hates it, two or three years later they change the GUI a little and fix the bugs and then release it as a new version which people love.
Windows 95 < Windows 98
Windows 2000 < Windows XP
Windows Vista < Windows 7
Windows 8 < watch this space
It is as predictable as the Star Trek odd/even rule.
... don't fall for it.
In fact when they return the Start Button it should be labeled "Mojave" button. The smart money is that it will point back to Metro! That will be the biggest slap in the face any company has ever perpetrated on its customers.
You know, when they said they were listening to the Vista criticisms they really weren't. Yeah they fixed up the UAC prompt and some other minor tweaks moving from Windows 6.0 ( Vista ) to Windows 6.1 ( 7 ), but nothing substantial. What made 7 successful ( and Vista if you tried it later ) was the hardware differences three years later. It wasn't lack of drivers, it was lack of fast hardware. The average PC of 2006 was not appropriate for Vista ( or 7 if it had came out then ). Vista was released about three years ahead of the average consumer hardware much like XP was. By the time Windows 7 came out three years later, Core2 and other choices which were rare during Vista's RTM were readily available and ubiquitous.
Anyway, The Mojave Experiment was classic Microsoft arrogance, the birth of the: "You're doing it wrong" meme. "We're listening, now here's a random sample of users that really love Vista". So if this is Microsoft's Vista moment again, it really means that you should prepare to be insulted once more.
"She's done so in a set of coordinated meetings with a select number press used to deliver the official message".
Means either .. meetings with select(ed) members of the press... or some kind of technological messaging system which involves selecting and then pressing a number (phone?)
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