back to article Microsoft parades Windows 8.1, the version you may actually want

Microsoft today demonstrated Windows 8.1 for the first time in public and showed off at least 60 compatible devices - including Haswell-powered gadgets. Windows vice-president Antoine Leblond took the Computex crowd through a whistlestop tour of all the major new functionality in the OS formerly known as Windows Blue. Key …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

    1. Khaptain Silver badge
      FAIL

      Microsoft said that they had listened to their customers, oh really

      Don't tell me someone at Microsoft actually thought that when people referred to the, lack of the "Start Button", that they actually took that phrase literally.

      It would be interesting to know just how many downloads were made for StartMenuClassic et all.

      1. ShelLuser

        @Khaptain

        Well, don't forget that according to Microsoft those same "user input channels" convinced them that the start menu had to go. Of course the results that followed made many wonder to which audience Microsoft had actually been listening, but even so that was their original story.

        1. nichomach

          @ShelLuser

          The problem was that Microsoft didn't listen to an audience at all - they listened to "metrics" provided by crap like the customer feedback apps without putting it into any sort of context.

          1. Someone Else Silver badge
            Facepalm

            Re: @nichomach

            ...and some wet-behind-the-ears marketdroids whose certificate from Marketing U. still has wet ink on it, who thought they could be responsible for the Next Big Thing™ in Computing!

    2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

        And Windows 8 still has a market share of about 5 times that of Linux on the desktop.

        EADON MEGA FAIL

        As usual

        1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

          1. mmeier

            Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

            If Android is Linux then I can surely

            Use an open source JDK / JRE to run my Tomcat or Jetty on it

            After all the think runs under Linux and does not need much power/memory. Or if not that, at least a complete X-Server runs there? After all X and Linux is like crap and toilet.

            1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
              Holmes

              Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

              mmeier from mmicrosoft asks:

              If Android is Linux then I can surely Use an open source JDK / JRE to run my Tomcat or Jetty on it.

              Sure. Just armor yourself with a few heavyweight laways, grab a copy of OpenJDK (GPL) or Harmony (Apache License) and code away for a good porting. Be my guest. Just be sure it passes the TCK and won't be like an "enhanced" Java version by Microsoft, mkay?

              I might even download it.

              Or you can adapt Tomcat to run on the Dalvik VM. I think that's the better option.

              1. mmeier

                Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

                So the short version is

                NO

            2. This post has been deleted by its author

            3. blondie101
              Linux

              Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

              > If Android is Linux then I can surely

              >

              >Use an open source JDK / JRE to run my Tomcat or Jetty on it

              You can. Not directly out of the box, but I've seen OpenSuSe running on a Galaxy S2 right onto the stock kernel. You only need root access. And yes you could run Tomcat on top of it. Usefull? I doubt! Fun? Yes! (and that what Linux is, fun to use!! :-) )

              1. mmeier

                Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

                OpenSuse != Android

                So the Answer is: No / not without massiv modifications to Android

          2. ChrisM

            Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

            I may be wrong (and frequently am) but my understanding is that Android is a FORK of Linux that has little to no chance of being merged back into the main branch of the kernel.

            With that in mind isn't the main problem is, as is the case with the proliferation of desktop environments, the freedom of Linux is its own worst enemy....

            1. Salts

              Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

              That was also the argument given about unix - it's fragmentation, however with the GNU license all code derived from the source code, must be made available, therefore, regardless of the fork, the source should be available.

              Therefore we have a situation of evolution, with lots of dead ends, but a few winners in the end, if it does follow evolution, we get a product that "is most suitable for it's environment" which means you have a choice.

              you choose, what works for you, windows, OSX, UNIX, Linux or whatever.

              I like that idea, others may not

              Ian

            2. Jemma Silver badge

              Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

              Nah, Eadons its own worst enemy.. the Baldrick of Linux.. A 'frozen horse' working to bring down the system from within...

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

            And when Linux was offered pre-installed what happened. On Laptops etc almost no uptake, that's why companies stopped offering it. On Netbooks the average punter just returned their purchase as the wanted Windows

            1. Antoinette Lacroix
              Coat

              Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

              I think it has got nothing to do with the OS. Users wouldn't recognize an OS if it bit them - they can't distinguish between an OS and a UI. What users want is "easy & shiny" and that's exactly what Gnome - the most used UI - isn't. Everything made with GTK still looks and feels like a sad Win 3.1 clone. Take KDE3 or E17, skin it like Win7, add some transparency and they won't notice the difference.

              1. Tom 13

                Re: they can't distinguish between an OS and a UI.

                Even more to the point, they don't care that they can't distinguish between an OS and a UI. They want an app that just works so they can do whatever their real job is (assuming work), or play their game (hardcore gamers) or video chat with their grandkids 300+ miles away.

                And you know what? As a tech supporting them who does know the difference, I think they have a valid point.

            2. Chika

              Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

              Very true. However, back in the early days of Microsoft, they had the same problem. The only way around it was to persist and to advertise like crazy, something that didn't really happen with the Linux in a box setup for whatever reason (probably because they need long term support from a company wishing to market the OS to the masses rather than companies that were only interested in buying up distros to market them as server OSs).

            3. hplasm Silver badge
              Windows

              Re: the average punter just returned their purchase as the wanted Windows

              Just like Win 8 then?

          4. kb
            WTF?

            Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

            Nice to know you claim Android and the 1 million infections that Android will hit by July, that's good to know. Oh and just FYI if everything thet runs a locked down GPL kernel now counts as "linux" why aren't you claiming routers and the cheap Chinese set top boxes as well?

            FYI Android is owned and controlled by corporate, no different than Windows and OSX. you just try getting some of your patches into android, or try to get them to take Torvalds latest kernel noodlings and see how quick it happens...hint, never.

            All Google is is trading one master for another, see how they take what was once bog standard X86 hardware and lock it down so bad the ONLY way you can put another OS on it is to completely wipe the drive, no dual boots allowed, for "freedumb" of course, a page and a half of CLI garbage and then and ONLY then can you run one of a few piddling distros that have bootloaders that can get around Google's hardware DRM. You just try running any bog standard distro or BSD or anything but the few hacked together distros and see how far you get (hint,no boot).

            Of course I'm sure google is laughing all the way to the bank, you can put "do no evil" right next to "think different" on the best BS marketing ever created.

            1. Richard 12 Silver badge

              Linux is everywhere

              Linux is the kernel, so yes, my set-top box runs Linux, Android phones run Linux.

              There's also a lot of stuff running on Linux that you'd never think of - the new Disney ships run on Linux, the Sheik Zayed Al Nayan mosque runs on VXWorks, the world's tallest building runs on Linux and Windows XP.

              A lot of BMS and industrial controllers run on the Linux kernel - it's either that or VXWorks for the most part, and most ARM/MIPs computer-on-module suppliers offer Linux as a standard BSP.

              1. TimeMaster T

                Re: Linux is everywhere

                "the Sheik Zayed Al Nayan mosque runs on VXWorks,"

                What the Hell does a mosque do that requires a Real Time OS (RTOS)?

                I used to work for WindRiver, vxWorks is a great OS for embedded systems like the Mars rovers but I would think it was overkill for anything not requiring a deterministic hard RTOS, like a building.

                I'm going to have to Google that place and find out whats up, thanks for calling to to my attention.

                1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
                  Trollface

                  Re: Linux is everywhere

                  What the Hell does a mosque do that requires a Real Time OS (RTOS)?

                  FATWA CONTROL!

                2. Richard 12 Silver badge

                  Re: Linux is everywhere

                  vxWorks is the RTOS used by over 300 control boxes in the Grand Mosque lighting control system, plus 11 WinXPE boxes as well. There's more vxWorks licences there than Windows ones in an average SME!

                  I suspect (but don't know for certain) that the lifts run on it as well.

                  If you want deterministic and short response times on low-power hardware, you're going to want an RTOS because the alternative is bare-metal.

                  However, more modern hardware is becoming so much more powerful and cheap, that in the last five years or so a lot of stuff that would previously have been RTOS or even bare-metal is now Linux.

      2. mmeier

        Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

        And again more FUD and lies from EADON:

        Where is the desktop crippled? All Win7 software still runs fine. No need for Modern if you do not want it

        And for Linux: It does not work on a tablet pc. Sure on a smearboard it is fine but use a pen - bang, does not work. So no Penguin here.

        1. Chika
          Linux

          Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

          No Linux on tablets, eh?

          Well, apart from the number of folk that have already pointed out that Android is a fork of Linux, a number of distros are either developing or have already developed versions for the tablet.

          As for anything else, we shall see. The problem with the start button and the menu that lay below it was that TIFKAM was not a good substitute. If what they present in Blue is a good substitute, then I suspect that the whining will die down. Of course, you can't please everyone...

          1. mmeier

            Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

            No Linux with build in WACOM or NTrig pen support and Handwriting recognition. Same for the journaling software

            Android has but that is not part of the OpenSource so no backport from Note or TPT1 to Linux. Same for the journaling software

            And buying a 1000+ € tablet pc and not be able to use the main component - useless

      3. Eadon Trifles
        WTF?

        Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

        Ah just when I thought you'd had a blow to the head and were being reasonable....

        You love Linux, we know, you got the T-shirt and the matching pants.

        People would find you less boring if you put your anti-MS rants aside and made good, valid points.

        As for App stores, take your pick, they all do the same thing and get a cut and a Linux app store will happen if it hasn't already (I've lapsed in my subscription to Linux and Flagellation Monthly).

        Are you about 12? Is hair starting to grown "down there" and you want to ask questions about your feelings for girls and how they work?

        Linux will NOT get anywhere in the "home PC" arena while it's a billion different versions and has nerd snobbery attached to it. FACT. In that respect, even Umbungo has failed. MS might not listen, but with Linux there is nobody to HEAR you. The home user wants things simple; they don't want to mess with distros and command prompts. 90% of home users are not technical at all - good luck turning them off MS - besides, where does your moral and intellectual superiority elevate you to? You sneer at the people at home using PCs as stupid because they choose to use something that is popular?

        We get it, you're too clever for us, and you're totally right, but I think about now it's time that YOU and LINUX, got a room......

        1. naw

          Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

          @Eadon, you missed the point completely, Linux will not win the desktop, but the battle isn't for the desktop - it is for the mobile market - pretty much every PC user (or MAC user, or even Linux Desktop - yes there's a few) also have a smart phone (maybe 2), maybe a tablet as well. While every Office worker uses a PC at work, there is probably only a shared PC or laptop at home.

          Once-upon-a-time, people would replace their PCs every 3/4/5 years because the rate of change was so quick - that was the case in business too - companies with well-run IT refreshed every 4-6 years. Not anymore. So that means that the HW vendors (intel/AMD/HP/IBM/Dell) are struggling - but they can and have diversified into other areas. MS are a one product-sector company, because not users (especially home users are only refreshing when their PC/laptop fails - then they're transferring software rather than re-buying).

          Along come smartphones and tablets - now users have disposable PCs all their photos are on Flickr or Facebook, their music collection on spotify or iTunes. They don't need a PC any more to browse eBay, watch pr0n, flame each on YouTube or lie to the friends they never met on facebook.

          So now *users* realise that 95% of their PC/tablet/smartphone use is content browsing and less than 5% content creation (I'm not including Facebook or Twitter here - they hardly count as content creation) and when they realise they don't need a PC - then they're lost to MS forever.

          So the future is to use a PC/laptop at work, use smartphone(s) and tablet at home. A few Power users will have a PC/Laptop at home but it's a tiny tiny proportion.

          And you know what? Thats just the beginning, because the next big thing will be the SmartTV, then SmartFridge, then SmartToasters... - and I reckon whoever wins the SmartPhone / Tablet battle will win the SmartTVFridgeToaster war too. The whole stack of cards is falling down for MS - their future major revenues will be in Applications like Office and Cloud Services with loose change in some pokey little OS called windows.

          MS know this - and thats why they threw Windows away for Metro/Surface - because it's the last desperate kick of the ball at the final whistle to keep them in the game - If Win8 catches on then they win, if Win8 fails then it doesn't matter because they'd already lost anyway.

          1. mmeier

            Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

            They did not throw away Windows - they changed the start menu and call it Modern. That's it.

            Win8 works beautiful on a tablet and with a small dock - that tablet becomes a fully capabel PC (either core-i or Atom based). One device for both or (since a 10'' Atom easily replaces a smartphone as well) all three devices.

            As for smart TV: Once you add all the stuff needed to make them useable - you are looking at a 42'' AIO PC.

      4. Salts

        Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

        Eadon,

        If you really have so much passion for open source(for which I commend you) please, please, please help. You don't have to be a programmer.

        Evangelism for foss is very 1990's

        GNU/Linux may never conquer the desktop in end user land, but it does not matter any more, it has reached critical mass.

        <18 months from launch RPi is 1.5+ million units

        MS contributes to the Linux kernel, because it needs to compete in the virtual arena

        If open source was to disappear tomorrow, the internet would stop working - fact

        Most people use GNU/Linux, they may not know or understand, but, they do, name a home router that runs anything else?

        The list can go on, but what I am asking, is you look to where you can help, you have the ability, so please help.

        Hope you take this as positive

        salts

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Trollface

        Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

        Nobody ever heard anyone publicly complain about 'Unity' or any other interface gaffes. That's because being open, Linux users could simply move on and install another GUI.

        If only Windows users had the same option. If only it was possible to easily install some free software that could magically restore the old familiar interface - start button, start menu, boot to desktop, etc.

      6. Jamie Jones Silver badge
        FAIL

        @Eadon; Re: The WHINING of the WINTARDS

        "So what's up Wintards? You stuck with MS, you made your beds, now sleep in them. If you want to be treated like humans, not sheep, then there is this other operating system out there called, er. lumix? Linnix?..."

        There are *many* alternate operating systems out there, not just the one you worship.

    3. JDX Gold badge

      Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

      Except to the users, whose #1 problem is "where the f*** are my programs"

      1. Hooksie

        Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

        Try the Windows key on the keyboard you morons

        Would be my response

        1. hplasm Silver badge
          Meh

          Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

          What key? I ask, you tit- this is a tablet.

          1. Avalanche

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            Then just hit the "charm" in the lower left corner (I believe, could be the upper left).

          2. D. Pechon
            Facepalm

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            Every Windows tablet has a Windows key.

          3. David Barrett Silver badge
            FAIL

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            "What key? I ask, you tit- this is a tablet."

            Probably the one, bottom centre below your screen... you know, the one with the windows logo on it...

            http://news.cnet.com/8301-13924_3-57360734-64/microsoft-lays-out-window-8-tablet-hardware-requirements/

        2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

          1. mmeier

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            Only Eadon could be clueless enough not to realise that on tablet devices there are other options like "stylus in the lower/right corner"

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem. @Eadon

            "Only MS could design a touch interface OS that needs a keyboard. Makes a change from needing a stylus I guess."

            -- They didn't, Eadon. Interesting comment considering you're always saying they're trying to foist an interface designed for touch onto desktop PCs ...

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            Or you could hover your mouse in the bottom left and the start screen will pop out...

            Or if you are using touch flick in from the bottom left and it pops up.. almost like a gesture (you know like touch interfaces use?)

            Dumbass

        3. Levente Szileszky
          FAIL

          Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

          "Try the Windows key on the keyboard you morons

          Would be my response"

          Which would clearly show what kind of an even bigger moron you are because it has little to do with the Start Menu people are missing, you tool.

        4. Belardi
          WTF?

          Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

          You need a mirror. Obviously you're as narrow minded as the people at microsoft. It wasn't about the button itself as the whole mess of mixing two UI at people. Its an ugly messy package.

          Hell, Windows8 has made me download and start using LinuxMint... which is usable, unlike metro.

        5. Ron Christian

          Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

          But that does not gives you a start menu. It gives you an ugly collection of square blotches of color, which appear to represent applications, with no hierarchical grouping visual clues, that takes up the entire 22 inch screen while showing only a fraction of the choices, having to be scraped back and forth to expose the rest of the blotches. It's a mess.

          I'm writing this on Windows 7. When I hit the Windows key, I get a real menu, and I can choose to bring up a new application while leaving my current open windows in place. I have a Windows 8 machine, but haven't touched it in weeks, because a real user workflow does not work on the device. It's probably fine for casual browsing (which I do on my phone anyway, but never mind) but is a definite step backwards for real work.

          1. Panimu

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            "But that does not gives you a start menu. It gives you an ugly collection of square blotches of color, which appear to represent applications"

            Tbh, that's basically what the Start Menu does, and it does in a little fraction of the screen with small writing.

            For reference, I use Win7+8 and don't have any skin in the arguement.

        6. TimeMaster T
          Meh

          Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

          "Try the Windows key on the keyboard you morons

          Would be my response"

          Ever notice how easy it is to tell when someone has never tried the OS they are trying to defend?

          For those of you who have so far managed to avoid the Horror that is Windows 8;

          Pressing the "Windows key" on a Win 8 system does NOT bring up a menu of applications/settings, it take you to the Metro screen. "Windows key" + "r" will open a run dialog. Goddess help you if you don't know the name of the actual executable exe file for your application.

          and wasn't the whole point of Windows to make it so you didn't need a keyboard to start your applications.

          1. tabman
            FAIL

            Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

            But, run any of the replacement programs (StartUI, etc) and windows key = start menu.

            Guess what Win Key + D does.....The Desktop. The Win 7 desktop. With the added security and other "under the bonnet" tweaks that actually makes Win 8 an excellent OS for tablet, laptop and desktop.

            Now if you are smart enough to use "sudo apt get" then you should just be able to carry out the StartUI (or any of the others) trick.

            What are you afraid of? That you would have to admit that with WIN 8 everything does just work, if you want the Win 7 experience then go get it.

            Your answer kind of underscores what you mention when you say "Ever notice how easy it is to tell someone has never used the OS they are trying to defend"

            Did you mean yourself when you made that comment?

        7. darklordsid
          Pint

          Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

          Most users now will respond you "Ballmerboy, what button are you talking about anyway? My iOS/Android device has not that f*** button!"

          And it is true for the majority of devices, as after that epic fail of W8 Squarepants was announced non Wintel machines sales and usage skyrocketed and pros and developers ran away in flocks. And after fist 9 months of W8 heavy advertising reign, Wintel platform IS NO LONGER THE DOMINANT ONE for number of users nor for revenue.

          Welcome to the new world, MS suicided itself, get a clue.

      2. Old Handle

        Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

        Except to the users, whose #1 problem is "where the f*** are my programs"

        Only they won't be helped much has could be either, because it's a new unfamiliar logo. It's marginally more obvious than pointed at the empty space where the button used to be, but only marginally.

      3. mmeier

        Re: Start Icon != Start Menu. This the problem.

        15min of training for a user with a high 2 digit IQ. 8h for the rest (or 30min with electricity). Lets face it, Olaf Officedrohne does not use all that many programs. Just train him to click on the bright shiny icon and thats it.

        1. Tom 13

          @mmeier 05-Jun-2013 17:20

          There aren't many posters here at El Reg that are quite as annoying as Eadon on an MS-rant. But if you work just a little bit harder at it, I'm sure you can get there with your Windows 8 shilling.

    4. crtc
      Thumb Up

      Allowing a user the 'option' to choose between the classic start menu or the new start screen was too much for m$.

      Can't wait for the moron hipster retards in suits to do the same thing to thier console business...oh wait...

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Vast Imprvoements

    Such as bringing back the start menu

    Bringing back multiple apps on screen at once

    Bringing back the ability to improve performance

    Heck lets just say we brought back a whole load of the stuff we stripped out of windows 7 before tacking on the metro UI.

    Heck why don't we just call this "Windows 7 + Metro" so people can really see what we're selling.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Vast Imprvoements

      Bringing back multiple apps on screen at once

      You sort of can already, you just need to use that stupid "snap" system where you drag the apps to the edge of the screen.

      1. Zaphod.Beeblebrox
        Meh

        Re: Vast Imprvoements

        "Bringing back multiple apps on screen at once

        You sort of can already, you just need to use that stupid "snap" system where you drag the apps to the edge of the screen."

        Except that only gives you two, and one is mostly unusable, and even then it only works on screens with the proper resolution. Here's hoping they fixed it up a bit better than that in 8.1...

        1. reno79

          Re: Caps Lock?

          I was under the impression on higher res screens - 1080p, essentially - you can have three (with the desktop classed as one, so effectively, unlimited)

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Vast Imprvoements

          From the looks of things in 8.1, you can position the split between two apps anywhere, you're not forced into the stupid small/large fixed sizes as in 8.0 (I never understood why they fixed the split point).

    2. Someone Else Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: Vast Imprvoements

      Heck why don't we just call this "Windows 7 + Metro" so people can really see what we're selling.

      Or we could call it Windows 386 V2.0

  3. Daniel B.
    FAIL

    Nice ... Nice ...

    But they still haven't brought back the Start Menu. So 8.1 still isn't the Windows version you actually want!

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Nice ... Nice ...

      Since when is Start-Menu the definitive last word in How Things Should Be Done? I seem to recall XP cahnged things quite a lot too, as have other versions.

      Start menu is crap IMO. 4-deep nesting in one tiny area of the screen with menus that close if you move the mouse the wrong way, etc. When you're launching an app you are not multi-tasking so why NOT use the whole screen to show everything?

      1. Tom 35 Silver badge

        Re: Nice ... Nice ...

        Lots of people thought the start menu was crap. But the start screen is a lake of liquefied pig shit. So we want our crap back, at least we know how to work with it.

        Change can be good, or as the start screen / metro shows it can be bad. Windows 95 to 7 had both good and bad changes, but more good then bad.

      2. Daniel B.
        Boffin

        Re: Nice ... Nice ...

        Because the Start Menu is the one single thing that made users get up in arms. Actually XP made it less cluttered, by putting all the "My PC", "My Documents" et al in the Start Menu instead of wasting space as icons in the screen. Same with the scrolling menu vs. zillion cascading menus behavior. Vista/7 even improved on this concept.

        And just searching stuff, a lot of people that aren't even in IT are complaining about it.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @Tom 35 Re: Nice ... Nice ...

          I am still to this day LIVID that since installing Windows 95 Microsoft have simply assumed I want to load Windows every time I boot my PC. What was wrong with WIndows 3.1 and having to type "win" at the prompt if you wanted to load Windows? Every single day since then I have woken up angry and haven't given Microsoft a penny since then.

          1. Grogan

            Re: @Tom 35 Nice ... Nice ...

            "I am still to this day LIVID that since installing Windows 95 Microsoft have simply assumed I want to load Windows every time I boot my PC. What was wrong with WIndows 3.1 and having to type "win" at the prompt if you wanted to load Windows?"

            Again, sarcastic trolls, you could easily override that behaviour in Windows 95, just like you could make your shell progman.exe to get the old Windows 3.1 UI back. You could also still use the Windows 3.1 file manager (winfile.exe) if you preferred it, as long as you were careful not to break LFN aliases by renaming shit.

            A simple edit to c:\msdos.sys (a text configuration file in Win9x), BootGUI=0, would return the old behaviour of starting Windows 95 to DOS and typing "win" to run win.com and start Windows.

            Tell me again why people can't have a more classic user interface in Windows 8, when it's clearly demonstrated that a third party can trivially add that functionality back (for free, even)? I'll tell you why, because the system is arbitrarily crippled to direct people to the fugly tile screen with spammy tiles and Microsoft's software store.

            1. Tom 13

              Re: fugly tile screen

              I'm not sure you should compare fugly tile screens to the Win 8 whatever they call it.

              It's insulting to actual fugly tile screens, which are much more aesthetically pleasing.

        2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
          Childcatcher

          Re: Nice ... Nice ...

          And just searching stuff, a lot of people that aren't even in IT are complaining about it.

          Upon which we read....

          "For my older readers, it's like when you used to have to masturbate your horse to get him going and then hang a severed horse vagina in front of his face in order to get him to sprint."

          HOLY DUCK, NOW I HAVE TO USE MIND BLEACH.

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
            Childcatcher

            Re: Nice ... Nice ...

            But finally, I found the money quote. I hope GNOMEtards are also reading these,

            Here is where you may break down and buy a brand new computer. It's a good feeling -- you spent a lot of money, sure, but at least you know you've left that old mess behind.

            So, you get it home and turn it on, only to realize that something is even more wrong with it. All of the controls are gone -- all of the stuff you used to click on to make it work, even the "shut down" button, are just ... gone. All of the buttons in the upper right of your window -- the "X" and "-" buttons your kids showed you how to use 15 years ago -- have vanished, and in fact so has the window itself. Even the "start" button in the lower left that let you access everything is gone. Unfortunately, you have been infected with a piece of malicious software called Windows 8, and not only did you just unintentionally pay for it, but it will cost you another couple hundred dollars to get your local computer shop to remove it. And here is when you realize that all of this is just an elaborate prank meant to teach you to be satisfied with what you have in life, because you just couldn't leave well enough alone.

  4. MACWINLINO
    Alert

    More like Windows 8 RTM than 8.1

    This product is what Windows 8 should have been when it was released. This makes Windows 8 look like it was a paid for beta when it was released.

    Now if only Start Button can actually = Start Menu (we don't need a start menu/screen that takes up a whole screen)

    This update might make the much needed improvements to Windows 8, however we will only know once it is released.

    Looking forward to testing this though

    1. JDX Gold badge

      we don't need a start menu/screen that takes up a whole screen

      You don't need one crammed into one corner of the screen either. You can't use any apps while the menu is open so why not use the screen to display more things at once?

      1. hplasm Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: we don't need a start menu/screen that takes up a whole screen

        " You can't use any apps while the menu is open "

        Why would you? Tiles are for 'apps', menus have Programs.

      2. Cameron Colley

        Re: we don't need a start menu/screen that takes up a whole screen

        "You can't use any apps while the menu is open so why not use the screen to display more things at once?"

        Bullshit. Or am I imagining reading email or monitoring a script's progress whilst opening the start menu? Am I imagining watching video or using Skype while the start menu is open?

      3. Raz

        Re: we don't need a start menu/screen that takes up a whole screen

        @JDX Posted Wednesday 5th June 2013 15:49 GMT

        Why not use the whole screen? Because of efficiency. I can very nicely setup the programs in my Start Menu so that by only moving the mouse a bit I can reach all of the programs that I use mostly, without a need to see the shortcuts on the desktop.

    2. ToddR

      Re: More like Windows 8 RTM than 8.1

      Why are we surprised Win8 was crap. Every 1st version is shite and they fix it, (mostly), with the second version. This has happened since Windows 95.

      If only someone would produce an Officesuite that was really inter-operable with Office, I could get away from Balmerland

  5. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

    I prefer GPL, but I would be happy with BSD as Microsoft seem to think that is more 'business friendly'.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

      Eadon, is that you?

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    2. mmeier

      Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

      GPL - that is the viral, unfree Licence from the great toe cheese eater? Thanks but no thanks. I stick to free licences like Apache

      1. hplasm Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

        "Thanks but no thanks. I stick to free licences like Apache"

        I think you mis-spelled 'Unenforceable shrinkwrapped EULA; there.

        Might have been a slip of the penable pen.

      2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      3. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

        GPL - that is the viral, unfree Licence from the great toe cheese eater? Thanks but no thanks. I stick to free licences like Apache

        Woah, mmeier Failure of that level at groking GPL either comes from the "it's all mine, mine!" microsoft-subsidized roach corner of proprietary shackleware or the "I want to have it all, why don't you give it to me!" camp of aggravated freetardism.

        I like Apache license too but I have no problem with GPL or LGPL.

        1. mmeier

          Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

          My employer and quite a few of our customers have a strict "No GPL/LGPL" policy, Dual licenced is okay but pure is not

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
            Devil

            Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

            > My employer and quite a few of our customers have a strict "No GPL/LGPL" policy,

            Everybody has to stand in the corner of FAIL.

            Oh hold on, what was your point again.

            1. mmeier

              Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

              Have yet to see an interesting tool or library that was not either dual licence or using Apache/Mozilla/BSD/... really free licences

          2. Alan Johnson

            Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

            I am really interested why no GPL and no LGPL.

            LGPL Is a completely benign license from a users perspective I really struggle to think of any reason not to use LGPL software.

            GPL can have issues if you develop and distribute software you do not want to open source but even then only for software components. Tools and platforms have no problem and

            If you need certified tools if developing high SIL level SW or similarGPLed tools could be an issue but they are usually better than the commercial alternatives ignoring the price advantage.

            What is the problem your employer and customers are concerned about?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

              I am really interested why no GPL and no LGPL.

              The prime directive of it management is to infiltrate the board - like the HR-hairdressers managed to do a decade ago. To do that, the it budget must be bloated to a level where it will make an impression on profits. This is hard to do with FOSS and much easier with VM-ware.

              1. mmeier

                Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

                There are a lot of free licences on the market. GPL is for many purposes the least free of them. The number of non OpenSource Software used in our company is very limited, basically MS-Office and the big databases. And while the databases are not OSS they can be used without charge for development.

                So - no budget bloat there

            2. mmeier

              Re: What would really make a huge difference is fixing the license

              KISS - Keep it simple

              For the software we write there is not benefit from a community (limited market, strong competitor, needs high amount of non-IT technical knowledge, customers have no developers) for us or for our customers (who commission special modules that add to the common framework),

              At the same time making their internal "knowledge" (for better words) public is something the customers do not want. So they rule out GPL for it's potential viral character. And just to make it simple they say GPL/LGPL so there is no discussion needed.

              We in turn adopt this even for those customers who do not have that clause. Again "just to be sure". And extend this to the tool chain because it is simple and we do not benefit from GPL based tools since the Java stuff used here is Eclipse or Apache based mostly (some is Sun/Oracle) and we do not use Linux (Solaris and AIX - like our customers)

              And Eclipse/Netbeans/Glassfish are just as free (and for development so is Oracle RDBMS and DB/2)

  6. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
    Headmaster

    smaller than the 10 and 11-inchers Windows 8 was architected for

    Architected?!?!?! The word you want is either built, designed or possibly conceived.

    Architected isn't a word, at least outside bullshit bingo.

    1. Levente Szileszky
      IT Angle

      BS bingo? Err, you probably meant lingo, right?

      Or you mean MSFT/Windows 8.x have something in common with the game of chance played with randomly drawn numbers in which players mark off their pre-printed numbers as the drawn numbers called, the winner being the first person to mark off all their numbers...?

      1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

        No - see here. It's a fun game to play in presentations and similar events where (usually) marketing people make up either new words, crash words together to form new bastard offspring (webinar and things like that) or just give existing words new and previously unheard-of meanings.

        Although it is certainly the lingo of BS Bingo alright :)

        1. Levente Szileszky
          Go

          FWIW my reply was an (apparently failed) attempt to make fun of MSFT's meaningless/pointless numbering/naming system (as it has nothing to do with any evolution of Windows).. oh well, (sh)it happens. :)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      at my skool we teachz autocad 2013 architected

    3. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Holmes

      Arseitected? Huh?

      Architected isn't a word, at least outside bullshit bingo.

      But verbing weirds language. I like!

    4. gazthejourno (Written by Reg staff)

      *foot in mouth face* Tweaked, ta.

    5. steeple
      Happy

      Nothing wrong with architecting

      Architect has been used as a verb for centuries (just). Ref: http://blog.oup.com/2008/07/architect/

      1. Tom 13

        Re: Nothing wrong with architecting

        Some words should be removed from the language. This is one of them.

        And if we stop using them they will disappear.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not really fixing any of the problems

    But making alot of noise and pretending they have,..

    1. Ledswinger Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Not really fixing any of the problems

      Of couse. But what more should we expect when Microsoft still believe they were in the right, and it was everybody else's fault? They've done the absolute minimum, and put some lipstick on the pig.

      As with Vista, they'll release a more thoroughly fixed version next year under the Windows 9 banner, intended to appeal to enterprise buyers, and expect all the W8 victims to pony up for what will be little more than a jumped up bug fix (albeit your bugs=our features for Microsoft).

      1. KakersUK
        Meh

        Re: Not really fixing any of the problems

        One danger MS has now is they've split their customers into two groups, those who prefer a traditional desktop environment and those who prefer Metro. Now if they make Windows 9 more of a traditional environment they won't be able to please this new group of Metro lovers.

        Well who knows, I guess they could just make the Metro interface a launch-able application similar to their much unused Media Center, but that wouldn't fit into their new "Make billions off an app market" strategy.

        1. mmeier

          Re: Not really fixing any of the problems

          I do not see that problem. Win8 works just fine on a desktop. Modern replaces the start menu and taskbar-attached "most needed" programs. All Win7 applications work just fine (as they do on the penable) and data synchronisation between devices works like a charm both privat (MS cloud service) and company (Sharepoint)

          The benefit of Win8 is that I CAN use Moderns "small but limited capabilities" apps but unlike iOS/Android I can also use full powered applications. Chat/Notification/Weather (and since the last update Kindle) are apps while note taking uses MS Journal or OneNote

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Not really fixing any of the problems

            as they do on the penable

            Seriously, what is it with you and the word "penable"? You're the only person on the whole internet who ever uses that word.*

            .

            .

            .

            *Not necessarily the complete absolute truth.

        2. Nigel 11

          Re: Not really fixing any of the problems

          One danger MS has now is they've split their customers into two groups, those who prefer a traditional desktop environment and those who prefer Metro.

          Linux solved that problem ages ago. When you log in you select the UI you prefer from a list of those installed on your system. If your UI of preference isn't on the list and you have admin access to your machine, you download and install the one you want. I bitched like hell when Gnome 3 destroyed Gnome 2 rather than being able to install them both side by side ... that's NOT THE LINUX WAY ... but the open-source community fixed this brain damage both possible ways, with Mate (a fork of the original Gnome 2) and Cinnamon (a new but similar UI running atop Gnome 3 libraries).

          But Microsoft think there must be one and only one UI, that they tear up and replace with something utterly different on a whim. And the Windows 8 UI is frankly about as loveble as Jimmy Saville. The more one learns ....

          1. Spoddyhalfwit

            Re: Not really fixing any of the problems

            @nigel 11

            "Linux solved that problem ages ago. When you log in you select the UI you prefer from a list of those installed on your system. If your UI of preference isn't on the list and you have admin access to your machine, you download and install the one you want. "

            In fairness that is the case with windows 8... I didnt like Metro... One classic start menu download later and a little tinkering and I had a fully working desktop with a start menu.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Toggle Buttons...

      MS may always have their enterprise lovers. But retail times are a changing. WTF do new versions of windows bring anymore? Here's 3 things I need, but do they ever listen :-

      #1. A Toggle button that switches between Ribbon & Menus. For Office & OS including Explorer.

      #2. Why did they never include a simple EXPERT / NOVICE mode toggle switch in their UI? I'm bored having to expend wasteful energy troubleshooting computers whether its helping out girlfriends, friends or neighbours every time they have a PC problem or buy a new one. We need a maintenance toggle button. A troubleshooting feature that can be switched on easily for expert users, that will show file extensions, hidden files and folders in file details view. With System settings changed to 'Adjust for Best Performance'. Disable: All SCHEDULED TASKS including Facebook Voice, Google, Adobe, Java Updaters... Disable: All unnecessary SERVICES especially the most hacked: VNC Server, MS SQL, Remote Access RDP... Disable: All Registry Run / Runonce key commands.... Disable: All browser add-ons & plug-ins in all installed browsers especially the most cracked: Flash & Java!!!

      #3. Stop changing the UI for fickle shallow reasons! How about having a guarantee that MS won't continue to play lock-in games for x years at least? FOSS solutions are not here yet, and VBA macros are a bitch. But if Google ever gets interested in going head to head, or the FOSS alternatives improve, what then? Who wants the hassle and ongoing risk that MS changes file formats again and it will be non-backwardly compatible? Or continued risk of radical ribbon-like UI changes? Or the risk that previous versions will be crippled or unsupported via activation & cloud games? I laughed so hard when managers insisted on getting Office 2007 because they had seen MS glossy sales demonstrations. They were left sending out critical quotes that own their customers couldn't open!

  8. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: NEWSFLASH: MS invents multiple applications on same screen

      But Eadon ... you now also get a "rich productivity experience" FREE OF CHARGE.

      It's like free healthcare, who can object to that?

  9. Craig 2
    FAIL

    FOR THE LOVE OF GOD - Just have two OS types. It's a massive reduction from the many, many previous editions of Windows. (eg. Vista) You don't see Apple trying to shoehorn it's desktop OS on to mobile platforms. Sure, share codebase & whatever compatibility makes sense, but this is (still) madness.

    1. mmeier

      And what OS version to use for convertibles and 2in1 units? Is a penable with BT keyboard a tablet or a notebook? The Sony Vaio/Lenovo Helix - what to use in tablet and what in notebook mode?

      Sorry but two OS versions do not make sense with these units as part of the "family" and never have. At least since Vista Windows had full tablet pc support integrated in all but the most basic version.

      1. Fehu
        Windows

        common mistake

        The interface is not and should never be the same as the OS. As Linux has demonstrated, an OS can scale from hand held devices all the way up to the mainframe, but having the same interface or trying to shoehorn one interface onto all these devices is ridiculous. You don't have to be an IT professional to know that. Even lay people know that. Hence the dismal sales figures for windoze ate

        1. mmeier

          Re: common mistake

          Sure, sales have nothing to do with:

          Economy down the drain

          Companies transiting to Win7 since 2010 so most are not yet due a replacement cycle

          "Old" hardware still more than good enough for most jobs

          Sorry but MORE than one UI for my devices is contra-productive and will eat resources in a corporate environment to boot. Sure, W8 is not "the best" in any job but having one "good enough" for all beats a zoo where every device works a tad different, speaks different formats etc.

          1. Daniel B.
            Facepalm

            Re: common mistake

            Companies transiting to Win7 since 2010 so most are not yet due a replacement cycle

            Yes, companies are transitioning to Win7. They're also blocking Win8 for the same reasons most people who aren't MS shills or MS fanboys (I didn't know there was such a thing!) are: Metro/Modern is crap. The Start Screen is crap. Companies want their employees to work, not to dabble with toy interfaces.

            Sorry but MORE than one UI for my devices is contra-productive and will eat resources in a corporate environment to boot.

            ... which is why companies hate Win8 as well. It has more than one UI, and a crap one to boot.

            1. mmeier

              Re: common mistake

              No smart companie will transit to another OS or version when:

              The current one is still in the leasing / tax writeoff cycle (3-5 years)

              The next one is not yet fully tested

              That is the only reason most companies are not looking at Win8. We have a customer that is since he went "Win7" quite early in that products lifecycle and the next replacement is due 2014. Since they evaluate 2in1 units for the mobile workers they have Win8 in the "lab".

              As for Modern: Most company users do not use an OS, they click on "big shiny icon" and use the program. And that actually works BETTER with Modern!

            2. AmigaMan

              Re: common mistake

              Really, starting an enterprise 8.1 migration project this month, did the 7 thing years ago.

              The problem with Windows 8 goes away when you stop listening to a load of gossiping bitchin grannies that seem to converge around the comments sections on once great sites like this one!

          2. hplasm Silver badge
            Windows

            Re: a zoo where every device works a tad different, speaks different formats etc.

            Sounds like MS Office to me.

            1. mmeier

              Re: a zoo where every device works a tad different, speaks different formats etc.

              In my special version of MS Office all programs behave the same way, have the same menue / ribbons entries in the same place and with the same function. Maybe yours is different. If that is so I could speak with Bill and he might send you one of my special versions as well

              1. Richard 12 Silver badge

                Which version of Office is that, mmeier?

                Because in Office 2007 and 2010, Excel and Outlook still behave totally differently to the rest.

                Excel remains MDI while Word, PowerPoint etc are now one-window-one-document (which is better on multi-monitor).

                Excel's copy-paste behaviour is completely and utterly different to everything else that has any kind of copy/paste.

                Outlook 2007 wasn't ribbon'ed, 2010 is but still has the appearance of multi-window while actually being something slightly different and strange - try starting to attach a file, then stopping and trying to do something else while the "Open" dialog is still open. You're stuck - and some users end up rebooting the whole machine because if that one.

                Consistency within MS Office has never existed before, why would I believe you now?

    2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    3. ncosgrave
      Devil

      Actually, its the reverse. Microsoft is trying to shoehorn a mobile interface onto the desktop. Users of Mountain Lion have complained that Apple is trying to "iOS" OS X. The GNU Project have made a similar mess of GNOME 3.

  10. Fehu
    Windows

    angry old codger rant

    Ok, first of all(that's how these things always start) I plan to buy some sort of tablet with my next bonus, but I have no intention of using it for work. Mainly, because I understand that they are pretty much useless for doing any real work. Note to all those dam(have to intentionally misspell to get around profanity filters at work) hipsters HR just hired: cruising the net and looking at content someone else has created does not fit the definition for work. Well, ok, for a lot of us maybe it does, but still ... Not as much as we actually do. Doing work and getting paid for something are not always the same thing. So, what was I saying? Oh, yeah, Windoze ate one too. I doubt if the slab I buy will have that on it. Going to take my nap, now.

    1. mmeier

      Re: angry old codger rant

      Windows penables like the long-endurance Atoms allow one to have the cake (lightweight media consumtion device) and eat it (full powered netbook). The extra flexibility, even in privat use, is well worth the money.

      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Re: angry old codger rant

        penables? Is that an alternative to a touchable, or a typable?

        1. mmeier

          Re: angry old codger rant

          The latter. The pen is mightier then the key in most tablet uses. Try using an OSK while balancing a decend sized (11.6+ inch) tablet in one hand. With a stylus - no problem

  11. kenius
    Devil

    No thanks Microsoft, We dont need another Vista!

    Windows 8 is a joke OS!.

    Its Vista all over again. Look people, desktop computer users are not wishing their computers were giant tablets. As I've said in many posts on many sites about windows 8, If I wanted to buy a child-like computer OS like windows 8, I'd buy me a Fisher Price or V-tech children's computer from Sears.

    Please dont fall for this, as the one writer here put it, "putting lipstick on a pig" move by Microsoft.

    Dont buy it!!! , just dont, because if you do, well then we will be stuck with it,

    I'm still using windows 7 and will continue to do so till Microsoft realized that desktop and tablets work differently, and so do their users.

    I have 3 desktops, two laptops and two tablets. and I use them for different things. Oh and desktops and laptops are still the best game playing devices out of the two (PC's vs Tablets).

    Dont be fooled. A mouse and a control pad beats touch screens for gaming any day.

    Oh, and write computer companies that force Windows 8 when buying a new PC. and tell them no thanks!, so they too will get the message.

    Windows 8 might work great on a tablet, I wouldnt know, I only own two Droids. But on a Desktop or Laptop, it just looks and works badly. the interface is the worst thing to happen to Desktops, ever!

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: No thanks Microsoft, We dont need another Vista!

      >Dont be fooled. A mouse and a control pad beats touch screens for gaming any day

      Depends on the game, no? I'd like to see a variant of Cannon Fodder or Bullfrog's Syndicate on a tablet, if the multi-touch allows several cyborgs to be controlled at once.

      1. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
        Childcatcher

        Re: No thanks Microsoft, We dont need another Vista!

        I'd like to see a variant of Cannon Fodder or Bullfrog's Syndicate on a tablet, if the multi-touch allows several cyborgs to be controlled at once.

        Good point! Multitouch is wonderful tech. Now if we only know what to do with it...

    2. mmeier

      Re: No thanks Microsoft, We dont need another Vista!

      Strange. I must use another version of Win8. Mine works great on a desktop (Dual Monitor, Software Development) with keyboard and (rarely since the switch) mouse AND on a tablet pc (with a core-i CPU and WACOM stylus). Granted, the tablet is a bit slow for First person shooters due to the graphic card but so would be most notebooks with a similar battery life (4+h)

    3. Belardi

      Re: No thanks Microsoft, We dont need another Vista!

      Kenius said; "I'm still using windows 7 and will continue to do so till Microsoft realized that desktop and tablets work differently, and so do their users."

      And what if Microsoft continues with TIFKAM? The rumors are, that in a few years with Windows9, they will remove the old UI all together. Which case... what would it be called "Windows" at all? To a huge degree, TIFKAM on a tablet and phone IS NOT WINDOWS since there are no Windows.

      So what then?

      Seriously dude, I've already started my migration OFF of Microsoft OS. Windows8 drove me to try out LinuxMint and it works very well. I can swap data instantly with one of my USB flash drives... it just works. LinuxMint boots up just as fast as Windows8 without that hybrid boot-up BS. I know because I replaced Win8 with Linux on the same notebook.

      Using LinuxMint is fine. Afterall, TIFKAM isn't compatible with Windows, neither is Linux - so why bother with the crappy UI design that costs $100~200?!

      You can run LinuxMint off a live DVD too...

  12. stephajn
    Megaphone

    Oh if only...

    ....someone would just jump up at one of these conferences when they are parading the new release and still with the full screen Start Screen and yell out, "You know damn well that is not what the customer's wishes are!!! We want the start MENU back! Not just the start button!!!! ARE YOU LISTENING?????" Of course...security would then be marching that person out of the room in a big hurry....but everyone in the room would also start clapping and cheering and that guy would have all the beer he wants that night.

  13. Keith 72

    Having just one operating system is simply MS trying to gain traction in the tablet market by hoisting apps on it's dominant desktop market. Otherwise why would developers bother to write/port yet another app?

    1. mmeier

      Just one system makes it easier for commercial software companies that sell / program full sized applications. They simply run on the tablet pc and since commercial tablets typically offer / have a WACOM or NTrig stylus they can be used.

      While "Web applications" and "HTML5" are THE buzzwords - classic RichClients have benefits for internal software and get used there a lot.

      1. Mystic Megabyte Silver badge
        FAIL

        Amnesia?

        You forgot the bit about giving 30% of your revenue to MS.

        1. mmeier

          Re: Amnesia?

          Only for Modern and only if you publish them through the market.

      2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
        Facepalm

        "Software product lines". Look it up.

        "Just one system makes it easier for commercial software companies that sell / program full sized applications."

        Yeah, they will fail equally hard on all systems because they are adapted to none.

        Actually putting work into what you are shipping makes for a good product. Lazy arsed "one size fits all" approaches not so much.

      3. Richard 12 Silver badge

        Sorry mmeier, each class of physical UI requires a different GUI.

        Something that's great on a 21" desktop with a mouse & keyboard is awful and probably unusable on a 7" touchscreen. Something great for your 7" touchscreen is hideously ugly and annoying on your 21" desktop.

        Would you want an onscreen keyboard always covering half the screen on your desktop when you have a perfectly good real one?

        That's just the most obvious example, there are many others!

        1. mmeier

          Re: Sorry mmeier, each class of physical UI requires a different GUI.

          OSK on a desktop - unneeded and not shown in WIn8. The OSK is "on demand" in Windows and has been so even in Win7. The system is smart enough to know what elements to display and what are not needed. Works even with tablet hardware as soon as a BT keyboard is detected.

          As for Office: 2007 and 2010 and 2013. For me the way they behaved was very consistent maybe that I never considered SDI/MDI a huge enough difference.

          1. Richard 12 Silver badge

            Re: Sorry mmeier, each class of physical UI requires a different GUI.

            mmeier: "Never considered SDI/MDI a huge enough difference."

            Thanks, coupled with 'just hide elements' between touch and non-touch, you've now proven that you genuinely know nothing at all regarding GUI design and don't "get" why it matters either.

            That's ok, many programmers are the same as designing a UI is a very specific skillset (some might say mindset).

            But please, do your users a favour, and never, ever design the GUI for anything. Get somebody who specialises in that, though they need some domain knowledge to be any good.

            1. mmeier

              Re: Sorry mmeier, each class of physical UI requires a different GUI.

              Nope. I design UIs and strangely - the customers like them. Do so for the last 15 years so maybe I DO it right

  14. Combustable Lemon
    Meh

    I quite like Windows 8, still sad to see the return of the (largely irrelevant) start button. It should be noted that Windows 8 is the same as Windows 7, it works exactly the same. If you previously relied on the start menu and start button to get work done on Windows 7 then i feel that i really have to point out that you were just doing it wrong. You can't cry "productivity nightmare" over Windows 8 without being a user who fully utilises the shortcuts provided in Windows already. Tidy your house before you start telling other people about the mess in theirs. I work as a software engineer and i am an avid gamer (ex pro-level, in fact [CS: S in case anyone even cares]) and running Windows 8 hasn't affected either of these activities in any detrimental way, in fact i've seen performance increases in a few games after having moved to Windows 8 (which i concede could be incidental due to Direct X/driver updates, etc). The installation of Windows 8 was also seamless but I hear others did have issues; I’m not sure how this is supposed to be surprising as I can’t think of a Microsoft operating system that didn’t have install issues on some machines.

    Downvotes, etc. I care not.

    1. Nigel 11
      Thumb Down

      At the moment I have five windows visible on my screen. That's how I want to work. I don't want anything to ever go full-screen unless I click on the full-screen button - which I never do, because no application I run needs 1920 x 1200 pixels. Several more windows are hidden but I can bring them to the foreground with one click and return them to underneath with another one click. I don't have to touch the keyboard to context-switch.

      Microsoft think I should be working differently.

      If Windows 7 ever goes away, I'll find a job that doesn't involve ever having to interact with a Microsoft system at all.

      1. mmeier

        Nonsense. MS thinks that for certain jobs one or two apps (small programs) will work. MS also knows that for other jobs multiple monitors and Windows are needed. That is the Deskop part of Win8. They both work fine and nothing changed.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      windows 8

      I've used Windows 8 every day since launch, it's fine. Like when XP was launched, there is some adjustment required but the "missing start menu" isn't a major problem, most people use desktop shortcuts anyway...

      I've used Windows 8 both with and without a start menu add on and I'm not bothered either way - you don't even have that option on Windows RT and that works fine too.

    3. Belardi

      "Windows 8 without being a user who fully utilises the shortcuts provided in Windows already"

      Same stupid argument.... To get the most out of Windows 8 with its TOUCH-DESIGNED UI, you must learn how to use the KEYBOARD Short-cuts to get around because the Touch interface is such shit.

      And pretty much every Windows8 user who LIKED Win8 I have ever meet in person (I think 3 so far), say the same thing "Its not that bad"....

      WTF?! ITS NOT THAT BAD?! Even those who like it... don't love it. And a huge chunk of them are running a Start-Menu replacement.

      As of this moment, there are 20 major Start Menu replacement programs out there... who knows how many are trojan infections. And that is WHY corporations are not going to mess with Win8 with a 3rd party add-on for basic functionality.

    4. Piro

      Irrelevant start button. I disagree. What about windowed RDP'ing into a server 2012 server with GUI on, huh? ALT+HOME gets tedious after a while.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why save the PC?

    Why would MS want to save the PC? Seems like regardless of software people prefer computing devices they can carry.

    I also think MS has too much negative sentiment associated with its brand to really excite large portions of the market. They have a lot of burnt bridges to rebuild. The firing of Robby Bach and the flushing of windows mobile was step 1. The firing of Sinofsky and 8.1 is step two.

    1. katie scarlett

      Re: Why save the PC?

      I would hazard a guess that Windows 8 was done on a portable device, while commuting, when the seat opposite was occupied by noisy twins and the one next to by an abusive drunk.

    2. Tom 7 Silver badge

      Re: Why save the PC?

      MS Office - if you dont have PC's you dont have MS office continuity. If you dont have MS office continuity that's £500 lost to MS from most company desks every couple of years. Every company I've worked for buys MS to maintain their old 'content'.

      While its apparent to some that LibreOffice does a better job of continuity than MS bar activeX when the only argument the IT manager can come up with for upgrading is 'Well I get a few months away being trained how to do the same old shit on a new 'desktop' then you know someone's days are numbered and it wont be the IT manager.

      1. mmeier

        Re: Why save the PC?

        And what is the iOS / Android alternative to (MS)Office? None or none at all?

    3. Nigel 11
      Flame

      Re: Why save the PC?

      I also think MS has too much negative sentiment associated with its brand to really excite large portions of the market.

      And when did IBM last excite large sections of the market? What percentage of people outside IT even know what IBM does? And ... so what?

      Microsoft's bread and butter is desktop PCs used by businesses or for business. For content creation not content consumption. If they carry on down the road they are on, someone is going to eat their core business the way Linux(*) is eating the iPhone.

      By the way, I don't care. I almost hope Microsoft does go the same way as Digital. Those whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad. Telling your customers that they're wrong and should <go away> is a symptom of corporate madness. It's also what Digital did more and more, until their fall.

      (*) Android. It's Linux under the skin. Though the moral would be the same even if it weren't.

  16. katie scarlett
    Flame

    Question

    Before I get my IT guys to change my laptop back to Windows 7, can anybody tell me how to print the pictures from W8? Or even how to copy and paste onto Word? Or attach to an email? Scenario being I have just looked at one of my hundreds of pictures and like this one and want to send it to my friend? This one, not the one before or after, because they are nearly the same but not quite? You know, just a Windows 8 version of the right click. At the moment I go into a picture gallery and all I can do is "select". My IT people don't know:-)

    1. MIc

      Re: Question

      Go to the desktop and use file explorer. The Photo app in win 8 is such a pile of crap....

      1. katie scarlett
        Facepalm

        Re: Question

        Thanks, but this is exactly what I don't want to do. I have perhaps 20 pictures of the same thing, the detail of which I can see on the big screen, but not in the file explorer, because they are with the same date, and same subject. In Windows 7 I could copy, attach, do whatever with the ones I wanted, now all I can do is select. There is no answer to this particular perfectionist's problem in Windows 8.

        But from the forum above I imagine W8 is great for software designers and gamers.

    2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    3. MelniboneanAirways
      Happy

      Re: Question

      Tap the photo you want, it'll expand to take up screen, then swipe charms menu in from the right hand side of the screen.

      If you want to email select 'share' then 'mail'; if you want to print select 'devices' and then the printer you wish to print to.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Question

        Of course, opening Charms to do that will start the email client that you don't use and doesn't have any of your email accounts or addresses configured...

        According to Microsoft, this is a Good Thing.

      2. katie scarlett
        Angel

        Re: Question

        Thanks Melni, sounds like fun!

  17. Levente Szileszky
    FAIL

    Shockingly tone-def to any feeedback, utterly clueless, breathtakingly arrogant...

    ..., impossibly ass-backward, openly deceiving, hilariously overconfident (forget criticism) yet spectacularly failing - this must be Ballmer's MSFT, period.

    Obligatory reminder with the Vanity Fair link to read the greatest article about MSTF & Ballmer from last August:

    "How Microsoft Lost Its Mojo: Steve Ballmer And Corporate America's Most Spectacular Decline"

    http://www.vanityfair.com/business/2012/08/microsoft-lost-mojo-steve-ballmer#1

  18. Shane Kent

    At MACWINLINO...

    8 was not paid for beta to 8.1, both are paid for betas to Tiles 1.0 ;)

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just imagine all of the bad press and the beatings they took if they had actually listened to the reviews of the betas. Seems like Microsoft wants to fail again, well, here is to June 2014 then.

    Kin = Fail

    WP = Fail

    Windows 8 = Fail

    WinRT = Fail

    Windows 8.1 = Fail

    They got a streak going.

    1. Belardi

      MS-Office 2012 = Fail

      Xbox One = Fail (Coming soon)

  20. Richard Remmele

    Mr

    They are just complaining about the Bolted on Modern Front End (Metro).

    Click on Desktop or boot directly to Desktop and you are on a slightly faster Windows 7 with a few new features.

    Change a couple of defaults (like to the included Windows Photo Viewer) and you won't be popped out of the Desktop unless you press a key to go to the Modern Front End.

    Remember a couple of things that fit on a Post-it note or install the free Classic Shell to get back your Start Button /Menu.

    I run both a Windows 7 and Windows 8 system side by side every day and never get popped out to the Front End. I run all my Windows 7 and Xp programs on both systems in the exact same way with the same icons, with the ability to pin them to the bottom task bar, just the same as Windows 7.

    No reason to upgrade from Windows 7 but no reason to hate Windows 8.

    1. Belardi

      Re: Mr

      Some of those new features can be added to Windows7 for free. Like TeraCopy and Better Explorer.

      Windows 8 desktop is still an ugly bastardized Windows-basic version of Windows7.... who pays for such crap?

  21. MigMig

    “PCs are still better at many things than tablets and smartphones, but I think that message has been lost and needs to be revived in order to get people focused on the benefits that PCs offer.”

    Hmm so if there is a product out there that is a "PC" and a tablet simultaneously, then this would be rephrased as “PCs are still better at many things than themselves and smartphones....." I don't know why but this doesn't sound right.

  22. W. Anderson

    Empty content article

    Did Phil Muncaster or any other gaga eyed tech media person at Computex ask Microsoft "specifically" what are the advances in security that Microsoft proclaimed in statement ..."With Windows 8.1 we bring new management capabilities and great advancements in security and mobility. "

    Why even bother to report this story if in fact it is only a repeat of Microsoft propaganda statements? Experienced, technologically knowledgeable and non Gee Whiz reporters cannot be that difficult for The register to find.

    Otherwise I can just read Microdsoft's Press Announcement.

  23. Two Posts
    Unhappy

    <joe-pesci-lw3>

    Microsoft, they #### you in the Office then, when they're done ####ing you in the Office, they #### you in the OS. Where does it say you need a lopotomy to use a desktop computer?

    </joe-pesci-lw3>

    <will-smith-ir>

    Microsoft, sh##ting on the power user.

    </will-smith-ir>

    Windows TIFKAM designed by Star Trek TNG fans, bringing the 24th century interface to your desktop today, without the intervening 300 years of development.

    "There was I, digging this hole, hole in the ground, it was big and sort of round..."

    Disclaimer:

    Yes, I am still holding a grudge and being a bad will ambassador for Microsoft when the mood takes me.

    I do actually run Windows 8 Professional at home (alongside an Ubuntu powered netbook and an Android smart phone), hey it was £50 and I can run my old computer XP disk images in a Hyper-V window which is cool (shame I can't promote this feature to family and friends, their XP/other Windows OS images are OEM). The desktop experience is better than fine, but like the Office ribbon interface, I can barely tolerate TIFKAM. Maybe I am too old, these days in the software world, new and improved means to me, more confusing and less productive.

    For various reasons I need to run Microsoft products in 'out of the box' mode, so things like Start8 and kludging menus back into Office are a non-starter.

    I'll use Windows 8.1 when it is released, if only to boot straight to desktop, as for all the other 'improvements', I'll wait and see.

  24. James Pickett
    Headmaster

    Language

    Since when was "architected" a word?

  25. jmk89
    Thumb Down

    This is just a mean spirited prank

    Average User: "Oh thank heavens the start-menu is back, such a relief, I'll just open a progr...aww"

  26. Tom 13

    Re: Microsoft parades Windows 8.1, the version you may actually want

    Doubtful.

    Especially after the Start Button fiasco.

    Yes, if I want a system that will play most of the PC games out there, I may be forced to buy a copy or two. But it won't be because of an innate desire to buy it.

  27. carlos_c
    Facepalm

    Re this is a mean spirited prank

    Funny that....... most users I deal with don't know how to launch a program from the start menu. You'll find your average pc user will have an icon on the desktop (put there by the IT chappie) or one on the quick launch.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Re this is a mean spirited prank

      The conclusion being that they don't need "Windoffs" at all just a big red button with "LAUNCH MUH APPLICATION NAOW".

      Positively Simpsonian.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    While they are rolling things back...

    Can we get rid of that crappy ribbon bar and the black and white VS icons too?

  29. enerider
    Linux

    As a person who got the Win8 Pro upgrade when it was going cheap...

    ... I am glad I did.

    I'm not using any touch interface, I have a mouse, monitor, keyboard and a handy little mITX PC I've put together. Z77 chipset and i5 3470 to match - and things are notably snappier when I switched from Windows 7 to Windows 8 on the same hardware.

    I will admit initial frustration with finding where things got moved to from Windows 7 - but most anything I can find now by mashing the Windows key on the keyboard and typing a few characters.

    I will make this plain and simple: I like playing games with my friends. One of these is MechWarrior Online.

    I havn't yet tried running it in a WINE instance, but I suspect it probably wouldn't work all that well - CryEngine 3 being the beast that it is.

    In times past I have used (in no particular order): FreeBSD, Slackware, OpenSuSe, Debian, Ubuntu, Mandrake, Red Hat, Fedora, Linux Mint. When I was giving gaming under a Linux-kernelled OS a good thrash, there were inevitable roadblocks. At the time, Quake Wars: Enemy Territory was a reasonably newish game (with native linux installer).

    The fun parts were the games from iD: All the Quakes and Dooms had native installers or ports. UT2004 also had a native installer. These all worked flawlessly.

    Then you get to some of the other titles we usually like to thrash out on a gaming weekend, things like Call of Duty, Company of Heroes, Dawn of War: Dark Crusade among others. In these cases , WINE support was not quite up to snuff *at the time* (Single player often worked, but if you're trying to LAN game, single player is not enough). Starcraft worked fine. Red Alert 2 not so much.

    I can't remember what tricks I pulled, but I was playing BF1942 online reasonably well in WINE - even if PunkBuster didn't like it and would boot me off every so often. A patch was even added to WINE which corrected issues when trying to look around in a fullscreen game (the fix basically recentered the mouse cursor after every detected mouse movement - so you didn't have the issue where you would be able to turn so far and no further).

    I went to a LAN with my setup and my 9800XT finally had enough of the torture and decided to suicide - which was replaced with a spare nVidia card that was available at the time. With no Internet connectivity, I was sunk for trying to get the Linux nVidia drivers to make things go again (since the ATI was using FGLRX obviously). So ended up defaulting to Windows XP at the time out of necessity (thank goodness for dual boot) - since someone else had nVidia drivers available on the network.

    I havn't tried gaming under a *nix system for some time since then - seeing as Windows 7 did everything that was asked of it until I recently went with Win8 Pro. Windows 8 from my view has carried on nicely - with my graphics card and everything working off the bat.

    So it hasn't been for the want of trying - I've given gaming a solid go under Linux, but using Windows just saved so much frustration. But that isn't to say I won't try again sometime soon - first I need a new hard drive that isn't old and tired which I can then partition and dual boot from - and I'll either go Debian or Slackware.

  30. MIc
    Thumb Up

    Not jarring in 8.1

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YTR8_-UVmHc&feature=youtu.be

    reddit thread:

    http://www.reddit.com/r/windows/comments/1fteei/microsoft_shows_new_start_button_in_action_118/

  31. Winkypop Silver badge
    Stop

    Please

    Don't feed the Eadon.

  32. lazyedit
    WTF?

    Hit the windows key and then begin typing...

    On a desktop with Windows 8 go to either bottom left corner or hit the Windows key to bring you to the tiled interface and then start typing.

    If I want to play civilisation I type "CI"

    If I want the control panel I type "CO"

    If I want to bring up a document called bring back my start button I type "br"

    If I want any file/program I begin typing much like the seach bar I would use in the Windows 7. I have no input on using windows 8 on a touchscreen device and appreciate that there is prob not a physcial windows key to just "press" like on the desktop and if so this is a design flaw. But nothing wrong with desktop W8 why does everyone bang on about the start button. Using W8 at home and W7 at work. On windows 8 I can.... find any file much quicker than I could in Windows.

    "Try the Windows key on the keyboard you morons".... is an excellent answer for people that complain about the fact the start button is missing!

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Hit the windows key and then begin typing...

      I like it how the defense of Windows now seems to consist in arguing that it is basically much like a Unix shell.

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