Defenestrate Windows 7: Windows 8 Preview Is Out

By Craig Pearson on March 1st, 2012 at 3:32 pm.

wub wub 8
The best thing about Microsoft launching a new version of Windows is watching how they’ll awkwardly advertise it. The Windows 7 party videos might just be the most cringe-worthy thing they’ve ever done, and that’s saying something. So I’m a little disappointed with the launch of the free Windows 8 Consumer Preview. The video on the site is a rather awful, embarrassing attempt to ride the Wub Wub wave by layering dubstep over operating system videos. Incongruous, yes, but I doubt I’ll be linking to it when Windows 9 comes out. It’s just unmemorably awful.

I’m usually keen to download and try early copies of Windows, but after having to reinstall W7 last month I think I’ll pass on Windows 8 for now. I am interested, as I quite like some of the aesthetics: the live info on the desktop apps are a particularly smart addition as I do like integrating of information. Microsoft have enabled cloud sharing as well, so files and settings are imported across devices. So far those that have it installed are reporting it launches speedily and responds snappily.

But I’m a bit wary that they seem to have made two operating systems in one: one for touch screens and one for desktop, and I’m worried that’s it’s specific to neither. In fact, this looks like the beginning of the end of the desktop, with the traditional methods we’re used to being hidden behind that clunky, Windows Phone style interface. A lot of the interaction is about mouse-placement, using the corners of the screen as hotspots for accessing programs. The taskbar and desktop are hidden, accessed in the same way as all the other programs.

But, at the same time, there’s also a lot of changes, really smart tweaks, for the desktop: they’ve finally improved file copying, with proper reporting on the speed and control over what’s copying, and a smart task manager that shows what starts-up with the PC and allows you to disable unwanted programs, and it also shows that applications pause when put in the background, using up RAM but not CPU cycles.

In all this games seem to have been a bit lost: there’s an Xbox Live app that brings a few elements of the Xbox Dashboard over to the PC, which is both a fancy games launcher and market rolled into one. It could signal the end of GFWL, as it properly exists outside the games, but there’s been nothing mentioned about how that will be handled. And given Microsoft have just launched a Flight as a GFWL game, I doubt it’s being wholly ditched.

I guess I could try it and see, as that’s what the preview all about, but when my PC is my primary means for everything ever. So instead I’ll leave that to Lifehacker, who do a good job of showing off a few of those tiny little details, and The Verge who’ve had a good play with it.

Let us know if you’re interested in the direction W8 is taking, as I’m rather comfortable with 7 as it is.

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211 Comments »

  1. InternetBatman says:

    That was a clever title. Also, not interested in Windows 8 at all. It’s clearly not designed with PCs in mind.

    • HothMonster says:

      Console port

    • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      The desktop just doesn’t deliver the same “intimate experience”.

    • Smashbox says:

      You guys are on a roll today.

    • vodka and cookies says:

      Desktop PC’s are dinosaurs only used by some offices and hardcore PC gamers, everyone else has moved to laptops and all those people will be moving to touchscreen laptops and tablets (plus hybrids of the two) in the future which is what Windows 8 is designed for, the mass market.

      I cant say I’m a big fan of the touch focus either but I understand why, everyone’s moving that way whether you like it not.

      I’m hoping that someone will at least make a good quality touch screen display for desktop PC’s that way you can at least make Windows 8 a little more usable if your sitting close to the display or even better a clever feature in Windows 8 is that you can have the metro start menu on a second display while having the desktop on the primary so second monitor can be used for touch screen stuff.

    • HexagonalBolts says:

      Yes, I have to say, being a gamer without any (non-internet) friends who are gamers, I feel almost embarrassed to own a desktop – that alone is a sign of geekiness these days. I know no other person at university with one, and even though my (computer-illiterate) parents own a fantastic desktop they still felt the need to have a work laptop, an Eee, an Ipad and two smartphones.

    • Khemm says:

      @vodka
      I’d be perfectly fine with hooking up my laptop to a monitor and use it as a gaming/working machine, but the desktop is so much more powerful. Laptops and tablets for the most part suck for gaming unless we’re talking about games which are several years old.
      Desktop are big and not portable, but they’ll be around until laptops and tablets stop sucking.

    • HothMonster says:

      @khemm

      its not that laptops suck. You can buy an i7 laptop with a modern graphics card in it and be top of the line. The problem is you can’t upgrade shit besides ram and hdd. It still amazes me that none of the card companies have released replaceable laptop graphics cards yet.

      I’m willing to spend a couple hundred every year upgrading a part or 2 in my desktop but I really don’t want to buy a 2k laptop every couple years.
      http://www.asus.com/Notebooks/Gaming_Powerhouse/G74SX/#specifications

      @vodka
      The idea of reaching over my mouse and keyboard to touch my display just seems stupid to me. Touch is great for what its great for but that is not my desktop pc.

    • Consumatopia says:

      The one big thing Windows 8 looks like it’s getting right is that tablets and desktops are both computers. That whole iOS crap where tablets are only appliances is a tragedy.

      I guess my concern is that I’m afraid of a compromise interface that sort of works well with touchscreens and sort of works well with mice/keyboards (no, I don’t want to rely on touch for my 13″ laptop, let alone a 30″ desktop monitor).

      EDIT: watching that of desktop usage, it looks okay to me. Those tiles have replaced the Start menu. That’s okay, the Start menu sucks. There’s that Metro interface where he was complaining that the scrollbars go in different directions or whatever. I guess that’s probably more useful on tablets. And once you click to the Desktop than it looks like Windows 7. Which is probably harder to use on tablets. So there’s a tablet-optimized set of applications, and a desktop-optimized set of applications. Which makes perfect sense to me–if I plug a mouse and keyboard into a tablet, it becomes a desktop. But either way, it’s still a PC. I guess. Anyway, cautiously optimistic here.

    • Lemming says:

      I’m with you err..Batman.

      I only got Windows 7 64bit in the last few months and I have no intention of going over to something that expects me to favour a touch-screen approach and try to shill Xbox crap at me for gaming.

      You still need a keyboard and mouse for so many other things than just navigating the OS (typing, reflexive gaming), so why would they try to encourage you to move your hands away from these devices to another depending on what you’re doing? That’s not innovation that’s spreading things too thinly.

      The ‘hype’ surrounding this seems to be coming purely from media outlets and MS themselves, as far as I can see.

      I get that they want to create a one-size-fits-all OS, but it shouldn’t have gone beyond mobile, tablets and consoles. PCs are expected to have more latitude.

    • Edradour says:

      @vodka: “PC’s are dinosaurs only used” I think given the colossal amount of desktops used in offices around the globe, “only” isnt the right word.

      @hexagonal: almost all of my friends own a desktop almost all of them have played a game or two on them at some point. At University i know many who have one many use their tablets/laptops to take notes int he lectures and work with them on their pcs while a suprisingly high amount plays games on them too ( mostly stuff like LoL and CoD though ) so i cant really see your point.

      Tablets and Smartphones are nice additions but for the most part a desktop is required for writing actual papers. It can be done on Laptops but most people i know prefer a pc with a real keyboard for sitting down and working on smth.

    • Rich says:

      “Desktop PC’s are dinosaurs only used by some offices
      Offices? You mean business users, i.e. Microsoft’s bread and butter.
      With this UI Microsoft is about to alienate their core business.

      Mark my words, this will flop. Windows 9 may well be excellent, but 8 will bomb.

    • Mctittles says:

      @Rich
      That usually seems to be their business plan if you pay attention. They’ve managed to come up with a system that sells the exact same crap OS to us over and over.

      1. Re-skin existing Windows; remove some items, rename others, add in older existing items.
      2. Hype it up and sell to people excited for something “new”
      3. Wait for backlash because OS sucks and some features removed annoyed people.
      4. Release another version that is the same version with the things people hated and some of the stuff removed added back in. Watch people talk about how much better it was than the last OS. “Best windows ever!”
      ….and repeat

      Just check out that video where the most excited the guy gets is about adding back in the folder up button. Yea, great job…

    • HothMonster says:

      @rich

      It takes years for any major business to advance in operating systems. They have to wait till all the 3rd party software they use is stable and even then a lot are happy to stay with something they know works until they are forced to upgrade due to something the rely on no longer supporting the older OS. Tons of businesses still run off xp and a lot are just starting to make the switch into 7.

      @others re: business desktop
      To be fair physical business desktops will probably be going the way of the dodo soon and replaced with server based virtulization.

    • bitchpants says:

      Maybe it’s designed with kinect in mind? I would not object to this, but I’m not sure if I would make the switch for it.

    • Brun says:

      Mark my words, this will flop. Windows 9 may well be excellent, but 8 will bomb.

      It will probably bomb as a Desktop OS. Early reviews as a pure tablet OS, however, seem to be surprisingly positive. Meaning that it may do well in sales, but it won’t pick up a lot of the desktop market share.

    • gtb says:

      “Console Port” is the best way to describe it. That’s what im telling people from now on who bring it up.

    • Tams80 says:

      @ vodka and cookies

      I’m using a hybrid or tabletPC now. I don’t have a desktop, but damn do I wish I had one when I’m at home, even just to surf the web. O and Windows 7 works quite well my tabletPC, it just needs refining, which Windows 8 doesn’t really do. Windows 8 is good on it, but placing the windows of err, WIndows on the backseat seat isn’t that great.

      Having a touchscreen on a laptop is rather overrated by the way. Even with an active digitizer that I use everyday, there is still the wearing off of the new gadget feeling.

    • noasdlasd says:

      The Apple iPhone 3G (8GB) U.S. $ 193.99 free expedited shipping!
      http://kurl.rs/984
      Now the iPhone has new generation to the 4s iPhone 3G is not up to date! But its low price is very competitive! U.S. $ 193.99 is likely to be the lowest on the network!

    • D3xter says:

      @vodka You heard it here first people, Programming, Video/Wordprocessing, CAD etc. only with touch soon, everyone else is a dinosaur.

      Ironically i am writing this on a tablet in a Bus while travelling through Spain and it took me ages.

  2. President Weasel says:

    I only just got a PC with 7 on it. I shall pretend 8 doesn’t exist for a while longer so I can enjoy my shiny new OS.

    • jezcentral says:

      Win7 has been a joy from the RC onwards. They’ll have an even harder job trying to convince me to upgrade than they did with WinXP to Vista.

      EDIT: I’m not saying it’s bad, just that I’m still waiting for a reason to upgrade, while my monitor is not a touchscreen.

    • fionny says:

      I am saying Windows 8 is bad… from a desktop user perspective!

      I wont be touching it, and I dont think any self respective business will be touching it either seen as its TOTALLY impracticable.

      It took me 5 minutes to figure out how to get to control panel to see if I could turn Metro UI off which wasnt possible.,.. I call bullshit.

    • jezcentral says:

      From what I can see, by “bad”, you actually mean “new”.

      And you can’t turn off Metro, you say? Well, you did call it.

    • Valvarexart says:

      “I won’t touch it”

      I see what you did there!

      I won’t touch it either, but I most certainly will install it on my non-touchscreen.

    • Matt says:

      Like every useful setting in Windows since ’95, you have to use regedit to disable Metro:

      http://www.mstechpages.com/2011/09/14/disable-metro-in-windows-8-developer-preview/

    • Kent says:

      I have yet to upgrade my Win XP computer to Windows 7… and now they’re releasing yet another sodding operative system. That is incredibly annoying.

    • TCM says:

      Why the frig would ANYONE still be using XP.

      It’d be like using Win 98 towards the end of XP’s lifecycle.

    • Lukasz says:

      Why am i using xp?

      single core amd3200 ati4850 2gb of ram.

      tell me what will make windows seven better os for me?

    • MasterDex says:

      @TCM: Because not everyone has the power to run Windows 7, or they’re smart enough to realise that the laptop they bought is ill-equipped to run Windows 7 with any degree of efficiency. XP is still a perfectly valid choice of OS.

    • Stephen Roberts says:

      Just Cause 2 is enough of a reason to get windows 7. Pretty much over and above any power concerns you have with your computer.

  3. Brun says:

    +1 for use of Defenestrate.

    Also, keep tablet OS garbage out of my gaming world please Microsoft.

  4. povu says:

    None of the good changes are significant enough to warrant an upgrade over 7 right now.

  5. visualdeity says:

    I’m skipping Windows 8. Microsoft apparently hasn’t learned from the fiasco of older Windows tablets that using a UI on a device it wasn’t designed for provides a terrible user experience. I’ve used the Win8 developer preview, and it’s horribly unpleasant to use because it forces you to put up with Metro (which is optimized for touch, not mouse+keyboard). To put it in familiar gaming terms, it’s like a bad console port of a game where thought wasn’t put into how the PC operates differently than a console, and how to leverage that.

    I’m rather hoping that people avoid this version like the plague, and force Microsoft to actually (gasp!) design an OS for each platform that plays to the strengths of that platform.

  6. MistyMike says:

    I’m a win XP loyalist. Some of us still persist hiding in the woods.

    • The Tupper says:

      Works fine for me.

    • diebroken says:

      IMHO (damn I hate using that expression, but still) Windows 7 is probably the best version of Windows since Windows 98 SE/2000 (yeah, I know). Also, each version of Windows gets progressively easier to install H/W…

    • Khemm says:

      We don’t have proper 64 bit programs and are stuck with 32 bit-related 2GB RAM limit because of your stubborness.

    • Khemm says:

      @Hoth
      That only proves we’re in a terrible spot right now. You have to rely on some third party programs to make something work like it should and you’re still limited, only to 4GB this time. Why resort to such nonsense instead of getting proper 64bit applications, those should be a standard now.

    • Sarissofoi says:

      Still going to hide in the woods.
      Also loyalist is great sounding name.

    • bwion says:

      About 10% of why I haven’t upgraded from Windows XP yet is to spite joyless ‘YOU ARE HOLDING BACK THE FUTURE” nonsense-mongers.

      (10% that, 20% New Operating Systems Are Expensive, 70% I Am Lazy And It Works Just Fine).

    • Khemm says:

      @bwion
      That’s precisely the reason why I intend to stick to Win 7 as long as it makes sense. ;)

    • Stevostin says:

      Just left XP a week ago for 7 and I must say it really is, for once, all for the best. The navigation is better, the resilience is better and it’s hugely more user friendly when it comes to installing or get the network working. The only cons is more annoying security pop up but let’s be honnest : this is an infected world out there and it probably needs it.

    • sinister agent says:

      About 10% of why I haven’t upgraded from Windows XP yet is to spite joyless ‘YOU ARE HOLDING BACK THE FUTURE” nonsense-mongers.

      Same here. Although I have Windows 7 on this PC, it wasn’t an upgrade, as my other one still uses XP. So I’m probably cheating, but I don’t care. I have no problem with people still using XP, either way.

    • bwion says:

      I actually really like Windows 7 from what I’ve used of it. (Which is mostly really Server 2008 R2, but same difference, as I understand it.). I really just want to time updating the OS to coincide with my next major hardware upgrade/new machine.

      (Also I have no money and I am lazy.)

    • Kefren says:

      I have dual boot XP and Win7. I use XP as my primary one, and Win7 for the few things that don’t run so well in XP (usually a few games with strange DRM). I use Win7 at work and there are some things that I like about it, but I don’t like the Start menu at all, and Win Explorer is much harder on the eye. Since those are two places I go to a lot, and WinXP generally works with no problems, I see no reason to change my current situation at the moment.

    • Kaira- says:

      Speaking of XP… new software compiled with the new MS C++-compiler won’t run on XP if one doesn’t do little trickery.

    • drewski says:

      XP’s working fine for me too, but on the day I do eventually get a new system (probably not until this one completely dies given how little time I have for gaming, let alone PC gaming) I’m looking forward to getting into Windows 7 properly.

    • E_FD says:

      I don’t WANT to be a crusty old eccentric still clinging to a long-retired operating system, but yeah, XP is still working fine for me, and for all the nice things I hear about 7, it doesn’t really feel worth it to shell out money and go to the hassle of reinstalling everything when I can do everything I want on my current setup.

    • Harlander says:

      I do my OS updates when I build a complete new system. It’s too much of a pain otherwise, when you could just leave a working system working.

  7. Apples says:

    Who thought that users would want their start bars to be turned into a pile of squares that takes up the entire screen? Really, who?

    • Gnoupi says:

      The ones that use a touchscreen, obviously. It’s probably much easier to use on a touchscreen than the regular menu.

      For a mouse, though, it feels just big and overwhelming.

    • The Godzilla Hunter says:

      Can I have the start key/menu back? Its really useful, and I reaaaallly don’t want some weird “start page” or whatever. I use the start menu for two reasons: searching for files/folders and having quick access to page history (for instance, hover over steam and I can quickly launch my most recently played game..very useful).

    • DrGonzo says:

      The start button is still there, it’s just invisible. Mouse over the bottom left and click and there you are. It’s functionality is essentially the same but better. The search feature now searches every app, your hard drive and google/bing. It’s a universal search which is very nice.

      I do agree that it taking over the whole screen is a bit much, but the more I use it the more I’m liking it.

    • RDG says:

      You people need to learn to hit the Windows button on your keyboards.

    • SiHy_ says:

      @RDG Actually, I resent having a Windows key forced onto my keyboard. The only function it serves is shooting me back to my desktop when I accidently press it whilst playing a game. If I want to open the Start menu I’ll click on the damn thing.

  8. Faceless says:

    You have to sign into Microsoft to use Calculator? Alright, then.

  9. deadly.by.design says:

    @alt-text
    96.5% more Wub-Wub?

    • droid says:

      Much much less than that. Approximately 26.2% of the wub content of Borderlands 2.

    • c-Row says:

      Wub wub? That’s not even close to it. Sorry Craig, but that just made you sound like the kind of person for whom every kind of electronic music is “techno”.

      It’s not particularly good, though.

    • stupid_mcgee says:

      Agreed. That is NOT dubstep. I’m not a big fan of dubstep, but that’s hardly what the genre sounds like.

      I believe the music in the video is what the kids would call, breakbeat or bigbeat. Popularized by acts like The Chemical Brothers, The Prodigy, Fatboy Slim, Crystal Method, Depth Charge, Uberzone, Cirrus, Bentley Rhythm Ace, etc.

      Actually, the song in that Win8 vid kind of reminds me of “More Beats and Pieces” by Coldcut.

  10. bit_crusherrr says:

    That looks horrible.

  11. Galaxy613 says:

    Ok so it’s all fancy, but what would it do with my two monitor setup? Would it just completely ignore my second monitor? This is very very silly.

    • deadsexy says:

      It would be as silly as it can possibly get and show you the Metro UI on one display and the normal desktop on the other.

  12. djbriandamage says:

    I installed Windows 8 yesterday and it’s pretty interesting so far.

    The first thing I’ll say is that everything works. I installed the OS and it installed working drivers for all my devices without me having to lift a finger. It even recognized both my sound cards and defaulted to my preferred one. Steam and its games work. WoW works. GOG games, SCUMMVM, and DOSbox work. Microsoft Flight works with my Thrustmaster joystick (many buttons, hat, throttle, yaw) with no additional drivers. Firefox, my FTP programs, my zip programs, it all works like a charm so far.

    The new interface takes some getting used to. Some commands have changed and it takes me a moment to learn the new one. Otherwise the UI is awesome. Copying files gives a pause button, a line graph showing speed over time, and it consolidates multiple copy commands into a single window. The Start menu is awesome and full of opportunity – I’ve replaced my Win7 desktop gadgets with live tiles on my Start menu which tell me things like weather and mail. There’s not a lot of apps on the store (like where’s Twitter?) but today’s just day two of the preview so I know it’s all forthcoming.

    The thing works BEAUTIFULLY. It boots super fast, the new GUI bootloader lets me choose between Win8 and my old Win7 install (which I have on another partition), everything works, and I feel like I’m not missing anything from WIn7.

    I highly recommend checking this out. It’s free for now and it’s a lot of fun to use. You can be a clueless naysayer or you can get your hands dirty and be the voice of experience. Just be open-minded and don’t allow yourself to be a dinosaur who regresses every new Windows version into a Win95 clone. Allow yourself to try this thing and you will be greatly rewarded.

    • nutterguy says:

      Glad to see that this isn’t just a thread of stupidity…

    • Vagrant says:

      I was fairly excited about Win8 until reading a bit yesterday. Now, let’s say I just have cautious optimism. I do want to install this on my PC, I remember testing the developer preview build at work with some excitement.

    • Apples says:

      The thing is that some things, I can just tell I’ll hate and never use. I always immediately remove any desktop widgets like weather/mail (laptops always seem to come with these all over the bloody screen) so I don’t want a start menu entirely consisting of them. I barely even have any apps* on my iPod so I don’t want them on my PC. I’d like the new task manager and file transfer stuff put onto Windows 7, but the larger structural GUI changes look unappealing because they bear no relation to the way I personally use a PC.

      * by apps, I think you can probably tell what I mean and how they’re distinct from ‘programs’. Don’t get pedantic :V

    • Khemm says:

      Sounds interesting, but I got Windows 7 64bit fairly recently, roughly 2 years ago – I have doubts it’s worth spending a lot of money on a reskinned Win 7 with a tablet interface – a few improvements, as great as they might be, are not enough I feel.
      Maybe Win 9 will make the tablet interface more customizable so that it works better with keyboard & mouse, refines that idea further.

    • dangermouse76 says:

      Question ?

      I am a photographer, I also do some web design and game a far bit. Given that I use Adobe CS5 and Steam etc for most of the work and play on my computer; does the Metro UI and general system functionality lend it self to being used as a work machine as oppossed to a family or use home computer?

      How does the new system affect work flow and programme access can you pin photoshop etc to the metro tiles. Is there quick swithing between programs.

      Cheers for any insight.

    • kael13 says:

      See, now this is what I wanted to know. Couldn’t care less about the tablet-centric GUI, but this stuff and the new task manager are looking mighty tasty.

    • Scrawnto says:

      @dangermouse76
      The workflow is pretty much hasn’t changed. Any program can be pinned to a tile, though desktop applications won’t have any live-tile functionality, as far as I know. The tile just acts as a shortcut to the program on your desktop. There’s still a taskbar on your desktop, so switching between programs with that is the same as before. You can still alt-tab between them.

      They didn’t really take anything away, except the clunky start menu folder navigation from before. As I responded below, there is search based program starting exactly like before. Press the windows key (which used to open the start menu, but now opens the metro interface), start typing, press enter when it finds the program, and it pushes you back to the desktop you know and love and loads the program. It’s pretty intuitive. Windows Explorer is also still around, of course, if you need to dig around through folders.

    • TormDK says:

      @dangermouse76 – See, this is something we will have to wait and see.

      If *all* your installed programs and apps get live titles, then I would expect a much greater amount of information without the need to open up the programs to get said information.

      Steam sales could flip the titles on sale on Steam’s Live Tile without needing to open the store window etc.

      All the good stuff that we would expect. The static desktop as we know it is dead! Long live the interactive metro interface.

    • LionsPhil says:

      Rather than install it on real hardware and risk trampling a working 7 install, it should run well enough to poke things in VirtualBox. Obviously somewhat slower, in particular in terms of 3D support, but once you’ve installed the Guest Addons told it that yes, you do want to try the experimental WDDM drivers, that picks up to be slick enough in most places. Oh, and bump the guest’s display resolution to 1024×768 at least or half the apps just bomb out without any error message, at least in the Developer Preview.

    • dangermouse76 says:

      @ Scrawnto & TormDK

      Cheers for the info and views sounds interesting. Mind you I held on to XP for about 10 years and missed out Vista and only got W7 about 4 months ago. So Unless there is a compelling advantage I will try to get my moneys worth out of windows 7 for a while yet.

    • djbriandamage says:

      @LionsPhil
      I ran the previous Developer Preview version in VMware Workstation 8 and although it worked fairly well you’ll want to run it fullscreen if possible. Win8 has a lot of mouse gestures that rely on you dragging the cursor to the screen extremities which is hard to do accurately if you run the OS in a window. I know VMware lets you run fullscreen but I’m not sure whether Sun Virtualbox lets you do this properly.

      The UI is very fluid and responsive running on the bare metal versus a VM so if you get the opportunity I’d highly recommend trying it the way it was meant to be run.

    • Tams80 says:

      @ Apples

      Windows 8 without the GUI? Yes please! I’d preorder it like I did Windows 7.

    • LionsPhil says:

      Yeah, VirtualBox can do fullscreen once the Guest Additions are installed, and good point in that regard.

    • MarcusCardiff says:

      @djbriandamage
      I was quite interested in your argument until you started throwing insults which clearly demonstrated you’re a fanboy and a bit of a dick.
      I dismissed your comment at that point but thanks for playing.

  13. Kektain says:

    Nice to see they’re integrating a few things I’ve always used external tools for at least a decade to do (mounting ISOs, checking startup programs…). Almost any change from the current way of uninstalling a program would be a welcome improvement, so I like that. It isn’t clear if they still have search-based program starting though, which is the only thing I’d miss if I went back to XP from 7.

    The new start menu/metro thing looks silly, but I don’t use the start menu now anyway.

    I can’t believe some Apple-style App store looks to be a central aspect of a new operating system and some sort of motivation to buy it.

    • Brun says:

      I can’t believe some Apple-style App store looks to be a central aspect of a new operating system and some sort of motivation to buy it.

      When the target device (big-screened phone-without-phone) has no disk drives, downloading software from an online store is about the only way to get programs. Yes, programs. I hate it when people call things that are programs “apps.”

    • The First Door says:

      Yeah, I’d miss the start menu search functionality terribly as well. I barely even look at the Windows 7 start menu now… although that might be because I find it horribly unusable for browsing installed programs.

    • Scrawnto says:

      There is search based program starting exactly like before. Press the windows key (which used to open the start menu, but now opens the metro interface), start typing, press enter when it finds the program, and it pushes you back to the desktop you know and love and loads the program. No change to the workflow there.

  14. nutterguy says:

    I should point out that this can easily be installed onto a Virtual Hard Drive (VHD) and installed without messing with anything that matters. If your on Windows 7 that is. And if your not by now, got out.

    Guide here: http://www.hanselman.com/blog/GuideToInstallingAndBootingWindows8DeveloperPreviewOffAVHDVirtualHardDisk.aspx

    • Havok9120 says:

      Which is nice and all, but I’ve yet to see significant reason to upgrade. Perhaps it’ll grow into something, but “new” doesn’t mean “better” anymore than it means “useless.”

  15. davidgilbert says:

    I’ve tried the developer preview that was released last year, and it feels a bit too schitzophrenic for my liking from a user perspective (who really wants two systems) but the baseline was its Windows 7 hidden behind this tablet style frontend.

    From a support perspective I can see the need for the windows 7 interface being here as tech need to access the underpinnings of the system somehow.

    I guess the tablet mode is great if your into media publishing or need your daily fix absolutely everywhere, but to be honest if you want a graphical interface on a larger screen you are better off with an ipad / other tablet, also I can’t really see how Microsoft are going to sell it – would you really want to sink 100 quid into windows 7 with a tablet interface added on?

    In conclusion I don’t think its going to work that well, as its neither a full graphical interface system or a huge improvement on Windows 7, so its stuck being OK in the middle between the two.

    • Brun says:

      Well, one can kind of see the potential for a resurgence of transformer tablets – you know, those notebooks that were popular in the early 2000′s that had touch screens that flipped around and covered the keyboard to make a tablet. The only thing really holding those back was the lack of an operating system that was designed for the touchscreen side. Microsoft has addressed that, and included the more traditional side of the OS that could handle such a device when it’s in “traditional notebook form.”

  16. sonofsanta says:

    Use VirtualBox to install it on a virtual machine running on your PC, it is genuinely as easy as pie, although for the record I’ve never made an actual pie so I am guessing here. I have done VirtualBox VMs though and they’re well easy, innit.

    I think they’ve said (in a blog on the interface) that Win8 really isn’t targeted at power users, i.e. the likes of us lot. I imagine Win9 will then be for us, Win10 for touch etc. and we’ll start to see an every-other versioning.

    Win8 does look horrible for mouse/keyboard, though. Have you seen the magic corners thing? Looks like you have to remember which corner is for which function. Queue much pinging around with the cursor trying to find the Magical Happy Bar or whatever they call it.

    • Ajh says:

      To be fair, mac users have had the corners thing since os 9 or earlier, and haven’t really had any issue with them.

    • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      I have made pie, and I consider pie making without experience to be of moderate difficulty, becoming easier as you gain experience.

      I have not installed Windows 8, so I cannot comment on whether or not it is easier than pie.

  17. mr.ioes says:

    “But, at the same time, there’s also a lot of changes, really smart tweaks, for the desktop: they’ve finally improved file copying, with proper reporting on the speed and control over what’s copying [...]”

    Hoooold on a second!
    Can we pause file transfers now? Is this for real? Don’t tell me it is. That wouldn’t be microsoftish at all. So – beeping – innovative!

    edit: There indeed is a pause function now, as seen in lifehacker’s preview. Mindblowing.
    I am pleasantly surprised by Metro. I’ll give it a shot at some point. Also, improved Taskmanager rocks.

  18. Ajh says:

    I tried the developer preview last year also. I see potential, especially since I hear you can turn off the silly blocky screen for good in the end.

    Aside from that most of the tweaks are performance and behind the scenes, as well as a slight adjustment to explorer having the ribbon, which isn’t that hard to get used to.

    I didn’t see any improvement from my games, but I didn’t see anything get worse either.

    If I wasn’t already running 7 I’d upgrade to 8 on release, instead I’m recommending it to my friends who cling to xp still.

  19. SquidInABox says:

    I own a windows phone and metro on a touch screen device is absolutely one of the best interfaces created to date.

    The same is very not true of a desktop PC.

    However I can see that this is mostly acknowledging that lots of people who own a PC actually want a device for accessing Facebook and for those people this will be quite good.

    Given that this is the comments section of a PC Gaming website and as such every single one of us will automatically fall into the “Power User” demographic as a result this is not for us. I’d suggest that if you are planning on buying a new Windows license a year from now then consider Windows 8 and just turn off the Metro stuff. Otherwise it’s not worth upgrading from 7 for.

    • DrGonzo says:

      I’ve found it to be very quick though, even compared to 7. And the automatic driver and device installer is a very nice feature, which finally works.

      A multi screen user should upgrade to 8 simply for the new device management. I’m only ever a click or two away from turning off, switching to or extending to my second monitor.

  20. desirecampbell says:

    I am exceptionally excited about Windows 8. Especially in the ways it will affect gaming.

    The “one OS for all” ideology Microsoft is trying to implement means less of a wall between mobile gaming and traditional desktop gaming.

    The new “paused app” mechanic means that background apps won’t drag down the performance of resource hogging games.

    In the same vein of increased performance, Win8 uses less system resources than Win7, again increasing performance for those of us that don’t have the fastest of computers.

    • Brun says:

      The “one OS for all” ideology Microsoft is trying to implement means less of a wall between mobile gaming and traditional desktop gaming.

      I (and likely many others) would argue that that wall needs to be built higher, not torn down. We don’t need FarmVille infecting gaming any more than it already has.

    • LionsPhil says:

      I’d worry much more about how the iOS-esque side of things is all heavily locked down, and which way freedom will flow with that wall eroded.

      You can write a program (say, a random 48-hour challenge indie game) for a normal desktop OS with nothing more than freely-available tools. You don’t need to go off and get permission from anyone. You can put the results on any old place where other people can get them and run them; say, your website.

      iOS-esque walled gardens require that you are an Authorized Developer with a signing key and account from the OS developer, and people can only get your application by it going through an Approved Application Store, the one big central location of Allowed Software. (Sure, sure, rooting. But unless you think Linux is fun you probably just want your damn iProduct to work as intended and be supported when you roll up to the Genius Bar to have them fix it. Also the unfortunate fact is that root exploits are also security holes so would get closed even without controlling malice.)

      We really don’t want that latter model taking hold.

    • YourMessageHere says:

      I second Brun. As best I can ascertain, mobile games are simplistic, gimmicky and have pretty low production values. I want that attitude kept out of anything I play.

  21. SlappyBag says:

    I think a lot of people don’t understand the market they are pushing with this: tablets and home users. Us proper games and ‘power users’ I dont think will use the new interface much. It looks a boat load better for tablets then IOS and Android but with the backwards compatibility of having a solid windows is.

    Imagine a powerful tablet you could take home, dock into a keyboard and then use the same system as a desktop? Or family machines with a touch screen computer with the mouse and keyboard as legacy interfaces.

    I wont use the metro UI, unless you can put those ‘widgets’ on your desktop for quick info/launch instead of standard windows icons.

    My biggest issue is the lack of an old-school start menu. The current way has much more functionality, but im sure there is a toggle somewhere, like how you can still go back to pre-XP start menu.

    I think its a great move.

    • SlappyBag says:

      Comment added by my Windows Phone, which I love btw.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Like I said before, it still works essentially the same, place your mouse in the bottom left and click just like you used to then start typing to search for what you want. But it’s unfortunate it takes over the whole screen. Hopefully there is a toggle I’ve missed or one, or they add one eventually.

      And second the Windows Phone bit. I love it and I have the LG, which is probably the worst (but cheapest) of the lot.

  22. Brun says:

    Reply fail.

  23. The First Door says:

    I really like the look of some of the updates they are doing. The new copy/paste stuff and the incorporation of the ribbon in the core OS look fantastic… but I do have a couple of major worries. My biggest one being the seeming removal of the start menu search functionality in Windows 7. That is basically the only way I open things now, so I hope it is still present somewhere.

    Also, I’m worried about the integration of an app store and I hope you still have control behind it. People I work with have had no end of problems with the Apple App store in Snow Leopard and the inability to easily circumvent it. One colleague ended up with a version of XCode which he couldn’t run, un-install or re-install for days. I didn’t know he knew so many swear words!

    Still, I’m definitely looking forward to trying this out and seeing how it works… after all, I wasn’t sure about Windows 7 until I tried the developer previews and then I bought it on release day.

  24. Miltrivd says:

    I can’t remember the last time I actually used my desktop screen… I don’t think it even has a wallpaper on.

    After checking out some more, it looks damn awful for PC. Bunch of stuff that will never be used except for basic/novice PC users. Windows is an OS, not an application suite, I will have to wait and see if the core of the system is worth trying/using because for people like me, that don’t even use Explorer to navigate folders, this whole bunch of cutesy stuff seems wasteful and more worryingly, intrusive. My entire PC works from the taskbar and the system bar, no desktop, no Start menu used at all, I hope they do remember people that uses PCs and not tablets and give us an option.

  25. man-eater chimp says:

    It’s a nice idea for tablets, but for traditional PCs less so. I have always been impressed by the design on the Windows Phone OS, even though I have an iPhone. Its a very nice style and looks like it could be very slick and smooth.

    When touch screen PCs become the norm Win8 will be fantastic, but for traditional gamers its probably not a desired upgrade. Although I’m looking forward to where PC gaming is going to go with these changes to OSs. Be it gamers and games migrating to Linux or everything changing.

  26. Hordriss says:

    Seeing the dreaded ribbon in Windows Explorer makes me sad – I still hate the damn thing in Office even after years of trying to get used to it.

    I like that there’s a ‘classic desktop’ mode, but the fact that the start menu is that tablet-style abomination… sigh. Combined with the whole UEFI secure boot issue, it might be time to buy a spare copy of Windows 7 for future PCs.

    • Brun says:

      I wouldn’t worry about stocking up on Windows 7. It’s rapidly becoming the next “enterprise” operating system (replacing Windows XP), meaning that all of Microsoft’s business customers will be firmly locked into Windows 7 for quite a while. You can expect Microsoft to continue providing support for 7 for as much as a decade, if XP is any sort of measuring stick.

    • LionsPhil says:

      The problem with that is that “supported” and “enterprise customers can stick to their licenses for it” isn’t the same as “can buy retail copies”. :(

  27. Euphoric says:

    I agree with alot of people in these comments. I think the Metro UI is rather ugly, almost “retro” and quite boring. I for one will be staying with Win7 as long as I can, if I want a Windows Phone or a tablet running a Windows OS…I’d buy one.
    Sad but true, but I guess we have to once again rely on the modding community to do something Microsoft as well as many other companies are not good at, making pleasing/functional UIs.

  28. Skabooga says:

    Every other operating system that Microsoft releases seems to have major failings, and seeing as Windows 7 works pretty darn well, I think I’ll be sitting this one out.

  29. Dana says:

    wub wub ? More like big beat. I liked it.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      I came onto the comments to say exactly the same thing! Late ’90′s big beat completely, took me right back:

    • stupid_mcgee says:

      There were some damn good tracks back then. I recently listened to Fatboy Slim’s Better Living Through Chemistry album again and I’d forgotten how truly amazing that whole album is.

    • tossrStu says:

      Oh man, I loved big beat so much *hugs fading Skint t-shirt*

  30. sneetch says:

    Looks nice and all but I bought 64 bit Win 7 a couple of years ago and I don’t see any pressing need to give Microsoft more money.

    Mind you, I like the “Xbox LIVE Games” button, proper XBLA support in Windows 8 might be enough to make me upgrade.

  31. MrMud says:

    Every single time I have seen a video of Windows 8 I have wanted to throw up.

  32. Ultra-Humanite says:

    To me it is telling that as of now, I have yet to hear Microsoft offer me any compelling reason to switch to Windows 8.

  33. Gundato says:

    Must say, I am very impressed by that video.

    In all honesty, so long as i can still do the same action of “push the winkey, type the name of what I want to do, hit enter”, then I can live without a start menu. In all honesty, I haven’t actually USED it in a long time.

    But I am probably still gonna hold off to see if this OS has staying power. Seems like too many changes, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this is another Vista (and that Windows 9 is what gives me super happy fun time).

  34. Droopy The Dog says:

    Wait, surely a graph that busts out of the axis and splurges all over the screen is a terrible idea/bug (at 0:20 in the video, just before “games”), why would they manipulate their video to imply windows 8 does that?

  35. Giant, fussy whingebag says:

    I really hope that Microsoft are abandoning PC gaming. I’m not a ridiculous hater or anything, but I’d love it if that caused more mainstream games to offer Linux and Mac versions. More choice is best, and if I could play all my games (reliably) on Beardy-PC, I would grow that beard.

    • Net_Bastard says:

      I agree. The only thing that’s keeping me from switching to a Linux distro is that it has fuck all for a selection of games.

    • LionsPhil says:

      I’d give you about a week before you switched back. Linux still doesn’t want to solve any hard problems (Win7 bounces right back from graphics driver crashes—Linux still completely barfs on them), and still doesn’t know what it wants to do on the desktop (other than be a flabby mess). The Unity interface in newer Ubuntu in particular is atrocious.

    • Kaira- says:

      and still doesn’t know what it wants to do on the desktop (other than be a flabby mess)

      Nah. XFCE for example is one bloody fine DE, as is LXDE and OpenBox (even if it requires more tinkering). KDE has a good, focused vision on things, and Gnome… well, don’t really know, since I haven’t tried Gnome3. Unity is actually getting more and more usable with time, and is much better than the trainwreck what it was at launch.

  36. ukpanik says:

    Ugliest colour scheme. Vomit inducing.

  37. serioussgtstu says:

    I’m amazed. I would have thought that PC gamers would be going ape shit about having to conform to an xbox 360 layout, with all the mandatory disney avatars and bright green backgrounds that go with it. I still don’t like using steam for alot of my games, but I’ve gotten used to it because its impossible not to.

    And now I don’t like any of the operating systems!

    • ShEsHy says:

      Exactly.

    • Brun says:

      I think part of the reason they aren’t going crazy is that the gaming integration in Windows 8 is actually preferable to (less intrusive than) GFWL.

    • yhalothar says:

      If you don’t know or don’t want to know how to use your computer, but just want to go to Facebook or click icons to run games, a handful of tiles on full screen background seems enough. It turns your PC into a powerful console. It’s not suitable for serious multitasking work or power use, though.

  38. Khemm says:

    There’s one thing I don’t understand. I’ve seen them launching something they refer to as “metro apps”, which appear to be a different thing compared to your normal programs. How does that work, exactly? There are 2 OSs in one, metro and desktop and they don’t share information with each other?
    I’m a bit confused here.

    Edit: ok, read there are some specific Metro programs. Which is beyond dumb.

    • TormDK says:

      No, it’s brilliant.

      Why – Because developers will be able to make apps that you buy once, but get to use on whichever Windows 8 device you log into using your Live ID with.

  39. spamenigma says:

    I’ve tested this in a VM last night… Some bits I like, storage spaces, the new task manager, bringing the UP arrow back to explorer!!….. but removing the start menu button really is not a good move.

    OK so.. moving to the corner of a screen isnt too big a deal is it? oh wait yes it is when you have more than one screen or are using remote desktop or other remote control sessions.. its slows you down with no advantage since the taskbar is still there! I found myself trying to accuratly hit the right pixel without going to far to get the start menu to show, not well thought out idea imo.

    I dislike the metro interface, its going to be a pain with lots of apps installed, many of which wont support metro well. Just like when MS gave us a place for games shortcuts or saved game stuff, hardly any game dev’s use it! I remember the move to vista/7 caused a few questionable extra clicks to get to certain controls, win8 adds a few more before getting there!

    No doubt will get used to it, or customise it, but fgs.. bring back the start button in some way!!

    • sneetch says:

      Good point on the multi-screen problem, my second monitor is to the left of my main screen so this could be a pain. I don’t see the advantage of removing the start button from the non-Metro UI when every windows user will just be wondering “where the hell is the start button?”

    • Gundato says:

      Actually, from what I recall, a lot of games supported the Games explorer it. The problem was we all just started using Steam and GoG (neither of which did a good job with it).

      I do agree on not seeing the point behind a lack of start menu, but could you elaborate on why you are trying to click the rightmost pixel? With the shift in 7 toward “folders” for all instances of an application, the bottom barry thing really isn’t all that crowded.

    • Brun says:

      I’ve read some articles that indicate that multiple monitor support is enabled. Apparently it can show Start on one screen and the Desktop on the other.

    • spamenigma says:

      “but could you elaborate on why you are trying to click the rightmost pixel?” right as in ‘correct’ pixel.. you try and move the mouse to the bottom corner but unless you do it slowly you end up with the mouse pointer moving on to the next screen on the left… one option would be make the start on the far left screen but that’s equally just a pain, I want it on my middle screen. Same applies if using a remote desktop/logmein/vmware window.. it just slows you down trying to get to the start menu without missing it.

    • Gundato says:

      Ah, I get you now. You said it awkwardly.

      Basically you are saying that if you are running the OS “in a window” (so a virtual machine, remote desktop, etc) you need to make sure you get the bottomleft (or bottomright) pixel of that window.

      Does sound annoying, but didn’t the video say you could hit the winkey? Also, don’t most of those have a method to capture the mouse for stuff like this? Still annoying under some cases, but should solve most problems.

    • Mctittles says:

      I remember joking before around Windows XP or so how the start menu seems to get bigger every version of Windows. Around Vista I joked that the only next step is to make the start menu take up the entire screen.

      …not so funny now :(

    • spamenigma says:

      “but didn’t the video say you could hit the winkey? Also, don’t most of those have a method to capture the mouse for stuff like this? ”

      Windows key doesnt work in a remote desktop session, maybe an alternative i’m unaware of. As for capture the mouse you still go off the edge of the screen. Or in my case with mulitple monitors I dont want the hidden small pixel area start menu sat in on the far left screen. One solution I can think of is to have… a button! :)

      The corner mouse pointer situation only works well if the pointer stops there, in multi display or remote control scenarios it often doesnt.

      Essentially I can understand if the task bar was also to vanish totally too but thats still there so why get rid of the start menu button from it on PC’s, especially since a start popup exists to bring back metro or some sort of side bar window picker.

  40. Kleppy says:

    Man, Windows 8 is ugly as sin. What was the idea behind the move back to ’98 era visuals?

  41. yhalothar says:

    I played around with the Developer and Consumer Previews of Windows 8 and it’s a really schizophrenic operating system, you get those jarring transitions from one environment to the next – and one of the environments is clearly meant to be used on a touch device. This huge, fullscreen metro interface replaces the start menu, so every time you press the Windows key to search for a file or run an application, you get COLORED TILES IN YOUR FACE instead of a simple menu. A fullscreen menu is not really usable or neccessary on a 20-something monitor with a resolution of 1080p or 1920×1200. I wonder who though of this and said “Yes, this is usable. Let’s ship it.”.

    Not to mention it tries to tie you to the Microsoft Live account at every step of the way, which brings about numerous problems in usability if you DON’T want or need one. I am boggled by the positive responses in the tech press – are people afraid to shout that the king is naked, or had everyone tested the OS on touchscreen tablets?

    And if so, who here has (or has a need for) a intel-based touchscreen tablet? Or a touch-capable monitor for your desk?

    • Brun says:

      “everyone tested the OS on touchscreen tablets”

      That. They tested the desktop features by docking those tablets to KBM. The “tech press” is too trendy to test Windows 8 as a power user on a real desktop. They’ve already committed themselves to the idea that the desktop PC is dead, and “computing” anywhere outside of an office means using a tablet or smartphone as a dumb terminal to access Facebook and Twitter.

    • jezcentral says:

      Windows tying us into a Microsoft Live account structure is just the same as Google’s Android tie-in and Apple’s iEverything-whatever-it’s-called. It seems to be the way things are going. Jumping ship will get VERY difficult in future.

  42. RogB says:

    360 dashboard just went more Metro-ey, and the dame thing is chock full of adverts. Would MS be daft enough to do this on a desktop?

  43. hosndosn says:

    Getting a warning viewing the site on a Mac and Firefox that the website “only works under 32bit” and the (supposed?) video not loading is another one of those things Microsoft might want to avoid.

  44. rustybroomhandle says:

    Forget Windows 8, I just want Microsoft to die.

  45. Shooop says:

    I’ve seen it in action and it’s just not suitable for a desktop computer.

    It’s perfect for mobile devices which don’t have the inputs and large screens. But it throws way too many extra obstacles in the way of desktop users in order to get to the files and settings they want to by making those concessions.

    It’s absolutely foolhardy for Microsoft to think they can make a “one size fits all” OS.

  46. Enlightend says:

    When touch screen PCs become the norm Win8 will be fantastic, but for traditional gamers its probably not a desired upgrade.

    Without extreme revolutions in input methods, I don’t see how this will happen in any kind of near future.
    And with that revolution I mean nothing short of full neural control of a computer, and at that point, I’m certain that display methods like the Vuzix VR glasses will be up to snuff, to allow for handsfree and display free work.

    The consumer push now, is for full multimedia capable tv sets and tablets, unless you have both, both are a mess in terms of touch only input, when you do have both, touch on the TV is moot and you’ll use the tablet as a glorified mousepad/keyboard or remote.

    Anyone who wishes to do something productive, even on an ipad, is rather quick to get a wireless mouse and/or keyboard connected to the thing. Stuff like the Asus Transformer also have a dock with keyboard, because touch just isn’t viable to do anything decent with.

    Even in Sci-Fi like Star Trek, the touchscreen interfaces used while sitting down, are desk size contraptions while the others require you to stand.

    For everything that is remotely productive, the only decent input methods are a mouse/keyboard combo. Having a virtual keyboard take up screen real-estate is just a nuisance and any positioning I can think of for a touchscreen is just not productive.

    Even a keyboard, touchscreen combo isn’t viable since the placement of the screen would be awkward at best, if you have the keyboard in front of you, you’d have to stretch to reach the screen to touch it, making it much easyer to simply have the mouse next to the keyboard as usual, making touch moot once again.

    Besides that, if the home user that checks facebook/mail/youtube, only use touch, their skills for productivity work on a computer will become worse, and the end result will be a less skilled workforce, and in this day and age, having everyone capable of working with a computer is much more valuable.

    Toys like voice control and camera control like with the Kinect, aren’t viable in a productive environment either (except for some very specific tasks). If you have a room with 10 people, voice input is impossible (almost as bad as when wireless keyboards/mice became the norm and people like me had to do crazy shit to get all of them to behave when in the same room. I still have some people complaining that their keyboards and mice sometimes switch and one person is moving someone elses mouse etc.

    In terms of motion tracking etc, I think that explains itself, the range between camera and user needed, and the user moving about quite a bit, are simply not viable for productivity.

    I’ve been wreaking my brain over optimal input methods for a few years now, and touch’s usefulness is extremely limited, mostly to the point of rarely used controls, like domotics, aka thermostats, lighting and audio/video controls.

    There simply isn’t a single thing made or thought of right now, that can even begin to approach the speed, ergonomics and desk real-estate advantages of a mouse/keyboard combo.

    It’s absolutely foolhardy for Microsoft to think they can make a “one size fits all” OS.

    They can, but they can’t make a 1 size fits all interface.

    Google has made a 1 size fits all OS, but the interface used for phones/tablets/desktops, is a layer on top of the OS, that can be adjusted to fit the device its running on.

    I also have to note that if they switch from a Windows Desktop to this tile stuff, the big chunk of consumers will freak the hell out and can’t use their system.

    My dad freaks out and gets anxiety attacks, just going from Windows Vista to Windows 7, and for him, the only thing really different was how the taskbar looks.

    If he were to be put in front of the new interface, he’d poo his pants and get another heartattack.

    • YourMessageHere says:

      Thank god someone’s not distracted by the shiny primary colours. It staggers me that MS are so shortsighted on this sort of stuff. Touchscreens are poison for, you know, actually doing things, and mandatory visual revamps is a great way to not only make existing novice users very confused and hostile, but also alienate their relatives who inevitably get used as free tech support. My mum sounds much like your dad; anything out of the ordinary results in a mild panic and a phone call where she tries to tell me the problem without bothering to use proper names for things.

  47. PC-GAMER-4LIFE says:

    Xbox LIVE For Windows is not actually available to preview in UK only 4 countries right now.
    http://forums.xbox.com/xbox_forums/xbox_support/f/2479/t/214459.aspx

    But I think MS are doing what they always do on PC try to get the developers to use GFWL/Xbox LIVE for Windows whilst not actually doing more than the minimum themselves (2 x F2P medicore games really MS do you think that will encourage publishers to embrace XBLFW!!).

    MS have a conference on 6th March @ GDC perhaps RPS could find out what that means for PC gaming if its not NDA heavy! Looking at the agenda I think it will be more of the same but now it seems MS want to get developers to embrace Cloud Gaming via XBLFW which is unlikely to happen especially if the cost to patch XBLA is $40K per patch no wonder they never bothered porting all the most popular XBLA titles to PC only a handful ever made it.
    http://blogs.msdn.com/b/kennyspade/archive/2012/02/14/microsoft-developer-day-at-gdc.aspx

    Oh and back on topic W8 Metro UI is garbage Windows 7 is excellent no need to change & I doubt many PC gamers will have any reason to anyway so its yet another in a long line of PC gaming white elephants from MS…….

  48. newprince says:

    I’d totally be on board with W8 if I had a touchpad nearby that I could use when I wanted. But I still want high functionality with mouse/kb, and to me ‘hotspots’ is really frustrating and not cool. In fact, clicking on certain things just won’t work, and you have to hover there. Mice are precision devices that point and click, hovering and swiping on them is just terrible.

    tl;dr, if MS had any kind of capacity like Apple to make a touch pad for W8, I’m down

  49. Shadrach says:

    From the looks of it Win7 will be the last Microsoft OS I use. By the time it’s ready for upgrade for me gaming on Linux will probably be a real alternative. There is no other use for Windows than gaming for me anyway.

    • Enlightend says:

      We’ve been saying that “gaming on linux” thing for decades now …
      Won’t happen.

    • Hordriss says:

      I’m hoping that this will be the case too – I only use Windows for gaming and some proprietary software I need for work.

    • trjp says:

      Linux is actually LOSING market share – the situation with ‘gaming’ on Linux is still, effectively, non-existant – dream on – basically.

      I reckon we’ll all be using Windows until someone makes a really solid ‘cloud’ option (may be Chrome but I suspect it won’t be).

    • Enlightend says:

      Have to say though, with OnLive, linux gaming doesn’t seem to far fetched. And it actually works quite nicely.

    • Brun says:

      Gaming on Linux will never take off until DirectX is replaced by a Linux-supported graphics API (right now that means OpenGL). Given that DirectX probably holds ~90% of the market that’s not likely to happen any time soon.

    • Kaira- says:

      @trjp

      If anything, Linux is gaining marketshare. Not to speak about how Linux is still the de facto-choice in servers and film industry.

  50. WatchGeek says:

    Much like a few others, I went through a complete overhaul of my desktop this past summer…OK, I bought a brand new one with the components I wanted, and in the process went from WinXP to Win7. After 7 months I can say that Win7 is a much better OS than WinXP and has made life with a desktop easier. Other than changing the battery in my UPS, I haven’t turned it off since I got it and haven’t had any issues.

    Having watched the video, I don’t see why I would bother with Win8. A couple of tweaks to explorer is all I can see. The “app” thing is just catering to the tablet crowd and I could see it benefiting complete novices to make it simple to use a PC for day-to-day tasks. Back in Windows 3.x, we called these “shortcuts”. :-) Unfortunately, this is where computing devices will continue to go. Until we get really good gesture (Kinect-like) interfaces with voice recognition, eye tracking, and ultimately, neural interfaces, I’m still going to keep my keyboard and mouse…and they’ll have to pry them from my cold, dead hands to get them!

    Final thought…touch screens for desktops are complete and utter lunacy. Why the heck would I want to put my fingers all over the nice giant display that I’m trying to look at. Fine for a phone, but not for a desktop PC!

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