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Old 09-16-2012, 10:21 PM   #1
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Default To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

Through a student license, I received a copy of Windows 8 Pro x64 (see attachment).

Where to even start...

When installing Windows 8 (the first time), I upgraded from 7 to 8, which apparently is a bad idea. I can't imagine why it's a such an issue as it acted like I was reinstalling Win 7 (moving old install to Windows.old).
It also caused many issues with permissions with the new system that I had to command prompt my way back to owning directories and even the root drive.

If you make the jump to Windows 8, do not upgrade. Do a clean install!

I've been using Windows 8 for about 2 weeks now and have seen some issues that don't really matter much to me, and others that are quite annoying.
  1. User Account Control (UAC) must be enabled to run any Metro app
  2. Even though the new sexified Task Manager shows little usage, the system is noticably slower
  3. Windows now strongly suggests that you do not use a local account, instead they want you to use a live ID. It's a catch 22. If you do, then your profile follows you to any Windows 8 machine, but then your local activity is uploaded constantly. If you don't, then you have to provide credentials for every Metro app.

I think everyone here has seen the Windows 8 previews and screenshots, there are some cools features.
  1. Native support for mounting ISO's
  2. Windows Explorer 'Ribbon'
  3. Task Bar management - Both screens now have a taskbar and you can make Windows only show the open program icon on the taskbar for the monitor it is open on.

The other change from preview to final was the inability to restore the Start Button without completely disabling the Windows 8 features all-together. Doesn't make much difference to me as I rarely use the Start Button and like it being gone. I setup RocketDock to have links to all the frequently used programs anyway.

Overall, Windows 8 final needs another update before they release it. The issues encountered when upgrading from 7 are going to piss a lot of people off (in my case, Metro apps stopped working completely). It's going to take some getting used to for Desktop users (or just don't use it at all... there's really nothing "Great" about it), but it's really for tablet users. I like the new Windows, but I'm not typical user and this OS will turn a lot of users off. Luckily, you can buy a new system and downgrade to 7.

Apologies for the randomly ordered thoughts, if you have questions about the OS, I'd be happy to answer.
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:48 AM   #2
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

Whenever I want to try a new OS for the first time I always install it as a Virtual Machine in VirtualBox or VMWare Player first. If it causes problems or I don't like it then it's a simple matter of just deleting the VM.

Should I decide that I want to actually install the new OS I always choose a clean install. I usually buy a new hdd or ssd to do the clean install so that I can keep my old OS intact, should I want to go back, I simply reinstall the old drive. I feel a new hdd or ssd is inexpensive enough that it's worth it to me.

I know that buying a new drive is not an option for a lot of people so, in that case, I would do a full image backup of my existing drive before formatting and doing a clean install of the new OS. A simple restore will bring my system back to the way it was.

I would NEVER do an update install as it often causes more problems than it is worth as you experienced with the permissions issues and such.

With Windows 7, it was possible to do a clean install with upgrade media, I guess we will need to wait until Win 8 actually ships to find out if a clean install can be done using Win 8 upgrade media.

I work on a development team producing a add-in for Excel so I have been testing our product on Win 8. I don't care for the Start screen (which seems to turn most people off) but once booted it's a simple matter of clicking on the Desktop and once there, it's pretty similar to Win 7. I haven't found any major issues with our product working with Win 8 so that is good news.

Win 8 may have an uphill battle trying to overcome the popularity of Win 7 but I think once there are phones, tablets, laptops and desktops out there running Win 8 it will gain acceptance because people will appreciate the fact that they can run the same OS (as well as apps) on all of those devices.
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:52 AM   #3
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

Personally i don't like Windows 8 at all.

I think Microsoft saw how well touch screen devices are doing and thought quick, we want in on this. However I think it was rushed and i think they have overlooked their mass market (actual desktop users).

I see what they were trying but i think it's going to take a good SP1 or even another OS before I upgrade (just like i avoided windows Vista and waited for 7).
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:59 AM   #4
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

Windows 95 sucked,

Windows 98 good,

Windows Me sucked,

Windows XP good,

Windows Vista sucked,

Windows 7 good,

Windows 8 sucks,

Windows 9 will probably be good.

I see no reason to upgrade to Windows 8. By the time I hack away the GUI, restore the Start button, and make a few other registry mods, when I'm all done what will I have? Windows 7!

I'll wait for Windows 9.
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Old 09-17-2012, 11:39 AM   #5
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

I don't miss the Start button in Windows 8, don't use it in Win 7 either. I've been using Win 8 as installed with no tweaks or hacks and it works fine.

Whether Win 8 is successful or not, I think the Start button is gone for good and won't reappear in Win 9 or whatever the follow on OS is so people need to get used to it.
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Old 09-17-2012, 12:16 PM   #6
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

I hear what you're saying but folks who don't like Win8, really don't have to put up with it. There are already registry hacks for the restoration of the boot up desktop, and the start button if people want it.

However, at this point there is no difference in the basic performance of Win8 over Win7, the Kernel is the same in both.

In other words there is no speed improvement, or stability improvements, or anything else that would make most people want to switch to Win8. If M$ had changed the Kernel, and benchmarks showed that it was superior to Win7, I'd go for it.

Perhaps Win9 will provide a noticeable performance improvement, and if it does that's when I'll upgrade.
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Old 09-17-2012, 01:17 PM   #7
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

if you been with windows since 98 then you know never to install any new OS till after 1 year, due to bugs, and fixes, just my 2 cent
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Old 09-17-2012, 01:26 PM   #8
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

Win 8 shouldn't even be released for the desktop. Its just Win 7 with a very poorly designed GUI making life miserable for desktop users -> its aimed at tablet users and their touchy-feelly screens.
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Old 09-17-2012, 02:57 PM   #9
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

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Originally Posted by OS-Wiz View Post
Win 8 shouldn't even be released for the desktop. Its just Win 7 with a very poorly designed GUI making life miserable for desktop users -> its aimed at tablet users and their touchy-feelly screens.

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Old 09-17-2012, 08:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: To 'Windows 8', or not to 'Windows 8?'

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hameister View Post
I hear what you're saying but folks who don't like Win8, really don't have to put up with it. There are already registry hacks for the restoration of the boot up desktop, and the start button if people want it.
This is no longer true in the final release. You can have the start button, but you're completely reverting to 7, you lose all Win8 enhancements.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hameister View Post
However, at this point there is no difference in the basic performance of Win8 over Win7, the Kernel is the same in both.
Very wrong there. The kernel has changed... a lot. The hacking convention in July actually took a look at Win8 and how much it changed. They noticed many differences. This isn't like the iPad three that got a new screen, there are many changes under the hood.

As far as performance, as you can see in my original attachment, my system is by no means slow. My experience index was bottle necked at my SSD. As noted above, there is a huge performance difference when playing Diablo 3 on highest settings. I am assuming though that this is due to the Catalyst suite that doesn't yet support Win8, more to come on that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hameister View Post
In other words there is no speed improvement, or stability improvements, or anything else that would make most people want to switch to Win8. If M$ had changed the Kernel, and benchmarks showed that it was superior to Win7, I'd go for it.
The key word there is "most." "Most" people will stay with the OS that came with their PC. My Wife's grandmother still uses XP, because she knows no different. As far the adept crowd, then you're going to see a split. I personally have no issues with Windows 8 that I have not been able to overcome, but it took a few days of customizing and I'm still finding things that need changing. After these two weeks of learning and tweaking the OS (nothing on the backend), I can't say that I wish I would've stayed with 7. Again, I don't use the 'normal' Windows functions and run all of my programs from one of three ways. 1. RocketDock, 2. Run Prompt, 3. Default File Association. Therefore, I have no need for the Start Button and am glad to see it go.

In a business, this would be a nightmare to administer and that's a completely different story.
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