Windows 10, the TechSpot Review

By Julio Franco
Jul 26, 2015
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  1. Three years ago I reviewed Windows 8 and time has proved skeptics right. Microsoft was unsuccessful in combining touch and desktop features in a single OS and was forced to rush an 8.1 update that made Windows more desktop-friendly and less annoying. Because of Windows' desktop dominance, however, most PCs sold since have come equipped with Windows 8, a capable if somewhat irritating OS that nobody loved.

    This review is largely based on my experience using Windows 10 on a desktop PC, so I've been treating Windows 10 like most computer enthusiasts will: as a direct upgrade from Windows 7/8 on my custom-built machine, just as I did with 7, Vista, XP, 2k, and other previous Windows releases.

    Windows 10 is the best Windows you can run today. This alone should make it a big win, not to mention the fact that it's "free." However I don't think Windows 10 is there yet. Can Windows 10 bring seamless updates that one or two years from now will make it the best, most polished desktop OS available, and still be called Windows 10? Microsoft must prove itself under this new direction.

    Read the complete review.

    misor likes this.
  2. I guess I'll be sticking to Windows 7...
    rpjkw11 and DaveBG like this.
  3. EClyde

    EClyde TS Maniac Posts: 624   +147

    Nothing you wrote about is of interest to me. It may be a great OS to folks that are interested in the "features" you described. Soon as they get rid of automatic updates I will give it a try.
  4. skline00

    skline00 TS Member

    I have Win 10 Build 10240 on one machine and ready with my second to go over to the RTM build.. Good OS
    Steve likes this.
  5. dustin_ds3000

    dustin_ds3000 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 869   +8

    Great article Julio, I will be upgrading all of my computers on the 29th.
  6. Windows 10 is really at best a ~meh update.
    At worst it's a complete work-flow destroying machine.

    Windows 10 feels a lot less like Windows and a lot more like a tablet OS.
    Less so then windows 8 but, non-the-less it still falls flat on feeling like it actually belongs on a real desktop/workstation.

    I'll be happily using Windows 10 on my tablet but if it doesn't change a lot over the years then I see myself moving to Linux on my workstation when support for windows 7 ends. Windows 7 under VM in Linux can already run all the windows programs I use (even the highly demanding ones such as CAD, and high dpi Painting) near flawlessly so I'm sure by then it'll be a pretty easy switch.

    Frankly the last thing I want to do is switch to linux on my workstation but MS is nearly forcing my hand, and the same is true for many of my friends and co-workers.
  7. gunste24

    gunste24 TS Rookie Posts: 39

    Having struggled with a few bugs and more and more annoyances in Windows 8.1, I wonder whether ver 10 will be an improvement? Not just added litle perks that I have no interest in.
    Is there a better Mail than Outlook or Mail Live, which seems to be changing every year??
    Fortunately, I am able to run Eudora on this PC.
    After having to give up XP, because Dell said it would not run on my XPS8700, bought when the 8 year old PC with XP was dying, I am getting few up with Microsoft after staying with them since Dos2.1 in 1983. -
    -Lacking backward support of MS Office 2003, which was nice compared to the mess in office 2010, inability to make your favorites the Default Program, bringing up a store screen saying that there is no App to open the item, right on top of the opened item is maddening.. and so on.
    - My conclusion is: one more problem with Dells PC and/or Microsoft Windows8.1, and I will scrap thisPC and buy Apple.
  8. Nvidia SLI simply does not work with Windows 10. I don't know if its windows or Nvidia related, but the same driver version on Windows 7 is solid!

    I want to like Windows 10, and I will probably switch as soon as basics, like Nvidia SLI start working properly, but until then. Windows 7 it is!
  9. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,817   +485

    If you can't bother to create an account when making stupid critique comments then don't bother writing. Everything you guys wrote as "guests" is wrong and it's mostly because of misconceptions or misinformation.

    All people need to know is that windows 10 is better than win 7/8 even if it's not exactly perfect. If you don't want all of the new features and performance improvements because you don't like the colors of the UI then you have some pretty serious "issues".
  10. drjekelmrhyde

    drjekelmrhyde TS Booster Posts: 188   +43

    They don't seem to get it. You create a account and that same account follows you on ALL of your Windows8-10 devices. I have a Surface RT, Windows 8.1 PC and as soon as I set up RT all my shiat showed up on it. Backgrounds, screensavers, passwords, people, email, even log in picture. If I go out and buy a new PC all I have to do is put in the same username and password from my other PC's/tablets. Bonus: You can use your Xbox creds as a login. If they put WP10 in the mix, this might be the most COMPLETE ecosystem so far.
    Cryio and Puiu like this.
  11. Phr3d

    Phr3d TS Booster Posts: 218   +40

    Yep, the most serious "issue" that I have is that I feel like I know a Lot more about you than I should or could ever want to, from one narrow-view and exclamatory post.
    Your experience does not now, nor will it ever equal everyone's experience. Further, Your experience appears critically Lacking. I humbly offer that you consider conversing with only friends that agree with you on every point, as I find making statement like "the only thing you need to know," outside of four close and drunken mates at the bar tends to invite a physical correction to my attitude. Hope you get one.
    EClyde likes this.
  12. I tried it for a week and I hated it. The new Start Menu is an abomination, the flat colorless UI is atrocious and looks unfinished, and most of all I hate all the stupid phone UI stuff being shoved onto my desktop (like the big sliding switches made for fat fingers instead of the old tried and true checkboxes and dropdown menus). The new control panel is a joke, the ridiculously huge calculator, clock and calendar, etc, all designed for tiny little phone screens have no place on a desktop.

    The app store, like Apple's version, is full of garbage and I have no interest in running "apps" on my desktop anyway. Out of all the things I disliked I really failed to find anything that I actually did like and would consider being worth of upgrading. The only really good feature I can think of is DirectX 12 but I'm not really much of a gamer anymore so even that doesn't matter to me. It's pretty sad when an OS upgrade is free and I still don't want it. Going back to Windows 7 never felt so good.
    Pavlin and EClyde like this.
  13. "I don't consider built-in applications like Maps, Photos, Mail or Music core to the Windows experience in a way that it can make or break the operating system."

    Yet this article and others on Techspot talk about wallpapers as if they are a big deal. I mean, wallpapers for crying out loud! The only thing important about wallpapers is the question: Can I replace it with one of my own. If so, move on. If not, WTF?!

    As for upgrading yes or no: I've said it 1000s times before: the early adopter gets the bugs - so in a couple of weeks or months, when the dust is settling, I'll probably take advantage of the free upgrade. For now, I'll gladly let others discover the beauty and bugs of the new. Better safe than sorry. (And let's face is: no one that has Windows 7 needs Windows 10 right now. Don't buy into the hype.)
    Darth Shiv likes this.
  14. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,817   +485

    I'm a developer, I finished an IT college and I work in IT for many many years. please don't insult me saying I lack knowledge or experience. I've seen it all and worked with every single OS from DOS to win10.
    when was the last time you cared about what color the taskbar is?
    people here are just complaining about things they can actually change.

    take for example the guest saying he doesn't like the new start menu. he calls it an abomination because of the colors... but he doesn't mention the fact that it loads 10 times faster and that it's more customizable than the one on win7.

    if he cares about looks so much then just install a third party theme or even a third party start menu. it's something he can do very easily.

    I call people like that "lazy bums" who are just looking for attention. sad people. it's when people stop having social relationships (friends, girls, etc) that they start to care about the most stupid stuff and complain online.

    PS: I have nothing with guests posting stuff, but when they attack the writer directly and provide no real constructive feedback then I won't be polite to them and nobody should defend such practices. (the post in question seems to have been edited or removed)
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2015
    Cryio and darkzelda like this.
  15. No I don't call it an abomination because of the colors but because of the horrible functionality. When people said they wanted the Start Menu back they meant the one from Windows 7 and earlier; instead Microsoft took the Metro start screen, shrunk it down, and said here you go. It's a disaster. Of course there are always things like Classic Shell to restore a real start menu but why resort to third party programs when I could just use Windows 7? The entire UI is a Frankenstein's monster, a tablet OS shoehorned onto a desktop OS and the result is just a huge mess. There should have been a seperate Windows 10 for tablets and one for desktops. This one size fits all ideology just doesn't work.
    Yarrow likes this.
  16. @Puiu

    You seem to think these "easy" things can be done by everyone??? Not all simple things ARE simple for everybody.

    It's much like changing a car tire. I personally think it's easy.......but I'm not going to imply that everyone should have known how to do it......because not everyone does. So stop thinking the world revolves around your way of thinking.
  17. Phr3d

    Phr3d TS Booster Posts: 218   +40

    I operated from the statement, "All people need to know is that windows 10 is better than win 7/8 even if it's not exactly perfect."

    I chose the term Experience, not 'knowledge' as it appeared yours was lacking, making a blanket statement as you did. Win7 is in Every way, suitable for truly countless desktops - if you refuse to believe that, so be it.
    I am using Win 10 (but still have my Win7 Main computer), I have recommended it in a Few cases. Mostly, at Enterprise level, I cannot presently do so, and I will add that said Enterprise environments had to be dragged into the New Better Office, so I would be very leery of recommending it to them, as their cost figures for training and support did not justify the change from Office 2003. They simply got Balmer'd, in his refusal to simply charge a maintenance fee for the product that they Wanted, and claiming that it was too expensive to support multiple platforms (coincidentally, No One wanted his).

    I hope these experiences were taken to heart by the New Microsoft, Enterprise is willing to pay very lucrative fees for OLD Microsoft products -maybe they'll continue to support Win 7, since it Works completely for them- and does not force x-personnel being trained-yet-again for minimal productivity gains.

    My long-winded way of saying that I do not agree with your statement above.
    Yarrow likes this.
  18. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,817   +485

    actually you should not even have to do it.
    - moving back to the win7 start menu would be a downgrade. besides the "colors" there is no reason to like the older one more.
    - moving back to the aero theme would be a huge downgrade (especially performance wise).

    I don't need to think that the world revolves around me. I'm just stating the obvious. people who dislike win10 for the wrong reasons are going to tell their friends not to upgrade to an OS that they might actually like if they tried it themselves.
    just tell everyone to upgrade and be done with it. as a tech-savvy person, you should know that refusing software updates often leads to broken or infected PCs.

    it's simple: you don't have any software that will be incompatible with win10? then upgrade and don't be stuck with an OS that sooner or later will have performance and security problems. just having the lackluster "windows defender" will help 90% of the people stay safe from malware.

    PS: @Phr3d please man. stop saying office 2003. it's over a decade old and nobody should keep using it and we are not talking about business solutions here. it's the regular end user. win7 will continue to be supported for companies that can't upgrade their IT infrastructure. and don't forget that Balmer pretty much left because of the whole win8 fiasco and other problems he caused.
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2015
  19. Axle Grease

    Axle Grease TS Booster Posts: 65   +15

    I've been using my 2009 PC which includes a i7-965 and a GTX 590 (dual GPU) to test Windows 10 builds. There's only two real annoyances. 1) Cortana is not available in my region which is New Zealand, and as I don't have an American accent, Siri does a crap job of recognising mine. 2) The nVidia display driver keeps on stopping and recovering. I've used DDU, disabled the automatic driver update from Windows Update, and installed the latest driver 353.38. The driver still stops & recovers. Other than Cortana and the nVidia issue the OS is a pleasure to use. I will be replacing Win 8.1 and Win 7 with Win10 this week. BF4 and BFH run well, so it's all systems go for Win 10.
  20. The Windows 7 start menu was far more customizable. Since Windows 95 I have always organized all of my programs into neat folders (accessories, applications, games, etc). In Windows 10 they have shoved all of their Metro apps into the start menu as well and they cannot be moved or uninstalled. You now have to scroll through this huge list of stuff and most of it is crap that I don't even want like Xbox, Groove Music, etc.

    In the Windows 7 start menu I could pin all of my most commonly used programs onto the main menu, in Windows 10 they have to be pinned as huge tiles over in the metro section. You also said the Windows 10 start menu is faster which is total rubbish. The Windows 7 start menu opens instantly, there is no discernible load time. The Windows 10 menu on the other hand is somewhat laggy, not surprising with all the "live tiles" and other tablet garbage in it. The start screen from Windows 8 should have remained just that and only in tablet mode, the classic start menu should have been returned for desktops.
  21. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,159   +67

    "Despite some limitations, mobile OSes like Android and iOS have demonstrated the level of security and control that is possible with closed ecosystems. They have also shown that constant and major point updates are possible without disrupting the user experience and breaking compatibility every single time."

    Spoken like someone who doesn't use mobile OS's much. Every iOS and Android update breaks something. Windows in my experience is a lot more stable. Android is pretty much the poster child of how not to do a stable OS. Frequent UI changes, apps suddenly take more space filling your limited storage, serious bugs rendering devices non-functional, games refuse to run or crash on many devices, ...
  22. Who is these guest people commenting really terrible and wrong reviews about windows 10? they don't seem that they ever used windows 10? what the hell these people are talking about?
  23. H3llion

    H3llion TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,249   +220

    Automatic updates should be on by default however there should be a "developer mode" which turns them off. The more people keep their browsers and machines up to date the better.
    CorvusCorax likes this.
  24. Peter Hayler

    Peter Hayler TS Rookie

    I very much agree with you.. All the reviews of windows ten mention its looks and layout. Never mentioned is how it performs as an operating system. How do our programs work on it? Better? faster? or what.I dont think anyone knows or cares.As for Cortana, if my family catch me talking to the computer they will have me put in a home.
    adisoftcafe likes this.
  25. Don't get me wrong There are plenty of things about Windows to knock but...

    Do Linux trolls scour the internet for these articles? Funny how so many people that knock Windows mention Linux in the same breath.

    I had to make some hardware changes to be compatible but other than that inconvenience I don't have much to really complain about here.

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