Weekend Open Forum: Chime in on Windows 8.1 Preview

By Shawn Knight · 62 replies
Jun 28, 2013
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  1. Microsoft’s overhaul of Windows 8 is now live as Windows 8.1 Preview and can be downloaded as an ISO file. The software update delivers a number of worthwhile changes like the ability to boot to desktop and better search following...

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  2. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,747   +3,712

    (n)(n) - I'll keep it short this time.
  3. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,038   +2,559

    Unlike that mean old Clifford, I'm giving it two thumbs up....(y) (y) ....(wait for it)....Steve Ballmer's behind.:eek:
    Raoul Duke, avoidz, St1ckM4n and 3 others like this.
  4. TheBigFatClown

    TheBigFatClown TS Guru Posts: 684   +254

    Oh wonderful news. The turd has been polished.

    I had hopes that the return of the traditional "Start Menu" and the boot to desktop would give me some inspiration, some small desire, to at least give Windows 8 another look. But after seeing screenshots of the traditional "Start Menu" in the Windows 8.1 preview I honestly don't have much of a desire.
    This is a revelation to myself. Something deeper is wrong with Windows 8 other than the traditional "Start Menu" being gone. I think I could live without a Start Menu. It's the whole watered down UI that just kills any desire to use this operating system. The square tiles everywhere make me wanna puke. They should have named Windows 8 "The Color Purple" but I think that's already been used as a movie title and Whoopie Goldberg might get upset about that.

    I hate to say it but it seems that no matter what features Windows 8 might gain in the future I can't deal with the pre-school, square tile, color purple, touch-centric user interface. Microsoft could add native DVD-support back into Windows 8.2 and I still couldn't stomach the UI. It has a cheap look to it.

    Okay, so it looks like Windows 7 Ultimate is my last Windows operating system. But being eternally optimistic I will certainly be watching the fate of the Windows operating system. Maybe Microsoft will realize what a complete and total failure the Windows 8 UI is on desktops if we just give them more time. It seems they have realized they aren't too big too fail. No thanks to all the brown nosers who purchased this turd on day 1.
    avoidz and hammer2085 like this.
  5. I really like Windows 8 and the changes coming in the free 8.1 update.

    Part of me kind of gets entertained by all these OS gladiators getting their jimmies rustled about an operating system.

    The icing on the cake is how when Windows 95 came out everyone hated the Start menu!
  6. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,046   +681

    I still can't get over why they would get rid of the classic start menu, but have two desktops, and two different types of apps/programs. I could live without a classic start menu, but W8 doesn't know what it wants to be yet. I might try it again if the reviews are positive after 8.1 goes final, but I can wait if nothing really changes.
  7. Jeffrey Hunt

    Jeffrey Hunt TS Rookie

    Most of the people I know who are complaining (work colleagues) are resistant to change. You don't need a start menu anymore. Search is all you need. The better the search, the better the experience. I use windows 7 at work and have not navigated through the start menu once. All I do is click start then search. I have used windows 8 since developer preview at home and have loved it the whole time. I am NEVER in the metro/modern interface, but that's because I use it as a desktop, and spend all my time in the desktop. The new interface is designed for tablets. Power users will always use the desktop. They are two interfaces on one OS. It's a great concept. I also love the interface on server 2012. Just saying.

    To recap, I love it. I will be upgrading, and as soon as I can begin rolling it out at work, I will be doing it. Just need to update SCCM 2012 to SP1 first so I can trial it. Enjoy your weekend.
    GhostRyder and spectrenad like this.
  8. TheBigFatClown

    TheBigFatClown TS Guru Posts: 684   +254

    It's not about the "Start Menu". The "Start Menu" appears to have made a come back. But I still won't be updating to Windows 8. Nothing compels me to. It's still too repulsive.
  9. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,747   +3,712

    The way you are describing is more than likely the way I would use Windows 8. I'm simply waiting for MS to come to their senses and give the Desktop Users power over their own PC experience. After all we are not limited by lack of CPU/GPU performance. I didn't spend and will not spend $1500 on a desktop, so an OS can be limited in performance by tablet capabilities.
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,038   +2,559

    Here, I'll make this real simple for you. I'm not up for coughing up a hundred bucks or so as a donation, every time M$ decides they're going to pass the hat.

    That should take all the BS, the anecdotal validation, the desire to "outwit, outplay, and outlast", dull, droning & dogmatic promotion of Windows 8 out of the equation.

    Whatever it is or isn't, it isn't worth a hundred bucks.
  11. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,891   +1,224

    I think 8.1 is a step in the right direction. That doesn't mean it's in the right place, but it's in the right direction.

    The irony of course is that's it's a step closer to Windows 7.
  12. TheBigFatClown

    TheBigFatClown TS Guru Posts: 684   +254

    But that's on purpose because of all the backlash. They thought every Windows 7 user would bend over and drop their pants. Most of you did. They almost succeeded. But not just yet. Thanks to the crowd that has stood their ground.

    Microsoft needs to come to the realization that you can't have "One UI to rule them all, NOT!." They should ink that slogan on Ballmers bald forehead. And then put mirrors on all his office walls.
  13. Kneep

    Kneep TS Enthusiast Posts: 44

    My two cents :)
    HATED 8 at first, it was, at first, uber glitchy and IE 10 blew when it was new. Now? With all the updates over the past few months I've found it to be much better, more stable, and a little faster / more responsive than Win7. For Desktops I use Classic Shell, hit the advanced options and KILL all metro-start screen options to make it more like Windows 7, after running it on all three PC's and my Tablet I'd never go back to Windows 7, 8 is just simple and fast and I've yet to see a BSOD too boot :) 8.1 is much more relevant to touch screen users, so I'll be looking forward to the finished product to toss on my Tablet
    spectrenad likes this.
  14. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,038   +2,559

    Believe it or not, I can say the same damned thing about XP SP2, and an 8 year old eMachine.

    So please, don't try to pass off, "it hasn't blue screened yet", as a "feature", or an "improvement".
    Raoul Duke likes this.
  15. TheBigFatClown

    TheBigFatClown TS Guru Posts: 684   +254

    Allow me to amplify subtle implications in your post?

    Windows 7 BSODs often enough to compel it's fan base to upgrade to Windows 8...true of false? false. BSODs could also be more closely related to your hardware configuration and the software you have installed versus the operating system itself. I can't remember the last time my Windows 7 installation has BSOD'ed.

    Windows 8 is faster than Windows 7...true of false? true...why? because the UI is purple square blocks

    Windows 7 is too complex for most people....true or false? true for the crowd Windows 8 has targeted..if Windows 7 is too complex for you as a user...my advice...get a tablet, stay way from desktops all together.

    The reason you can't go back to Windows 7 is because Windows 8 is "simple" and "fast"(no argument there It's a perfect fit for a tablet operating system. Simple and fast. However, there is a subtle implication that is misleading in this statement as well. And that is that Windows 7 can't be fast as well. Almost everything in life has tradeoffs.

    So what's the underlying hidden message in your post...is it something we haven't heard before....could that be possible...."Try it you'll like it." Oh darn. No, same old tired argument.
  16. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,891   +1,224

    Maybe I wasn't home the day Microsoft showed up at my house and forced me to buy Windows 8, but to me the differences are just preferences. I don't ever remember standing my ground when they tried to take away my Windows 7. I prefer 7, so I'm using 7, if you prefer 8, then use 8. It's going to be pretty hard to win an argument that 7 is 'better' because you prefer it. It's an opinion. I like blueberries better than strawberries... can you prove me wrong?

    When I hear someone likes 8 better I want to know why, and how they're using it. Maybe there are things about I would prefer if I learned more.
  17. Julio Franco

    Julio Franco TechSpot Editor Posts: 7,679   +992

    I like Windows 8 better than Windows 7, it's better optimized in a number of areas that matter to me (on the desktop since I barely use the Metro side). However, Windows 8.1 is what Windows 8 should have been, since it patches up some glaring mistakes Microsoft made when they introduced forced Metro into the flow of the OS.

    The wallpaper thing is big - at least to me. I wish they added an option to double-click the Metro Start screen and let you go back to the desktop. The flow would be better optimized for desktop users then.

    Other cosmetic changes, while subtle, reinforce and improve the marriage between two otherwise disparate OS ecosystems. I understand Microsoft's decision to force in Metro, and it's a big win for all touch-enabled devices, but for the desktop there should have been less compromises and 8.1 improves in that respect.

    Search is also finally not broken. One of the key criticism I had when I reviewed Windows 8 at launch.
    GhostRyder and spectrenad like this.
  18. TheBigFatClown

    TheBigFatClown TS Guru Posts: 684   +254

    And I wish that's what people would just come out and say. Stop trying to get people to like Windows 8 by spewing nonsense. Less BSODs on Windows 8 than Windows 7? Rare, if ANY on my computer. Faster than Windows 7...yeah because of tradeoffs(square purple tiles instead of beautiful smooth windows with transparency) when you compare the same system but my system is powerful enough not to even worry about the performance gains....."Try it, you'll like it?" Translation: "Try it,, you'll get used to it".
    You say it best Mike. It does come down to nothing but preferences at this point I guess."

    I have no doubt there are things I would like about Windows 8 if I learned more. But the UI repulses me. There are lots of women with a good heart but if you can't stomach their face it's gonna be pretty hard to even wanna talk to them in the first place. Just a little analogy for people to think about maybe.

    Microsoft is trying to please all people with one core operating system that is highly biased towards mobile devices. If they can accommodate both segments(desktop and mobile) in the same operating system only then will everyone be happy.
  19. ShadowDeath

    ShadowDeath TS Booster Posts: 92   +23

    I haven't been one of the fortunate ones. Since I bumped it up to Windows 8.1 over Windows 8 I've had desktop freezing when I right click on it. I've had my computer lock up just sitting there doing noting. Definitely not good times with this update so far.
    VitalyT likes this.
  20. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,038   +2,559

    Duh wull, I still like XP sometimes. But then I fire up Win 7, and there's the parade of "female figure studies", in glorious procession.

    And so, it is with heavy heart that I say unto you, I still believe the best place for those square tiles, would be to hammer them into any round hole portion of Mr. Ballmer's anatomy.

    Julio, it occurs to me, that selecting a Windows OS, bears a striking similarity to picking which presidential candidate to vote for here in the US. You listen to all the arguments, the hype, the distortions and slander, then you vote for the one you hate the least.
    Raoul Duke likes this.
  21. Scot A

    Scot A TS Rookie

    8.1 really shines on my Surface Pro. These are really nice improvements, the OS should have been originally released with these revisions. There should of been more consideration with consumer remarks when Win 8 consumer preview went live.
    My recommendations for system builders is to do a PC Reset, then run 8.1 update on top of that.
  22. ROTFLMAO! The real icing on the cake " how when Windows 95 came out everyone nobody hated the Start menu" ... because they had no reason to since the old interface remained as a choice! People who actually moved from Win3x to Win95 were too overwhelmed by an actual 32-bit OS with pre-emptive multitasking ( finally! ), unlimited virtual memory available to programs, much less crashing and fairly reliable PnP to complain about the new Start Menu which they didn't *have* to use in the first place. We wouldn't even be talking about this if Microsoft had included the Start Menu as an option in Win8.

    A lot of MetroTards repeat this meme because they obviously don't know any better having seen it at some website in a MetroTard comment. But it is hysterical to read it if you were actually a part of the Win3x transition years. The Start Menu killed in Win8 was 17 years old at the time. By comparison ProgMan in Win3x wasn't a day over 5 years old when Win95 came along ( and that was only true for the few of us that used the earliest versions of Windows 3.0 ). Most people got it with a new computer and that would most likely be Windows 3.1 in mid-1992. So the overwhelming majority of people would have only used the Win3x Program Manager about 3 years total, hardly enough time to become wedded to it, let alone hate the replacement! Killing the Start Menu after 17 years with no official way of going back is what led to the massive revolt now. And for the love of God, everyone I know hated that damn Win3x interface and ran as fast as they could to Windows 95. That's the actual truth of the matter.

    I note that you used the curious phrasing: " the changes coming in the free 8.1 update ". This is wording you would expect used by Microsoft shills, the astroturfers that are flooding the net trying but failing to save this dog. Regular people would have said: "the changes coming in Windows 8.1" period. So why exactly would you do that?
    avoidz and captaincranky like this.
  23. Only have seen very little on 8.1. If it improves metro enough maybe I'll actually spend the time to learn how to use it instead of booting right to the desktop with a Start8 start button + menu. So far metro is a turd wrapped in gold foil being foisted onto the masses as an 'improvement'. Not all change is for the better.
  24. Saintnsinner

    Saintnsinner TS Rookie Posts: 56   +11

    People by nature don't like change and they certainly are not going to shell out money to be moved away from what their comfortable with. Windows 7 is a great operating system for desktop computers. Microsoft cut Windows 7's life cycle short way to soon so unless you have a touch screen device there's really no compelling reason to upgrade to Windows 8. Microsoft should have developed Windows 8 as a seperate touch screen operating system or they could have offered Metro as a UI that ran on top of Windows 7 for touch screen users. If you think about it the bulk of Microsofts customers are still standard PC users without touch screens. It was a bad idea to try and market a touch screen operating system to a majority of desktop users who are happy with their current desktop operating system.
  25. Saintnsinner

    Saintnsinner TS Rookie Posts: 56   +11

    And just to add one more thought, I'm offended Microsoft is trying to turn my PC into a giant Android device. I don't want to get finger prints all over my beautiful high definition monitor. And let's face it when you really need to get some work done you don't turn to your touch device. You turn to your good old PC. Ok I'm done.
    Raoul Duke and avoidz like this.

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