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Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Mon Sep 10, 2012 11:59 pm

Our inaugural post in this oft-neglected forum!

So, Windows 8: will you be upgrading or will Windows 7 be the new XP?



As for myself I typically upgrade every other OS so I will be happily skipping Windows 8. The whole tablet interface is nonsensical and with very few benefits. At least it's faster and Microsoft has a really competitive price tag.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby ZeroGuardian » Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:47 am

Man I'm really tired of people saying that the new user interface is useless on a desktop. Its not, it works very well, its faster UI wise, and it allows the OS to work on touchscreen devices just as well if not better. I fail to see the downside.

Am I upgrading? Hell yeah! I really like the new "metro/modern UI" (or whatever they decide to call it). People are just scared of change. Its just like when Vista came around. There was nothing wrong with the OS (yes there were driver issues at first but that was not Microsoft's fault and that was resolved very quickly) and it came with so many needed upgrades (better security, better graphics, more stable, etc). Now here comes Windows 8 and once again, it has better security, better performance, a better UI, better multi-monitor support, and it comes in more form factors than you can shake a stick at.

People need to get off their high horses... for fuck's sake, Microsoft is practically giving the professional version away! Why wouldn't you upgrade?

(Just to make this clear I'm not targeting you Synch... just venting on some of the opinions I keep hearing.)
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Re: Windows 8

Postby jacobvandy » Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:59 am

Frankly I've not been at all interested in the new OS, and what little I have seen or read about it has done nothing to convince me otherwise. And since they aren't actually giving it away for free, I'll likely be waiting until next time, when they've at least got DirectX 12 to offer.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Natedog » Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:10 am

When it comes to PC OSes I don't change it unless it's broken. Right now every PC I own has Win 7 in some form on it and really I don't see any reason to shell over cash for the new Win 8. I don't think it's a bad OS, just that I don't see a need for me to spend the money. I'd rather buy myself a new video card or another SSD.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Tue Sep 11, 2012 9:27 am

I'm sorry, but the interface is a complete fuck-up. For one, it doesn't actually work as it should on my netbook because the resolution is too low for the stupid apps to work with (wtf). So that just leaves my desktop, which has 0 touch functionality. I have no intention of bothering with any of the Windows mobile devices.

In order to search for applications or really do anything of substance I need to go to the stupid Metro UI every time. It's jarring and it's completely unnecessary. There is no actual choice to maintain the same old interface. Sure, it's faster overall and I love that they included proper multi-monitor support, and the new task manager is mana from heaven, but I can't get over that ugly, childish interface that dares assert itself every time I need to get anywhere. A good design minimizes the amount of traveling needed. This isn't a good design. It's not the future.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby jwhx » Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:03 pm

I know nothing about Windows 8. All I know is I liked XP.......despite its bumpy start, I liked Vista......and once I got used to it, I liked 7. I have no intention of switching right away. I never do that. I always wait for the first service pack so that the kinks can be worked out. By then I'll have a better idea about the OS but as it sits.....I'm perfectly find sticking with 7 for the time being. If I build a new machine, I'll probably snag 8 but I highly doubt I'll get it before.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Ronin » Thu Sep 13, 2012 3:40 pm

I just read in Maximum PC that Valve is looking at Linux in part because Gabe thinks Windows 8 will be a disaster. I haven't used Windows 8 yet but it sounds like Microsoft is trying too hard to be Apple. "Bright Colors! Big Buttons!" "It's like your phone and uses apps!" My PC has 100 times the computing power and screen space as my phone. I want my phone to be more like my PC not the other way around.
After seeing and hearing about the amazing rigs that many people have on these forums; it seems rather silly for me to the specs of my very modest gaming PC. It works and that's good enough for me.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Thu Sep 13, 2012 3:45 pm

Ronin wrote:I just read in Maximum PC that Valve is looking at Linux in part because Gabe thinks Windows 8 will be a disaster. I haven't used Windows 8 yet but it sounds like Microsoft is trying too hard to be Apple. "Bright Colors! Big Buttons!" "It's like your phone and uses apps!" My PC has 100 times the computing power and screen space as my phone. I want my phone to be more like my PC not the other way around.


I think Gabe's main concern (and this was echoed by Blizzard and other influential PC developers) is the Windows Marketplace/Xbox Store that is included with the operating system. They're worried that Microsoft will try to centralize PC gaming again under their own branding (GFWL). I don't think it'll happen and Steam will obviously peacefully coexist with the App Store but it's still a concern nonetheless.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Ellsworth » Thu Sep 13, 2012 4:21 pm

The interface looks cumbersome to me, but I haven't used it, so I can't give an educated opinion. The look is all a matter of taste. Personally, I don't like it. It reminds me of a kindergarten classroom. All it needs is a desktop background with the alphabet scrawled out in some crayon-type font.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby gregorov_14 » Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:17 pm

I don't plan on upgrading to Windows 8, mostly because I see no compelling reason. I got Vista because I got sick of XP, and then upgraded to Windows 7 because there were several improvements. All I think about with Windows 8 is Windows 7 made for a tablet that also runs on a desktop. Now if I were to get a tablet I would consider getting a Windows 8 based one vs. android or iPad, but that's really about it.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Splice » Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:02 am

I bought a new laptop for my dad recently, which qualifies for the $15 deal, so I'll probably grab that copy, as long as I can install it on another PC instead of my dad's. I don't have any other particular plans yet.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby LORD-ORION » Fri Sep 21, 2012 9:48 pm

Waiting to see how Windows RT and Phone 8 looks...

If they are good, and they have proper JS and HTML5 support for their SDKs, I might pick it up and switch from Apple for my mobile devices...

I really hate no start button.... and I really hate "always on" web e-mail. (gotta be more careful on setup) :D

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Re: Windows 8

Postby FiSH » Thu Oct 18, 2012 4:24 pm

I'll be getting W8 for my 'Million Dollar' build. I like what I've seen of the Metro UI, though I'm glad users aren't limited to it. Lots more positivity than I expected in reviews and blogs too. Windows 7 functionality with expanded capabilities, punchier performance and potential for whatever. I'm sold.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Transco901 » Sat Oct 27, 2012 12:37 am

I'm using Windows 8 Pro right now. I've had it for a while (I've got MSDN access).

I think Win 8 RT is a step forward and bridges the gap between touch screen mobile and traditional desktop apps. It works for both.

As a developer I keep up to date to stay relevant; so a Windows 8 upgrade is both a necessity and a pleasure.

I'm so ready to make the leap to a tablet (still stuck on desktop/laptop).
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:49 pm

Well I take it back. I like Windows 8 now that I've gotten used to some the nuances. For $15 I couldn't say no.

Good

Everything is faster.
Everything is prettier.
Windows Explorer has gotten a much needed (though subtle) revamp with the Ribbon interface from Microsoft Office.
Proper multi-monitor support.
Some of the apps are actually useful and nice to use.
Games perform better (5-10% FPS increase).
UAC is smarter about what to allow and what to disallow.
Everyone has drivers already out (and they're better than W7).
Task Manager is a lot more useful.
I feel like there's less clutter.
Everything is categorized nicely.
My SSD has more free space with a clean installation than with W7.
Some parts of the tablet interface actually work really well (and make a lot of sense) on a desktop.
Desktop is almost exactly the same as W7.
Price!!

Bad

The lack of a start menu makes no sense. It's pure stupidity. Thank god for Stardock and Start8
Fuck integrating my Hotmail account to my operating system.
The shoving of the cloud down my throat is pissing me off.
I wish I could forcefully stay on my desktop and blow off Metro entirely (or vice versa) so that I don't get so many jarring transitions.
Too many tablet leftovers that scream "this is a tablet OS."
Metro/Modern UI still looks ugly as fuck.
OS is a bit unstable.
Some drivers/programs force themselves to be installed from the Windows Store rather than separately for the desktop.
Separate installations for apps and desktop programs.


In addition, I love Office 2013.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby ZeroGuardian » Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:44 pm

I told you so! :P
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Re: Windows 8

Postby jacobvandy » Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:22 pm

Shit, for fifteen bucks, I'd give it a try. Think you could hook me up, Synch? Or is it just one of those deals where you put in a university email address? Mine might still work.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:59 pm

You literally just tell Microsoft you bought Windows 7 after June. They're even aware of the "loophole." Apparently they just want people to upgrade and they're almost willing to give it out for free.

Makes sense since Windows 8 is really pushing the entire Microsoft ecosystem down your throat. If W8 were free Microsoft would still make boatloads from in-store purchases, advertisements (yes, there are ads in the Metro UI apps), and related MS services.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby jacobvandy » Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:04 am

Well that loophole that lets anyone get it doesn't work anymore, apparently. I do have a Win 7 key, though, pondering whether I should pop it in. It doesn't seem they actually do anything to check whether you bought it recently, and are just wanting to make sure you have a legit copy to upgrade.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Wed Oct 31, 2012 12:31 pm

Aw, that sucks. It didn't ask for a key when I did it.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Natedog » Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:04 pm

For $15 I'll get a copy and throw it on my work laptop. I just reformatted this thing anyways so there isn't much on it right now.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby zookeeper820 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 1:46 pm

So if any of you were going to upgrade and had a choice between win 7 or 8, which one would it be. I use vista on one computer and 7 on the other one I like both os's the same. The price for both are about the same ( within 10% of each 7 or 8 ). The computer I will be installing it on is an AMD quad core with 8 gigs of ram, ocd at 3.5. ghz .

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Sun Nov 04, 2012 4:19 pm

Windows 8. It's just a lot faster and has a lot of interface improvements that I couldn't do without.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby FiSH » Mon Nov 05, 2012 4:28 am

After spending a little time with W8 installed on a laptop at Best Buy, I've decided to hold off and see what a service pack might do for it. It might answer the call for a proper start button. The Start8 app you can get doesn't really do the trick.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Egg » Mon Nov 05, 2012 1:08 pm

I dunno.....what was this nonsense about applications and patches needing to be "approved" by Microsoft before release? I'm pretty sure that's what Valve and others were so upset about. What ever ended up happening with that??

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Mon Nov 05, 2012 1:30 pm

FiSH wrote:After spending a little time with W8 installed on a laptop at Best Buy, I've decided to hold off and see what a service pack might do for it. It might answer the call for a proper start button. The Start8 app you can get doesn't really do the trick.


How does it not do the trick? It's literally the same exact start menu and button.

Egg wrote:I dunno.....what was this nonsense about applications and patches needing to be "approved" by Microsoft before release? I'm pretty sure that's what Valve and others were so upset about. What ever ended up happening with that??


That's only with Microsoft's SmartScreen filter (which you can turn off). It's essentially a new UAC and will merely prompt you for permission to install something that was unverified. There is also enforcement of digital signing for drivers but you can also turn that off really easily. I assume Microsoft's comments were directed more to their own store rather than anything to do with the desktop.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Natedog » Tue Nov 06, 2012 1:00 pm

Egg wrote:I dunno.....what was this nonsense about applications and patches needing to be "approved" by Microsoft before release? I'm pretty sure that's what Valve and others were so upset about. What ever ended up happening with that??


Apple has been doing this for years with most of their products and everyone absolutely loves it.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Egg » Tue Nov 06, 2012 5:30 pm

Synchronicity wrote:
Egg wrote:I dunno.....what was this nonsense about applications and patches needing to be "approved" by Microsoft before release? I'm pretty sure that's what Valve and others were so upset about. What ever ended up happening with that??


That's only with Microsoft's SmartScreen filter (which you can turn off). It's essentially a new UAC and will merely prompt you for permission to install something that was unverified. There is also enforcement of digital signing for drivers but you can also turn that off really easily. I assume Microsoft's comments were directed more to their own store rather than anything to do with the desktop.

So what were Valve and other game devs throwing a fit about? I remember reading something about Windows 8 becoming a closed system. That never occurred?

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Tue Nov 06, 2012 6:47 pm

Egg wrote:
Synchronicity wrote:
Egg wrote:I dunno.....what was this nonsense about applications and patches needing to be "approved" by Microsoft before release? I'm pretty sure that's what Valve and others were so upset about. What ever ended up happening with that??


That's only with Microsoft's SmartScreen filter (which you can turn off). It's essentially a new UAC and will merely prompt you for permission to install something that was unverified. There is also enforcement of digital signing for drivers but you can also turn that off really easily. I assume Microsoft's comments were directed more to their own store rather than anything to do with the desktop.

So what were Valve and other game devs throwing a fit about? I remember reading something about Windows 8 becoming a closed system. That never occurred?


No, they feared Microsoft over-encroaching on PC gaming thanks to the Windows Store and greater Xbox integration, something akin to the fan-fucking-tastic disaster that was Games for Windows Live.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby jacobvandy » Tue Nov 06, 2012 7:04 pm

That's wrong, Synch. They feared, and continue to fear, what Microsoft is doing to make WIndows 8 less open and accessible to users and developers alike. They ARE controlling what goes through their store and what can be integrated into the Metro UI. Basically anything that is unsigned will only be accessible outside of that, so even if you did decide you wanted to embrace change, you wouldn't be able to put all of your stuff up there and make it all coherent. Pretty much any level of user above he mainstream, average joe is forced to bypass it. That's bad news for any software creator, whether game-related or not, because now you're beholden to Microsoft to get permission to release your product to the majority of their users... Not that I've really researched it too much myself, but I keep seeing more and more developers speaking out against the bullshit, and it sounds like they have good reasons. See this fellow from Croteam (Serious Sam), who recently spoke up about it on the Steam forums:

I have to apologize in advance for keeping off topic, but I would very much like to clear this one thing. I think that this is very important as there are "under the hood" motions related to Windows 8 that are hidden and not well understood even by many developers (yet), and certainly not by most gamers. Pardon me if this turns out to be a long post, but it is a complex issue. I'll highlight only the most important sentences if you want to skip the details.

Gabe Newel did not overreact. What you don't see here is that, under the hood, the new tiled UI is a means for Microsoft to lock Windows applications into a walled garden, much like the one on iOS. There is this "small detail" that Microsoft is not advertising anywhere, but you can find it dug deep in the developer documentation:

One cannot release a tiled UI application by any other means, but only through Windows Store!

I cannot even begin to stress out just how horrible this idea is! There is no side-loading, except for corporate use inside one company, and that works only on the enterprise edition of Windows 8. Do we all understand what that means? You cannot download an application from the Internet and run it on your computer. You have to get it from Microsoft's store. Even if it is a free app!

If it was just about "being downloaded from Windows store", it would not be a problem. It would be nice to have a common hub to download things from. But to get an app onto that store, it has to be certified by MS. This means bringing the "console experience" onto your desktop. Each app that you will get through the Windows Store will have to adhere to certain requirements imposed by MS. So far, we know that they've banned mature games, like Skyrim, CoD, and Serious Sam.[*] They have forbidden modding. They could very well forbid Open Source if they want. But even if these terms were not there, this is still a certification system. With all of its downsides, including uncertain release dates, rare and late patches, and everything turning out to be more expensive and sucking more.

While, theoretically, desktop applications are exempt from these requirements, it looks more and more like just a foot-in-the-door technique. A large number of developers have expressed their concern with possibility that, probably in Windows 9 or something like that, the ability to get even desktop apps in any other way than through Windows app store may very well be removed. When that happens it will be too late.

I would not invest into supporting the tiled UI apps (which MS now conveniently calls "Windows Store apps" - does that ring a bell?), until MS removes the requirement that they have to be shipped through Windows Store on desktop at least - and thereby remove the requirement of certifying them with MS. Certification is a broken concept and should be abolished.

Now, while in current state Windows 8 do look like they support plain desktop apps seamlessly, the removal of start menu and use of "charms" even on the desktop looks like a pretty blunt attempt to force users to "get used" to the tiled UI. It would be fine by me if it wasn't for the aforementioned certification issue.

So, it is a vicious circle. And not an accidental one. This one was carefully designed to be that way. I say: no thank you, I'll skip on that one.

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[*] Yes, I know that the PEGI-16 limit is supposed to be lifted to PEGI-18, but this is only an announcement, and we didn't see the new terms yet. There could still be another fly in the ointment. Note that besides the bare rating, they also disproved profanities, drug references, and various other things like that in terms that are separate from the rating requirement. If they don't remove all of that, a game may satisfy the ratings yet still fail the cert. Worst thing is for such things you simply cannot know what they will allow until you submit, which is terrible.


The real concern here is the trend, the slippery slope. Once MS decides to start closing off the OS, to any degree, where will they stop? People make the argument of, oh Apple does that and everybody loves them, there's no problem with it. First of all, NO, everybody does not love those assholes, but anyhow, that's been their business model all along, so we never expected anything more. Windows was the freer alternative for developers big and small, but now that is changing for the worse. When Valve is putting in major efforts in collaborating with NVIDIA to bring Steam gaming to freaking Linux, you ought to know something is very wrong in MS-land...

Needless to say, I've changed my mind about getting Win8, even if I could for only $15.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby indigo196 » Sat Nov 10, 2012 9:04 pm

I have played with Windows 8, but have no intention of running it for my main OS. I, in fact, only run Windows 7 in a VM as well. My main OS is Ubuntu and has been for several years. Check out the video below - the Valve presentation starts at 13:24. I could not go this year so I missed out on the going on, but I would not count out Valve and Linux being a serious thing.

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:58 pm

As far as Ubuntu goes it feels like it's getting really bloated. I'm looking towards other distros like Mint and straight-up Debian. Maybe become adventurous and give Gentoo a try.

Anyways, I'm installing Ubuntu on my Nexus 7!
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Callred » Wed Nov 14, 2012 10:49 am

A friend brought his new laptop in for me to look at and I had a chance to play with Win 8 for awhile. The very first thing I decided was that when the time comes for me to have to upgrade to it or the next one out, I'll disable the Metro UI. I did some beta testing a few months ago and thought it would be an awesome Tablet and Phone system, but for me personally, I don't care for the cartoonish Metro look, or that I had to keep going back to it.

The very first thing I did was to look up how to switch it off. Once that's done I could live with 8. I don't have enough research under me to know how the Store would work for me since I like a lot of software that's out there and not in the Store.

Overall I won't put it down because I don't know it. It could be great and it could be the next Windows ME. Either way I'm not going over to it right now, and certainly not here at work. I'll let time flush it out and I'll take my own time to research it and see how it goes before I decide if I like it or not.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Firing Squid » Tue Dec 18, 2012 8:40 pm

I was instantly repulsed by Windows 8 User Interface. I still am, potentially even more so. WTF are they paying their designers to do, make puzzles? Their new OS is certainly puzzling, and unnecessarily so! Yes, I know the scope is completely different but the latest iTunes is completely fucking retarded as well, although they have given the end user the option of still viewing traditional menus. That's handy!
If I have to run Mass Spec SW on this I may be forced to firebomb the local Microsoft store.

Other than that, everything is completely nominal. :))

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:06 pm

If it makes you feel better the lead designer quit his job at Microsoft. So Windows 9 might look better. But yeah, their goal in making a user friendly OS completely backfired when my goddamn mom demanded I put Windows 7 back.

Also, I felt iTunes was in need a complete overhaul. They got close with the latest update.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Egg » Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:54 pm

Synch, you can't talk about your mom that way!

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Re: Windows 8

Postby Synchronicity » Wed Dec 19, 2012 1:02 am

lol, I love my momma. I meant if the goddamn target market is worse off than before it is a catastrophic failure. :crazy:
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Re: Windows 8

Postby FiSH » Wed Dec 19, 2012 3:03 am

I think that Windows 8 is indeed a progressive move, but one that might have made a better impact had it been released on down the road when tablets have matured and touchscreen displays are more plentiful and affordable. Of the usual suspects, only Acer and Viewsonic have touch displays that aren't attached to all-in-one machines and are semi affordable. Dell has one as well, but $700 for a 23 incher is way over the top. A wise move might have been to limit Windows 8 RT to tablets and phones, and then release a full blown consumer version for laptops and PC's when the market is more ripe. Using a laptop touch pad with W8 is a pain. The use of a mouse helps, but still no cigar.

I dunno. Maybe it takes an OS like this to get manufacturer interested in making touch displays. What I do know is that Windows 7 is not in need of a replacement right now.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby Callred » Wed Dec 19, 2012 9:36 am

Eddie, you may be right about manufacturers waiting to see how it pans out before jumping in. Apple and Android markets are doing well and it wouldn't be the first time a big name failed to bring it to the plate.

As for touch screens; I'm curious about something. I hate that I have to clean the oils and such off my Razr Maxx all day long.. will you go to a stylus on your monitor? Otherwise the screen you work and game on will become even worse for wear over short periods of time.

I finally did put it on here at work and frankly I'm good with it. Start button isn't really gone, just another way to use it (Windows Key, just like always) Once I placed my tiles as I wanted them I never go back to Metro unless I need an app I don't use often... it's all good.

It does run slower in some apps, specifically rendering pictures and creating email in Outlook, but that can be video drivers that were made for Win 7 since I did an upgrade and not a full blown install. Last, speaking of the upgrade. It was flawless for me. Started it in Windows itself and clicked a few buttons, went for coffee, went for coffee, went for more coffee, went to restroom to get rid of coffee and it was done.
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Re: Windows 8

Postby jwhx » Wed Dec 19, 2012 10:11 am

I always thought the the interface would be fine for phones or tablets but terrible for a PC. I've heard the OS itself is pretty good but I have no desire at all to switch from Win7. Especially since I don't even have all the machines at work on Win7 yet.

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