Here's something I wrote for my blog:
I'm not having very good luck with it so far. I'm installing it in virtualbox, though it always seems to die after a bit of messing around, bringing me to the "Diagnosing your PC" start screen, spending forever trying to fix itself, then failing. I'm going to take a snapshot of the fresh install in case it happens again.
Right now, I'm not liking what I see. This is what I expected, since it is pretty different from what I'm used to. In order for progress to happen, radical change needs to happen (e.g. the original iMac's lack of a floppy drive and serial ports, which annoyed people but was ultimately a good decision for the future).
However... The "Computer" version of Windows 8 is too much like the metro-only tablet version. In the metro mail application for example, it has gigantic labels and a ton of padding in the interface. This would be suitable on a touch screen, though on a desktop or laptop computer, you're wasting a bunch of space that could be used on content. The metro apps all seem to have a common goal: Be friendly for users on touch screen devices. This is fine, though certain new elements of the Windows Desktop are almost tricky to access. The start button is removed and replaced with a "Hot-corner", which gives the user very little room to click on.
To access the opened metro apps from the desktop, you need to go to the hot-corner, then move the mouse directly up within a 10 pixel strip of the screen until you go above the start icon. Then you get into the mail app and it uses 80 pixels of padding between the columns. It really feels like three isolated teams made the metro interface, the windows desktop and then glued it together into this inconsistent mess.
In this version of the OS, I've been seeing user interface elements that work well on tablets, yet are included in the PC version. For example, I can't figure out how to shut down or restart without going through a bunch of steps (Start > username icon > sign out > drag lockscreen up > click power > shutdown). A tablet can easily sit in standby for a while, though my laptop or desktop consumes a lot more power than some low power tablet CPU. The lockscreen that goes in front of the login screen is another good example. It feels natural and intuitive on a tablet, though feels clunky when doing it with a mouse or touchpad.
On the desktop, I love the new task manager and the ribbonization of explorer. The ribbon can hint the user how to do certain things without being too intrusive. A good example is when you're in the music library. The ribbon has coloured tabs for the library options and music-related options. The ribbon is also a bit more convenient than searching through multiple drop down menus, which are hidden until you hit the ALT key in Windows 7.
The new task manager is easy to use in the default mode and doesn't look like it would overwhelm the less-experienced with irrelevant information if they just want to stop a frozen application. Because I'm not one of those users, I can click "More Details" and get more useful information. If I wanted to get network and disk usage from an application, I would have to use the Resource Monitor, which isn't exactly quick to access in Windows 7. The new Task Manager gives me that information in two new columns. Items in the list are highlighted depending on their usage, so spotting a resource-abusing program is a lot easier. The graphs in the performance tab are also nice-looking and useful.
For the less-experienced user, I imagine this OS will be terrifying. If I sat someone with Windows 7 experience in front of the computer with Windows 8, they would be totally lost. There's no cue that the start or settings menus even exist. They just see what appears to be a broken task bar. The experienced power users are probably annoyed that previously-accessible settings are now buried deep into the OS. Either way, there's going to be a lot of annoyance towards Microsoft. Windows 8 may become another Vista.
It's very unfortunate, but I see Windows 8 being a complete flop. In terms of usability, for the average person, it's going to be very difficult. I had my parents take a look at it and they were absolutely clueless in what to do. Unless Microsoft requires users to take a tutorial (Think Windows 3.x), I feel like people are going to hate this (That is, unless they have a tablet device. In terms of tablet computing, I think Windows excels. It's a way better platform than Android or iOS.)
So what's the recommended means of installing this? Dual-boot?
Remember that annoying tour in Windows XP that nobody ever watched?
I fucking need one of those now.
After using Windows 8 for a few hours on my desktop, I find it anything but intuitive. It doesn't seem like a bad OS, all my games are running great and some of the UI changes in Explorer are improvements on 7 (though I still vastly prefer XP's Explorer). But it makes me feel like I have to jump through hoops to do anything. Getting to the control panel is a pain in the ass (I still don't get why they removed it from My Computer since XP), the shutdown process (or at least the only one I've found so far) takes effort and I haven't found any way of customising the Metro interface at all.
It just feels like a severely dumbed down Windows, so much that it actually makes it far more difficult to use for experienced users. I don't feel like I have any control over how my desktop works.
For a tablet, I can imagine using the Metro interface would be far better than using the traditional Windows desktop, but on a desktop PC or a laptop, frankly it sucks.
Also my Windows folder after a fresh install is 20gb. thefuck?
Hey, Windows 8 seems to work perfectly in VMware Workstation. Probably the only way it can run faster is if it was native.
I do really want to play with this on my tablet PC though.
i'm really annoyed zune pass doesn't work with the default music marketplace
As for it being difficult to use for experienced users - I disagree. It's something we just need to learn. After playing with this for an hour I can say I'm becoming a lot more familiar with it. If I ever want to say "fuck it" and go back to Windows 7 style applications I can go right back. Windows Media Player is still there. Internet Explorer 10 for the desktop is there. Almost every other application is there too.
Is chrome stable enough to be ran in 8? Firefox is just flat out shitting itself.
Oh its so nice to have a actual iso mounter built into windows now.
Silly Windows, you're not installed on a tablet.
Can you move the video app to a different screen?
I got 2 screens. I want the monitor that has the desktop all the time on my main monitor but I dont know how to do that. anyone fooled around with it more than me?
So I like the speed, but I feel 8 still needs the old start menu or something similar.
I mean I was unable to find the disk defragmenter, had to get to it via control panel, which was pretty difficult to to find (there is no visual indicator that one must put their cursor in the corner).
There is also no excuse for the lack of a shutdown button.
I guess MS really does believe the age of desktops and laptops are over. Cause this is so impractical for those. At least the dev preview had the start menu.
And since they know most people don't install new OS's on their computers, they know they won't be faced with the issue of 8 sucking on desktops and laptops. Their next PC will be a tablet with a physical power button.
KEEP FORGETTING PROGRAMS ARE ALREADY INSTALLED ON OTHER DISKS AND NEED TO STOP INSTALLING THEM TWICE
people make a really big deal out of the shutdown button thing lmao
All we wanted was a better Windows 7... We got something that:
A. Does not make logical sense to the standard computer user.
B. Deliberately hides features and settings from the end user.
C. Is hostile to any form of modding or customizing the interface, even down to the background patterns.
I can see Windows 8 working on tablets and maybe desktops with touch panels. This is going to flop on 95% of the computers sold worldwide between launch and Windows 9. I wouldn't be surprised if Microsoft even takes a loss on this, all things considering.
You have to think, corporate environments won't use Windows 8. At all. If they upgrade, they're going to Seven (because it's closest to XP). Microsoft is going to lose millions from that alone. It's going to be shunned by IT professionals in nearly every corporation, institution, and organization that uses Windows.
If we're lucky, this will be another Vista. Another "toy OS", so to speak. Windows 7 will become another Windows XP, and we hope to Gates that they reinstate a full desktop mode in Windows 9.
And this, gentlemen, is the issue. Something that consists of two clicks in Windows 7 is now four clicks in Windows 8. That's two more clicks. Efficiency my nose.
What's the best VM for a not-too-powerful machine to run this on?
Windows 8 is gonna be fantastic on tablets.
But it needs some heavy tweaking for desktops and laptops, and it seems like that isn't going to happen.
So I guess I just burn the files in the WindowsESD folder to a DVD and I'll have a pretty Windows disk?
Keep's telling me I am unable to get a product key. when I run through setup, ISO it is I guess.
Well, I'm on Windows 8. All I can say right now is that it's really confusing. I have to get the hang of it so I can actually make my mind.
In some metro apps, you can drag from the top of the screen downwards and it does something... What is it? Multitasking?
Removed my Ubuntu partition, removed GRUB, attempted to restore Windows 7 BCD via Command Prompt on disk, Thought it wasn't working, Apparently it worked fine
Also my Windows 8 disk I got through that program didn't work so I'm downloading the iso now.