Hands-on: What’s good and bad about Windows 8

The user interface (UI) seems strange tablets were forced to experience the desktop, but overall, Windows 8 looks very promising.

Because Microsoft’s Develop conference earlier this month, where Windows 8 shows the big debut, which quietly explore in depth the next operating system. Now that I have spent real time, I could give a full assessment of what appears on the first day of the announcement.

I can honestly say that any “final judgments” You’ve read about Windows 8 is not useful. Early edition of Windows 8 is not so much as a half-baked, even in small details like the wild color scheme.

To install Windows 8 will preview, download the file from Microsoft’s developer site.

Windows 8 Hands on: Whats good and bad about Windows 8<!  DONTREWRITE  >

What I like so far in Windows 8

Windows 8 I like the ability to configure your PC to a local login or a Windows Live ID. This gives a more consistent user experience across devices, and even between mobile and desktop applications. His most frequently used Windows settings will be transferred to Windows Live ID session by prior arrangement and state for Metro-style applications. Credential will remain for applications and web sites that require username, and travel with you on any PC you connect. That is really controlled, so you can specify items you want to synchronize items that are not.

Not fancy new task manager on the screen is much better than the CPU, memory, disk and network for applications and processes. But mostly, I see no other changes in the administrative purpose or set of information management tools, including Event Viewer and Disk Management. There are exciting changes in how Explorer works now, because it has a user interface on some cassette tapes that are relatively easy to operate. Subsequently, after going from Windows XP, the icon arrow back, the recovery method many users prefer to navigate your folder structure.

You can look forward to other fun details, including the new look of Internet Explorer (the preview has IE10 Developer Preview, which comes in both a standard Windows 7 look and the new Metro look). It also advances HTML5 support significantly, rating a score of 300 out of 450 in the HTML5Test.com test, compared to just 141 for IE9; by comparison, Google Chrome 14 scores 340, Mozilla Firefox 7 scores 313, and Apple Safari 5.1 scores 293. I didn’t have a chance to test a feature called Refresh Your PC, but it promises to restore your system to factory settings — perfect for when you plan on selling your PC. You can also configure refresh points and restore to those point-in-time snapshots of your PC.

What I don’t like so far about Windows 8

Again reserving full criticism until I see the final product (or at least move into betas and release candidates), I’m not yet a fan of the integration of the tablet and desktop interfaces. I prefer the two to be separate. But as has been mentioned time and again, the Metro UI isn’t an app: It’s the Windows 8 shell. That is, it’s locked in, so it can’t be decoupled from Windows. According to Microsoft, it is Windows.

I can honestly say it isn’t a lack of desire to move into the world of tablets that is holding me back from loving the Metro UI. I’ve worked with and love my Android smartphone and Galaxy Tab tablet with Android OS on it, but I don’t want that look on my desktop. Also, I don’t like touchscreens. It’s bad enough I have had to get used to wiping off my phone screen every few many minutes to remove smudges. But now to have fingerprints all over my monitor at work? No thanks.

I also don’t like that when I click or tap the Start button in the bottom-left corner, it takes me back to the Metro UI apps when after 16 years of clicking that same spot, I’ve become accustomed to seeing my Start menu and related options. To view a minor menu, I have to hover and fish for it. The option still is labeled Start, but it really means Switch when you click it. I suggest that Microsoft leave the Start button alone and add a new option to the right for returning to the tiles, so I can use Windows 8 like I use Windows 7. Change is good, but I don’t want the company to break a feature that currently works.

Windows 8: Still exciting

Despite my initial criticisms, I’m excited. I know my complaints are minor and will be worked out once others weigh in. I’m happy with what I’ve seen so far and pleased that Microsoft will soon be in the tablet market with a competitive product.

My big concern is the inability of Windows 8 to run classic Win32s desktop apps for ARM tablets. Emulators are constantly made for apps to work across different platforms, and Microsoft is no stranger to this. In Windows systems themselves, you have virtual DOS and Windows on Windows and all sorts of options for running 16-bit apps on 32-bit OSes, and then XP Mode and so on. Why not build in an emulator so that ARM apps run perfectly on x86 and vice versa? There are rumors that Microsoft is working on some sort of Win32s-on-ARM compatibility feature, despite its current statements saying legacy Windows apps won’t run on ARM chips; my fingers are crossed.

Aside from that, I’m looking forward to seeing the many applications that developers come up with, now that they have this preview and can get a glimpse of what the next version of Windows 8 looks like.

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