Windows 8 – Review on a Desktop PC



the next major release of Microsoft Windows dubbed Windows 8 is scheduled for release to the public sometimes in 2012 the windows 8 user interface has been completely redesigned and is completely different from the traditional desktop environment that users have been used to since Windows 95 in early 2012 Microsoft made available to the public a free beta version of Windows 8 and since mid-march I have been running Windows 8 on my desktop PC in this episode of tech report I'm going to review Windows 8 not as a tablet operating system but instead rate its performance on a traditional desktop PC the user interface in Windows 8 has been completely rethought Microsoft calls it an evolutionary change but when I first saw it I considered it an oversimplified piece of garbage Microsoft says they've designed the user interface to be compatible with both traditional desktop PCs using mice and keyboards as well as touchscreen only tablet devices however when I first saw pictures of the operating system I was scratching my head trying to figure out how the operating system would handle basic tasks that a desktop can such as multiple monitors or even running legacy desktop applications nevertheless in mid-march I took the plunge and installed Windows 8 on an empty hard drive connected to my desktop PC and since then I haven't looked back many people say that the real power of Windows 8 is when it's running on a touchscreen device however myself and many people like me are going to be running desktop computers for years to come so I thought it would be interesting to do a review on how Windows 8 performs on a desktop PC in this review I'm going to all but completely ignore the Metro interface and explain to you how you can use Windows 8 as a traditional desktop environment with a mouse keyboard and applications you're familiar with using so after installing Windows 8 when you first boot up you are presented with the Start screen which should look something like this now this is your new tablet friendly Metro user interface that Microsoft is trying to force on us however click on the tile marked desktop and suddenly you're thrown into an all-too-familiar Windows desktop environment we're doing good so far but the first shocker came to me when I was looking for the Windows Start menu I couldn't find it after doing some research I quickly discovered that the Start menu was not only hidden but had been removed from Windows 8 beta and possibly removed from the operating system for good after my initial panic subsided I came across what's called the links toolbar the links toolbar can be installed into your taskbar by right-clicking on any empty space and selecting toolbars and then links in the next menu by default the links toolbar only has shortcuts to a few different web pages in it but you can quickly customize that just open up the links toolbar under see users followed by your username favorites and favorites bar and you can place any shortcut to any website or any application or any batch file you want place a few application shortcuts in there and then click on the two arrows after the word links in your taskbar all of a sudden what appears is a box with shortcuts to all your applications very similar to a mini Start menu I even tossed a folder with a couple of batch files into the links toolbar so that I can easily reboot or shut down my computer from the Start menu just like I would in Windows 7 now I know it's not a complete replacement for the Start menu and if you want to search through all your programs that are installed you're still gonna have to use the Metro user interface but after several weeks of using the links toolbar in combination with the Metro UI I have discovered that life without the Windows Start menu is indeed worth living Microsoft is really pushing cloud integration services with Windows 8 when you first install the operating system and are asked to set up your initial user account Microsoft gives you the option of setting up a local user account or a Windows Live account I personally don't like the idea of linking my PC at home with a server somewhere on the internet that could potentially be compromised I also don't know how the computer would handle logging in without an internet connection but for braver Souls out there the integration between Windows Live and your Windows PC could I suppose be convenient with all this cloud integration I was really hoping Microsoft would have included support for the open CalDAV protocol of synchronizing calendars unfortunately I was out of luck when I opened the calendar application in the Metro UI I was asked to sign in to or create a Microsoft account apparently Microsoft really wants to push their own cloud services with Windows 8 unfortunately for many users myself included we don't have a Microsoft account and I don't ever have the intention of signing up for a Microsoft account unfortunately the same is true for the default email application as well launch it and you're faced with a screen telling you to sign into a Microsoft account hopefully by the time the final release of Windows 8 comes to market Microsoft will have realized their error and you'll be able to use your computer with email services and calendar services other than those sanctioned by Microsoft onto some good news now and those of us with multiple monitors should be extremely happy with Windows 8 because Microsoft has included a fantastic new feature multiple task bars now when you boot up on a Windows 8 computer with two or more monitors connected and launched the desktop application you can see a taskbar displaying on each of your monitors you can then easily configure the task bars to display only the programs that are running on the associated monitor as you can see when I take a window and drag it from one monitor to another the icon in the taskbar on the first monitor disappears and then subsequently reappears on the second monitor now aside from essentially tripling my taskbar real estate Microsoft has also made it extremely easy for me to locate running programs and minimize them or maximize them as I need a double thumbs-up for the multiple task bars in Windows 8 Windows Explorer has also been completely redesigned in Windows 8 and now features the so-called ribbon that has been a part of Microsoft Office since 2007 for myself and most of the people I talked to before making with us in this video the most common way of manipulating files in Windows is to use keyboard shortcuts or drag-and-drop operations however I know there are still a few users out there that use context menus and I think that the windows 8 ribbon interface is actually a more intuitive way of interfacing with Windows Explorer it's just got a bit of a learning curve but like everything with Windows 8 once you overcome that learning curve I think it's going to be a lot simpler for people to use Windows Explorer isn't the only facelift that Windows 8 has received the task manager has gotten a complete overhaul as well opening task manager now reveals a much more user friend than previous versions of Windows hat the default tab is called processes and it shows quite simply how many resources each of your running applications is taking you can kill processes from this window or switch to the details tab for a more traditional list of processes also available through task manager is a list of all the programs that are set to run at startup now it's much easier to access these programs through task manager rather than firing up ms config as I would have done on a previous version of Windows you can disable and re-enable startup applications by right clicking the performance tab yields a detailed list of system resources just as you would expect from previous versions of Windows and the users tab as also in previous version of Windows shows a list of users currently logged into the PC so far from what I have discovered software and hardware compatibility in Windows 8 is pretty darn good for my experience thus far any piece of hardware that is successfully run in Windows 7 will also run successfully in Windows 8 software support is almost as good the only program that I found so far which doesn't run properly in Windows 8 is win TV version 7 when TV is an application made by hop egde and it allows you to watch and record live TV on your PC as long as you have a ha pitch TV tuner installed the reason I use ha pitch win TV is because it has fantastic support for multiple TV tuners if I want to watch four television channels at once all I have to do is launch four instances of the ha pitch win TV application and I can watch a separate channel on each window this is because I have four tuners in my PC under Windows 7 for instances of win TV ran without an issue however in Windows 8 running more than two instances of win TV cause the system to freeze and become generally unstable I've alleviated some of the problems by running win TV in compatibility mode however the video still stutters and glitches out occasionally when I'm running more than three television channels at once hopefully this is an issue that Microsoft or ha pitch is going to repair in the future windows 8 is a brand-new operating system that Microsoft is taking a huge gamble on the new Metro user interface has been designed with tablet users in mind but the inclusion of a classic Windows desktop environment means that older applications will still run fine and users with desktop computers won't be forced into using an underpowered UI Windows 8 is available as a free preview download right from Microsoft so if you're feeling just a little bit adventurous why not give it a try yourself for tech report this is Christopher reporting

37 thoughts on “Windows 8 – Review on a Desktop PC

  1. But you shouldn't have to make your own start menu in a what really is a bulky way.. things should just work from the beginning.
    They should just make an option during instalment saying. Whit or whitout touch screen.
    I know how to do these things to. But say my dad at age 76 don't.
    And either way you shouldn't have to make changes to eany OS to make it run optimal. And if you do changes this "big" to the world's most known OS you better make a tutorial for user friendly guide lines.

  2. A loss of a start menu isnt a big deall for me I really use it only to shutt down reset and things like that.If it can run tottal commander its like windows 7

  3. This whole metro interface sucks. There are so many buttons you won't ever use and too many of them are linked to a Microsoft account most people don't even have. Why change a good working platform? As if everyone at home is not using a desktop any more? That's bull shit. I still prefer Windows 7, although in the near future when Microsoft decides to stop supporting Windows 7 I would have no choice but to upgrade. I hope by then Microsoft has made a better OS than Windows 8.

  4. If i buy a laptop today it will comes with windows 8. Will it be easy to downgrade to windows 7 and all drivers be compatible?

  5. I have the Windows start bar on mine. It works and looks just like normal. Idk, why your's didn't include it

  6. If you really must find something wrong with anything, you will. But, it doesn't necessarily make it wrong. Perhaps learning Chinese in 2 days would pose a significant problem. If the power goes out you can still play with the flashlight.

  7. Windows 7 has a nice screen where you can put the background picture you like. Windows 8 is full of gay ass looking rectangles and squares colored like some kindergarten shit.

  8. All the hacks hes having to do and shortcuts and nonsense just to make Win8 *attempt* to work like Win7? No thanks.

  9. No it would confuse the hell out of kids i think its made more for torture they kidnap arab terrorists and force them to use windows 8 ultimate torture in existence.

  10. As I was watching this I was getting more and more pissed at Microsoft (I could only bare watching 6 minutes and 15 seconds) and towards the end of my watching the video I was speechless and I almost can't stand this whole Windows 8 (I almost even can't stand typing it). This is the dumbest thing Microsoft has ever done to us. Where did our freedom go?

  11. This is why if I get Windows 8, I'm just gonna' label Calenders, Weather, etc. " Bullshit " and the rest useful.

  12. hey to the so called tech in the video you should have know about the links tab many years ago . also you should have looked for ways around the start menu problem on windows 8 instead of making more of a hassle for people to get set up.

  13. to have a start menu use a download able program called ( classic shell ) you can put what ever kind of start menu you want for any windows type.

  14. Yes, on speed having many clever people look at stuff can make a lot of difference. I don't even count as extremely clever and yet, a couple of times, I have suggested speed improvement. I just happened to notice something and brought it to the attention of the person who was maintaining the code. Multiply that by millions an a significant effect can be seen.

  15. lol i fuck up my computer and resotre it back to windows 7 when it was windows 8,

    i don't know what the fuck im doing

  16. Yes, and being open source means that you can trust it. Many folks have been able to look at the source code and check to make sure it doesn't add any backdoors. Really for trustworthy software, this is by far the best way to go. It also usually means that the program is very efficient. Open source tends to combine the best from many programmers. This makes Classic Shell look like the 1st thing to add to a Win-8 if it must be Win-8 that you use.

  17. I ended up using an open source utility called Classic Shell which does a fantastic job of replacing the start menu.

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