So I played around with the Developer Preview of Windows 8 for the past few days. Honestly can’t say I’m all that excited about Windows 8 as of this post. It’s not horrible, but it’s not dazzling to me by any means. If I had to choose right now, I’d take Windows 7 over 8 without thinking twice. Though it is not even a public beta, so there’s still time for Microsoft to change things for the better.
If Microsoft is banking on everyone running out and buying new computers with touchscreens or replacing already costly big LCD screens with touchscreens just so folks can use Windows 8… Then I’m thinking Microsoft is going to be terribly disappointed. Especially with the threat of gas prices rocketing upwards of $5 per gallon this year. I know I’m not planning on many hardware upgrades in 2012. Certainly not touch screens for my desktop and I don’t need a new laptop yet.
It seems that’s the only thing Microsoft is gearing Windows 8 for, is touchscreens. So for those of us not planning any upgraded hardware this year, it’s going to be a very hard sell to us. Not having a touchscreen makes using Windows 8 a royal pain the ass.
First you are greeted with what looks like a digital picture frame for a “lock” screen.
This you have to swipe up to reveal the actual login screen behind it. Without a touchscreen, you have to drag it up or use your mouse’s scrolling wheel. It would appear that this year, green is the new blue.
Finally you get introduced to Metro. Over all, it’s a bunch of rectangles that you can use to launch programs or view weather or interact with your social networking life. Again, I need not express how much I’m not into the social networking crap. I’d rather use a phone or hang out in public in real life rather than…. never mind, don’t get me ranting.
As you can see, it covers a lot of useless things that may appeal to others. As well as any programs you install yourself end up as squares on the far right. So if you have a lot of apps and programs installed, you could end up scrolling forever just trying to find what it is you want to run. Again, without a touchscreen, you have to scroll your mouse wheel or click and drag a slider that appears on the bottom.
Over all, Windows 8 seems like it’s just a slightly updated version of Windows 7 with this Metro thing slapped on top of it. Metro merely appears to “hook” into certain programs to make it feel like it’s new when really it’s just an obscured view of what you already have. You see, if you have a program that isn’t Metro ready (such as Firefox 9.0.1), you click on it and it throws you to the normal desktop where it opens the program to run there. Making Windows 8 feel terribly clunky.
Also you can see while in “windows” mode, you see that the explorer windows got an upgrade to the ever popular ribbons.
Here’s what I mean by “hook”. Metro acts like it’s just the first program to run. It’s not actually part of Windows. It overlays the screen or runs in full screen mode and launches apps specifically designed for it as well as “hooks” into programs that allow it to hook into. My example is running Internet Explorer from the desktop looks like Internet Explorer as everyone knows and hates.. er loves it.
But if you open IE from Metro, you get an even more horrifying version of the exact same program. (makes me wonder how toolbars will get bastardized)
Scary isn’t it?
Thankfully I was able to find a “hack” that makes Windows 8 play like every other version of Windows since 95 essentially. It turns off Metro and gives you a slightly fancier version of Windows 7 which would be Windows 8 without the stupid shit.
Although it has a side effect of killing the ribbon menus in Explorer.
So, all in all it’s really like Microsoft is not only banking on touchscreens, but also that you’ll rush out and buy what you think is a new operating system when really its more like just a few tweaks and fixes and this new interface that merely runs on top to make it look completely different when really it isn’t different.
Although if Microsoft were to see it in their slightly bent hearts to add the ability to turn off Metro like that “hack” does, I’d actually be into buying it. It’s sure to have more improvements over Windows 7 right? Or will it be like every opposing version of Windows, and suck royally? I’ll revisit this when they make a public beta available (if they do).
Millenium Edition = Sucked | XP = Rocked | Vista = Sucked | 7 = Rocked | 8 = ….. ???
Anyone else see a scary ass pattern forming here?
Warning, this review isn’t written with techno-geek jargon. 99% of end users wouldn’t understand that sort of rambling. Thus, I want Ma and Pa User to understand exactly what I think of Windows 7 in terms they can relate too. Besides, if you are an uber-geek, you already know how cool Windows 7 is, and don’t really need to hear my praises.
Back in the pre-Vista days, I tried out the beta and was smitten by it’s cool glassy looks. But all the polish in the world wasn’t going to shine up what was to become the second biggest pile of feces that Microsoft ever produced for an operating system (OS). I was so taken by it at the time, that I ponied up $200 hard earned dollars for that OS when it came out. Sadly, within my first 30 days of use, I couldn’t take the pain of it’s memory hogging, warning pop-up (UAC) annoying experience. Thus it was ‘shelved’, and sat in wait until about 2 months ago when I thought to give it a try again. Only to be let down before the end of the day. Thus leaving me to go scurrying back to my beloved XP.
Needless to say, when Windows 7 Beta came out, I only tried it out for a couple of days. It looked so much like Vista, I didn’t really give it a chance. Though when Windows 7 RC had hit the streets, I had so many friends telling me that it was worth the try. So I first tried it on my laptop.
It not only installed perfectly on my Acer 5620z Laptop, it also setup all the fancy button functions. Negating the need for any 3rd party crapware from the manufacturer to control said buttons. Running so efficiently, that I can still play my Guild Wars and Runes of Magic games on my laptop while using Ventrilo to voice chat with my friends. Is there anything this OS can’t do?
Now on to my baby, my desktop where I spend nearly the entirety of my evenings battling mythical creatures and socializing with my friends. Just as with my laptop, the OS did everything it should without flaw and even recognized my RAID 1 setup without the need for a driver. Is there anything this OS can’t do?
Not only does it look pretty (which yes Aesthetics are important), but it uses far less memory than XP did. How they managed that is a mystery to me. It’s fast, clean and a load of fun. Sure I could throw 100 technical terms out there and detail all the info. But Joe Average isn’t going to understand. Thus, in short I’ll say this OS simply kicks ass!
Well OK, it’s not perfect. Though I did finally get my Installer program to work. Now I’m just waiting for the author to give it official Windows 7 support so I can update my packages for my users. Other than that though, I haven’t had any issues. It runs like magic and takes less resources than Windows XP did.
A wonderful thing I would really like to see in software, is something to relieve the cluttered All Programs menu. I realize this has nothing to do with the OS itself, but software producers/developers. There needs to be a consortium to come up with standards of organizing the start menu (see Clipboard 9). Software either wants to be installed in the All Programs directly or in their own Company / Software folder. Within a few titles, it makes the All Programs list grow and grow. Until it’s nearly impossible to navigate. I would rather see a tree system done by Category, then Software. So when a software gets installed, it auto organizes based on what category their software falls into keeping the All Programs menu neat and organized.
and so on… But I digress and go on to my review of Windows 7.
Sharing files is also very handy with Windows 7 and their new Homegroup (visit link for more info) system. Extremely clever idea. Also, my current shared folders can now have the requirement for username/password turned off. (hooray!!!) That’s all the tech speak you’re gonna get here.
Though one thing does concern me greatly about this OS. The price. With the economy in the shape it’s in, will I be able to afford to buy it for my computers? If Microsoft is listening, hopefully they introduce this great OS with an early bird savings or something that will drive it up. It really is a great product thus far.
This is probably the first Windows OS I’ve been excited about in years. As they say at Mickey D’s “I’m lovin’ it!!”
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HTML is fine but PHP is quicker… Suicide is slow with liquor… OK bad Ozzy pun. I’ve finally found a suitable WordPress theme I could deal with. It’s not ideal, but it’s pretty. (weird thing about wordpress, a bazillion themes, yet none suited my needs) Even then, I hacked some of it to make myself feel more at home. But instead of editing HTML every time I wanted to make an update, wordpress gives me the ability to simply login, upload and post without FTP, HTML editor and all the bull that comes with it. Though I can already see the email and comment spammers lining up. Fucking pricks…. Not even a day and I’ve got 3 members who don’t know me and look to have spammer intent. You know what? Fuck you!
Yes, you’ll see Runes of Magic up in the header now with the Guild Wars. (does this sound like the old Reeses commercial?) Yes, send me your Runes screenshots as well as your Guild Wars ones. Frankly it boils down to this. Since the break up from Last Chaos, we simply can’t agree on a game we can all play on. No need to get into the reasons why, it’s just that way. So, in a sense, CastleRain still lives on as it did, just slightly different. What do I mean? CastleRain guild sat dormant for months in Last Chaos cause we all were in different or same but differnet named guilds. Though in the end, it was just us. Our friends. Sadly we lost a couple. Trogdor469 we miss you!! But we stuck together, and that’s what’s important. Now we play different games. But we still meet up on Vent, IM and such. Thus, we are essentially a “Guild of Friends”. So I’ve reworked the site enough to make it this way more comfortably. If you guys want to make posts on here too, just let me know, I shall give you the power.
My first 24 hours with Windows 7 Release Candidate has been a so far, so good experience. I’m not sure I like the new way the task bar is setup, then again, perhaps I’m thinking more traditionally than innovation. It is incredibly faster than Vista, and it seems more stable. Though, I’m not going to set those words in stone yet. Only had 1 application refuse to install, and I’m sure since it’s a private project, the programmer is hard at work fixing it. (especially since he writes install making programs I do thoroughly love the Desktop Slideshow feature (something Linux and Mac has had for years… thanks for catching up Microsoft….) This way I can view all my sexual perversions in a day
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