My thoughts and experience with Windows 8 Pro on a desktop.

What’s up,

So after much mental debating, I went ahead with upgrading my production PC (work and personal) from Windows 7 Ultimate to Windows 8 Pro. You can check out my upgrade experience here: My Windows 8 upgrade experience.

I’ve now been using 8 Pro on my desktop for a little over a week.

My overall experience so far has been good.

There are a lot of pros that I think people are overlooking and I think that Windows 8 overall is just a better O.S than Windows 7. Now, Don’t get me wrong I absolutely LOVE Windows 7. I’ve never had a problem with 7 personally and in the enterprise world, problems have been very minimal. Most problems I have with 7 turn out to be Code 18’s and hardware issues.

Now, what I love about Windows 8:

“Modern UI” looks great, live tiles are amazing. It’s fast, fluid and easy to use.

The Windows 8 desktop, simply put, is fantastic, very fast, and looks not much different than 7.

MS integrated the “Ribbon UI” across Windows Explorer (Looks great and easy to use!) also, I don’t know what it is, but the desktop UI looks nicer, sharper, and I find the colours are more vibrant as compared to 7.

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What’s real nice is Windows Defender now includes Windows security essentials (antivirus) integrated and installed out of the box, its automatic and you will never see it unless you happen to get some sort of malware.

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Copying/Moving files now allows you to pause and resume (yay!)

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Windows explorer is finally able to read/extract ISO files!

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Also, you can open PDF files WITHOUT adobe reader, because 8 includes a PDF reader.

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There are many more advantages to 8, but I wont get into that now.

Now, the biggest difference here is the lack of the classic “Start Orb/Menu”.

If you don’t know much about Windows…this is a huge deal and many…MANY people are very upset, most of these people are IT Pros, like me. However I’m not upset, and I feel that these people are what I like to call “The lazy admin” who are afraid of change and movement because it means more work for them. As an IT Pro, I strongly think that you MUST embrace change, because the IT industry doesn’t stand still, it keeps moving…FAST. (I also understand that many IT admins have a lot of reasons, other than the modern UI, as to why they dislike Windows 8, like retraining, upgrading, troubleshooting, etc..)

Now, I understand that the “modern UI” maybe difficult to use on a desktop (I honestly have no problem navigating it using a mouse/keyboard) and people are allowed to have their own opinions about it. However if this is the way it’s going to be, stop crying and get used to it because it probably not going to change, and you don’t HAVE to upgrade, you can stay on 7, XP…or even VISTA! or change O.S completely!

Now with all that being said I do and probably always will have a soft spot for the classic start orb/menu, why? probably because I grew up using it.

When I use 7 I would always press the “Windows key” on my keyboard and the start menu would pop up, then I would either point and click with my mouse to which application I wanted to access or I would just start typing and it would search for the application that I wanted to open, this still works with 8, except it goes into the “modern UI” start screen” like so:

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So that’s all good. Start menu functionality seems to be more or less the same except your “Start Menu” is now a “Start Screen” with a mix of classic desktop apps (x86 applications) and modern UI apps (Apps from Microsoft Store).

Anyway, the kick ass 8 desktop made me think, and this is more for the enterprise aspect of Windows. Microsoft made many enhancements to the desktop in 8 which I think many IT Pro’s and power users would really appreciate, however they would want it without the modern UI experience and just have the classic start menu and give it a name like “Windows 8 Desktop Pro/Enterprise edition”.

There has been a lot of debate on this, and why Microsoft decided to force the modern UI down everyone’s throat. Why couldn’t they give the option of having a “desktop” version of Windows? The answer seems to be, because they want to move away from the desktop and into the mobile space with Windows on tablets/phones, is this the right strategy?  I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

So thus far, my experience with 8  on a desktop has been really positive, however I’ve only been using it for a little over a week, I will continue to use it and then will upgrade from 8 pro to 8 Enterprise, if I come across any speed bumps or issues in regards to 8 usability, I’ll surely let you guys know.

Agree? Disagree? think I’m nuts?…let me know

Thanks

Vinny

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