Windows 8: Preliminary Review

Yesterday, I downloaded the final code for Windows 8. As a Microsoft TechNet subscriber, I have access to most of the software produced by Microsoft. I chose to upgrade my main desktop machine just to see what the experience would be like.

Unlike other recent versions of Windows, the installation procedure did not run a compatibility check. With only a few prompts, the software seemed to run on its own. Only at the end of the procedure did I encounter problems. Toward the end of the procedure, the user starts getting prompts to select theme color, some default settings and then tie the installation to your Windows account. (For many years this was called the Windows Live account.) It was at this point that the installation process crashed. I got a message that Windows could not be installed and then the program removed Windows 8 and a few minutes later my computer restarted into Windows 7.

My first thought was that my Kaspersky internet security program was responsible. (I am aware that no existing antivirus product works with Windows 8 but it was part of the experiment to see what the average user would encounter.) I uninstalled the program and did the suggested restart. Again I ran the Windows 8 DVD and about 25 minutes later I was running Windows 8.

The final code provides a much clearer interface than previous versions. Before when I ran betas of Windows 8, every item in my start menu appeared as a tile. It was just a cluttered mess to wade thru but the tile experience on the final code is much simpler. I also installed the beta version of Microsoft Office 2013. (I may blog on this at a later date.)

So far I like the program. I did shrink many of the default tiles to the smaller size and add a few but otherwise everything fits onto one screen. The best thing I found in the marketplace was the app to let me run XBOX programs thru my network on my Windows 8 PC. That looks interesting.

Lastly, on my desktop view, all my stuff is there except my Gadgets. I had read that they were deemed a security risk and MS was planning to end them.

I still haven’t checked out dual monitor capability because my other monitor is the TV and Chef Ramsey does not like to be preempted.

My final word is uninstall your antivirus program and the take Windows 8 for a spin.