Windows 8

Yep, there appear to be a whole load of changes afoot at MS, including Larson-Green moving to the xbox/hardware division, so that's means another incoming captain of the windows ship for the third major release in a row. I'm sure that's going to be part of a larger picture revealed over the next few months, but it's going to take a while to see how that all shakes out.

Apparently 8.1 introduces Bing-Ad-results in OS-level searches. That won't end well.

Edit: I may have fallen for click-bait as the setting is optional and ships disabled by default. (FOR NOW! dun dun duuuun)

Does anyone know if I upgrade to the 8.1 preview today if I'll have to do a clean install when the 8.1 update ships publicly?

T-Prime wrote:
Does anyone know if I upgrade to the 8.1 preview today if I'll have to do a clean install when the 8.1 update ships publicly?
Pretty sure you don't.

http://blog.chron.com/techblog/2013/...

If you do opt to install Windows 8.1 Preview, be aware that – unlike previous early Windows releases – you’ll be able to install the finished version without having to start from scratch, going through the Windows Store.

T-Prime wrote:
Does anyone know if I upgrade to the 8.1 preview today if I'll have to do a clean install when the 8.1 update ships publicly?

Depending on what you use the device you're upgrading for, I'd be very careful. I had some fairly serious issues with some SonicWall VPN software and also some DisplayLink beta drivers that are buggy.

There's also some minor annoyances with IE11 and how it handles cookies/sessions and zooming when using multiple monitors.

If those aren't concerns for you, then I would give it a shot.

So I looked on slickdeals and found that Nothingbutsoftware.com is selling windows 8 pro upgrade for $55!

So I pulled the trigger. There are just too many directx 10 or later games coming out that I want to play. I don't know if I am ready to make the switch just yet but at least I will have a copy ready for when I do really need it and I won't have to pay $120 for it.

It's seriously a great OS under the hood. Just install Classic Shell and you're good to roll.

I have been running it for about a month on my Surface Pro and I love it. I got a touch monitor coming soon and I can't wait to upgrade my desktop.

Thinking about finally putting Win 8 on my main machine. Just picked up a 250GB SSD.

Is there a way to do an upgrade install to a machine and move the install from an existing drive to a new drive? So my current drive is on a 1TB drive, but the new Windows 8 install ends up on the SSD?

Not sure if it's worth it over a clean install, but as much as I've heard how good the upgrade process is with Win 8, I kind of want to try it.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:
It's seriously a great OS under the hood. Just install Classic Shell and you're good to roll.

last time I tried classic shell, and in all fairness it's been awhile, it was buggy/crashy/freezy.

Best for me so far has been retro-ui. Yes you have to pay $10 american, but I've never experienced any system performance decrease and even better, never a crash. For me, easily worth the $10.

MannishBoy wrote:
Thinking about finally putting Win 8 on my main machine. Just picked up a 250GB SSD.

Is there a way to do an upgrade install to a machine and move the install from an existing drive to a new drive? So my current drive is on a 1TB drive, but the new Windows 8 install ends up on the SSD?

Not sure if it's worth it over a clean install, but as much as I've heard how good the upgrade process is with Win 8, I kind of want to try it.

Personally, if you have the choice of 100% clean install, go that route.

Yes, it's a pain to reinstall your apps and get everything the way you want it but at least you know it's a no compromise install.

Also, I'm assuming you meant install W8 on top of W7, so specifically for SSD , depending on what SSD controller you have, the way the 7 goes to 8 in the way it's addressed could be drastically different, which over time, may cause problems. (If I can find the PcPer specific podcast that references this from their storage guru Allyn M. I will update this, but they went over this quite awhile back).

So, basically, 100% clean all the way if you have the time and patience. It may save you headaches in the future.

Hope it helps
/ESA

ESA wrote:
MannishBoy wrote:
Thinking about finally putting Win 8 on my main machine. Just picked up a 250GB SSD.

Is there a way to do an upgrade install to a machine and move the install from an existing drive to a new drive? So my current drive is on a 1TB drive, but the new Windows 8 install ends up on the SSD?

Not sure if it's worth it over a clean install, but as much as I've heard how good the upgrade process is with Win 8, I kind of want to try it.

Personally, if you have the choice of 100% clean install, go that route.

Yes, it's a pain to reinstall your apps and get everything the way you want it but at least you know it's a no compromise install.

Also, I'm assuming you meant install W8 on top of W7, so specifically for SSD , depending on what SSD controller you have, the way the 7 goes to 8 in the way it's addressed could be drastically different, which over time, may cause problems. (If I can find the PcPer specific podcast that references this from their storage guru Allyn M. I will update this, but they went over this quite awhile back).

So, basically, 100% clean all the way if you have the time and patience. It may save you headaches in the future.

Hope it helps
/ESA

A lot of tech writers and Windows people say the opposite of you about the Win 8 install, which is why I'm kind of curious. Also this thread way up has people who have gone the upgrade path and been pretty happy with the process.

Windows will adjust setting during the install if it's an SSD, so I'm not worried about that. The problem with SSD's is more if you clone an OS drive to an SSD, you have to make sure things like auto-defragging is turned off, TRIM is working, etc. Unless there's something very strange going on, Windows should be fine during an install from all I've read. I do have a small SSD in the current setup, and Windows set it up correctly when it was added.

I always do clean reinstalls because I'm neurotic that way but I've upgraded a few customers to Windows 8 and I've been stunned by how seamless the process is. Very rarely does any software end up being incompatible and you pretty much just start the install, walk away for a couple of hours and it's done. Very impressive.

When moving to an SSD you'll want to make sure you have proper sector alignment. I believe the major cloning apps handle this gracefully now. Of course a fresh install also does it properly.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:
I always do clean reinstalls because I'm neurotic that way but I've upgraded a few customers to Windows 8 and I've been stunned by how seamless the process is. Very rarely does any software end up being incompatible and you pretty much just start the install, walk away for a couple of hours and it's done. Very impressive.

That's my history, too. I don't think I've EVER done anything but clean installs, but I'm kind of curious this time. I'm just not sure how well you'll be able to target a smaller OS drive than the current install + programs will fit on. So it probably won't work.

I think I'll just image the current drive and play around. I can always go back and restart if something goes wrong. Bad thing is that I don't trust my WHS right now to make it really easy to revert, so I guess I'll do it on another drive.

I am thinking of installing this now that the reviews of 8.1 seem to be pretty positive. How are you early adopters (of 8.1) liking the improvements?

can't say I notice much difference.. but hey..free upgrade. The return of the Start Button was about the biggest lol ever.. the Penny Arcade comic was right on point. That being said if you miss it and havent installed Classic Shell then..go do it.

I haven't even installed 8 at all. I didn't see any reason to really. I probably still don't but I always get that itch when I read lots of articles about a new OS. I have an old machine sitting around so I think I will play around with it.

Installed 8.1 on a development touch tablet we have in the office. If you don't mind/like the Metro interface like me, it's really great. Having the same wallpaper on Desktop and Metro is one of those obvious touches that makes the transition between the two environments more seamless.

If you're a Desktop user, there's even more incentive to move to 8.1. You can now default the OS to boot to Desktop (which I never understood as a need, but that's fine). Lifehacker covers it better than I ever could: http://lifehacker.com/all-the-new-st...

If you're coming from Windows 7 you absolutely should upgrade, in my opinion. The under-the-hood improvements alone made me upgrade my desktop gaming computer to Win8 in the first place. Going from Win8 to 8.1 is very much like going from Vista to 7, a lot of the same, but just with nicer finishes all around.

I've upgraded my Surface RT to 8.1 (from the 8.1 preview) and it feels much smoother and a little faster. The upgraded Microsoft apps like Mail are much better and IE11 seems far more polished in the touch environment. Pretty good update.

Here's one problem I haven't found an easy fix for. My taskbar is set to autohide, but sometimes gets stuck behind other windows. In Windows 7 I could always just hit the windows key and it would come to the front, but obviously that doesn't work in Windows 8. Is there a way around this other than minimizing all the windows?

Chairman_Mao wrote:
Here's one problem I haven't found an easy fix for. My taskbar is set to autohide, but sometimes gets stuck behind other windows. In Windows 7 I could always just hit the windows key and it would come to the front, but obviously that doesn't work in Windows 8. Is there a way around this other than minimizing all the windows?

Classic Shell fully restores the original start button, including that functionality.

I think 8.1 might have fixed my wife's biggest problem with Win 8. She hated my Yoga for the most part, and it seemed to be about the fact that she'd accidentally swipe from the left side of the track pad and be in some other app or program and not understand how it happened.

With a few setting changes, I cut off the swipe from the side, changed her background to stay the same from the desktop to Metro, etc.

We'll see how it goes.

8.1 fixed my controller connected issue with Wolf Among Us. The game wouldn't load unless the controller was disconnected. Telltale said 8.1 would fix it. My initial thought was, "bullsh*t," but they were right.

I like booting straight to desktop and the render benefits on BF4 make my decision to upgrade again to 8 (I had rolled back to 7 months ago) really, really painless.

I am seeing some wireless network issues with my Netgear A6200 adapter. Might need a driver update, but I'll go wired for now.

Parallax Abstraction wrote:
Chairman_Mao wrote:
Here's one problem I haven't found an easy fix for. My taskbar is set to autohide, but sometimes gets stuck behind other windows. In Windows 7 I could always just hit the windows key and it would come to the front, but obviously that doesn't work in Windows 8. Is there a way around this other than minimizing all the windows?

Classic Shell fully restores the original start button, including that functionality.

Sweet, thanks. I'll look into that.

I upgraded to 8.1 earlier today. Some early observations:

1. Somehow, when I had installed 8.0, I did so without having to log into a Microsoft Account. Well, during this upgrade process, it insisted that I log into an account. I must have selected one that I had not used previously (honestly, who keeps up with Microsoft Account accounts if you do not use Hotmail/Outlook?!?), because now, none of the Metro apps I had downloaded will work. Wonderful. Thanks! I guess it's a good thing I rarely use them...

2. Now, because I've logged into this Microsoft Account, I can no longer log into my PC using my simple desktop login password. Instead, I have to use the LastPass generated password (that is until I go change it). But, as a result, I was locked out of my PC, until I could log into LastPass on my wife's PC, and figure out what the damn password was.

Anyone know how to decouple the f**king Windows 8.1 desktop login from the stupid f**king Microsoft account?

sheared wrote:
2. Now, because I've logged into this Microsoft Account, I can no longer log into my PC using my simple desktop login password. Instead, I have to use the LastPass generated password (that is until I go change it). But, as a result, I was locked out of my PC, until I could log into LastPass on my wife's PC, and figure out what the damn password was.

You can actually chose a 4 digit PIN for local login, or even the picture password. I use the PIN for log in locally, and only have to run the full password for admin stuff.

But you can still have local accounts. I think yours is still there, but they made them harder to find IIRC what I heard yesterday.

spankyboy wrote:
I've upgraded my Surface RT to 8.1 (from the 8.1 preview) and it feels much smoother and a little faster. The upgraded Microsoft apps like Mail are much better and IE11 seems far more polished in the touch environment. Pretty good update.

Agreed. My Surface RT feels a lot smoother. Granted was running the preview before and those are usually pretty unoptimized, but feels better than how I remember vanilla 8 being.

sheared wrote:
I upgraded to 8.1 earlier today. Some early observations:

1. Somehow, when I had installed 8.0, I did so without having to log into a Microsoft Account. Well, during this upgrade process, it insisted that I log into an account. I must have selected one that I had not used previously (honestly, who keeps up with Microsoft Account accounts if you do not use Hotmail/Outlook?!?), because now, none of the Metro apps I had downloaded will work. Wonderful. Thanks! I guess it's a good thing I rarely use them...

2. Now, because I've logged into this Microsoft Account, I can no longer log into my PC using my simple desktop login password. Instead, I have to use the LastPass generated password (that is until I go change it). But, as a result, I was locked out of my PC, until I could log into LastPass on my wife's PC, and figure out what the damn password was.

Anyone know how to decouple the f**king Windows 8.1 desktop login from the stupid f**king Microsoft account?

Supposedly only the preview versions of 8.1 required you to have a Microsoft account, but maybe they bumbled that up somehow. I read that another way around the forced sign up is to intentionally enter a wrong user name/password and it will ask you to enter your local account info.

Pirate Bob wrote:
spankyboy wrote:
I've upgraded my Surface RT to 8.1 (from the 8.1 preview) and it feels much smoother and a little faster. The upgraded Microsoft apps like Mail are much better and IE11 seems far more polished in the touch environment. Pretty good update.

Agreed. My Surface RT feels a lot smoother. Granted was running the preview before and those are usually pretty unoptimized, but feels better than how I remember vanilla 8 being.

After another day of use, for the first time I feel like the RT is actually good enough with features and performance that I'd be ok recommending it to my family. It's certainly pushed out of my mind any thought of upgrading to the Surface 2, even though it should be a pretty big improvement over the original. Colour me impressed with Windows RT 8.1.