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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Question Your opinion please: Has Windows 8 anything to offer this desktop user?

    Moderately tech-savy, I've jumped at every new thing as quickly as I could find a beta. Installing and running Win 95 for the first time was a high I still remember. I went back and forth to Linux (numerous distros) a dozen times during the XP (and Vista) eras, but have frankly never seen the need since Windows 7 came out. My wife and I have a couple of desktops and laptops on our home network, no touch screens nor Windows-eligible tablets. We use them for internet browsing, mild photo and home video editing, and the simplest of games, nothing fancy.

    Question: I'd jump at the chance to install Windows 8 if I could see any reason at all to do so. Does Windows 8 have ANYTHING to offer that we do not now have with Windows 7?

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  3. #2
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I don't think that there is anything at the moment that would be compelling enough, at least for me, to move to Windows 8 from 7, at least not at this stage.
    Obviously the OS is still in beta, albeit in advanced form, so there will be plenty of time to have it looked at by all sorts of people eager and willing
    to take it appart and sust-out all it's workings.

    Of course, you may want to install it on just one of your computers when it comes out and see if it offers anything over and above what you have now.

    The Metro and the up and comming MS application store will be the thing to take a "wait & see" approach to imo.

    Begin to form your own opinion based on what is available in pre-release.

  4. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    If you are completely happy with Win 7, then perhaps not! Just being honest. I (even though it would be very difficult to tell for sure with many of my recent posts) am not completely sold on Win 8!

    What I would prefer to say is don't take what you read about Win 8, either positive or negative, as the only determining factor. Be fair to yourself and test drive this beta OS. If you were considering a new car you would perhaps research the models you would like to consider, but ultimately what determines which model you buy? If you are anything like me, it's ultimately the test drive, and then the deal you get.

    Be fair to yourself and test drive this beta OS. I am not senile and repeating myself. I am repeating myself because that is truly the only way to see if you will like it. Do your research, read all about it, read through the various threads presently here and in other Forums. Do NOT take anyone's word for it, test it for yourself. Set up a dual boot with your present Win 7. Install the OS and apps you use and try it for a couple of months. Customize it to make it work the way you want it to work. There have been so many threads on how to accomplish various things in Win 8 that I will not repeat them here. There have been many discussions on the features.

    I guess the last thing to say is take this OS for a spin to form your own opinion. Many people have been converted to believers with a fair test drive!
    Last edited by Medico; 2012-07-01 at 18:54.
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  6. #4
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    I don't see anything that exciting to make me switch from Windows 7. Just a very small speed increase and a little faster boot time is about all. I could care less about the whole Metro and apps stuff.
    Joe

  7. #5
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    If you want to look at Metro as something to put aside, at least for a while, I would say Windows 8 is an optimized Windows 7, when used from the desktop. Probably there are no killer features, but there are some features that can be seen as rather interesting. I would probably choose 3:

    1. The refresh / reset options, which will most likely eliminate the need for Windows reinstalls. Refresh allows you to set your machine to the most recent refresh point, no loss of personal data files or metro apps (all desktop apps and drivers added after the refresh point will need to be added). Reset allows you to get back to a pristine installation, but here everything is wiped clean, including user docs and accounts).

    2. Storage Spaces - this is a feature similar to something that had been offered in Windows Home Server. It allows you to create a storage pool, made up of two or more drives. You can add or remove drives to increase the available space, or replace a drive that has failed. It also allows you to use mirroring in such a pool, providing automatic hardware redundancy.

    3. Hiper-V replaces virtual PC. Hiper-V is a much more capable virtualization tool and Windows 8 users will get the same version that will be offered in Windows Server. This may not be much relevant to regular users, but for anyone who needs to use virtual machines, it will be a huge improvement. This feature has specific requirements in terms of the CPU feature set needed, so won't be available to all existing Windows 7 running PCs.

    Are these reasons to upgrade the OS while not upgrading your hardware? In most situations, no. But these and many other features are a reason not to avoid upgrading, when your upgrade time occurs "naturally", specifically when you buy a new computer.
    Last edited by ruirib; 2012-07-02 at 08:55. Reason: spelling

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  9. #6
    Bronze Lounger Drew1903's Avatar
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    Patrick,

    "Does Windows 8 have ANYTHING to offer that we do not now have with Windows 7?"

    Yes, it does...

    I'm not copping out but, 1st of all, I'll give you a couple links to info about Win8 Features.

    Windows8 features - Bing
    Windows8 features vs Windows7 - Bing

    Now, I'll try to list a few things, from personal use & knowledge.

    > Yeah, faster boot, but, not a huge thing for most Folks w/out stop-watches, lol. Although, the differential can be quite large. More of interest is the impressive performance after boot.
    > Big difference in resource handling, use & hardware demands.
    > Easier, more direct, more readily available & quicker to find things or get to certain things (less digging, fewer clicks). Big factor here is the Power Users menu & Search from the middle of nowhere on Start.
    > Much less has to be 'added' (to the OS). Flash, Reader, Security, Drivers for some examples... mostly, just Java (now) missing.
    > Amazing graphics.
    > Depth & breadth of compatibility for both software & hardware.

    I like the (NEW) picture log-in.

    Many of the feature differences, enhancements & improvements, relate to biz concerns.

    As for the so-called Metro UI, not a big excitement to me. I only use it to hit the Desktop tile @ Boot-up. I, certainly, may use a couple of 'APPs' but, personally, I am 100% on Desktop... access everything, do everything there or from there.

    Cheers,
    Drew
    Last edited by Drew1903; 2012-07-02 at 13:35.

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    Doc Brown (2012-07-02)

  11. #7
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    Drew's list covers it well. I think for those of us who love technology there are a lot of things that make us want to jump on board when it is available. Even some of the small improvements are welcome and may make it worthwhile to upgrade. But for most people, the cost and effort may not be worthwhile, even for the casual techie. I don't think these types of users are going to see a lot of tangible differences. The real benefits are going to be more noticed by tablet users and corporate IT departments.

    EDIT: I think I may have found a compelling reason...
    Last edited by Doc Brown; 2012-07-02 at 15:24.
    Chuck

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    Medico (2012-07-02)

  13. #8
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    I believe the Hyper-V is dependent on the chipset so it may not work on all installs. And won't you still need an install disk and valid COA for it?
    Joe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe S View Post
    I believe the Hyper-V is dependent on the chipset so it may not work on all installs. And won't you still need an install disk and valid COA for it?
    Joe
    Hyper-V requires your CPU to be one of recent generations, that support SLAT, which most older CPUs (even most Core 2 Duo) won't (as I said above). You just need to enable the feature in the control panel. Also, it will run only in 64 bit Windows versions.

  15. #10
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Chuck, I have been saying my decision on Win 8 will be based on price. If this is indeed correct, Win 8 Pro, here I come! Thanks. And this pricing structure includes the Media Center at no additional cost.
    Last edited by Medico; 2012-07-02 at 17:13.
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  16. #11
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    Price no longer a consideration for me!

  17. #12
    Bronze Lounger Drew1903's Avatar
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    Even $70 for Full Box is an excellent deal. But, $40 for an Upgrade... WOW! Wonder, if, can do clean installs w/ it, teeheehee. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge. (doesn't really sound like it, maybe but, hard to say, really)

    Cheers,
    Drew

  18. #13
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Yes you can. (I do know exactly what you are talking about) The article in question tells exactly how to Custom (Clean) install by inserting the DVD, booting to it, and wait until asked to Format the HD. They do suggest not to Format the HD ahead of time, but do it during the install. This does allow an Upgrade from an existing OS to Win 8 Pro using a Clean Install while formatting the HD. I will do this method ad I believe I get a more pristine installation by not trying to upgrade from one OS to the next.

    As always make a complete Image before starting the Win 8 Pro installation.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
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  20. #14
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    One other thing I've noticed about Windows 8 which I really like. Its handling of file transfers is many steps beyond Windows 7. You can make multiple transfers of multiple files among multiple partitions and devices, and you see progress as stacked graphs with lots of details to inform you.

    I use two esternal HDDs per Windows OS (six in all) for my computers. And partitions fro data archives and System Image archives. So it makes a lot of sense to me to be able tom manage multiple transfers simultaneously. It saves a LOT of time when copying the results of recent backups and data file updates.

    I'm not a fan of syncing nor online backup or filesharing, so I use my own local "sneakernet" as described. I'm also not a fan or virtualization, so I dual-boot. I guess I'm just old-fashioned in those ways. And Windows 8 (desktop mostly, not Metro) suits my needs just fine.

    Old drivers and hardware work great in Windows 8 so far, and this is another reason why I would have no reluctance to use Windows 8 as a second OS while still saving Windows 7 for productivity applications, where its desktop works for me better than the Win 8 "legacy desktop" with no Start Menu. Now if the Win 8 Pro System Builder Edition would have a good price deal, I just might go for it.

    So why not go for an upgrade over Win 7 HP? Same reason I just rebuilt Win XP Pro on my older laptop -- there's still some work which gets done more efficiently in the older interfaces. In 2014 I'll have to decide about keeping Windows XP or converting to desktop Linux, but I wouldn't worry about anything that far in the future with such old hardware.

    And I had the foresight to create every kind of backup and OEM reinstall hard-copy I could for Win XP and Win 7 (including all my current drivers), so I still have all the disks and all the SPs on disks. System Builder should allow similar hard-copy restore disks.

    Sure beats having to redo the DLs from MS Updates!
    Last edited by bobprimak; 2012-07-04 at 11:35.
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  21. #15
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    I'm going to stay with Windows 7. I know that I can't stay with it forever, I found that out with Windows 2000, but maybe I can hang in there for a few years, and then either I will like Windows 9, or I'll go to Linux. Or who knows, maybe by then Andriod will have grown into a laptop/desktop operating system.

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