Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 17
  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Hartford, WI, USA
    Posts
    370
    Thanks
    153
    Thanked 62 Times in 37 Posts

    The Wrong Way I Believe!

    In his LangaList post from Oct.23rd. 2013 Fred Langa writes "... new PCs have Win8 installed, and their owners are trying to adapt to a system ...". You find this in section "Will Microsoft continue to support Windows 7?".

    I want to submit the suggestion that this is skewed thinking and cause of many problems with Win8, perceived and real ones.

    It is easy to adapt Windows 8 to the user; usually takes me about 5 to 10 minutes and Windows 8 works (almost only) in desktop mode.

    Practically all my customers call themselves computer illiterate and I have not gotten any negative comments yet from so far about 50 new machines that I have set up.
    Eike J Heinze
    What I am about
    SE Wisconsin

  2. #2
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    3,411
    Thanks
    447
    Thanked 406 Times in 378 Posts
    At the risk of repeating what has been said here by hundreds of people, in my opinion, the only way you can make Windows 8 truly operate in Desktop mode is to get one of the add-ins, such as the one I use, StartIsBack.

    These add-ins will actually make Windows 8 work in Desktop mode; however, I haven't found any way to achieve that simply by modifying Windows 8.

  3. #3
    Administrator
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    23,594
    Thanks
    5
    Thanked 1,059 Times in 928 Posts
    To have the PC start in desktop mode upgrade it to Windows 8.1 and set a couple of options.

    Joe

  4. #4
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    21
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
    I have installed Start8 and ModernMix on almost all computers here, now for the users it is just like Windows 7 and they are happy. These programs play happily with Windows 8.1 too. $8 for both per machine is not much. I know there are free alternatives but I think Stardock are the best (and no I don't work for them).

  5. #5
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,335
    Thanks
    13
    Thanked 267 Times in 260 Posts
    Do you change all the default associations to desktop programs as well or leave that up to the user? Using ModernMix will open them on desktop but the apps by and large seem quite limited as replacements.

    The CEO of Stardock has been VERY enthusiastic about Windows 8. I forget the exact words he used but it was something like, Windows 8 is a gift from heaven (or maybe he even said from the big man himself).

  6. #6
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    21
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
    Well I have installed PDF-XChange PDF Viewer in some cases, not least because it allows some limited editing of pdf files, but otherwise I just stick with Win8's standard apps for video, imaging etc. They seem fine for this purpose. But our workhorses are Firefox, Thunderbird and MS Office (97->2010)...

    I guess Win8 has been good for Stardock sales! And I believe they have worked with Microsoft before so don't want to be rude, and no need really. I think it's a pity that Microsoft didn't buy in Start8 and ModernMix or at least replicate the functionality in Windows 8.1, but they still want to push us all to the Modern GUI...

  7. #7
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    3,411
    Thanks
    447
    Thanked 406 Times in 378 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Dominicf View Post
    I think it's a pity that Microsoft didn't buy in Start8 and ModernMix or at least replicate the functionality in Windows 8.1, but they still want to push us all to the Modern GUI...
    I'm totally mystified as to why Microsoft didn't set up Windows 8 for All Desktop, All Metro, or a combination of the two. It would have been extremely easy to have done so, as is proven by the success of the add-in "Desktop" programs.

    If they had done that, they would have gone a long way to dominating both markets. By abandoning the Desktop to the extent that they have, they are risking that loyal Desktop customers will look elsewhere.

  8. #8
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Hartford, WI, USA
    Posts
    370
    Thanks
    153
    Thanked 62 Times in 37 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    These add-ins will actually make Windows 8 work in Desktop mode; however, I haven't found any way to achieve that simply by modifying Windows 8.
    Jim, You are quite correct. I did not mean to imply that I do it by Win 8 means only! Actually one of the very first steps I do is to install Classic Shell and from then on it's just like Win 7.

    In 8.1 (have done two upgrades so far) there is a setting, somewhat obscurely hidden though. The latest version of Classic Shell overlays the frumpy Win 8.1 "Start button" with a neat square button labeled "Start" in bold letters. The only customer who has seen it so far LOVES it!
    Eike J Heinze
    What I am about
    SE Wisconsin

  9. #9
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Hartford, WI, USA
    Posts
    370
    Thanks
    153
    Thanked 62 Times in 37 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by JoeP517 View Post
    To have the PC start in desktop mode upgrade it to Windows 8.1 and set a couple of options.

    Joe
    Joe, that is correct but you still have nothing at all like the classic Start button. My retirement age customers got trained for the last 18 years (since Windows 95!) to look for it and there it is again, even on the much maligned Windows 8.x.
    Eike J Heinze
    What I am about
    SE Wisconsin

  10. #10
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Hartford, WI, USA
    Posts
    370
    Thanks
    153
    Thanked 62 Times in 37 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    I'm totally mystified as to why Microsoft didn't set up Windows 8 for All Desktop, All Metro, or a combination of the two. It would have been extremely easy to have done so, as is proven by the success of the add-in "Desktop" programs.

    If they had done that, they would have gone a long way to dominating both markets. By abandoning the Desktop to the extent that they have, they are risking that loyal Desktop customers will look elsewhere.
    Jim,
    you are totally correct. But I believe that there were and still are other, much stronger motivating forces at work. If you are so inclined you can read my philosophical ramblings about that here.
    Eike J Heinze
    What I am about
    SE Wisconsin

  11. #11
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Los Gatos CA
    Posts
    376
    Thanks
    52
    Thanked 12 Times in 11 Posts
    I am in the unfortunate position, as are many others, of being forced to get to grips with Win 8 because my wife's laptop (XP) was trashed by HP support. I had to buy a replacement, and in the Windows world there is only one choice. I have been using MS since DOS 3.0 and on through all versions of Windows, my wife has almost zero knowledge of computers. After spending an evening with this dreadful UI we, both of us, may as well have been looking into a bush. It's not just unfamiliar, it is totally alien, aggressively alien, you will do it our way. One evening and I'm seriously looking at Apple. I called Asus to ask about upgrading to Win 7, they said it couldn't be done because there are no Win 7 drivers for this machine.

    I have installed Start8, and at first glance it's a small step towards my idea of reality. The start menu is there, but the desktop is bare. For instance I installed the Win 8 version of Skype, its UI is just as hideous and inconvenient as Win 8, but then I shouldn't be surprised I suppose. (I do not understand the constant need to be connected, to have accounts linked, to broadcast my location, to tweet and twitter. I don't have a Facebook account, never will, so why should Skype nag me to link my account to MS and Facebook?) Skype is the only program I have installed so far. Yes Start8 lists it, but once I start it there is nothing familiar, no menus, the list of contacts which was on the left side of the window has become pages and pages of icons that I have to scroll through, place holders for photos, each taking up enough space to list a dozen names. I can read, I don't need to see pictures of people to know who to call. So what I'm hoping to find is some way of restoring not just the start menu, but the interface, the drop-down menus across the top, the running programs shown in the taskbar, and an easy way to switch between them. (ALT+TAB doesn't cut it with my wife, she needs to see it, to click on it.) How about Classic Shell, is that more comprehensive than Start8? Or ANY other suggestions????

    David
    Last edited by Rhinoceros; 2013-10-25 at 09:45. Reason: Typo

  12. #12
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    21
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
    Rhinoceros, I sympathize! I suggest you install ModernMix (also from Stardock) to go with Start8, this makes all the Windows 8 apps run in windows on your desktop, not gobble up the whole screen in their usual bullying way. ModernMix is another $5 if you eventually choose to buy it, but I think they bundle the 2 apps together for $8. With these two working together you can pretty much forget about the new GUI and stick with the familiar desktop. And if you ever want to explore the new GUI it is still there for the finding, but 'hidden'.

    Here's an example I made showing the Start8 menu and the Windows Store which is normally a full-screen app running in a window. This is Windows 8.1 but it works just the same for Windows 8
    Capture.JPG


    ... an alternative, for Skype, is to uninstall Skype (instructions here) and then install Skype Desktop (instructions here). I don't recommend you have both installed at the same time - it can get really confusing...
    Last edited by Dominicf; 2013-10-25 at 10:12. Reason: add info about changing skype version

  13. #13
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,335
    Thanks
    13
    Thanked 267 Times in 260 Posts
    There is all that but there is also an attempt shall we call it to bring together several elements that Microsoft has desired (a.ka. Bill Gates) almost since the very inception of Microsoft as well as leapfrog ahead of where they see Windows in the future. That being modular, highly vetted apps deliverable only through their controlled and closed system which allows a tremendous increase in security and the possibility of turning Windows into a subscription-based "service," and all but eliminating piracy. Also, from several knowledgeable folks on the day to day grindings of Redmond, they honestly believe portable touch app interfaces is where it's ALL going to be in the future and they want to be 5 years ahead of the curve, not 5 behind like usual.
    So for Microsoft, it's Win, Win, Win, and a calculated and committed Hail Mary. For all that to happen the old Windows must die and anyone living in the Years Of Conversion as it shall become known as (), will be dealing with the two-headed beast of Redmond.
    I might be wrong, but I think I read a stat where as slowly as Win 8 has been accepted over the last year, it has twice the userbase Apple does for it's real computer systems. That's a double meaning message for Microsoft (they own that userbase and touch tablets are not a fad) and there's a very easy way for Microsoft to eliminate all the fixer-upper programs; they just pull the plug on the traditional desktop altogether.

  14. #14
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    3,411
    Thanks
    447
    Thanked 406 Times in 378 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Rhinoceros View Post
    I am in the unfortunate position, as are many others, of being forced to get to grips with Win 8 because my wife's laptop (XP) was trashed by HP support. I had to buy a replacement, and in the Windows world there is only one choice. I have been using MS since DOS 3.0 and on through all versions of Windows, my wife has almost zero knowledge of computers. After spending an evening with this dreadful UI we, both of us, may as well have been looking into a bush. It's not just unfamiliar, it is totally alien, aggressively alien, you will do it our way. One evening and I'm seriously looking at Apple. I called Asus to ask about upgrading to Win 7, they said it couldn't be done because there are no Win 7 drivers for this machine.

    I have installed Start8, and at first glance it's a small step towards my idea of reality. The start menu is there, but the desktop is bare. For instance I installed the Win 8 version of Skype, its UI is just as hideous and inconvenient as Win 8, but then I shouldn't be surprised I suppose. (I do not understand the constant need to be connected, to have accounts linked, to broadcast my location, to tweet and twitter. I don't have a Facebook account, never will, so why should Skype nag me to link my account to MS and Facebook?) Skype is the only program I have installed so far. Yes Start8 lists it, but once I start it there is nothing familiar, no menus, the list of contacts which was on the left side of the window has become pages and pages of icons that I have to scroll through, place holders for photos, each taking up enough space to list a dozen names. I can read, I don't need to see pictures of people to know who to call. So what I'm hoping to find is some way of restoring not just the start menu, but the interface, the drop-down menus across the top, the running programs shown in the taskbar, and an easy way to switch between them. (ALT+TAB doesn't cut it with my wife, she needs to see it, to click on it.) How about Classic Shell, is that more comprehensive than Start8? Or ANY other suggestions????

    David
    Try all of the various add-ins. You have tried Start8. You also mentioned Classic Shell. Lots of people here swear by one or both of those.

    I installed StartIsBack upon the recommendation of some here. I did very little configuration; and in very short order, I was back in Windows 7 land in just about every way; and I can easily live with the one or two details that aren't like Windows 7.

    Perhaps you should set up a local account in Windows 8 and use that. That will probably eliminate all of the nagging you are getting to link everything.

  15. #15
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    6,798
    Thanks
    117
    Thanked 799 Times in 720 Posts
    I have noticed if you have a admin account on windows 8 and you upgrade to 8.1 it dose seem to convert it from a local account into a Microsoft account.
    If you want to go that route. change the Microsoft account to a local account rather than creating a new local account. A new local account will not have your favorites or the customizations you have made. To change a Microsoft Account to a local account:
    Go to the Charms bar (Win key + C)
    Click on Settings > Change PC Settings
    Click on Accounts
    Click change to a local account

    Jerry

  16. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to jwitalka For This Useful Post:

    eikelein (2013-10-26),mrjimphelps (2013-10-25),RetiredGeek (2013-10-25)

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •