Posted 07 February 2013 - 14:36
Just thought i would add a topic on my feelings of Windows 8.
I must say during the trial and the later half of last year, didn't like it. I found the start menu far too jarring and the search didn't work well (it couldn't seem to find PDF's or word documents very well). Start menu aside i did love the look of the desktop though, as i love the flat design.
A bit of background.
My primary machines at home are mac's and i use an iMac as my primary computer, but i do have Win7 machines about mainly for games and work, everything else, music, video, surfing etc.. all done on the mac.
I commute daily by train, with my commute being about 1hr each way, so it's a good opportunity to get some work done. Last november i got a ChromeBook, it's a good device however after using it for a few months it just doesn't provide the functionality i need, plus mines gone a little weird after an update in that it will sometimes crash and reboot when sleeping (it's on the stable channel, not dev).
Fast forward a few months and i remembered i had my old netbook, a MSI U135DX, i had already upgraded the RAM from 1GB to 2GB, this netboot uses the N455 Series Atom processor,which is a single core with hyper-threading, giving it two pseudo cores. After some research, i decided to install Windows 8 on the netbook as Microsoft had done a lot of work with power savings/management. One last thing i did do was to swap out the 160GB 5200RPM HDD and replace it with a 60GB SSD, for speed and battery life, as well making sure the netbook was robust (i..e not have to worry about chucking it about).
Well surprisingly for a netbook, Windows 8 runs incredibly well, very fast and lean. After booting to the desktop, Windows is only using 400-500MB RAM which i find quite incredible and this works well with a netbooks which by definition have limited resources.
However what works really well on the netbook is the start menu. I can't run Metro apps which i don't care about, however because the icons are quite bit, it works to the netbooks advantage, as the screen is small, clicking the icons to start applications is really easy to do and make using the netbook a lot easier, as Windows 7 and XP it was sometimes a little tricky to click the icons when travelling on trains or in a car.
I also installed Office 2013 for productivity, dropbox, evernote, Xmind (which requires Java), Adobe Reader and MS Project and Visio. For security the netbook is fully encrypted with Trucrypts full disk encryption. I am providing a background as Windows 8 runs all of these really well, really fast. The netbook boots up incredibly quickly and goes to sleep just as fast (i have my netbook set to hibernation instead of sleep to save as much power as possible).
I am really impressed, so i then installed Windows 8 on my Work desktop computer and have been using it for the last couple of weeks, yes the start menu can be a little distracting on a 19" widescreen monitor however it's becoming more and more unnoticeable. However as above i am impressed with the performance of Windows 8, it's running the same applications, which is a mixture of productivity (as above) and virtualisation and it's been running these i would faster than Windows 7, ive noticed that Windows 8 tends to manage the memory a little better, when i say little though i do mean minor, but noticeable.
Overall Windows 8 is growing on me, i didn't think i would ever take to it, but im surprised. I will say it took a few attempts to get this far, but i would say to people who don't like Windows 8, give it a try from time to time (proper try, i.e. more than a week) your opinions might not change, but you never know you might find the performance improvements i have found from it.
I think the next step is for me to purchase and install it on my desktop computer at home and see how well it runs games and fits into home life.