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Windows 8.1 Mini-Review

windows 8.1 mini-review review start screen drivers installation customisation upgrade clean install

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#16 OP theyarecomingforyou

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Posted 05 July 2013 - 19:33

The desktop icon colorization can be a problem too if the background and icon colors are too close (at work now so don't recall which icon was blending in with the background).

Yeah. Opera and Microsoft Word both suffer from tile colours that mask the icon.

 

First I am hearing about Leap Motion and it looks awesome. If it really works as good as it does in the video then wow this is going to be great! I have a great 22" LCD monitor but its not a touch screen. So the Leap Motion could be a fantastic device for example for people who already own a good non touch monitor and are using windows 8 and want to use the touch features.

It really does look like a great product. Quality touchscreens are rare, especially when you're looking at 30" 2560x1600 IPS displays (i.e. they're non-existent). Another advantage is the ability to use touch functionality without greasy fingerprints all over your monitor, as well as the sensitivity - it can recognise every finger and thumb with huge precision, as well as depth. It actually looks to offer better functionality that traditional touchscreens, provided it works as advertised. Most importantly, it's really cheap for what it is.

 

If it can live up to its promise then it could have a major impact on computing, particularly given that laptop / tablet manufacturers are already working to integrate it into their products.




#17 Frankenchrist

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 10:05

Like many of us have said, skiping 8 and waiting for 8.1 is a great plan. You get a more mature OS with many of the shortcomings fixed. För me, working with a multi monitor setup on 8 was close to useless, with ModernUI windows snapped to the desktop if you brought up the startscreen or any modernUI app the pinned ones went away. With 8.1 they stay in place AND can be resized to any size, which was not the case in 8. Otherwise it feels about the same. The search charm is close to useless at the moment, I use the search program "Everything" anyhow and it's way faster.

 

There still isn't an obvious shut down/restart pc button. Right clicking the start button or Windows+I does not cut it. 

 

If you're on the fence on WIndows 8, I'd wait it out and when 8.1 is released - go for it. It IS better than Windows 7, at least for regular users.



#18 tiadimundo

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 12:44

About the different sizes of the Live Tiles: did you enable the Start setting to show more Tiles? It seems so. Windows 8.1 handles this option differently. On Windows 8 there was only one or more rows of Tiles displayed and the text "Start" moved up a bit. On 8.1 the Tiles get smaller even on Windows RT!

 

The option is under Start > Settings > Tiles > Show more Tiles



#19 OP theyarecomingforyou

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 13:56

About the different sizes of the Live Tiles: did you enable the Start setting to show more Tiles? It seems so. Windows 8.1 handles this option differently. On Windows 8 there was only one or more rows of Tiles displayed and the text "Start" moved up a bit. On 8.1 the Tiles get smaller even on Windows RT!

 

The option is under Start > Settings > Tiles > Show more Tiles

In the screenshot for Windows 8 I had More Tiles enabled but on Windows 8.1 I didn't. However, changing that option had no impact on the size of the tiles.



#20 DELETE ACCOUNT

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 14:07

So what is new and improved for those of us who don't use the Start Screen, Metro Apps or Store at all?



#21 BajiRav

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 14:29

- Start Button. The return of the start button mean that mouse users who are used to placing their taskbar on other locations no longer have to get used to the single location of the Start tooltip. I noticed, though that you can still click Start from the lower left even if you already placed the taskbar somewhere else.

Ha, that's an interesting find! I suppose in that respect the addition of the Start Button will help those who prefer to have their taskbar in a different location.

I bet that goes away if you turn off the metro app switcher because the start button is part of it just like the start tip was. And I hope they remove the wasted space there, looks weird.



#22 OP theyarecomingforyou

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 14:35

So what is new and improved for those of us who don't use the Start Screen, Metro Apps or Store at all?

The ability to shut down without having to use the Charm Bar, by right-clicking the Start Button. You can also boot directly to desktop, which is great for those who don't like Metro. Then there's the integration of SkyDrive into Explorer. The bulk of the improvements are focused around Metro but there's still a lot to like for desktop users.



#23 grayscale

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 15:31

I bet that goes away if you turn off the metro app switcher because the start button is part of it just like the start tip was. And I hope they remove the wasted space there, looks weird.

 

If by turning off, you mean, without any hacks, then it does not. You can only disable the upper left, not both.



#24 BajiRav

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Posted 07 July 2013 - 16:26

If by turning off, you mean, without any hacks, then it does not. You can only disable the upper left, not both.

Oh right, I forgot that.



#25 DaveBG

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Posted 08 July 2013 - 07:23

Good review pal. I wish it had the real old start menu. I just cannot find good reason to use the new one... Also how do you close apps that has no X button ...



#26 Mikeparkie

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Posted 08 July 2013 - 12:23

several things i dont like 

 

1. search charms are slow to return results

2. lack of creating a system image for backing up

3. cannot turn off skydrive explorer link 

 

everything else is a nice improvement. 



#27 DELETE ACCOUNT

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Posted 09 July 2013 - 12:35

Hmmm, seems that for me it will be just bug fixes that will be of any relevance.  I don't use the Start Screen or Metro Apps at all.  I have bought Start8 and disabled all hotspots, charms, etc.  I don't use a touchscreen, and I don't use 'the cloud' at all (wouldn't trust MS or anyone else with my data if they paid me) and I don't do Social Networks.  Thank goodness this will be a free update!

 

I still crack up at how MS think that just adding a Start Button to the Start Screen is going to appease everyone who has moaned!

 

I for one use my PC (desktop) without using touch, The Cloud, Apps or anything like that!  Windows 8.x seems to be aimed at magament types who only use their 'PC' for management type work (emails, web browsing, calanders, basic word processing and spreadsheets, etc) and not at the heavy hitters (3D modelling, Complex Graphic Design, Advanced Audio Production, Hardcore Gaming and those who need to run several programs on screen at once).

 

Apps are no replacement for full featured suites of software and the Start Screen/Touch is far to impractical for real use.  Where my wife works Health and Safety rules (UK) mean their monitors have to be beyond arms length anyway!

 

I have no problem with change... when it's for the better!  Windows has been evolving nicely for years and years and now has suddenty taken a turn for the worse!

 

It seems to me the PC is getting dumbed down lately.