Leaked 9471 build of Windows 8.1 reveals more improvements

A couple of days ago, a leaked build 9471 of Windows 8.1 found its way on the Internet. The build contains a number of new features and improvements compared to the current public preview version of Windows 8.1, which launched in June. One of them is a detailed tutorial on how to use the operating system, which will likely be welcomed by most PC owners.

Paul Thurrott of Winsupersite has been checking out this leaked build and found a few more interesting additions and improvements. One is the new Calendar app, which Microsoft previously mentioned would be getting a "What's Next" mode that will display the next series of events on a calendar. That new feature is now in the 9471 build and Thurrott adds that the look of the app has received a revamp as well.

The Mail app in this new Windows 8.1 build also gets some new features, such as a way to pin contacts and folders to the app's navigation screen. The Photos app puts back a way to import images, although Thurrott says it's a pretty basic setup. The motion themes that were found in previous versions of Windows 8.1 are back again in this new build.

Microsoft could make the RTM announcement for Windows 8.1 at any time but there are reports that it will not release the OS to the general public until sometime in mid-October, even for MSDN and TechNet subscribers.

Source: Winsupersite | Image via Winsupersite

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RTM > OEM > some testing involved > bugfixes > release to public?

But on another note, that new calendar looks hideous!!!!!!!!! I surely hope it can revert back to the one that is in W8 atm.... <insert vomiting smiley here>

The background can be changed and the colours are related to the theme colours so those are easily changed. The view that's in the picture is the What's Next view.

Why is Microsoft holding on to a two-month gap between RTM and actual release for a relatively minor update?

I guess you can call a major UI rewamp, major changes to the fundamentals of the OS incl. DirectX, PowerShell, Windows Store, Windows Defender, IE11 and all the new enterprise features a "relatively minor update"

There is more to 8.1 than meets the eye !
Still waiting for an official annoucement on the release date though - until then, I am still waiting for a few (driver?) bug fixes, including related to WiFi - which is one of the reasons why we might have this gap, including possible new devices from OEMs.

(And no, I do not have any internal information ... this is my own guess and assumptions!)

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/arc...volving-the-start-menu.aspx
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/arc...gning-the-start-screen.aspx

TL;DR: simply pit, it does!

I run Windows 8.1 on all my desktop and laptop machines, it Works like a charm!

Why would you want the old startmenu back?
IMHO it doesn't make sense, to have such a small bar, docked away in the lower left corner, when using it, requires my attention to select between search results etc. And the idea of browsing through the old folder-structure in the startmenu? That's so 90's and should not be needed when you have excellent search options today!

All the improvements in Windows 8/8.1 in keyboard shortcuts (like Win+X!! Explorer shortcuts!) all makes my desktop faster and makes me more productive - while still working prefectly with touch on my laptop.

New calendar app? Beacuse that is what was missing...
Instead of making decent versions of Music and Videos App so maybe people will actually start using them and thus spend more time on the modern ui, we get a calendar app.

scaramonga said,
9478 out in wild

Actually barely more than 10000 in the wild; most of them just won't like Windows no matter what.

The real, honest, serious techies withhold their public opinions until the final product is released.

abecedarian paradoxious said,

Actually barely more than 10000 in the wild; most of them just won't like Windows no matter what.

The real, honest, serious techies withhold their public opinions until the final product is released.

Build 9478.

So notes on actual use of this leak. There are some very interesting changes to the management of Modern UI apps. Closing them now will return to the desktop, which is actually an improvement for the desktop over returning to the Start Screen, though it would be nice to allow this to be a configuration option as returning to the Start Screen is nicer for a tablet. Also, the Start Screen will come up when the black space is clicked with a Modern app is resized, that's actually nice for desktops and tablets.

Lots of little details in this build and it looks to be going overall in the right direction to make the new UI more desktop friendly.

Better, but Not good enough to make people buy Windows 8.
Microsoft need to make it easier to use and also slim enough so old computer hardware can use it without problems.
Now it is too big and too heavy for many hardware already on the market.

utomo said,
Better, but Not good enough to make people buy Windows 8.
Microsoft need to make it easier to use and also slim enough so old computer hardware can use it without problems.
Now it is too big and too heavy for many hardware already on the market.

What?

utomo said,
Better, but Not good enough to make people buy Windows 8.
Microsoft need to make it easier to use and also slim enough so old computer hardware can use it without problems.
Now it is too big and too heavy for many hardware already on the market.

I have found that Installing a fresh copy of 8 on a slightly older piece of hardware functions better for day to day use that 7.

Got 8 (and now 8.1 Preview) running on all my hardware, which ranges from an old Dell Latitude E6400, Lenovo T61 (Both old core2duo) - to my brand new Lenovo x1 - it runs smooth on all of it

Grinch said,
What happened to the "Outlook" app shown at the last BUILD conference?

It'll be included with the final build due on October.

Dot Matrix said,

It'll be included with the final build due on October.


The "Outlook" app won't be replacing the regular mail app, right?

No, the regular Mail app is still there they are just adding Outlook for Students at colleges and Universities that use Exchange Servers.

1. You obviously never used 8.1 if you think it's a purely tablet OS.
2. If aero glass = big fail to you, then I think you need to reconsider what are "big fails" in life. Stick to Windows 7 if it's that big of a deal to you, but seriously, the frosted glass in 8.1 looks much sexier IMO.

Hope they'll do something about the font rendering on windows.
Seriously, we're on 2013, we want fonts to look as smooth as on Mac OS or Linux

Ali Assal said,
Hope they'll do something about the font rendering on windows.
Seriously, we're on 2013, we want fonts to look as smooth as on Mac OS or Linux

No I do not want text on my Windows machines to look as bad as it does on OS X.

Fonts do look a bit better on my iMac than on my Win8 PC, it's visible while working in Words or surfing the Web. But the difference is not drastic. Oh and I do have a quality monitor on my PC...

But it's not something that would make me stop using Windows !!! LOL...

The fonts are much smoother and cleaner in Windows 8.1 compared to previous versions of Windows. You must have a really bad monitor or ClearType disabled.

Well, I agree with you, it's not terrible, but not good enough.
It's not an important thing to switch for it to mac OS, but it's a little detail that make difference.

ClearType is missing from the Modern/Metro/Immersive interface (as well as IE10+ desktop in Windows 8+ and Office 2013) - this makes sense for users with high-density screens (like the Surface Pro), but it's bad news for the rest of us.

Seriously, we're on 2013, we want fonts to look as smooth as on Mac OS or Linux

SharpGreen said,

No I do not want text on my Windows machines to look as bad as it does on OS X.

Ahh, the never ending font antialiasing style debate.

Quppa said,
ClearType is missing from the Modern/Metro/Immersive interface (as well as IE10+ desktop in Windows 8+ and Office 2013) - this makes sense for users with high-density screens (like the Surface Pro), but it's bad news for the rest of us.

Most of windows8 don't use cleartype but a newer type of font smoothing which is slightly more similar to the apple style blurry smoothing, but more accurate.

Most of the Windows 8/8.1 desktop uses ClearType (when it's enabled), with some notable exceptions being the clock and language bar on the taskbar, taskbar window preview titles, jump list text, Windows Explorer window titles and of course Internet Explorer 10/11. The immersive environment doesn't use ClearType at all.

The font smoothing in the immersive environment is not new - it's just grayscale font smoothing, which pre-dates ClearType. It's more accurate only in terms of colour reproduction (no colour fringing like ClearType) - it's less accurate in the shape of glyphs.

Mikee4fun said,
Hah, most users only want the desktop type on a non touch screen anyways. Die Modern UI DIE!

Um.. with 8.1 you barely even have to use the Modern UI and you can even boot directly to desktop. While you don't like it, MANY people do.

Mikee4fun said,
Hah, most users only want the desktop type on a non touch screen anyways. Die Modern UI DIE!

Microsoft and other OEMS have all publicly stated they see the desktops coming with touchscreens to be a dominant part of the market going forward, combined with tablet..anyone thinking touch or the metro UI is going away is just burying their heads in the sand.

Which is the case with both portables and AIOs even today - portables especially, due to smaller screen sizes. The resistance in larger screen sizes is entirely due to cost/price, and is perfectly understandable. However, none of it is any real barrier to using Windows 8.1 - any more than any of it - ModernUI included - is any real barrier to using Windows 8.

Osiris said,

Microsoft and other OEMS have all publicly stated they see the desktops coming with touchscreens to be a dominant part of the market going forward, combined with tablet..anyone thinking touch or the metro UI is going away is just burying their heads in the sand.

Until touch monitors reach the same price point as regular ones, this will not happen.

FloatingFatMan said,

Until touch monitors reach the same price point as regular ones, this will not happen.

All good things with time.

I knew this was gonna happen. It is only the natural evolution of computing. Eventually screens will become obsolete and we will interact with holograms instead.

How is it difficult? It's consistent across all the apps so therefore once the user learns it for one, they'll realize it's like that for all. I actually like it (keeping only the more frequently used elements visible and the rest hidden in the swipe menus).

jasonon said,
I don't really like how they hide so many buttons... makes it kinda difficult for new users to learn

Agreed - far too much is hidden in W8