Windows Server 8 screenshot leak shows new UI

Microsoft has got a lot to talk and show at next week's BUILD Conference but it looks like one interesting development has been revealed ahead of time. The person known by the handle "Canouna" has posted up a screenshot of a build of Windows Server 8 on the My Digital Life message boards. The screenshot, shown above, is obscured by a really massive watermark but it does show that the server version of Microsoft's next operating system will share the tile-based interface that will be in the consumer version of the OS.

In a previous post on Microsoft's Windows 8 blog site, the company discussed how it would be using both the more traditional interface for the operating system and the new "Metro" tile UI. It looks like Windows Server 8 will also have a similar arrangement with its interface designs. It will be interesting to see how PC server operators will react to this new way of presenting files to the user.

Microsoft will certainly reveal a lot more about Windows 8 Server starting on Tuesday at the BUILD conference in Anaheim, California. Intel will also be holding its annual Developer Forum in San Francisco that same week and there will be at least a couple of panels that deal with Intel working with Microsoft on Windows 8 development. You can expect to see Microsoft officially release Windows 8 and Windows Server 8 to the public sometime in 2012.

Image via MDL Forum, typographyandsquares.com

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How come MS don't just dig into mod communities and hire one of those skilled UI designers to make their UI? I'm sure whoever they dig up, would be more than willing to put in hours for such a cash prize hehe... seriously, back in the days of the old window blinds, they had some awesome AND usable UI. Although I admit, today I see a lot of fancy UI with little usability... but still... they're out there...

do you really need to post so many times saying it looks crap?, its fine to have a opinion but when you keep posting it then it becomes annoying and people think your hating just for the sake of hating

I like it. And the human eye works better with white space. It also works better with narrow columns, 4 inches or less, to restrict eye range of motion (left and right).

I thought I was looking at Windows 3.1 there for a second, then I remembered that Microsoft is still rocking that dumb solid colours gimmick.

Athernar said,
I thought I was looking at Windows 3.1 there for a second, then I remembered that Microsoft is still rocking that dumb solid colours gimmick.

Just curious, but how can you possibly confuse that for Windows 3.1? Obviously have never used it. And "still"? Last few versions of Windows were rather colorful plus glass all over the place.. this is a refreshing change from tacky, or (gak) the default Fisher Price look from XP.

Athernar said,
I thought I was looking at Windows 3.1 there for a second, then I remembered that Microsoft is still rocking that dumb solid colours gimmick.

omg... you say "windows 3.1" because you have read it somewhere or because you just want to make up something?... sorry but it doesn't look like windows 3.1, yeah that was my first windows, after MS-Dos. and IT DOESNT look like it, stop being silly and be this

"oh, it doesn't have gradients and alot of crap that will make it like its a 3d button so it must be like windows 3.1, because window 3.1 its old, i have never used it but.... its old.. and 2D must be old"

Zune, Windows Phone, new Xbox dashbord, sites like msdn... so all they look like windows 3.1 because "dumb solid colours gimmick" ?

Yup, and hey, if you don't like it you can always change it. There's always some that don't like the out-of-the-box look with every version of every OS.

Max Norris said,
Yup, and hey, if you don't like it you can always change it. There's always some that don't like the out-of-the-box look with every version of every OS.

Spot on! The same thing happened from Windows 98 to XP, from XP to Vista/7. And now Windows 7 to Windows 8. Some people just don't like change. But eventually they will start to love it. And when something better comes along they will be reluctant once again.

Fact of the matter is, Metro UI is the most elegant and beautiful UI in the world at the moment. That's why I'm so excited about Windows 8.

smooth3006 said,
my god you guys really think this looks better than windows 7?

so Windows 7 had server manager to add roles & features, since when?*
This is for server counterpart of Win8 (Windows Server 2012?) and anything cosmetic is second nature.

* yeah I know you can install it on Win7 but it's not OOTB thingy.

smooth3006 said,
my god you guys really think this looks better than windows 7?

Yes. Aero looks awful, especially compared to this.

Wow this looks so awesome! Can't wait for Windows 8! I hope Windows 8 desktop will also get a Metro theme.

Metro UI is the greatest and most beautiful user interface of ALL TIME!

Dusco25 said,
Looks like lame XP themes from back in the day...

just what i was thinking myself. i know this is the server version but come on.... no way this looks better than vista/windows 7 default aero.

sexypeperodri said,
Someone please tell Microsoft that Metro UI sucks.

Save money and buy a Mac instead. Because that's what I'm intended to do.

Taking your ball and going home just because you don't like a theme that you can change anyways? Yea, that makes a lot of sense. Good luck with that.

sexypeperodri said,
Someone please tell Microsoft that Metro UI sucks.

Says you.

But then again, I'm sure you haven't done millions of dollars worth of research into the matter and as such lack the data which proves otherwise.

sexypeperodri said,
Someone please tell Microsoft that Metro UI sucks.

Someone tell me sexypepperoni is a troll.

Owen W said,
This just looks plain awful. Going to make my day job harder :-/

How about waiting for BUILD and the official screens/builds before saying it's hard to use?

I dont mind as long as it makes it easier to configure the server. If it presents it in a way that all the utilities are accessable i dont mind a UI change for server

PS If it presents a configurable tile interface at logon that i can confiure which utilities are tiles that would rock. Being able to just logon click the say dhcp tile and kick a computer off dhcp and lock the pc again would be very helpfull .

Sort of looks like a revamped version of Whistler's watercolor. While I really liked it back in 2001, the whole thing looks a bit dated and not very imaginative nowadays. I mean, big solid colored boxes with white text in them? Not very original. That said, if Microsoft spices things up with animations and stuff it could be nice.

Anyway, the whole thing hasn't even hit beta yet so it's too soon to judge.

TheLegendOfMart said,
Fail, looks like Windows 7 will be my last Windows OS.

Don't worry, I know for sure Windows 8 won't have MDL Forums written all over it like that.

TheLegendOfMart said,
Fail, looks like Windows 7 will be my last Windows OS.

Because there's absolutely no chance of alternative themes (hint: Windows Classic theme on Windows 7), no chance at all...

This looks like the Remote Management system which is in Windows 2008 R2 (not sure for previous versions) i.e. a remote website on the Windows server which you can do maintence on. I doubt very much this is the actualy Desktop UI.

I see the watermark covering just about every interesting UI element, and a lot of white space. Does the watermark really need to be that big and annoying? Also, why watermark stuff like this at all?

joep1984 said,
I see the watermark covering just about every interesting UI element, and a lot of white space. Does the watermark really need to be that big and annoying? Also, why watermark stuff like this at all?

So that everyone excites about the release goes and visit your site cause you're getting insiders info. It's all about the money. Hits turn i to clicks, clicks turn into money, profit...

not enough info presented though. needs more server stats in the initial screen. that's a gripe I have about the current server manager as well.

I like, very clear and to the point without a lot of obnoxious fluff. I think. A little hard to see the few pixels that are visible behind that absurd watermark.

Mr Spoon said,
Now THAT's a way to watermark an image

Has MDL forums heard of opacity? Seriously, I understand the need to watermark images to reserve rights to image content. But ffs, at least make it transparent so that we can actually see whats in the pic.

i hope something similar replaces Aero..
that will mean WIN EVERYWHERE..
also
i noticed the start bar and app bars on the sides are dark grey in the Metro UI..
i hope they allow us dark and light versions just like WP7
so we can make those bars white.
and sameway change the normal windows UI to be Black with white text instead of the usual!..
that will be so sweeeeeeeet!!!
Go MS Go!

FMH said,
It means that the Desktop UI would also be heavily "Metro-mized"!
Uhh.. maybe.

I doubt this is the main Desktop UI, from the look of it, I think it could be the Remote Management service you can install on Windows 2008 R2 to manage the server via http.

Tony. said,

I doubt this is the main Desktop UI,.

I would really love it to be.
Or something very similar.

The_Decryptor said,
So much whitespace, so little content.

That doesn't mean it's bad. If there is no need for more content on that screen, why place more content there? That could well be maximised as well. It looks fine to me. It looks clear and quite minimal, showing the content that is useful.

Max Norris said,

Too much black space.

Personally, loving this look. Sleek without being gaudy.


Yeah, it is "lickable"!

....(gone to get a tissue)

The_Decryptor said,
So much whitespace, so little content.

It's a dashboard, you don't wan the UI to be uber busy

Kuraj said,

SPAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACE
haha!! space.. space space spa space i'm in space are you in space? spaaace space space