Windows 8.1 Did Microsoft miss their last chance?


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Active.

I bet the "real" RTM of 8.1 will see the return of the Start Menu? ;)


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Anibal P

 

I bet the "real" RTM of 8.1 will see the return of the Start Menu? ;)

 

 

The Start menu has been there the whole time, it's not called the Start Screen, get used to it, it works perfectly fine

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MorganX

I'm not sure what a fake Start button is. It looks nice. The Start Menu is still gone. Start8 was great, but with 8.1 I think I'm ready to let the old Start Menu go now that Search has been improved.

 

ModernUI apps, when apps I need and well designed are growing on me. I like Snap views. For desktop apps resizable windows have their place, but desktop apps really don't scale. ModernUI apps that are well deigned actually have functional snap views (orientation). I like that. It actually presents and opportunity for superior multitasking, if not windowing. Is Win32 Windowing just and organized mess, or actually usable window management. I think ModernUI better supports actually productive multitasking if the apps have well though out and implemented Snap Views.

 

With Windows 8 RTM, I understand the resistance. Given what was implemented, it should have been resisted. With the changes in 8.1, I think most of it now actually "is" just a resistance to change.

 

There's till room for improvement and I would like to see the ability to share data between ModernUI and Win32 apps. And of course, more significant ModernUI applications with well designed UIs and Snap Views. Things are actually looking pretty good IMO. Long way to go, but significant progress has been made in the year since the awful initial RTM.

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Active.

The Start menu has been there the whole time, it's not called the Start Screen, get used to it, it works perfectly fine

 

 

Don't really have a use for the Start Screen and don't feel like managing which apps to put on there. I've set the Start Button to go to the 'all apps' view in 8.1 instead. With the addition of the search sidebar in 8.1 I've now uninstalled Start8.

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MorganX

 As for the Desktop?  It's at it's end, there's few things one can do to it in any major way to make traditionalists happy. 

 

You had me up until this.

 

I'll consider this when, just for starters:

  • RSAT runs in ModernUI with no compromise
  • Call of Duty is native to ModernUI
  • Any Batman Arkham game is native to ModernUI
  • Office is native to ModernUI
  • Adobe CS runs native to ModernUI
  • File Manger ModernUI is equally capable as File Manager Desktop
  • You can drag/drop between ModernUI apps
  • Media Center is native to ModernUI
  • iTunes is native to ModernUI
  • File History is native to ModernUI
  • Hyper-V Manger is native to ModernUI
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Ace

Windows Image based system recovery has been removed from GUI. Now I have to pass some obscure DOS based commands. 

 

DOS hasn't been included with Windows for a very long time now.

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jakem1

 

You had me up until this.

 

I'll consider this when, just for starters:

  • RSAT runs in ModernUI with no compromise
  • Call of Duty is native to ModernUI
  • Any Batman Arkham game is native to ModernUI
  • Office is native to ModernUI
  • Adobe CS runs native to ModernUI
  • File Manger ModernUI is equally capable as File Manager Desktop
  • You can drag/drop between ModernUI apps
  • Media Center is native to ModernUI
  • iTunes is native to ModernUI
  • File History is native to ModernUI
  • Hyper-V Manger is native to ModernUI

 

 

He didn't say it's no longer useful, just that there are very few significant improvements that are left to be made to it.  The desktop environment works perfectly (yes, even in Windows 8.x) and doesn't require a whole new feature pack to improve the way it works.

 

BTW, I would love a Modern version of Media Centre and really struggle to understand why MS haven't already created one.

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neo1911

DOS hasn't been included with Windows for a very long time now.

Command Prompt or Powershell

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MikeChipshop

As for the Desktop?  It's at it's end, there's few things one can do to it in any major way to make traditionalists happy. 

 

I hope I'm misunderstanding you here?

Do you mean to say that you think the desktop is going the way of the dodo? If so, I'll tell ya, I'm a huge fan of Windows 8, I'm a fan of the modern UI and i love the unified direction that MS are going in BUT the desktop isn't going any where and neither do i want it to. I still stay in the desktop environment 90% of the time for work and it's functions and usability for content creation still far out way anything that Modern UI brings to the table and i'd say the Modern UI is still a long way off getting anything any where near as efficient as the desktop.

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123456789A

Windows 8.1 looks pretty good to me. I'm one of the people who stuck with Windows 7, and I was really excited about Windows 8.

 

With that said, I haven't actually used 8.1, but will definitely try it and hopefully stick with it.

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sathenzar

i guess you didnt get the memo that rtm is not the finished version of 8.1

Feel free to correct me if I am wrong, but RTM means Release to Manufacturers. Meaning there are no big changes coming to the update. If any changes are made it will be small bug patches, etc.

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guru

Win 8.1

  • polished up core modern apps,
  • provided a less jarring start screen with the common wallpaper
  • better start screen organization
  • Modern control panel with all the features of a desktop one
  • If you didnt like Modern / metro then boot to desktop option

This to me is what Win8 should have been. oh well, atleast MS has cleaned up its act within a year

 

having said that, There is still no Tabbed Explorer, IE - extension support / rational extension model

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BajiRav

I hope I'm misunderstanding you here?

Do you mean to say that you think the desktop is going the way of the dodo? If so, I'll tell ya, I'm a huge fan of Windows 8, I'm a fan of the modern UI and i love the unified direction that MS are going in BUT the desktop isn't going any where and neither do i want it to. I still stay in the desktop environment 90% of the time for work and it's functions and usability for content creation still far out way anything that Modern UI brings to the table and i'd say the Modern UI is still a long way off getting anything any where near as efficient as the desktop.

I am guessing he meant that desktop can only be improved so much.
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notchinese

Their last chance for what? Do you think putting the start menu back in would magically push Windows 8 ahead of all other OS's?

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Dashel

8.1 is an olive branch for me after the rough start and questionable direction of 8's release.  I'm actually happy on the areas they have, as well as have not, compromised.

 

For example, I'm not wed to the Start Menu per se.  8.1 brings some pretty critical changes for those looking for get that functionality back.  They didn't just throw in the towel without ever trying to make it work in the new format.

 

Even better, it has been an general vindication for many posters on many issues we've been arguing about for over a year.  Those harassing and 'teaching' were just so very wrong.

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DrCheese

Any fixes between RTM and GA will be updates to modern UI apps. The desktop experience will remain as it is - half-assed on non-touch devices.

It's half assed on touch devices as well. Using 8.1 on our surface RT's at work is painful.

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MorganX

He didn't say it's no longer useful, just that there are very few significant improvements that are left to be made to it.  The desktop environment works perfectly (yes, even in Windows 8.x) and doesn't require a whole new feature pack to improve the way it works.

 

BTW, I would love a Modern version of Media Centre and really struggle to understand why MS haven't already created one.

 Now see, I tend to agree with you. There are some improvements that can be made, sharing data with ModernUI is one of them ;), but what he said was:

 

It's at it's end

 

Now, if he meant, what you said, and not what Dot Matrix usually implies, then OK, we're all in relative agreement :D

 

PS: How fantastic would ModernUI Media Center be? So fantastic, there's no way it's going to happen, lol. BTW, 2012 Server Manger & RSAT for Windows 8 is a great illustration of ModernUI-like UX in Win32 that really works well. The Server team is awesome. I think I've said that before.

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George P

I am guessing he meant that desktop can only be improved so much.

 

This is exactly what I meant, it's updated out, I mean what more can you add to it really?  Sure you can polish it up with newer icons and so on but as far as big major new features?  I think 8.1s adding auto scaling for multiple res screens is one of the very last big updates we're going to see to the desktop.   That's just the fact of things, it's been updated and added to for 20+ years, it's as mature as it's going to be.    And no, I don't think it's going to go away anytime soon.

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jakem1

PS: How fantastic would ModernUI Media Center be? So fantastic, there's no way it's going to happen, lol. BTW, 2012 Server Manger & RSAT for Windows 8 is a great illustration of ModernUI-like UX in Win32 that really works well. The Server team is awesome. I think I've said that before.

 

I really don't get the lack of Modern Media Centre, especially given the fact that a Media Centre remote can be used to navigate the Start Screen, control volume outside WMC, etc.  It would just make so much sense and it could look great - a real poster child for Metro.

 

Unfortunately I think the TV functionality within the Xbox One represents the death of Media Centre :(

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jakem1

This is exactly what I meant, it's updated out, I mean what more can you add to it really?  Sure you can polish it up with newer icons and so on but as far as big major new features?  I think 8.1s adding auto scaling for multiple res screens is one of the very last big updates we're going to see to the desktop.   That's just the fact of things, it's been updated and added to for 20+ years, it's as mature as it's going to be.    And no, I don't think it's going to go away anytime soon.

 

I agree that it's not going away any time soon but I also think that the desktop environment can still be improved.  Aero snap is a great example of a very useful recent addition to the desktop environment and I'd say the improvements to Task Manager in Windows 8 are another useful improvement.  Desktop improvements will be evolutionary rather than revolutionary but there's still scope for more as the way we use computers changes.

 

Having said that, I don't think it's reasonable for people to get upset when updates like 8.1 focus mainly on improving the Modern UI.  I don't remember anyone asking for tonnes of new desktop features before Windows 8 and it seems like the only change that the detractors are really interested in is the total removal of the Modern UI.  That's not going to happen and, at this stage, I think it's right that desktop improvements involve improving the integration with the Modern UI.

 

As for the OP, the points you raised are silly.

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Obry

I too don't think Microsoft has lost it per say. I think Windows 8/.1 is fine for the most part. On a non-touch device I see no reason at all to use Metro but on my Lenovo X1 for instance I enjoy using certain Metro apps when at home/not working although being a web developer I have started using the touch screen when testing stuff in the mobile emulators as well - makes all the difference being able to touch the emulator vs clicking with a mouse inside an emulated iOS or Android device.

 

As far as apps, I use Metro Skype for personal and desktop version for work, I like the new mail app and use it for my personal email and use Outlook for work, I use the metro OneNote for my personal notes and OneNote 2013 for work, etc, etc, etc. With a touch enabled device it's quite enjoyable to use actually. I don't have my fingers on the screen the whole time but for certain tasks here and there (especially at home/coffee shop/etc) it's quite convenient. I was skeptical at touch screen ultrabooks at first but the X1 changed my opinion. What I was hoping for however was more polish and refinements in 8.1 - I think they under-delivered a little bit but looking at what's going on internally at MS the last couple of years I guess they're doing the best they can. Hope this year we see some more quality metro apps that will finally start changing people's opinions. That being said, I'm not sure I'd want to have Metro apps mixed in with the desktop like others are saying - I think they should keep it separate - metro for content consumption/consumer usage, desktop for content production/professional use - makes sense to me and I like it.

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ManMountain

OP: Perhaps I've misunderstood you but the ability to create a system image is still present. Sure, you could create a scheduled task or drop to the command line and enter:

 

wbAdmin start backup -backupTarget:Y: -include:C: -allCritical

 

But why bother when the GUI still exists? You can still create system images, the link is now within file history (lower left):

 

sq5s7k.png

 

Or you can just search for C:\Windows\System32\sdclt.exe and create an elevated shortcut to it for easier access:

 

2vi5w75.png

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briangw

@Op,

 

What do you mean "Fake Start Button?" There's nothing fake about it. It takes you to the Start Screen. :rolleyes:

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