My First Go with Windows 8

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by THOPMedia, Dec 2, 2012.

  1. THOPMedia, Dec 2, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2012

    macrumors regular


    Nov 11, 2012
    So I consider my self a quite adept computer user. I've owned Macs and PCs since ages ago and have done quite a bit of "advanced" technical work with both.

    I just had my first go with Windows 8.

    Let me set the scene quick. The Computer is a brand new HP Envy 17" with an i7, discrete graphics and blah blah: other fancy stuff. My friend in charge of that department bought it with out telling me although he was told specifically we needed a mac. He bought this one because it met the system requirements of the special software we plan to run on it, but was "way cheaper than a mac" (in his words). We were about to find out the value of "cheaper"

    So first we simply needed to play a video on a projector via the VGA port. Need to extend the desktop to the second display and play the video on there. Easy enough right? Here is how the event went.

    1. Log-in to windows (check)
    2. Greeted with squares with all sorts of random info (I had seen screen shots of this so I was slightly prepared)
    3. Find that all squares are 100% useless.
    4. Finally find the desktop square
    5. Go to click on the Start button to access Control Panel . . . IE opens
    6. I hate IE, especially when I did not intend to open it.
    7. Discover that there is no Start menu button but rather an IE button
    8. ?!?!?!?!? . . . What the . . .
    9. Search for a way to access Control panel . . .
    10. None found
    11. Right Click to find "Screen Resolutions"
    12. Finally get the projector working with extended desktop.
    13. Open the video and prepare to drag it across to the second display.
    14. Nope, It opens in full screen with no menu bar or anything. No way to minimize, drag or anything. Wonderful.
    15. Quickly decide to just do it with mirrored displays
    16. Go to switch the display settings back in the control panel . . .
    17. IE opens
    18. YOU MOTHER . . . STUPID . . . SON OF A . . . !

    OK, eventually get that sorted.

    Next job: run Pro Presenter software that we purchased the laptop for specifically

    1. My friend had already installed the software earlier.
    2. Open the program. (via the very handily placed short cut on the desktop . . . else who knows how I would have ever found a way to open it with no Start Menu)
    3. "This program can not run. Missing blahblah.dll file"
    4. Close that
    5. "This program can not run. Missing someother.dll file"
    6. Close that
    7. Program runs
    8. Random desktop browser window opens searching for language files.
    9. Cant close window . . . at all. curser spins and spins and spins with no way to end the task
    10. I look at my friend, wish him good luck with the computer which I never plan to touch again.

    yay for innovation!


    Ah, just noticed that this is the Windows ON THE MAC forum . . . sorry I didnt see that before.
  2. macrumors 6502


    Nov 6, 2010
    Auckland, NZ
    Yah, I had to do a Windows 8 config for a family friend today... It's a disaster.
  3. bable, Dec 2, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2012

    macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2012
    I'm a computer tech and almost all my friends and clients hated Win 8 when they got it because they didn't do any research. They thought it would be like the jumps from 2k-win7 where you can hit the ground running, but Metro is a MASSIVE overhaul to bring portables and desktops/laptops together. After ten minutes of me showing them the changes they're sold on it being an excellent upgrade.

    The Windows key opens the tiles and then just typing searches for anything with excellent results, the arrow keys will switch between programs, data, settings, etc.

    Most of the starting tiles are useless but once you customize them they're great, and as new apps are written they'll get better.

    Most of the Apps suck unless you have a surface, this will seem less weird in a year when Win tablets are common.

    You don't seem to like IE, that's good cause it sucks. Replace that icon with Chrome, like you always have to with Win upgrades.

    I got a few .dlls missing errors, but that's to be expected with any upgrade. I don't know of any OS that doesn't "recommend" a clean install for massive revisions due to those registry errors.

    Feel free to pm me with any questions and there's most likely a super easy solution.

    Win 8 took me about 45 minutes of research and toying to learn and it's amazing. I just hopped back into Mac for the first time since my old G4 tower and three days of aggressive research later it still feels like a clunky and inefficient version of Ubuntu :)
  4. THOPMedia, Dec 2, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2012

    thread starter macrumors regular


    Nov 11, 2012
    One slight problem there: I wasn't using a tablet. And the laptop will still be a laptop even once the Surface tablet starts selling (which it looks like it won't) so I'm significantly lost as to why the tablet interface integration is useful for the laptop.
  5. macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    What guy said is about the biggest problem with Win8. It's not so much that it's worse, rather that it's so different, and MS doesn't do a good job of telling you how to deal with it or where everything's been moved around, that almost everyone new to it hates it.

    It's not without its quirks, but it's actually (arguably) faster than Win7 once you get used to it.
  6. macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2012
    The same reason tabs sync is so cool, it's really handy even if it's only saving you a few motions. I know you weren't on a tablet but that's where the apps really shine. I just deleted all the squares except the ones that display stuff I care about and it's great, one button easily shows me my email, social networks, twitter, news, feeds, auctions, etc.

    MS put out dozens of videos and tutorials and at least when I installed it asked me three times if I wanted a video or walkthrough, I'm still confused why no one watched them... ;)
  7. macrumors 68040

    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia

    Different alone wouldn't be a deal breaker, if it was functionally equivalent.

    Minor functionality loss wouldn't be a deal breaker if there was some other benefit (new more efficient gui for example).

    However, Win8 combines large scale UI changes, also keeps the old UI for a lot of the stuff you need to do AND breaks a lot of things that worked well in Windows 7 - for example federated search.

    There is NO WAY in Windows 8 to search across all document types (both metro and classic desktop) at the same time. There appears to be no way to search Metro file types by date, either.

    This is a major functionality problem, which will impact me FAR more than saving 2-3 seconds boot time on my machine when i reboot it once per month.
  8. macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    That is about the one bad thing about Windows 8. I rarely ever did federated searches myself, but I can still understand why it's absence would tick some people off. I have no idea why MS didn't include it.

    ...probably so they could save it for Server 2013 or whatever, I bet.

    Though everything else is (once again arguably) better once you figure it out. The one biggest problem most people have with Win8 is figuring out where all the various control panel settings are. You don't have a My Computer to rightclick on the start menu anymore, and the My Computer icon isn't on the desk. Searching through Metro makes it look like everything's seperated between the oldschool way of doing things, and Metro.


    There is one incredibly easy way to access all the important control panel settings from one easy to use place.

    Go down to the bottom left hotcorner (where the start button now hides) and rightclick. There you go.

    I like it better because settings that used to be two or three clicks away are now available for immediate access right from the desktop. In general, once you get used to left and right clicking in that bottom left corner, Windows 8 becomes far easier to use.

    ...and of course arranging everything in the start screen to point towards things that are semi useful to you.

    Yeah, it's weird and goofy at first (and some things continue being weird and goofy no matter how used to them you are), but there is a rhyme, reason, and method for everything. As much as you'd think otherwise at first, nothing was just thrown out without any single thought to how people use it.

    They just don't tell anyone how to use all this new stuff, which...

    I did a fresh install, and the only one I remember seeing was the one showing the big cursor going to the top right corner of the screen to access the charms bar. I wasn't prompted to check out any videos beyond that one.
  9. macrumors 68040

    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    There are other deal breakers that the new UI causes:

    - tiny start/application switching hitbox for remote desktop sessions (i.e., i'm running a copy of some remote session in a window
    - no multiple window metro apps
    - no ability to run more than 1 metro app on screen (no that sidebar crap doesn't count)
    - no ability to run a metro app and a desktop app on screen at the same time

    now if win8 gave me some wonderful new benefits, maybe these would be worth the tradeoff.

    as it is right now, its a new second UI to learn, for no real benefit, and a lot of real-world regressions.

    I've been running it in a VM for testing purposes since the beta, because I'll need to get familiar with it for server 2012 admin tool support.

    I'm not looking forward to having to do so when we go server 2012.
  10. thread starter macrumors regular


    Nov 11, 2012
    One program at a time with windows 8?

    You have got to be kidding me!! What the heck is the point at all? That is simply mind boggling!!


    I'm really stoked that it shines on a tablet . . . PCs are not tablets. This HP laptop I was speaking of is not, and can never be a tablet. So why is the "amazing" tablet OS running on a PC?

    IOS is awesome on iPads and iPhones but Apple does not put it on their laptops and desktops. Tha would be useless.
  11. macrumors 68040

    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia

    Yup, it's true.

    It can run multiple apps, but all metro apps are full screen only, like an iPad.

    Desktop apps can be run in a Window, but as you say, what's the point of metro on the DESKTOP?
  12. macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    I don't mind Windows 8. I was cautious using it since I had heard that it was complex, but really, I found it quite simple. It's just the Windows we all know and love with a fullscreen Start Menu and new apps that are more tablet focused. Ignore/delete the pre-bundled tablet apps on a desktop and the tablet interface is never really seen.

    There are a few annoying GUI quirks, but overall, no way near as bad as people like to make out. It's faster, more stable, more feature rich and runs games better than Windows 7. It's a win as far as I'm concerned.
  13. macrumors 601


    Jan 11, 2012
    Pacific Coast, USA
    I'm still in the early stages of evaluating Windows 8. So far I'm impressed with the logical way it's laid out. What I have noticed thus far is that they've made this a more efficient OS with less clicks required to accomplish various tasks.

    I do believe that much of it is unintentionally missed by many, since they're going so fast they don't see it. Still thinking like it's just a warmed over version of windows, when they come to a new method or convention they immediately dislike it. It's change, it's new, it's different, all things that people in a rush fear. Believing they know best they condemn it.

    The real problem Microsoft has is they don't have the cult like following of Apple, they dont have legions of apologists and those that will defend Microsoft no matter what. That was the brilliance of Steve Jobs. He built an Army of Apple worshipers. They covet all things Apple. Elevated to Rock God Status, from Macworld to WWDC to the "Keynotes" the MacFans were and are everywhere. That's a huge advantage.

    What Microsoft has to do is get out there, make the people aware of Windows 8 features. Remind them that there's lots of good learning resources on the site. If people will approach it as they do OS X, then Windows 8 will have a fair chance.

    That said it may be too late. People are quick to judge & condemn. If it's not extremely easy to pickup & use, they have no patience. They want instant gratification. It will be interesting to see how it goes.
  14. macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    The Metro sidebar thing is more about easily switching between the two quickly, or getting updates from one than true side by side multitasking. It's a great idea for a tablet, but not the best idea in the world for a desktop environment.

    Though any complaints against Metro on the desktop are all kinda moot points to me, as it's a completely optional feature that's never forced upon you at any time beyond the start screen. The only metro app I run regularly is Netflix, and occasionally the Bing news and weather apps. Every rare once in awhile I'll hit up the MS store to see what new stuff they've got. It's all an aside thing, and doesn't directly effect my usage of the desktop, which is about 98.459% the same as it was on Windows 7.
  15. macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    One of the things Apple does is advertise every single new feature of OSX and slather it with so much hyperbole and breathless "it's" speeches that you tend to know about them long before you even use their latest update. Like I haven't used Mountain Lion yet, but I pretty much know where all the new stuff is the moment I do.

    On the other hand, MS spent more time showing off all the start screen and live tiles, with barely a single mention about where they sorted everything else. The video you see when you first install doesn't even mention anything about the bottom left corner and all the neat things it does. Only the charms bar was brought up, and it didn't even go too indepth about that. It's literally "charms's here". MS leaves it to you to figure out what does what, and what went where, and made it so minimalist that nothing is immediately apparent.

    Yeah, everything works great once you figure it out. There's a reason why most people who stick with it tend to like it. But figuring it out? Well, that's the unnecessarily hard part.
  16. macrumors newbie

    Jan 19, 2012
    get this then everything will just be like Windows 7, I'm using this right now.

    There are ways to get back the sidebar gadgets if you want to (just google it) and windows 7 has better compatibility with XP and pre-XP apps, however the UI is slightly more friendly for win8 now on high resolution screens (like rMBP or iMac), enlarge the text by 125% now won't look as ugly as Win 7 or XP (still not very nice of course). This is not including the Metro UI of course, it's a whole new thing that works perfectly with high resolution screens, but it's hard to get used to on desktop computers.
  17. thread starter macrumors regular


    Nov 11, 2012
    I remember when OSX launched.

    It was different OS with completely different ways of doing things but they all made sense. Things were quick and easy to find. Yet all the features that you used all the time were still there. Anyone could quickly start using it.

    I think the depth if tablet integration in Windows 8 is too far. Great if you have a tablet but again, for a PC, it feels convoluted.

    I realize though that I am going to have to learn it because I am the only "tech person" in our organization. Which means once people start getting it, I'm going to be the one who has to fix all their missing .dll problems.

    Thankfully most of us are using macs now.
  18. macrumors 6502


    May 30, 2010
    I LOVE Windows 8. It's primary function is to convince your boss to make the switch to Mac. It is surprisingly good at that. ;)
  19. macrumors 68040

    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    Which begs the question: why bother to upgrade if you are spending 98.459% of your time NOT using metro.

    To save 2 seconds per reboot every time you reboot?


    Microsoft are going to be encouraging developers to focus on metro app development so the apps work on their tablet. If you don't like Metro, i'm afraid that this is the future for microsoft.
  20. macrumors 68000

    Mar 5, 2012
    Central California

    they should of provided a video how to work around

    im still not used to it!
  21. macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2011
    Gramps, what the hell am I paying you for?
    It's 40 bucks, might as well. :p

    Beyond the Metro stuff, it's a straight up iterative upgrade. The new task manager is nice, the copy dialog is neater and allows for much more flexibility, and it does run faster and consume less memory overall.

    Is it an absolute must-have upgrade to Windows 7 though? No, it's not. But it's not terrible, either.

    Eventually, yeah. Though Metro as we're seeing it now is probably only the first nascent stage of whatever's coming in the future.

    MS has bitten off a whole bunch in their attempt to unify touch and the desktop. An interface that can handle both equally well without sacrifices won't be an easy thing to accomplish.
  22. macrumors 68040

    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    40 bucks is a nice bottle of russian vodka.

    I know what i'd rather spend my 40 bucks on :D
  23. knowhate, Dec 6, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2013

    macrumors regular

    Jan 7, 2008
  24. macrumors 6502

    Apr 13, 2012
    Thanks to my premium Dreamspark account from my University I have been running Windows 8 Pro before release, ever since they put it on DreamSpark.

    I at first just dual booted with Windows 7. I used it for about a month until the official release like that. After that month I did it. I officially did a full reformat and I now run Windows 8 solely on my main computer. I love it. No doubt does it have its quirks? Of course it does. But guess what? Ever OS does. I had my quirks with Windows 7 and I also have my quirks with OS X.

    When I first booted into Windows 8 I was unsure about it. So many things were different and I found the Modern UI was completely useless. I couldn't even find the control panel for the desktop. But after using it more and more figuring more things out, I love the Modern UI. I run Google Chrome 98% of the time on the Modern UI, with every now and then having to switch Google Chrome to the desktop. Google Chrome does this perfect that. When a website or plug in needs the desktop Google Chrome tells me, and it automatically launches onto the desktop and I continue my web browsing experience. I have hated IE for quite a while and I gave it a fair shot with Windows 8 and I still absolutely hated it.

    I could do a full review of Windows 8 but I feel we would be here forever and I jut don't have the time with finals around the corner. Though I am thinking of creating a video doing a full review of Windows 8.

    The best thing about Windows 8: I am still running a 7200RPM hardrive on this computer and Windows 8 absolutely destroys Windows 7 in boot up time. I can't wait to see how fast the boot time on Windows 8 is with a SSD. Not to mention in my tests it has seemed as if Windows 8 also even uses less RAM than Windows 7. Windows 8 at this time is only using 1.7 GB of ram with two other applications running. Windows 7 in my tests would use more with no applications running.


    I use some of the Modern UI apps and I think they are absolutely beautiful. I love how easy they made it to stream something to the 360. Watch something in the Video App, and I can send it straight to my 360 and watch it on my big screen.
  25. macrumors 68000

    Mar 30, 2011
    NY USA
    Lol, people spend a lot more on small boot SSD drives basically for that same benefit...okay they save 8 seconds on reboot, but still.

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