Microsoft gives further peek at Windows 8

Aug 30, 2011
Microsoft on Tuesday provided another glimpse at changes coming with the next-generation of Windows software that powers most of the world's computers.

Microsoft on Tuesday provided another glimpse at changes coming with the next-generation of Windows software that powers most of the world's computers.

Microsoft is making major improvements to a key Windows Explorer file management program to enhance how it interacts with the coming Windows 8 , according to Windows division president Steven Sinofsky.

"Windows 8 is about reimagining Windows, so we took on the challenge to improve the most widely used desktop tool (except maybe for Solitaire) in Windows," Sinofsky said atop a blog post detailing Explorer modifications.

"Windows Explorer is a foundation of the user experience of the Windows desktop and has undergone several design changes over the years, but has not seen a substantial change in quite some time," he added.

A control "ribbon" for commands was added to make them more easily accessible to people other than "power users" familiar with Windows Explorer shortcuts.

Engineers set out to "return Explorer to its roots as an efficient file manager and expose some hidden gems" in the form of handy commands many people may not know, according to Alex Simmons of the program management team.

Microsoft in June provided the first sneak peak at the successor to Windows 7, a next-generation operating system designed to work on both personal computers and touchscreen tablets.

Sinofsky demonstrated some of the features of the operating system code-named "Windows 8" at a D9 technology conference hosted by All Things Digital.

"Laptops, slates, desktops -- all can run one operating system," Sinofsky said.

"Windows 8" builds upon many of the features in Microsoft's latest mobile operating system for smartphones, 7, including the use of touch "tiles" instead of icons to launch and navigate between applications.

Microsoft has promised to reveal more features of , which uses Internet Explorer 10 as a Web browser, at its in Anaheim, California, opening on September 13.

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User comments : 21

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NotAsleep
3.8 / 5 (5) Aug 30, 2011
I'm a long-time fan of Windows but lately all I want them to add is an on/off button for the "suck" feature that they keep adding on to. Windows used to be the OS that everything ran smoothly on. Now it's hit and miss and, even if a program works, it takes a lot of effort to make it work correctly

Maybe they can just remarket WindowsXP as Windows 8
tux
3.2 / 5 (9) Aug 30, 2011
I'm a long-time fan of Windows but lately all I want them to add is an on/off button for the "suck" feature that they keep adding on to. Windows used to be the OS that everything ran smoothly on. Now it's hit and miss and, even if a program works, it takes a lot of effort to make it work correctly

Maybe they can just remarket WindowsXP as Windows 8


Sounds like a problem with the user if you ask me. If Windows was so bad they wouldn't hold over 90% of the computer market... Its no easy task writing an operating system that supports literally thousands of different hardware configurations that changes every day. Apple has it easy, they make the software run on hardware they design, so it works perfect most of the time... but Apple computers cost 3 times more than a PC.
Norezar
5 / 5 (2) Aug 30, 2011
I'll buy another M$ based operating system when they can release one for power users without the bloat. It shouldn't require a day half of modifying an OS *Nix style for it to be tolerable.
Squirrel
4 / 5 (5) Aug 30, 2011
Not the user. I purchased both Office 07 and 10 but had to remove both and revert to Office 03. The problem was that the ribbon and blue office button could be not customized to remove its distracting intrusion upon monitor real estate. That is not my problem but MS refusal to do allow users the freedom to adjust MS software.
jselin
4.8 / 5 (6) Aug 30, 2011
I'm clutching onto XP64 like a drowning rat... I tried Win7 64 and after weeks of trying to resolve issues I realized I was wasting a ton of time trying to gain marginal value and reverted my system back.
Eikka
3.7 / 5 (6) Aug 30, 2011
If Windows was so bad they wouldn't hold over 90% of the computer market...


The other explaination is that the competitors suck even more.

widgget
1.4 / 5 (5) Aug 30, 2011
XP was one of the best, sure, but it's so far behind times now that unless you don't need to ever run any new applications you will only be chasing more issues then you would be with 7. you can't seriously think that running 10 year old software is going to give you an advantage over something new. over all 7 is a solid OS (better then vista and i won't even ME-ntion that bastard child MS released) , full of bloated crap but it doesn't take a degree to remove most of it. as far as 8 is concerned i am holding judgement until i have it installed and can play around with it, until then 7 will be firmly planted on all my PC's.
Mike_De_Fleuriot
5 / 5 (4) Aug 30, 2011
What new apps, that are NOT hard coded to only run on 7, can you not run on XP. Only poorly written apps, of which there are many and better version available. None of these new upgrades are worth the increase in price that we are forced to pay for them.

Makes you wonder why people do not pirate more, and the reason for that is most people are technically inept to do this. That is why these people get away with bloatware.
Code_Warrior
5 / 5 (1) Aug 30, 2011
I switched to win 7 after my XP hard drive died and my computer runs faster and better than ever. I am running an AMD Phenom II 945 Black Edition overclocked to 3.5 Ghz and XP ran pretty well on it, but win 7 really makes it scream. There was always a few seconds of delay when starting programs on that box in XP, however, win 7 responds as fast as I can click and is a joy to use. I have absolutely no issues with it other than User Account Controls, which was just a new thing to learn. I cannot say that about any previous Windows installation, including XP. This does not mean that win 8 will be any good, and I won't make the switch unless I have to, but I have to give MS props on win 7, it works great for me.
Star_Gazer
4 / 5 (4) Aug 30, 2011
Not the user. I purchased both Office 07 and 10 but had to remove both and revert to Office 03. The problem was that the ribbon and blue office button could be not customized to remove its distracting intrusion upon monitor real estate. That is not my problem but MS refusal to do allow users the freedom to adjust MS software.


You know if you Double-click on the heading of the tab, it will neatly collapse? Hover the mouse over it and it will temporary re-appear? MSFT spent quite some time learning usability. They improved it alot. There is of course a learning curve..
Hengine
3.7 / 5 (3) Aug 30, 2011
The only benefit I will get from upgrading from XP is DX10/11 support, not much else if anything.

XP is simple and it tends to work reliably, I never have problems with new software. Every year or two the system files may need a manual clean up but that's nothing huge.
hard2grep
5 / 5 (4) Aug 30, 2011
You don't have to pay Microsoft for a license when you have plenty of open source alternatives. As a matter of fact, the more that people use open source the better and more reliable it is. another words, all that consumer input and so forth would stay in the open source community instead of lining a few people's pocketbooks. Microsoft operating system has two monopolies going for it. it has all the market already and a lot of money to keep things in check. Linux systems are freely quirky but now have better driver support than windows out of the box. We use them more often, and that quirkiness will be a Microsoft problem.I blame Microsoft for knowing where to put that money...
Deesky
4.1 / 5 (7) Aug 30, 2011
Windows Explorer is a foundation of the user experience of the Windows desktop and has undergone several design changes over the years

Pity you screwed it up in Win 7.

Now, while you may be able to have several Explorer windows open at once, you CANNOT customize each window view individually. For example, you can't have just a file view in one window and in another window have the navigation pane and file pane. As soon as you make a change in one window, the other window will also be changed when you navigate to a new folder say. Same goes with adjusting widths of the navigation pane. Totally retarded!

Instead of each window having it's own view settings, they made it so that there is only ONE global setting for all windows! And I won't mention the scrolling bug when you double click to open a folder in the navigation pane and the opened folder scrolls down to the bottom so that you can't see its sub-folders without scrolling.

Thanks MS for the great new user experience!
evropej
2.8 / 5 (6) Aug 30, 2011
I think this will seal Microsoft's faith. Their first attempt at removing functionality and compatibility in the OS with windows vista failed miserably. Mac's and Linux really took off when this new concept of fail came along. All you see in the OS now is dumb boxes for button pushers. Microsoft got big because they took over the business world but now they decided to abandon them. Apple already has an interface which is far superior then any that Microsoft is trying to develop for the mobile devices. Admins, developers, power users, gamers, media editors will have to migrate to other operating systems and to be honest, its about time. Someone has to tell these people that forcing users to do more clicking to do the same task is not adding functionality. I am dumb founded.
rynox
not rated yet Aug 31, 2011
Let me guess... does exactly the same thing as Windows 2000 with a 20GB install footprint and 90 second boot time. I can't wait.
hard2grep
2 / 5 (2) Aug 31, 2011
in the end, everyone will have nothing but a screen and mouse hooked up to a web browser. everything else will be from a host.what you call a pc now will no longer exist.
Sean_W
3 / 5 (4) Aug 31, 2011
in the end, everyone will have nothing but a screen and mouse hooked up to a web browser. everything else will be from a host.what you call a pc now will no longer exist.


At which point we all tie our screens to our legs and throw ourselves off a bridge. ISP's love to *sell* broadband but they will do anything to avoid actually providing it. If you think gaming, VoIP and file sharing is being throttled and traffic shaped now, just wait until everything is net based.
stealthc
2.3 / 5 (3) Aug 31, 2011
laptops, slates, etc... blah blah blah... wow they achieved what linux has been doing for years. Expect some nifty improvements to linux as the community takes microsofts ideas and makes them even better.
krundoloss
5 / 5 (2) Aug 31, 2011
We are seeing Microsoft trying to lead us somewhere, but even they dont know where that is. Its funny, they seem to change things just for the sake of changing them, not necessarily making improvements. Microsoft is in the business of software, so they try to make thier OS's flashy and good looking, yet they neglect underlying components, like something as simple as copying a set of files. They change all these things on the surface, but when you open some more advanced menus, everything is the same as it has been since Windows 2000.
What would benefit the computer world and give MS some real competition would be if Apple got off thier butt and actually started targeting the business market. They wont do that, because once someone else is making software for your system, thats when all the problems occur. Sadly, MS gets a bad rap for problems that are not thier fault, such as a hardware vendor that makes crappy drivers for thier OS.
LuckyBrandon
1 / 5 (1) Aug 31, 2011
hard2grep - you are mistaking the normal user environment for the developer community. Only the developer community is really going to make open source software more reliable...the average user isn't going to hunt down how to fix a memory leak in a process, nor are they going to code any improvements.
So yes, you are either paying Microsoft for a license, or a device vendor for a device that runs open source software. Its the same exact game, just a different face put on it to make it look "open"....if what you suggest were the norm, that open source software would convert....
You already pay for the license with the PC/laptop/tablet anyways, so it isn't like it costs extra for the consumer really (after all, the hardware manufacturer pays microsoft for the OS CAL, not the consumer), and for companies with licensing agreements, these licenses can be next to nothing.
btb101
not rated yet Sep 03, 2011
no matter what m$ do, the pirates will have it cracked inside an hour.. M$ are pretty good at applications and thats where they should stay.
they couldn't even make a mouse work without help from apple.. what does that tell the world?