InfoWorld Savages Windows 8 In Review, Gives It High Scores Anyway - HotHardware
InfoWorld Savages Windows 8 In Review, Gives It High Scores Anyway

InfoWorld Savages Windows 8 In Review, Gives It High Scores Anyway

When a review of a product is titled Windows 8 review: Yes, it's that bad," there's not much to do but brace yourself and push on. InfoWorld is running one of the first reviews of the operating system's RTM. While we're still two months away from formal launch, it's the version of the OS that'll ship out to customers when the gate opens on October 26th. The author notes that he's spent nearly a year with Windows 8, and that's one point where Microsoft deserves some real credit -- the company's Building Windows 8 blog and multiple pre-release builds have been great. It's a formula we hope the company sticks with when it's time to build Windows 9.

As for Windows 8, the complaints hit home exactly where expected. Metro -- yes, we're still calling it that, since Microsoft apparently can't field a replacement that isn't confusing -- works well on tablets, poorly on the desktop, and the shift between the two is jarring. The new Metro apps are missing a significant amount of functionality. Strangely enough, the actual review is rated a 7.8, while the author's sub-title is "Windows 8 is guaranteed to disappoint nearly everyone." But the actual rating? 7.8. Good.

That's...well, to be honest, confusing to say the least. It looks like what happens when a reviewer won't back down from harsh language and an editor doesn't want to tick off a major corporation -- or a publication that wants to drive hits. The reason we're talking about it at all is because the reviewer's comments line up with what MS effectively told us to expect with the Release Preview six weeks ago. The new Metro Apps are in, but semi-functional; Metro Mail can connect to Outlook/Hotmail and supports IMAP, but it can't use POP3 and won't import data from any of Microsoft's other email programs. Metro Calendar has its own synch problems and can't directly import from other MS products.

The bottom line appears to be that if you aren't running a tablet, Windows 8 may not give you anything you don't already have (and have better versions of). To be honest, we've known that for quite some time. Launching with an early review, a nasty headline, and a 7.8 "Good" rating is oddly appropriate for Windows, where Microsoft's grand effort to create a new UI appears to be hamstrung by the way the old desktop and new Metro designs don't work together.

The one major mistake here might be Microsoft's insistence that you boot to Metro and refusal to allow a Desktop-only environment. The more we push closer to release, the more this feels like a mistake.
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"The one major mistake here might be Microsoft's insistence that you boot to Metro and refusal to allow a Desktop-only environment. The more we push closer to release, the more this feels like a mistake."

It's a huge mistake. It's the reason our company will NOT buy Windows 8. Period. And that applies to the server version - I mean, seriously, what moron MBA who's never run a server in his life decided that the Fisher-Price UI (since MS doesn't want to call it Metro any more) was appropriate for a business server? You'd think Noradki was back at Microsoft.

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Hahahaha Fisher Price UI, that was good, that was gold!

I would've been fine if the "Fisher Price UI" was optional, I might've even considered giving it more of a try. But nope, not if they're going to be stubborn about it.

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I had a beta version of metro that I'd tried out for a few days earlier this year, after a few days got tired of it and removed it, the main complaint I had against it was the lack of a desktop only environment. I don't understand how anyone could've thought that could've been a good idea.

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Ive been Using Win 8 on and off since the preview release, I have to say, I am hung up about it-

I dont like it at all personally, I am with the majority out there that the Metrosexual UI is terrible for a desktop(worse that M$ wants you to buy its branded gear to better interface with it). So after a good couple weeks of learning the OS, and getting all setup to how I would first have it all set on my machine.... Simple thoughts- if your gonna just use your computer to browse the net, check email, and maybe listen to music- I.E common consumer, then its a 50/50 keeping the older generation in mind. It may actually be OK for them, but not good....

As for a business, or ANY type of power user, creative type etc.... This is much worse than Vista IMO. Vista was a slug and resource hog sure, but it was a variation of windows that everyone could figure out. Just as every version of windows has been a slightly new/different variation of their last. Everyone could find a way to manage.

I dont see how windows 8, home or server edition will serve as a productive tool to drive business.... Maybe more productive in making sure it takes you twice as long to do simple tasks.

This whole nonsense of having no ability to boot into the desktop-only environment is pure crap. Even after I have set everything up on our win 8 box. I notice that 98% of what I do on there, takes you back to the desktop anyway.... So whats the point? the bright rainbow colors? the idea you(M$) can try and say you had the first unified OS to go across all platforms? It doesnt make sense.

With every other version of windows, and other OS's for that matter, its always an "improved" version of their last. Changes are there, but the basic frame work is usually the same(even in Ubuntu you can go back to the classic UI). Its almost as though they threw up the towel and said we dont like how we've been doing this for the past decade- here try this one!

Sorry to rant, but being someone who works in the field- I see this doing NOTHING but driving up support calls, headaches, and more b.s. work for me!

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There's nothing wrong with being metrosexual -- or any other flavor of -sexual that exists. Please refrain from such comments.

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Since im a gamer i dont think it would be suitable for desktop let alone gaming. Its a dissappointment like vista

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Everyone's entitled to their opinion, it's just interesting there are people who actually like W8 and even have stated they seem more productive. It's just that people who complain tend to be the more vocal while the people who don't tend to keep it to themselves.

While comparisons to Vista seem to forget that Windows 7 was basically just a tweaked version of Vista with a new name! MS even said so when they released W7!

Having tried pretty much every OS out there, it's safe to say there's no such thing as a perfect OS and every OS has to stand on its own merits, but a lot has to do with perception as well. The problem with W8 is not so much whether the OS is usable, as a point of fact it is, but whether it's perceived to be is the problem.

Like the emphasis that Metro is only for touch screen when the truth is it's for both tablets and traditional systems. It's just including elements that work for both produces a compromised mix but that doesn't mean it isn't still usable in both environments.

While things like Metro Snap may be limited to 2 apps at a time but on multi-monitor setup it allows each monitor to support snap separately. You can even game on one screen and still use the metro or desktop app on another.

W8 multi-monitor support in fact exceeds W7. Each screen can have it's own wallpaper, cursor stops at the screen edge before going to the next screen, you can leave metro on one screen and stay on desktop on another, charms and the taskbar function for each screen, etc.

While it doesn't really take longer to do anything with W8 unless you're doing it the wrong way. Aside from being jarring, the Start Screen can be even more useful than the Start Menu...

Search works just like it did with W7, but it can also search content with programs or through Programs and you couldn't do that in W7 and it does it faster on W8!

Search result can also be organized i.e. if a program has multiple components, all these components will be grouped together. Lastly, due to the contracts feature in windows 8, you can extend the functionality of start screen search without Microsoft having to implement the feature in the OS itself.

W7 Start Menu also allowed pinning of apps up to 10 but you can put as many or as few as you want and organize them any way you want on W8's Start Screen. It even supports folders, files, contacts, and websites. Never mind whether anyone would find Live Tiles a useful feature or not.

While, arguably, having access to All Apps on full screen means you can more easily get through the list and it doesn't look as cluttered as on W7 Start Menu. Though that depends on how many programs you have but if you got like a hundred or more then the advantage can be W8's.

One of the points of W8 is that it's also the first Windows OS that's optimized to be very power efficient, which coupled with the new hardware improvements being offered on new systems means they could de-emphasize the power options because W8 can just sleep for days or even weeks.

However, there are still ways to quickly get to such functions or you can just customize and add the option to wherever you want. Like it's pretty simple to just add the power options to the desktop right click menu for example. Or you can just use the keyboard shortcuts that are already available.

While the Task Manager may not have the power options, it's otherwise much more useful than the W7 version and gives you both more control and more information.

Also, MS is hardware accelerating everything for W8. So while not everything is faster than W7, the OS itself runs smoother and is more responsive in most cases.

Even file transfers are faster, though it may seem to take longer because the files get virus scanned but basically W8 has default security that's higher than what W7 comes with and leaves less to worry about.

Really, there are people that have reported that their kids, as young as 4 years old, have quickly learned on their own how to use W8 and some power users as well have shown anyone can make it work if they really wanted to.

The main issue is while W8 isn't really any harder to use than W7, it doesn't necessarily bring anything to make people want to upgrade unless they see and want the advantage of more convergence with all their devices or just want something that can be useful where traditional Windows has not been.

W8 has some nice features and some improvements but things like gaming are negligibly different and those who prefer the old Windows will likely want to stick to it.

However, just because MS is introducing a new OS doesn't mean they want you to just stop using the last version. Windows 7 will still be supported till 2020 and MS has also made it clear they will help support companies with both W7 and W8.

So it's just a question of whether MS can deal with the perception problem but it doesn't have to succeed everywhere to be considered successful and once people get used to it then the rest may fall into place eventually.

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~"Fisher-Price UI"~

Ha-Ha! That descriptor is spot-on!

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