Windows 8 is Microsoft’s biggest makeover since Windows 95. Well sort of. It still has much of its predecessor, icon-and-mouse user interface, but it also has the innovative graphic UI from tablets and Windows phones.
Am I sounding a bit conflicted? That’s because I am, or better yet, that’s because of how Windows 8 feels to me.
To Use or Not To Use the Modern UI
Microsoft’s rational behind the Modern UI is that the start menu is used a lot less in favor of the quickbar and the search option.
Some want the start menu back, but it makes sense to me as I am one of those who does what Microsoft has described – the Modern UI Start Screen is just a prettier quickbar.
I am actually one of those people who doesn’t mind the look of the Modern UI, so if I can, I am more than happy to use it… only to get thrown back to the Windows 7 UI whenever I want to open things such as the control panel.
And that’s when things start to annoy me.
Dual-System: One OS, Double the Trouble?
If you want to open Wordpad, you will be sent back to the Windows 7 interface.
File Explorer (read Windows Explorer) will also throw you back to the Windows 7 interface.
There are a few more examples like this.
I can guess what Microsoft is thinking – they don’t want to make their OS completely alien to people who were used to the classic interface, and maybe with Windows 9 a lot of this dual interface business will disappear.
However this is all very clunky and there are a lot of things that could be kept in the Modern UI.
How Me and the Desktop Broke Up
I loved my desktop. I can’t even begin to explain just how much it meant to me. It was always there for me and never left me alone.
However, for the sake of backward compatibility, once again I feel Microsoft implemented it in a lazy way. In the Modern UI, if you have two apps running you can place one on the side of your monitor, taking up about ¼ of your screen, and then have the main app take up the rest of the space.
If you however have an app from Modern UI and one from your desktop you can’t do the same. It works if the desktop program is your main app, but not the other way around, making multi-tasking very irritating in some cases.
Why not make it so that each application still runs in the Modern UI container? That’s exactly what Google Chrome did even though they didn’t re-design the application.
I can’t help but think that Microsoft could have done something so that all applications could do that without any extra work from their developers.
As it is now, I don’t see that companies will swap to Windows 8 any time soon so small business IT support will not really need to learn the ins and outs of the new OS just yet.
[Recommended read: Super 7 Apps for Windows 8 to Pump The Performance and Productivity]
But There’s Light…
My computer is snappier since I installed Windows 8 and it starts up a lot faster. Like I said, I do like the look of the Modern UI so I don’t see myself going back to Windows 7 any time soon. Aside from the odd indie game here and there, everything runs just fine on Windows 8.
How about you, are you going to make the swap?
[Read more: 4 Things to Consider when Upgrading to Windows 8]