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Doug's Mailbag: More Reader Mail on Windows 8

Here's another batch of reader thoughts on Windows 8:

If Microsoft insists on all users having to use the Metro interface I'd say it will be the new Vista. I can't see business desktop/laptop users taking to it at all.

It's obvious that Metro will be superb on tablets but why should this replace the Start button on a desktop or laptop PC? It's far too clunky, rather like trying to control your PC using Windows Media Center.

My advice (for what it's worth) is that Microsoft should install Metro on tablets but offer a Metro free interface (i.e. Windows 7 with the new features) for traditional PCs. Why throw the baby out with the bath water?

I tried the Consumer Preview the other day and had no idea how to run Control Panel or even shut the PC down! It took a couple of Web searches to find out how to do the simplest tasks.

Microsoft PLEASE don't force us to use Metro on desktops and laptops. Give us our Start button back. I'll still want a Windows 8 table, promise.

I have been using the consumer preview since it released and there are definitely pros/cons. 

PRO:  If you've been using the Windows Phone 7 OS the new GUI is actually intuitive.  If not it's going to be a shock to the system.

 CON:  Average users will miss the 'good old Start button' since the bottom-left corner now takes you back to the Metro interface.

 There are already hacks available and more to come, I'm sure, to make it look more like Windows 7.

 I personally like how customizable the Metro interface is and believe Microsoft may finally have a tablet OS that will give the iPad some decent competition!

Share your thoughts with the editors of this newsletter! Write to Letters printed in this newsletter may be edited for length and clarity, and will be credited by first name only (we do NOT print last names or e-mail addresses).

Posted by Doug Barney on 03/12/2012 at 1:19 PM

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Reader Comments:

Sun, Apr 22, 2012 Kris

"Clunky" is a perfect word for it. I just installed the preview version today and am already annoyed on how many steps I need to take to do the simplest tasks.. shut off my pc? Come on MS, think about the user. There's no way I'd be able to walk through my less techie clients how to navigate win 8 over the phone.

Wed, Mar 14, 2012 Robert

I have used every version of Windows going back to Windows/386 and Windows NT 3.1 except ME. I can tell you that Windows 8 is the biggest mess I've ever seen. The usability is horrible. Finding things, finding how to do things. I used it for 4 days and removed it from my machine. Anxiously, awaiting Windows 9.

Wed, Mar 14, 2012 Raymond

I have yet to see any pro-Windows 8 comments that actually say anything specific about how it makes it easier to do what I most care about: get work done. Mainly I'm seeing comments that say how to make it more like Windows 7. If that's the best that can be offered, why should I upgrade? I have, by the way, been using Windows since version 2, and DOS before that. So change doesn't exactly scare me. I just need good reasons to change. And I've seen nothing in Windows 8 that makes me say, "Hey, that's really useful." And one last request: some specific information on why Windows 8 is worthwhile. I won't even bother going into all the ways it isn't because that topic has been thoroughly covered in very many places - and by Windows experts. (The Mac guys don't even seem to be bothering to criticize.)

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