Everything You Wanted to Know about Windows 8 but Were Afraid to Ask

Microsoft continues to dominate the desktop PC world and the gaming console world, and continues to struggle in just about every other area. From mobile devices to music players, Microsoft has been trying to invade other areas of the electronics world for decades with little success (does anyone remember the Zune?). When your business is Melbourne computer repairs like ours is, you have to know every possible platform, operating system and piece of hardware you might encounter in order to serve your clients’ needs. As a result, we’ve been learning everything we can about Windows 8 so that we can better answer our clients’ questions. Here’s a quick primer on this new Operating System (OS) from Microsoft, which will eventually be on the desktops in your shop.

Windows 8 and Computer Repairs in Melbourne

Right now the world is resisting Windows 8 because it’s a radical departure from the tried-and-true Windows interface that people have been using since the early 1990s. Some have likened Windows 8 to Windows 95 in terms of revolutionary re-design, but for those of us who were already making computer repairs in Melbourne in 1995, we know this isn’t true: While Windows 95 exploded on the market as a giant leap forward in terms of desktop computer capability, it did so with an interface that was recognisable to anyone who’d been using Windows 3.0 before it. There were refinements and new ideas, but the base interface was familiar enough to make the transition easy.

Windows 8 is a completely new concept. In it, Microsoft is predicting that mobile and touchscreen devices like our tablets and smartphones are the future – the new interface for Windows 8 is designed entirely for touchscreen interaction.

So the first thing to know is that using Windows 8 with your mouse and keyboard will feel a little frustrating, simply because the interface is designed to be a bunch of tiles, each linked to either an application like Office or a widget, like a weather bug. The tiles can be sized and arranged any way you like.

Melbourne Computer Repairs Cannot Bring Back the Start Button

The original Windows 8 lacked a Start Button, but (confusingly) reverted to an old-school desktop when you launched an application like Office. In Windows 8.1, Microsoft brought back the Start Button due to popular demand, but it’s not the same Start Button you might remember. It has far fewer functions attached to it, and it doesn’t do much, really.

In fact, Microsoft has received a lot of criticism about the dual nature of Windows 8 – it switches awkwardly between a tablet-centric approach and an old-school desktop, leading to an spike in computer repairs in Melbourne calls due to users assuming their desktops were broken, when it fact the OS simply works in a wholly different way. Rumours are already circulating that Microsoft intends to launch Windows 9 sooner than expected in order to fix some of these problems – Windows 8 still only has less than 10% of the desktops – and that’s fewer than Windows XP, which is now closing in on 15 years old.