Don't upgrade to Windows 8 / Metro !

I'm a glutton for punishment: not only do I do tech support for my parents' home PC, but I recently upgraded it to... my old desktop... and put vanilla (Metro) Windows 8 on it (I use Classic Shell myself).


The whole experience has been thoroughly underwhelming, and I would advise anyone to try and hang on to their old PCs until MS fix Win8, or until Google get serious about Android on the desktop.


Hodge-podge of issues


1- While installing

- Lost Admin access from Metro not once, but twice, ie had to start from scratch twice, taking care to create snapshots every 10 mins to be able to roll back whatever caused the issue (some Windows Update). Issue didn't happen on the 3rd try, for some reason.


2- Obvious usability issues:

- Live tiles can be arranged only one way: stacked from the top down.

- Very few good live tiles: photos, mail... that's it

- missing Live Tiles: clock

- bad Live Tiles: Videos (won't show screenshots), Skype (has issues logging in  at Windows start), IE (won't show as a Live Tile if IE is not the default browser)

- only very ugly icons shown for non-Metro apps, which is most of them

- many apps are not Metro-ized: Control Panel, Office, Explorer)... which causes a constant back-and-forth between Metro and Desktop that is utterly jarring to non-techies.


3- After a month of use, I got back there:

- (in email) "How do I print ?"... well you push the Menu key... "The what key ?" ...the key that shows a menu... "??" ... the one between the CTRL key and the Windows key... "the Windows key ? you mean the flag key ?" ... yes..., then you click print.

- (in IE) "How do I print ?" ... well dad, OBVIOUSLY the same way: push the menu key... no, that was the flag key... "It doesn't say print"... Look... oh, you're right, it doesn't... hold on a sec... you gotta use ctrl+P "Why can't I use the Print key" because... use ctrl+P... tell you what, you're better off using CTRL+P everywhere.

-> Wouldn't a bit of consistency be nice ?


- "Why do I show up as Disconnected on Skype ?" ... you've got to click on it to start it "but it wasn't that way before" ... well, it's flaky now, maybe they'll fix it.


- "How can I see my grandkids' vids ?" ... well, you click on the video tile, then hunt for the local folder... no, that's videos for sale... hold on, I'll just make you a shortcut to it, 'coz that video tile just sucks.


- "Can you make me a power off button like I used to have ?" ... no, just do what I showed you: top right corner... "but the things keep disappearing !" ... that's because you don't keep your mouse on the right edge dad... "But I liked the button better !" ... well, it used to be possible, but MS took that away... You can kneel under the desk and push the PC's powerbutton if you want... "OK, I'll do that then, and do it for your mom who can't kneel that well".


- I also noticed IE keeps open tabs, so they has like 20 tabs open... I'll just have to remember to remote log-in and close them every once in a while I guess. Also, nice move putting the address bar on the bottom, because on the top, it was so... well known... I'm guessing we'll have it vertical for Win 9 ?


In the end, they're using their $50 Android stick ever more: Skype does auto-log (and show conversations and online friends right on the home screen), there's a Power button, A photos widget, a vids shortcut, a mail widget. If it were not for Scrabble and Genealogy stuff, I'd junk their Wintel PC.

 

Discussion Info


Last updated March 24, 2018 Views 62 Applies to:

I'm a glutton for punishment: not only do I do tech support for my parents' home PC, but I recently upgraded it to... my old desktop... and put vanilla (Metro) Windows 8 on it (I use Classic Shell myself).


The whole experience has been thoroughly underwhelming, and I would advise anyone to try and hang on to their old PCs until MS fix Win8, or until Google get serious about Android on the desktop.


Hodge-podge of issues


1- While installing

- Lost Admin access from Metro not once, but twice, ie had to start from scratch twice, taking care to create snapshots every 10 mins to be able to roll back whatever caused the issue (some Windows Update). Issue didn't happen on the 3rd try, for some reason.


2- Obvious usability issues:

- Live tiles can be arranged only one way: stacked from the top down.

- Very few good live tiles: photos, mail... that's it

- missing Live Tiles: clock

- bad Live Tiles: Videos (won't show screenshots), Skype (has issues logging in  at Windows start), IE (won't show as a Live Tile if IE is not the default browser)

- only very ugly icons shown for non-Metro apps, which is most of them

- many apps are not Metro-ized: Control Panel, Office, Explorer)... which causes a constant back-and-forth between Metro and Desktop that is utterly jarring to non-techies.


3- After a month of use, I got back there:

- (in email) "How do I print ?"... well you push the Menu key... "The what key ?" ...the key that shows a menu... "??" ... the one between the CTRL key and the Windows key... "the Windows key ? you mean the flag key ?" ... yes..., then you click print.

- (in IE) "How do I print ?" ... well dad, OBVIOUSLY the same way: push the menu key... no, that was the flag key... "It doesn't say print"... Look... oh, you're right, it doesn't... hold on a sec... you gotta use ctrl+P "Why can't I use the Print key" because... use ctrl+P... tell you what, you're better off using CTRL+P everywhere.

-> Wouldn't a bit of consistency be nice ?


- "Why do I show up as Disconnected on Skype ?" ... you've got to click on it to start it "but it wasn't that way before" ... well, it's flaky now, maybe they'll fix it.


- "How can I see my grandkids' vids ?" ... well, you click on the video tile, then hunt for the local folder... no, that's videos for sale... hold on, I'll just make you a shortcut to it, 'coz that video tile just sucks.


- "Can you make me a power off button like I used to have ?" ... no, just do what I showed you: top right corner... "but the things keep disappearing !" ... that's because you don't keep your mouse on the right edge dad... "But I liked the button better !" ... well, it used to be possible, but MS took that away... You can kneel under the desk and push the PC's powerbutton if you want... "OK, I'll do that then, and do it for your mom who can't kneel that well".


- I also noticed IE keeps open tabs, so they has like 20 tabs open... I'll just have to remember to remote log-in and close them every once in a while I guess. Also, nice move putting the address bar on the bottom, because on the top, it was so... well known... I'm guessing we'll have it vertical for Win 9 ?


In the end, they're using their $50 Android stick ever more: Skype does auto-log (and show conversations and online friends right on the home screen), there's a Power button, A photos widget, a vids shortcut, a mail widget. If it were not for Scrabble and Genealogy stuff, I'd junk their Wintel PC.

1. How on earth did you "lost admin access"? Administration, security, privileges etc are pretty much unchanged from Win 7, apart from the added feature of being able to log on using a Microsoft account and have all your settings saved between PCs. Well, most of your settings.

2. Clock is an app available in the Store. Bad live tiles: I agree, there is room for improvement here. In fact I tend to avoid most of the touch apps, lol.

3. Print? Ctrl-P isn't hard, surely?

- I recommend Skype for desktop, lol
- Dont you just scroll up with the mouse to see local vids? Or just install VLC, go the desktop, click file explorer and open vids with VLC. Vids metro app is kinda useful if you're using a touchscreen I guess, again tho I tend to avoid it!
- Winkey-X to power off. In windows 8.1 right click the start button to power off.

Yeah if you're used to the old Windows interface, it does take some getting used to, and I hate the charms thing as much as your dad does haha... you get used to it though. Pinning a few frequently-used shortcuts to the taskbar and start menu will help.

IE - if you're on keyboard/mouse, DO NOT USE THE TOUCH VERSION OF IE. Sorry for all-caps :D To save yourself hassle, open IE on the desktop, go to Internet Options > Programs tab and tick the box that says open IE tiles on the desktop. I can't stand that touch version of IE - but there's no reason to actually use it.