Windows 8.1: Everything You Need to Know

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Laptop Adapters...

This one is so cool, and the pictures are very beautiful. I really like it!

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pastorbob

Updated two desktops and one laptop to Windows 8.1 this week. It was smoothest and fastest major update I've ever experienced in twenty years of using Windows. And the new additions/features are nice.

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Jademan

How can Microsoft wash their sins - with the upcoming OS, not 8.x: have touchscreen detection for deploying 'Metro' - if that's to stay - if wanted (touchscreen detected, wanna use metro? Yes. No.) and use of desktop (with the famous start functionality) all ova' da place, no matter if touch exists and especially if classic interface is used in interaction with the OS.

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agello24

same way apple did it. apple told millions that macs dont get viruses. well they have to issue a huge public apology when the hackers shredded the hell out of the os!.

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Ninjawithagun

What the heck are you trying to say?? Your constant babbling using a couple of run-on sentences will not help your diluted cause.

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Khaotic

My complaint is that when I want to use a file type that has a tile app associated with it. Pictures are the most annoying. Viewing pictures requires use of the metro tile app and once it takes over, it requires viewing pictures in a way that's 'now how I do it'. And it is MY PC after all?! Isn't it?!

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davelray

You can change file type associations in Windows 8. Just right click the file, choose Open With, click the option "Choose Default Program," then select or browse to the application you want to open that file type.

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Gary1847

I am not going to reinstall Win 8 pro till the real time clock issue is fixed and documented. As for Norton not working, no affected as I will never use it. After 29 years in the computer business, nothing Microsoft does surprises me, Ballmer has only one claim to fame, he was Gates high school buddy like Fester was to Matt Dillon, and just as stupid. As for Win 8.1, I will wait till it has been bug checked by users. It is the new paradigm now to let the user community fix the crap that the software companies are releasing, anyone who has played Skyrim will know what I am saying. Remember, don't get mad, stay with Win 7 and don't buy 8, nothing works like ignoring a company's products.

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davelray

Making a lot of on the fly BCLK changes while still in Windows? Because that's the only way the RTC has a problem. And I don't know many people that do that. Not even among friends that do some serious overclocking. This problem only occurs when you are over or underclocking and make changes to the BCLK using some utility while in Windows. And since the percentage of people doing that is probably less than 0.01%, it's not really an issue. Sounds to me like you just want an excuse to trash MS like some of the others here.

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andrerocha

my biggest complaining about windows 8 was because it is ugly. after seen some windows 8.1 screenshots, I think Microsoft is really working hard to change that. I kind of like windows 8 now more (still needs a few improvements necessary, like when you install an application and the whole shit, uninstall, readme, etc., spreads like crazy in the start screen.)
it is really a BIG improvement imho.

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Pulagatha

Ideas For 8.2:

Combine the Menu Bar and Title bar.

Remove the word "Start" on the Start Screen and move the user profile icon to the side/bottom for landscape/portrait mode.

Tabs (or buttons with optional icons?) for Explorer.

Customizable buttons like VLC's customizable window interface, basic, advanced, and arrangeable buttons for Explorer and/or other applications.

Mouse Gestures, proper implementation of "Grab And Drag" for background space. QTTabBar's double-click background space option.

More Options/Adjustable taskbar (add, remove, arrange options, weather, headlines, stocks, a tab for auto-hide, the recycle bin optional). Maybe have the (customizable) options of the Charms Bar in the taskbar?

Metro apps could be windowed and at least have an option to change to the Desktop color scheme (light greys and light blues). And for the windowed mode, they already have a landscape or portrait setting, just choose one as the default for Desktop and let us have it windowed (along with a Menu bar.)

THE START BUTTON SHOULD NOT DISAPPEAR.

Metro applications should NOT have second taskbar on the left. They should be located in the original taskbar.

The scroll bar for the Metro Start Screen should NOT be at the bottom of the screen. It should be a lot smaller and right underneath the menu options. Maybe a small bar that has a glow that tracks from left to right as you scroll?

Full-Screen Metro apps should NOT have cut off pages (like the weather app) and should be appropriated for landscape/portrait.

The side bar should NOT cover the taskbar and should have some kind of border.

When using the side bar for search, A Desktop browser window should be optional, instead of, opening a full-screen Metro app. (And an option for Google instead of Bing.)

IE could give top headlines for a live tile (widget.)

There needs to be a Desktop version of Messaging, Photos, and Contacts.

DeviantArt themes on the Windows Store.

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T0mmy1977

Fuck Windows 8.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

+.1

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T0mmy1977

I work for a US government agency that will not even touch Windows 8. Business users and home users want Windows 7 style interface. I hope MSFT learns from this and designs another OS for us.

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Ninjawithagun

Misleading statement. For example, DoD has not employed Windows 8 only because Windows 7 was just deployed last year. Get your facts straight before trolling again...oh wait...then you wouldn't be a troll!

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davelray

I wasn't allowed to talk about what the government agencies I worked for had or used or anything. It was considered a violation of the NDA I had to sign as part of working for said agencies. I guess things have changed in the last 5 years....but I doubt it.

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spoonard

Doesn't anyone here know about StartIsBack? Type that into Google and do away with all your modern/metro UI woes.

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RtDK

*Shakes head slowly*

I don't have the words....

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PCWolf

There is no hope for Windows 8 on the Desktop because some RETARD at Microsoft thinks that because Touch Tablets are selling like Hotcakes, that people want their PCs to look like Touch Tablets. Something that has proven to be WRONG based on Windows 8's Dismal failure. Now we get a FAKE start button that leads back to: METRO! The modern fail UI.

Again, I KNOW how to use Windows 8. I have a test PC that I use for that sort of thing. I don't like the tacky looking tiles that are always "In your Face" nor do I like the stupid Apps that run on it. Also, it does not even work with some of my programs, & Second Life does not run on it. And I don't have a Touch Screen Desktop Monitor.

So again, Windows 8 remains useless for me or my current needs. Still sticking with Windows 7 64 bit. Keep on Failing Microsoft, maybe one day you might get it just like Sony forced you to "get it" with your stupid Xbox One's "Call Home every day" DRM. So much for that "If you don't like it, go buy an Xbox 360" Attitude you had at E3. Speaking
of E3, thats where Microsoft used Windows 7 PCs to showcase XBox One games. So much for Windows 8! Even Microsoft wont use it!

This Penny Arcade comic strip pretty much sums it all up for me.
art.penny-arcade.com/photos/i-RrTj8nL/0/950x10000/i-RrTj8nL-950x10000.jpg

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PSYCO_J

Yes, Brother, my mind is, as yours. WHEN will this company *really* listen to its customer base? They don't give a shit what *WE* the consumer want. M$ wants to shovel their messed up ideas up our collective asses and expect us to pay for it as well! I will not spend any money on M$ products until they make it right.

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sotoa

I use Classic Start 8 (for free) and lets me boot to the desktop. I don't mind not having the start button, but it confuses my co-workers (who don't know better). At least Classic Start 8 lets me put the button. Funny how MS has the same flat graphic button as CS8.

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PCWolf

The Big problem with these 3rd party add-ons is the possibility that the company or App your using might break during a Patch or Update. Then you might have to wait for an update. You may have to Pay again after a year (A-La Cyberlink style), & if the company goes belly up so does your Start Button App.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

"The button itself cannot be disabled, and still launches the Start Screen rather than a menu."

And there you have it. Ballmer continues to be an arrogant, spiteful little prick. He takes one of our biggest complaints and turns it into a running joke, with this as the final punchline.

Windows 7 still works great. You guys can shove your phone OS.

Finally, this is just a M$-friendly cut-and-paste from the press release. When can we get an actual review that isn't biased?

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someuid

"Finally, this is just a M$-friendly cut-and-paste from the press release. When can we get an actual review that isn't biased?"

Agreed, especially when I see things like XBox Music and Bing being pawned off as OS enhancements.

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tferrill

Xbox music is integrated into the OS, and is a pretty decent music player, particularly if you're using a tablet. Bing powers the entire search function in Windows 8.1. That's not an opinion, it's a fact.

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PCWolf

Bing is FAIL. To search on my computer, I use a program called "Everything". It only searches my computer, it does not go online. When I want online searching, I use Google. The 2 should NEVER Mix. & if I'm doing a search for pictures of Kathy on my computer, I don't need Bing searching Online as well. Windows 8, it's FAIL rises to new levels every day!

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fung0

"Bing powers the entire search function in Windows 8.1. That's not an opinion, it's a fact."

It's not a feature, it's one more reason to never use Windows 8.1.

By the way... don't you find it hilarious that several of the biggest "features" in Windows 8.1 are simply the ability to disable touted features of Windows 8.0?

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nauc

User tip.... spend $5, and buy Start8. Start8 is even better than the W7 Start button.

And a tip for MS, put a TB drive in the new Xbox, and let us DL games off the net, and save entire games onto the consoles, from store bought games. You think anyone wants to switch out discs every time they want to play a different game?

No, it's not rocket science.

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PCWolf

Why should people spend $5 for something that should be there for free?

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elzafir

STILL no File Explorer in Metro? Bummer. And Microsoft, stop forcing SkyDrive to us (resident in Office 2013 Save As menu). Some of us love local storage.

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Granite

Dude...there are probably a hundred apps that give you a file explorer in Metro. Heck, others talk about lack of options?? Check em out and pick the one you like most.

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davelray

How is having the option available to use "forcing" Skydrive on you? You can still save to your local drive.

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Scatter

This update better not break the Start Button replacement that I eventually purchased because Microsoft couldn't be bothered to add on the first time and doesn't seem to have full implemented this time.

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PCWolf

There is a good chance the 8.1 update might break your start button app. That is the risk of having to rely on any 3rd party App to do things that the original OS was never meant to do. But that's the risk you must take for using that fail OS. You will just have to wait for the Developers to make a compatible one. & that's IF they can. Microsoft may one day decide to block that.

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John Pombrio

I too am going to be royally pissed if Start8 no longer works because MS decided to emulate it in a half-assed way.

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Rachine35

While I like the update, it has too many compatiability issues for me right now. I know that software makers & hardware makers have to update their drivers for 8.1, but until they do, I can't use it. I installed the update and ran into all kinds of issues. Norton, creative sound card,roboform, logitec mouse & keyboard software, and since they changed how libraries works with it some of the apps would no longer find my files. My boot drive is 120Gig SSD, so I have all of my other programs on my other drives that I use for gaming and storage, yet once I updated, I could no longer use some of the apps on the start screen with my files even when I pointed it to the files in question. It worked really great at first, but then windows installed some updates and nothing would work right after that. Nice try MS, but you can do better then this. I will wait for the official release to see if things get better. Hopfully by then the software & hardware makers will have caught up to all the changes in the new update.

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ansible

Windows 8.1 doesn't allow me the option to never use metro. I am not unforgiving and I would buy a copy if I had access to a traditional desktop out of the box but my patience is not unlimited either. Making the full switch to Linux is becoming more viable every day soon my copy windows will only be used for gaming and that may not last long.

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Granite

You are correct, Sir. Since you and your ilk have failed to force MS into turning Win8 into a retrograde clone of Win7, you shouldn't waste any time. Switch to Linux today...right now. Heck, some day you might even be able to cut the MS cord completely when Linux becomes the preferred OS for gaming producers.

LOL!!!

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Scatter

So apparently you don't like options?

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Granite

shrug...I love options.

Win8 is loaded with options, too...except the one that person wanted. Too bad. He's not going to get it. That's life. Deal with it.

He still has his options, though. He can move on to Linux like he says he will. I'm just urging him to do it now...rather than later.

Maybe that'll reduce the incessant MS-hater crap.

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fung0

It's not about options, or love for Microsoft, or hate for the schizophrenic, touchy-feely Metro UI.

Windows 8, and Microsoft's stubborn unwillingness to listen to a large proportion of its most dedicated users, are merely the symptoms of what's gone wrong with the company.

Windows 8 reminds me more and more of OS/2. A great OS, for its day. But also a clear indicator that IBM (remember IBM?) had totally lost its way. Windows 8 and OS/2 are both signposts on dead-end roads.

It's not about features. It's about corporate culture.

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PCWolf

+50 Internets for you Fung0

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Xenite

You can polish a turd, but in the end... it's still a turd.

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someuid

Agreed. Even the two guys from Mythbusters would be impressed at the shine Microsoft has managed to put on this turd of an OS.

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tom10i

First, I found that Norton Security Suite was incompatable with Win 8.1; fine, just download the Norton Beta of same program it will work. Problem, Norton didn't let me download as it is Export Restricted (to the US!). I rebooted, have no software masking my location and the emails from Norton gave me licence numbers to use, but I couldn't even download. They don't read what they are sent at Norton. Also, called Norton support and the idiots located somewhere beyond the international date line seemingly were unaware of the Norton Beta Site and hadn't a clue how to force a download from the site. I guess it's Defender for the time being.
Also, the Programs and Features on the start button only brings up the old Add and Delete Programs app. Wouldn't it be nice if instead it brought up a list of the programs on your computer, so you could access them from the desktop without having to go to Metro to do so.
Otherwise, seems fine.

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davelray

Well let's see, right now 8.1 is only a preview release which means it's beta and use at your own risk. Norton's compatibility isn't a Microsoft problem it's a Norton/Symantec problem. I'm sure when 8.1 goes live, Symantec will have a version that's fully compatible. So I have no clue what this has to do with anything. Also, it's been Programs and Features in Control Panel since Windows 7 and I think it was called the same in Windows Vista. The right click menu is a power menu giving you quick access to many of the items you would find in Control Panel. Why you would confuse this with anything else is beyond me. Microsoft has already stated they are not bringing back anything resembling the old "Start Menu." If you want it, there are several programs that will give you something akin to it.

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tom10i

Thanks.

Yes, I understand about Norton. Hell, any Comcast customer knows how slowly they update their product, particularly if you are a Firefox user.

Though I'm sure you are more knowledgable than I am, I have worked in every operating system Microsoft has issued in over 40 years of running and supervising various configurations of main frame, data base and PC installations. That includes testing betas. Of course, I'll use another security suite until Norton wakes up.

That said, my experience with Microsoft has shown me that they do consider the needs and desires of customers when tweeking operating systems. It's often the revisions that really improve the experience. Even Vista and 2000 worked well after tweeks. Heck, without Vista and its issues, how could Win 7 have become the outstanding system it was and for that matter Win 8 (which is as stable as any Microsoft has ever issued).

Unless you surface your needs and desires, how is Microsoft to know what is wanted. That's what I have done here and on the MS community site.

Cheers,

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gfd

I'd like to thank MaxPC for the in depth overview (minus the attitude). We users will supply the MS hate mail for you. Some times I think that if MS gave everyone in the world a new kick ass PC, we'd complain about the colour.

Microsoft goofed with the initial release of Windows 8. It seems as though they have listened to their customers and made changes.

I initially installed Start8 along with Win 8. Win 8 is a better operating system than Windows 7. It is faster, more secure, and has improved a number of features.

I never see the Start screen. I'm quite happy on the desktop. At last everyone can get to the desktop without 3rd party applications.

Now what are you going to complain about?

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fung0

There really is NOTHING to complain about in Windows 8... except maybe that a major 'integer' release of the world's number-one operating system is offering as its only significant new feature a totally alien OS that's been awkwardly grafted-in, adding no new functionality, forcing users to learn new procedures to accomplish the same old tasks, and working well only with hardware that most of them don't own and have no interest in acquiring... while meanwhile allowing Microsoft to finally create the totally closed software marketplace of its dreams, thereby abandoning the one characteristic which, more than any other, made Windows a success in the first place.

So... (practically) nothing to complain about AT ALL! And anyone who says otherwise is just a whiny little ingrate.

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tom_m

One of the downsides about developing something as complex as an operating system is that you start planning and implementing several years ahead of the projected release date. It could be that they thought touch-based interfaces were going to be more popular on the desktop, since they're so popular in the mobile space. So they build an OS that's touch-oriented, but the market hasn't quite hit the target that MS expected.

Windows 8's desktop mode feels snappy and stable, thought I do still cling to a Start menu, and I need third-party apps for PDFs and images to avoid the full-screen stuff that Windows does now. It boots much faster and the disc has a lot of drivers pre-installed, shortening the time it takes to get fully up and running on new system.

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