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Microsoft Prepares Rethink On Windows 8

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the hey-everybody-let's-complain-about-the-start-menu-some-more dept.

Windows 536

jones_supa writes "Microsoft has confirmed to be preparing to reverse course over elements of Windows 8. 'Key aspects' of how the software is used will be changed when Microsoft releases an updated version of the operating system this year, Tami Reller, head of marketing and finance for the Windows business, said in an interview with the Financial Times. Referring to difficulties many users have had with mastering the software, she added: 'The learning curve is definitely real.'" While this decision is generally being framed as a frantic backtrack for Microsoft, it comes as the company has recently passed 100 million Windows 8 licenses sold. Clearly they see this as more of a course adjustment than bailing water from a sinking ship. Microsoft also plans to preview the update called 'Windows Blue' in June.

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Anonymous Coward rethinks Frosty Piss (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659291)

Fruity Pebbles?

Re:Anonymous Coward rethinks Frosty Piss (5, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659401)

Microsoft is misspelling things again.

It's spelled "Windows Blue", but pronounced "Windows Blew".

Re:Anonymous Coward rethinks Frosty Piss (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659439)

It's spelled "Windows Blue", but pronounced "Windows Blew".

Those 2 statements are pronounced the same, dumbass.

Re:Anonymous Coward rethinks Frosty Piss (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659453)

You know what is really shitty? Asian women usually have tiny tits :-(

The betting pool is now open... (5, Interesting)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659293)

...prediction: They'll lash in a start button but still try and force the user to go through Metro first.

Re:The betting pool is now open... (2)

exomondo (1725132) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659383)

Hopefully they'll have a 'boot to desktop' option, that would make it more like OSX's use of tablet interface in the desktop. I personally never use it as i use spotlight to launch everything, and it's more of a launcher than an application platform anyway as opposed to Metro, but it's there and it's only optional.

Re:The betting pool is now open... (2)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659473)

Maybe in the "Enterprise" version, where corporations will either get such an option or they'll stick with Windows 7 until the end of time.

OTOH, for ordinary users, they've kind of made it clear; they want everyone in consumer-land to get used to the whole Metro (or whatever they call it now) thing.

Re:The betting pool is now open... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659639)

"OTOH, for ordinary users, they've kind of made it clear; they want everyone in consumer-land to get used to the whole Metro (or whatever they call it now) thing."
          And the users have made it clear, Microsoft can fuck right off. No really, people I talk to that are not at all computer savvy have heard "the new windows" or windows 8 sucks, and are in some cases actually buying used computers to avoid Windows 8.

          Ditching forced Metro & adding the start button is probably all Microsoft has to do to assuage these fears, and it was IMHO sure egotism that prevented them from doing this to begin with.

Re: The betting pool is now open... (0)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660017)

Would kind of remove the reason to use windows 8, wouldn't it? If you do buy a new PC, see if you can get it with a blank drive and install windows 7.

Re:The betting pool is now open... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659697)

What's in Windows Blue (6.3) at the moment:
- There is an option to log in straight to desktop, skipping the (Metro) Start screen.
- There is a start button (using the new Windows logo, reminiscent of an earlier alpha build of Windows 8): but it takes you to the Metro start screen when clicked.
- The start menu is still gone.

Oh, and they're planning to charge for this "upgrade". What the fuck? They should give it away given how disastrously Windows 8 has been received...

good (5, Insightful)

jason777 (557591) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659299)

Personally, I went back to Windows 7 because I didn't like the constant switching / start screen. I shouldn't have to install a separate app to get the start button back. Give us an option for tablet or desktop mode.

Re:good (5, Insightful)

Cinder6 (894572) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659567)

Start screen has never bothered me, as whenever I used the old start menu, all of my attention was focused on it anyway. For me, having a start screen just means that I can display more icons at once, which is a plus. I would love a boot to desktop mode, though.

Re:good (1)

EdZ (755139) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659683)

Boot-to-desktop, and some way to categorise/group the tiles on the start screen. I don't really want a return to the 'program-in-a-folder-in-a-folder with piles of uninstall, manuals, help files, tutorials, demos, etc links lying about the tree at random' approach of the start menu, but some sort of organisation beyond just vaguely dragging things about would be nice.

Re:good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659831)

You mean like grouping them, which you can already do?

Re:good (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659837)

You can speed up the boot to desktop on non-touch devices by putting the Desktop tile in the uppermost left corner of the Start scree, Then when booting hit the enter key, which starts whatever tile is at said position. This is a helluva lot faster then using a mouse to click on the Desktop tile.

Re:good (1, Funny)

camperdave (969942) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659853)

If you want to boot to anything, boot to OneNote.

Re:good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659909)

More icons? The old start menu showed many many more icons at once.

Re:good (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659633)

A friend of mine bought a new laptop after using XP for 10 years. She hated Windows 8, so I let her borrow my Windows 7 laptop until she can find one. She likes 7, and I would imagine her sentiments are quite common. I like 8, but I can understand the frustration some people have with it, especially after watching her try to use it. I would not be surprised at all if Blue allows you to run 8 much like 7 since there must be a lot of people like my friend.

Re:good (4, Interesting)

vux984 (928602) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659899)

Personally, I went back to Windows 7 because I didn't like the constant switching / start screen.

The thing was that the start menu really was nearly entirely obsolete. None of its features really made sense.

Want to run a command by typing its name name?
Win+R, type away

Want to actually search for something? The start screen makes more sense then the smallish non-resizable start menu window.

Want to get to the control panel, logoff, etc? The charms bar was perfectly fine (if nonobvious). And has a hotkey of its own (again non-obvious)

The actual hierarchical start menu? Worthless legacy cruft that has been more or less replaced by search anyway.

All that was left was the smart recent applications/recent documents stuff which was almost covered by pinning apps to the taskbar.

To 'fix' windows 8, I'd

restore the start menu button (hot corner makes no sense)

When the start menu pops up, you get back the smart 'recent applications / recent documents', and the ability to pin applications to it, and the search box.

Except the search box is simple, only looks at program names, and document filenames. That's it. It doesn't look at email, or inside documents, or music... for deep searching for that, I'll use the start screen search, or even more likely the dedicated application anyway (for email, music, photos etc)

And a button to bring up the full start screen.
And another one to bring up the charms bar.

And make shutdown a direct option so you don't have to logout first, but that can be on the charms bar... i don't care. I don't shutdown more than once a day anyway, and many shut down once a week or less.

Then make hotcorners entirely optional in desktop mode.

That's really it. No "All Programs --> " on the start menu. if you need something from that go into the full start screen. No "Games" or "Music" or "devices and printers".

The resulting "start menu" is just a little taskbar gadget for quick search and application launching.

my 0.02

Re:good (-1, Offtopic)

lucm (889690) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659997)

Those are very good points. I boycott the mods system because fanbois use it to bury relevant comments otherwise I'd mod you up.

Re:good (1)

jason777 (557591) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660029)

ya I know. and I hate the hot corner. I have to fiddle around to get it to popup. Very frustrating.

mature response to a corporate stumble (5, Insightful)

one_who_uses_unix (68992) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659301)

I am no Microsoft fan however I am glad to see them responding to customer feedback on their product. IT is good to see large companies shape products based on customer response - particularly when they command a very large share of a market.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (2, Insightful)

henkvanderlaak (965214) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659373)

Responding to feedback.... You mean as in their response to "We want to stick with XP!"

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (1)

prandal (87280) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659557)

If they really want people to 'upgrade' from XP, shouldn't they make an in-place upgrade possible?

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659579)

Very few people are yelling that they want to stick with XP and MS isn't doing anything to stop them from sticking with XP. Them not supporting it in no way stops you from using it.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (1)

efitton (144228) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659711)

Quite a bit different than GNOME and KDE.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (3, Interesting)

Dishevel (1105119) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660015)

To be fair when people did not like where Gnome and KDE were going they had the choice to pick up where they left off and roll their own.
Which some people did. Some users followed. Some distributions picked up speed due to what they did.
With Microsoft your only choice is to bitch. You can not take the windows 7 source and stay on that path and update as you will.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (2)

Barlo_Mung_42 (411228) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659781)

It was nice to see them follow up Win7 with a new direction. We don't need endless cycles of more of the same. On the other hand it's also nice to see them respond to feedback. Metro is great for a lot of things but some people just can't let the start button go.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (1)

matrim99 (123693) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659861)

I fail to see what Metro is good for except on a tablet. Windows 8 is indeed a step in the right direction, but Metro should have only been the default Start menu on tablets.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659873)

But they're using the corporate line that more PC makes should be using touch screens to show off Windows 8 better. Which is a stupid excuse, since the entire world isn't going to get a new PC just because of Windows 8, and they're certainly not going to buy the very expensive touch screen capable ones. The issues still remains that Metro is a silly and clumsy UI to use on real world computers in actual use today.

Re:mature response to a corporate stumble (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43660035)

That was sarcasm right? I can't quite tell. My sarcasm detector always has trouble with Windows 8 comments.

You started with "I am no Microsoft fan" so that must be sarcasm right? Or is that just what the script tells you to type?

The freakin company has decades of experience shaping products based on customer response and untold millions poured into the development of Windows 8.

If they were 'mature' company responding to customer feedback, Windows 8 wouldn't be the public relations disaster it is now.

Insightful my a**

100 million Windows 8 licenses sold (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659309)

Of course that's what Microsoft cares about, but it's irrelevant to the point of fixing this broken OS.
People don't buy Windows; they buy computers.

Re:100 million Windows 8 licenses sold (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659433)

People don't buy Windows; they buy computers.

Sure, but PC makers are more than unhappy with windows 8 reception. At least I did complain with HP about windows 8 just for the lulz (since i've already unistalled it).

So the causality actually is: MS makes shitty product -> PC makers install it -> customers buy a computer with winodws 8 -> costumer bitches about W8 with the PC makers -> PC makers bitches to MS -> MS is forced to act

Re:100 million Windows 8 licenses sold (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659443)

People don't buy Windows; they buy computers.

Or they don't buy computers, if the computer comes with Windows 8 . . . which is what the PC manufacturers have been complaining about.

Or they buy tablets.

Re:100 million Windows 8 licenses sold (3, Interesting)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659573)

Or they don't buy computers, if the computer comes with Windows 8 . . . which is what the PC manufacturers have been complaining about.

Or they buy tablets.

On that "hairyfeet" had an interesting theory (in another thread) that is worth repeating:
Microsoft is rich enough to survive another Vista or two, but many PC manufacturers are not. If Microsoft does nothing to make them happy again, they may get desperate and push Linux in earnest.

So there is some risk for Microsoft of losing dominance in their main market if they overdo it with pushing the UI formerly called Metro ;-)

Re:100 million Windows 8 licenses sold (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659501)

People don't buy Windows; they buy computers.

They buy computers *with* Windows or Macs which often dual boot Windows. The only company successful in the mass market with personal computers running something *other* than Windows is Apple, not because it hasn't been tried but because users want either Windows or OSX (with the ability to run Windows where they need it).

Re:100 million Windows 8 licenses sold (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659627)

The 100 million number is very misleading. They sold licenses to OEM's. Also, the Windows computers I've bought since Windows 8 came out have had a license for Windows 8 (along with an install disc) but have come with Windows 7 pre-installed.

And they'll call it Windows 8-- ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659311)

\subject

Re:And they'll call it Windows 8-- ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659783)

And they'll call it Windows 8-- ?

I'm pretty sure that should be --8

I like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659343)

Just put back the start button.

Don't strain your Brains (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659359)

"One size fits all" rarely does.

I guess I am trying to be facetious, but rather than the strengths of different devices coming together through some kind of unified OS metaphor all the weaknesses joined forces instead.

Now go and make something REALLY GOOD

Re:Don't strain your Brains (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659415)

Now go and make something REALLY GOOD

Oh THAT is funny! REALLY GOOD and Microsoft in the same comment??? Love to know what you've been smoking to even consider that such a thing would even be possible.......

Re:Don't strain your Brains (2)

KreAture (105311) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659545)

Only thing I know that is a "one size fits all", is a straight-jacket.
Also, the 100 million sold are actually force-bundled with new computers. Wonder how many uninstalled it and got Linux on there or bought Win7 with/after it?

Re:Don't strain your Brains (1)

sdnoob (917382) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659585)

the 100 million figure also probably includes a pile of volume licenses.. but those seats mostly remain on XP or 7.

Re:Don't strain your Brains (1)

obarthelemy (160321) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659641)

Pareos are one-size, too.

wrestling with windows 8 now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659391)

I can't add a wireless profile if the surface unit can't see the network. When it can, I can't get it to use the certificate and it starts asking for a wifi password.
Then there's the compatibility problems. And the hiding of familiar places to make admin changes. And the removal of the start menu.
Microsoft should have listened to people instead of trying to strong-arm them into changing.

Not One? (1)

Psyko (69453) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659403)

Seriously? Nobody takes a crack at marketing calling the new one blue? If you thought windows 8 was bad, the new version is guaranteed to leave you blue... or something?

/I am dissapoint

Re:Not One? (5, Funny)

Psyko (69453) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659435)

Windows 8: We Blue it...

Re:Not One? (5, Funny)

sconeu (64226) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659491)

It will boot up into the Blue screen of death?

Re:Not One? (4, Funny)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659883)

Saves time that way.

Inspired by Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659919)

They didn't realize Gmail Blue was an April's Fool joke.
http://mail.google.com/mail/help/intl/en/promos/blue/ [google.com]

Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (5, Interesting)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659421)

Today I took delivery of my new work PC. When I ordered it I asked for Windows 8... One has to keep up with these things, right? Bloody hell...

Seriously, when one has to Google on another computer for instructions on how to bring up the damn (well hidden) address bar in the browser, you know your "intuitive" design is bad, bad, bad. Luckily I already knew about the (equally well hidden) active corners of the screen to bring up the Start screen, Desktop and Charm bar,so I did manage to get around, sort of. Trying to find some essential system settings proved impossible until I ended up installing StartIsBack, which gives me the start menu and old desktop upon boot; after that I could access the old style control panel. Windows 8 is just fine and dandy... Now that I have it working just like Windows 7. Honestly, the Metro interface is not that bad on a mobile device with a touch screen, but it has no place on a desktop PC.

Sure, all new UIs will require some learning. But never, not since Windows 3.11, have I had such a hostile experience from a new OS.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (0)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659529)

Sure, all new UIs will require some learning. But never, not since Windows 3.11, have I had such a hostile experience from a new OS.

I hope by hostile that you mean crashing a lot, because all the menus in Windows 3.11 can be written down on the back of your hand and still have room left over for an xkcd.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (0)

magamiako1 (1026318) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659535)

I guess you use a different version of Windows 8 than I do, I've found the experience to be quite useful.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (2, Funny)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659659)

If you like, I can refer you to a great dominatrix who is uncannily handy with the whip and enjoys watching people suffer. Should be right up the alley of people who enjoyed the upgrade to Windows 8.

Seriously, I am curious to learn which areas you found to be an improvement over previous versions of Windows on desktop machines. I for one never had to Google around for instructions on performing basic tasks after upgrading to a new OS. I didn't have to when I tried a few of the more modern Linux distros, nor when I got my first iDevice from Apple. That's because those environments have good UI designs that build on existing paradigms, make things obvious, visible and intuitive, and provide contextual help when stuff isn't obvious. Windows 8 has none of that.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (4, Insightful)

spire3661 (1038968) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659561)

Its amazing that Microsoft didnt figure out that Workstations are going to remain Workstations and to not fuck it up with a tablet paradigm. The thing that pisses me off is that it is blatantly obvious that they didnt care how bad the UI was, they wanted to trojan horse Metro so bad so they get that juicy 30% cut of everything.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (-1, Flamebait)

DogDude (805747) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659687)

But never, not since Windows 3.11, have I had such a hostile experience from a new OS.

I hereby give you the award for Most Dramatic Drama Queen today. "Hostile"? Really? It's a fucking GUI on an OS.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659825)

"User-hostile" is a term commonly used to describe a featureset of the UI that acts against the user in manipulating the UI.

Re:Windows 8 haters had the right of it. (0)

rock_climbing_guy (630276) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659835)

I had the exact same experience trying to figure out how to load an article in the WIKIpedia application. How on earth was I suppose to know that I'm supposed to find "Search" on the "Charms" bar?

MOAR (1)

istartedi (132515) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659929)

Now if we could just convince the Web design community not to impose the hacks required for constrained UIs on non-constrained platforms. I'm pointing at you, Google. I do not need a handful of links and a "more" button on my 1680 wide display. Show me all the links if you can, based on the value returned for display dimensions, which I'm pretty sure you can get from the browser.

"Learning curve" is missing the point. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659479)

This just further demonstrates that Microsoft doesn't get it. They seem to think that it's because it's all "different" and there is a "learning curve" which is why people don't like it.

The real reasons:
1) Metro apps default to one app on the screen, and break any sophisticated workflow which requires multiple widows. This is removed functionality, not just an interface change.
2) The UI requires more wrist movement or "gorilla arms", which forces people to do more physical work which adds up for things like muscle strain.
3) They try to force the same interface on two different kinds of setups - small touchscreen tablets/hybrids, and desktop setups with potentially multiple large monitors. There is no way to have a nice uniform interface for both kinds of setups.

There are certainly many more, but those are the worse that I can think of. It's not about learning a different interface - it's that there are genuine drawbacks and genuine functionality removed that needs to be given back.

Licenses sold... (4, Insightful)

Volanin (935080) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659485)

100 million Windows 8 licenses sold.

I just bought a notebook for my mother's birthday.
Since she is used to Ubuntu on the desktop computer, is was the natural OS of choice.
Windows 8 never saw the light of the day... yet since it came preloaded, it still counts as a sale for Microsoft.

Re:Licenses sold... (1)

fermion (181285) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659629)

We have several dozen windows 7 machines running windows xp. Each of those I suppose was a 7 license reported as a satisfied customer. My main windows machine runs 7 because it is a good OS, and XP is a bit long in the tooth. But my windows machine is to run specific applications for work, and even if I wanted to 8 is not an option.

Re:Licenses sold... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659645)

You are 1 in 10 million. But thanks for the anecdote, keep on preaching to the noobuntu choir.

Re:Licenses sold... (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659661)

Contact the manufacturer, demand a refund for the system.

Re:Licenses sold... (1)

cshirky (9913) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659675)

Ok, so let's see, that's 99,999,999 licenses then...

You could add up all the Ubuntu-wielding moms in the world, along with all the Ubuntu-wielding offspring, and it won't move that needle in the slightest.

I use Mac, Ubuntu, and ChromeOS, so no love for Microsoft here, but this belief that somehow Linux marks any kind of threat to MS on the desktop or laptop is silly. Most of the world runs Windows on those machines, and always will.

The thing that will shift that is not your mom, or even your mom times 1 million. The thing that will shift that is the move away from those devices, to Android. But Microsoft will still see incredible income from Windows during that shift.

Re:Licenses sold... (1)

Microlith (54737) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659775)

Do tell:

How did you enter the BIOS on boot? Laptops that come with Windows 8 are configured for Fast Boot and will ignore any key presses and boot directly into the installed OS - Windows 8 - which will stonewall you until you accept their EULA.

Re:Licenses sold... (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659903)

You can enter BIOS/UEFI even with a fast boot, no? I can do it on my desktop for sure, why not on a laptop?

bios entry by F2 at boot works on most machines (2)

girlinatrainingbra (2738457) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660087)

F2 still works on my uefi laptop. Don't know about if it still works with fast boot as I nuked my mswindows as soon as I got it and installed windows (X windows, thank you) on it instead with gnu-licious linux of the debian flavor.

Lies and statistics (5, Informative)

DanielRavenNest (107550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659489)

They may have sold 100M licenses to manufacturers, but adoption is still under 4%: http://www.netmarketshare.com/operating-system-market-share.aspx?qprid=10&qpcustomd=0 [netmarketshare.com]

Re:Lies and statistics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659665)

In other words, more adoption than Mountain Lion.

Re:Lies and statistics (3, Interesting)

Barlo_Mung_42 (411228) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659761)

Nearly 4% in 6 months isn't bad especially when you consider the lower demand for PCs in general. Also, some portion of the XP and 7 users will never upgrade so the potential growth for a new OS is even lower. It's already the fourth most popular OS.

100 million licenses sold, but to whom? (4, Insightful)

hamjudo (64140) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659503)

Microsoft has a habit of padding their sales results. [semiaccurate.com] How many of those 100 million licenses are currently in use? Does it include bulk purchases by OEMs? Does a Windows 8 license get subtracted when a user upgrades to Windows 7 or Linux?

Re:100 million licenses sold, but to whom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659581)

My company of several thousand is likely counted among that based on our enterprise agreement with them. But most of those are running Windows 7 (late last year we still had way more XP than 8 and most of those are scheduled to get 7).

At least now will have an excuse (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659513)

Will be the new normal to see Windows Blue Screen now.

100 million Windows 8 licenses sold?!?! (2)

SlowCanuck (1692198) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659527)

How many stayed with 8 after buying the computer or laptop, I know I have switched at least 30 to Windows 7 from 8. Windows 8 has also caused at least 5 friends to switch to Mac. Hopefully blue is a good fix/revision!!!

Difficulties Mastering the Software (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659563)

>difficulties many users have had with mastering the software, she added: 'The learning curve is definitely real.'"

Wow, just wow. It's not their fault it sucks, it's our fault for being too stupid to realize how awesome it is.

Re:Difficulties Mastering the Software (1)

ttucker (2884057) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659655)

>difficulties many users have had with mastering the software, she added: 'The learning curve is definitely real.'"

Wow, just wow. It's not their fault it sucks, it's our fault for being too stupid to realize how awesome it is.

That is exactly what I thought. Microsoft, we are sorry that we can not figure out that our PC is also a tablet, somehow, even without a touch screen, or any desire to do tablet things with it.

We just want a checkbox to turn off the fucking Metro shit! Just the *OPTION* to turn it off.

Re:Difficulties Mastering the Software (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659979)

Have you seen the latest "Woah! Bing won!" ad campaign? Remember Mojave [wikipedia.org] ? Microsoft has a long history of blaming their customers because they "just don't get it" how awesome the (fill in the blank) Microsoft product is.

Fix is easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659595)

Classic interface is default
Metro available as a theme

Start8 (2)

Danzigism (881294) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659623)

Honestly, Windows 8 is pretty snazzy once you put a start menu on there like Start8 or something. I personally don't like the Classic Shell free ones, but for $5 Start8 is pretty awesome. Regardless, I'm certain they will be bringing it back. Having a hybrid environment of both the Start Screen and Desktop mode is actually quite nice. It's like I'm working in desktop mode 9am-5pm and they I open up the Start Screen mode for watching my movies, reading news, social networking, etc. It's not for everybody and has a ways to go, but the concept of a hybrid interface is something I think we'll start seeing more of in the future.

Inertia (4, Insightful)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659653)

The key question is not how many of this or that MS is shipping but why and what direction the sales are going. Most companies and home users have a bevy of Windows only software that they are somewhat committed to. People also need to buy a new machine every now and then. These two facts mean that your average corporate or home consumer will buy their next machine without much thought and will buy a windows 8 machine. The more savvy buyer might even insist on getting Windows 7. But the average user, both corporate and home, are moving into a cloudy world where they need a browser as their primary software and an Office suite as a secondary. This still allows MS to have a slight grasp as MS Office is still mostly the standard.

But and this is a big but. Things like LibreOffice can suit many user's needs and if I were a student doing term papers I would use a combination of google drive and google docs. Docs so my stuff is everywhere and can't be lost and Drive so that if I loose connectivity I have it on my machine. This might seem like a small market but the students of today are the consumers of tomorrow.

Lastly many home consumers are skipping the whole home desktop/laptop all together. A larger screened phone is generally all they need for most of their needs. This also goes for corporate types. The average higher level manager / road warrior is fine with a tablet / BB combo or some other mobile technology.

Soon the only people really needing a Windows machine (as opposed to some agnostic OS that primarily serves up a browser) will be specialty users such as accountants. Many other power users will be fine with either a Mac or Linux.

Which then leads to the whole server market. Linux is pretty dominating. My personal experience is that the MS shops out there are hard core MS evangelists who don't mind buying and managing huge piles of licenses which is getting even harder with many larger companies going with internal cloud systems that can spool up 20/200/2000 new machines on a whim.

I don't think that Windows 8 is the problem. I don't think it is the Metro interface beyond the fact that some MBAs at MS probably had these great spreadsheets showing huge desktop app sales. MS is declining for many other reasons. Preinstalled Bloatware would be a big one. But the key question is why I should not be using Linux, Android, MacOS, QNX? What is it that MS offers me to come back? For some reason it just doesn't appeal to me to pay an extra $100 when I buy a $500 device just so that I can run Windows. I don't see why I would want to run servers that could get me sued if I don't manage the licensing. I can see why people might stay through inertia but that isn't a very good business model in the long term.

Disappointed (4, Funny)

Howitzer86 (964585) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659663)

Man, I am disappointed. I sure hope Microsoft, in their mad rush to undo the damage they perceive, doesn't ruin the touch experience on the touch screen computers out there already.

"Creativity" (3, Insightful)

nnnnnnn (1611817) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659695)

From the article:"There’s a level of risk and creativity going on that would never have happened two years ago.”

Creativity is not forcing people to use an iPad interface on their desktops, a better word would be idiocy. Idiocy, as in forcing system admins to use an iPad interface on Windows Server 2012. Idiocy, as in having two taskbars, one on the bottom, and one auto-hiding on the right side.

Don't count on it until they actually do it (2)

linebackn (131821) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659703)

These kinds of articles are supposed to make us feel better about Microsoft? I'd suggest not celebrating until they have actually DONE something. Lets see if they actually improve anything - there is a good chance they will make things even worse!

This isn't the first time they have screwed over their customers, and the sure as hell isn't the last.

The Car Analogy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659707)

Metro, because they were expecting good milage out of it. However most people took to it the same as a very small and awkward car with only three cylinders.

Fool me once (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659713)

The biggest Windows update since, well, forever. This WAS to be Microsoft's tablet dominating step into the future.

And they got it wrong. They didn't just get it wrong, they proclaimed loudly and repeatedly that Windows 8 was the best ever and we were just supposed to suck it up. Even though we knew they got it wrong.

Now Microsoft admits that they got it wrong and the next release will 'fix all that'. I guess we weren't all just fussing over nothing.

Fool me once.

Ubuntu-fork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43659727)

They should just fork ubuntu like everyone else does.

Windows 9 (GNU/Linux)

Remember when Apple fucked up Maps in iOS6? (1)

Trashcan Romeo (2675341) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659759)

After brazening it out for a few days, the CEO admitted, "OK, yeah, we fucked this up." You think Ballmer will have the class to do the same? We'll get corporate mealy-mouthing about "improvements" that shirk his culpability for one of the biggest (and most predictable) fiascos in PC history.

Couple of points... (4, Informative)

Gordo_1 (256312) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659787)

1. As much as they need to re-think the whole Metro implementation for users without touchscreen hardware, from what I've read they are *NOT* bringing back the old desktop Start Menu, they are simply putting an icon in the familiar place to get to Metro. Metro is still the place where you will launch programs/apps from... and I will continue to bypass it altogether with Classic Shell on my desktop PC. I don't need a complete context change just to open a command prompt, control panel or start programs. Perhaps surprising to MS, I prefer to do my computing at a desk with a 24" non-touchscreen monitor, and I will not be replacing it anytime soon just so that I can bend forward and reach across the keyboard to smudge a hidden menu with my index finger.

2. As we all know, the 100 million licenses sold BS is just that. MS is conflating OEM licenses shipped with actual users actively purchasing and/or using Windows 8 software. They can pull this off because Windows is the de facto shipping OS on virtually all PC hardware. It is obviously to their advantage to maintain this sleight of hand, so don't expect them to get honest any time soon.

Re:Couple of points... (2)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659893)

Indeed. The proper question is how many Windows 8 units have actually sold, versus units still sitting in warehouses or on store shelves.

That 100 million Windows 8 numbers are misleading (3, Interesting)

plazman30 (531348) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659821)

Every new PC worldwide ships with Windows 8 on it. Consumers don't really have a choice. They get Windows 8 whether they like it or not. Even Vista's numbers looked good, even though people hated it. And Windows 8 is far worse than Vista ever was. I like the desktop. I love Metro. The unhappy marriage of the two is exceptionally annoying.

Bring back Aero to replace flatland look (3, Insightful)

Twinbee (767046) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659863)

I hope they bring back Aero. For all its other faults, there's nothing quite as disconcerting as the 'flatland' style (no bevels, shadows, lack of contrast between elements, and generally a white-washed look).

100 million left holding the bag ? (0)

jacekm (895699) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659967)

Once they reverse the Windows back to desktop mode it will be a sign for anyone not to invest into Metro devices and apps Early adopters will be left holding the bag. Since Windows RT was glued artificially to Win32 it can be dropped without hurting compatibility of established huge Win32 software base. I predict, that MSFT will drop the technology since it is not getting any decent traction. Interestingly this will be a first to drop bloated part of Windows without hurting much of the user base. Windows RT now will have a stigma of failed technology and it doesn't matter anymore how good it is. It will be laughed out and will never be cool. Microsoft need desperately something new and it must be separate from Windows. Windows must stay with traditional business desktop / laptop and defend this ground without alienating that community. Mobile will have to get something that is not tied to the Windows 8 fiasco. Most likely some sort of a copy of proven Android / iPad interface but capable of talking to Windows well. MSFT is excellent at copying technologies that are developed by someone else and making them better than original. They suck however at connecting to the cool and therefore they fail to be successfully innovative.
From my point of view they wasted so much time and effort on the dead end technology and neglected to do any improvement for the desktop / laptop user. The .NET stagnated. Company indicated basically they they lost interest in .NET alienating many developers. .NET did not get AMP, did not get decent 3D engine. C# stagnated. There is still no good easy to program DirectX framework. AMP is only available through native C++. Speaking of native therfe is nothing on the horizon to replace ancient, outdated MFC. So much effort was given to Windows RT and it will be all lost.

Unified UI disaster (1)

Dorianny (1847922) | about a year and a half ago | (#43659985)

If you simply uninstall all so called "windows look and feel" more commonly known as metroUI applications, than the start screen becomes essentially a start menu. This goes a long way to making windows 8 usable on a non tablet system (touchscreens on desktops or even laptops are pretty much a novelty as the combination of keyboard mouse/track-pad makes for a much more capable input device) but it doesn't cure all ills. Microsoft made all kinds of trade-offs to make a supposedly unified UI, One that particularly annoys me is the inability to rearrange the order of wireless networks. I am no stranger to the command line but it seems rather nonsensical to make something as simple as reordering wireless networks impossible from the gui.

Just like New Coke (1)

houbou (1097327) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660019)

Old Coke came back.. Same goes for Windows! :)

Re:Just like New Coke (3, Informative)

EmagGeek (574360) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660043)

Old coke didn't come back. They created a third product called "Coke Classic" that was not in any way the same thing as "old coke," since Coke Classic is sweetened with High-Fructose Corn Syrup, whereas "old code" was sweetened with natural cane sugar.

Hoping for a MINOR change (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43660023)

I think Microsoft has gotten a bad rap on Windows 8, mainly from a very very vocal but overwhelming MINORITY of PC users that are resistant to change and can't handle learning new and better ways of interacting with PCs.

I personally think Windows 8 with Metro is wonderful, and creates a consistent and easy to use interface across all of my devices (which include Phone, Tablet, and PC).

I hope they don't listen to the equivalent of computer teabaggers and just dump the greatest idea to hit computing since Windows ME.

Translation from marketingese (2)

FuzzNugget (2840687) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660059)

"We fucked up."

Now, give us the option to *completely* remove any interjections from Metro (start screen, WinKey+tab, charms, network selection, search, probably a number of other elements I've forgotten), ie.: real-actual-computer-to-get-shit-done mode. Also get rid of that horrible, difficult-to-read low contrast color scheme and bring back the only good thing Vista brought us: Aero Glass.

Do these things and we might forgive you. Otherwise, fuck this shit, I'm going to Debian.

It's Crap But (1)

gpmanrpi (548447) | about a year and a half ago | (#43660067)

It is a steaming pile of donkey fecalation, however, with ClassicShell hiding the metro monstrosity and providing a usable start menu, it is a pretty stable well performing OS. Shame they had to unify the experience between unrelated platforms. That being said Ubuntu 13.04 is stable, familiar, and easily de-Unityed if one feels like it. In this day and age, a decent chunk of the market just wants certain things to run on their computer. Blue, or Green or Red, or whatever, won't make a difference, it is easy to just try something else. They successfully changed stuff too much, and for no reason.
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