back to article 'Dated and cheesy' Aero ripped from Windows 8

Microsoft must really love Windows 8, or hate its legacy install base. The Aero interface introduced with the hated Windows Vista and perpetuated with the loved Windows 7 is being canned from Windows 8, the company has revealed. In another achingly long Windows 8 blog post, Microsoft called the Aero interface it once …


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  1. Turtle

    Well you have to be fair here...

    "Using journalists as your defence while expressing a problem with the negative comments of your actual audience on the Windows 8 blog? Things must be worse than we thought."

    Everything that I have seen about Win 8 simply tells me that I am going to have to stick with XP, but really, the people most moved to used forums are people who want to complain. So the prevalence of negative comments on the Sinofsky's blog has to be taken with a little grain of salt. I would hope that Microsoft, and devs in general, have better ways of judging the opinions of their actual paying users, than *simply* and *solely* judging by the responses on official blogs. (Not that I am all that enthused about relying on journalists and bloggers either...)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well you have to be fair here...

      I hope they put blanks in the gun, or they might really shoot themselves in the foot over this.

      However, sadly it will prevail as it will come standard on all new PC's.

      I have always upgraded, but not this time, I hate the look of a mobile phone on a PC.

      I shall wait for windows 9 which will, no doubt, put things right.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wow, I think you noticed it...

    "Using journalists as your defence while expressing a problem with the negative comments of your actual audience on the Windows 8 blog? Things must be worse than we thought."

    My thoughts exactly. Is this not what happened with the Mass Effect Game? But that's ok, as MS can patch Windows with an extended ending too. :D

    (Anon, because it's only an opinion, the OS could end up good after all...)

    1. James O'Brien
      Thumb Down

      Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

      Lets see here:

      Windows 95 sucked

      Windows 98 was decent

      Windows ME sucked

      Windows XP good

      Windows Vista was the second coming of ME

      Windows 7 good

      Windows 8 I predict will suck worse than the other failures combined.

      And yes I know that there is more than good or bad with each of those OS but this list was to be general at best.

      Thumbs down for Microsoft on this one. They need to find something that people don't want to kill then for and nurture it instead of piss off their customer base. As a pc gamer the choice for me is ovbious but the time is going to come where an alternative is as good or better. Mark my words.

      1. Christian Berger

        If you want some sort of consistency with Windows

        Go to the server versions. From a desktop point of view you have everything you need, without all the crappy stuff in the "consumer" versions, like simplified access right dialogues which allow you to lock yourself out of your data.

        Just face it, Windows is legacy software, Microsoft won't make something affordable to replace Windows 2000 or XP. What they want to do now is consumer stuff.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: If you want some sort of consistency with Windows

          Except the makers conspire with MSFT to stop you

          Server will only run signed drivers and the HW makers only supply 'server' drivers for their 'server' HW - that's why the same PC from DELL costs 2x as much on the server page

          1. Tim Bates

            Re: If you want some sort of consistency with Windows

            What hardware is hard to get going under Windows Server? I've connected all sorts of weird stuff to Windows 2003 R2 and 2008 R2 servers without issue - including some obscure USB anti-piracy dongles and at least 2 Nvidia Geforce cards.

      2. Lee Taylor

        Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

        havre to slightly disagree with that list

        Windows 95 pretty good

        Windows 98 buggy unstable mess

        Windows 98R2 was Decent

        Windows ME sucked

        Windows XP good

        Windows Vista was the second coming of ME

        Windows 7 good

        Windows 8 I predict will suck worse than the other failures combined.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

          I too disagree with that revised list

          Windows 95 Buggy

          Windows 95 OSR2+ not bad

          Windows 98 buggy unstable mess

          Windows 98se was Better

          Windows ME sucked

          Windows XP Buggy insecure mess

          Windows Xp SP2+ Good

          Windows Vista Good, but too demanding

          Windows Vista Sp2, Good and Not that different to Win 7 but to late to the game

          Windows 7 good

          Windows 8..... Im not going to comment because I think you should just use it for a few weeks are see for yourself, Love it or Hate it, I don't care but do yourself a favour and try the bloody thing yourself and don't just assume or take other peoples words for the whole truth

          So anyhow, this tick tock nature of Windows, good bad, that people seem to dream up is somewhat "rose tinted" with a couple of exceptions almost all Windows Major versions have been "fixed" and turned in to decent Operating systems after a service pack or two. Windows XP people was not good by a long shot to start with

          We also seem to have forgotten 2000, and Windows 3.11 Both of which are good, which doesn't fit with the tick tock. Of course there is some irony with 3.11 given hat we are essentially moving back to that style of UIin Win 8 but, its worth pointing out that people of the time were in uproar about the Win 95 UI, saying its slow and inefficient.

        2. Keep Refrigerated

          Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

          Here's my experience:

          Windows 95 pretty good

          Windows 98 buggy unstable mess

          Windows 98R2 was Decent

          Windows ME sucked

          Windows XP good

          Windows Vista...

          Ubuntu 6.04




          Linux Mint


          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

            im not sure what you mean by those lists of Linux Distros, with out version info I assume That's your experience and your trying to be funny about ditching MS and moving to Linux after Vista? So since Vista was released, you've changed your OS at least 6 times?

            give than Vista is what.. 5 an a half years old? and lets also assume that you actually tried out the OS for a while before binning it, means you have changed your OS once every few months. The really funny thing is that XP was like that, after a year it tended to grind to a halt oh the good old days ;) I upgraded my Vista PC to 7, vista in turn hadn't been reinstalled since 2008, so essentially ive not clean reinstalled for over 4 years and yet you feel the need to reinstall every few months a new distro…

            Curious, but I cant say your selling the idea of Linux very well though.

            apologies if I got you all wrong, but your list makes no sense.

          2. NogginTheNog

            Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...


            Windows 98 SE ok, but Windows NT 4.0 much better.

            Windows ME pile of poo, Windows 2000 much much better.

        3. Joey

          Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

          I was at the UK launch of Windows 95 way back then. It was gratifying to hear the Microsoft presented say how bad Windows 3.11 was and how much better '95 was. So, that is their sales strategy. Tell the punters what a load of c**p they are using and promise them something, err, different!

      3. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Wow, I think you noticed it...

        My colleagues are working on a suboxone/methadone treatment for win-doze recidivists.

  3. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Everything is supposed to look grey, flat and boring instead now?

    This is part of the problem with Windows. It's can't simply evolve gradually, Microsoft have to keep knocking it down and rebuilding it all the time. Have they not learned from Facebook that a good number of people don't like drastic change?

    1. Norphy

      If we're still using Facebook as an example, that probably means that people will bitch and moan for half an hour then actually notice that yes, the extra functionality that's been introduced in the new UI is actually quite good and then just get on with it.

      Not to say that this'll happen with W8 but stranger things have happened.

      1. Piro Silver badge

        That would require..

        The presence of said functionality.

        I don't think Windows 8 has any.

    2. Vector

      You know, reading these comments and having seen a thumbnail preview of the "new" look, it seems Microsoft is going back to the future since Win 8 looks like Win 3.1 without the window borders.

      1. AZComicGeek

        except that with Win 3.1 you could actually get to the programs you wanted with a few simple clicks, and not have to do away with the main interface to find anything. Aero is dated and cheesy, lets go back to big color blocks instead.

  4. Thought About IT
    Thumb Down

    Tail wagging dog

    I don't care whet they do with Aero, as long as I can run my desktop apps without having to find the right pixels at the bottom left of the display to start them!

  5. LinkOfHyrule
    Paris Hilton

    "dated and cheesy"

    This is why I love MS - they just can't help but embarrass themselves time after time after time. Ohh Microsoft what are you like!

    Paris as she also seems to get off on public humiliation!

    1. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart
      Paris Hilton

      Re: "dated and cheesy"

      Embarrassment? The only embarrassing thing I see is a tacit admission that Aero Glass, Windoze 7, and the "Ribbon" interface are just MickSoft pricking around with the interface, making changes for the sake of change.

      Paris, also attracted to bright shiny new things.

  6. David Webb

    Win 7

    I'll be sticking with Windows 7, I just don't want to have to get used to the way Windows 8 works, it feels overly complicated, having to go through a billion windows just to add a user (who needs a windows live account) is a pita. Can see it being good for touch screen though but touch screen for a desktop isn't exactly an upgrade over a mouse.

    Gnome Locker on Youtube though seems to detest Win 8 on tablets, got his father using it and his old man was all "yeah, if it's the same price as an iPad I'll go Windows on a tablet" so he led with questions where the only answer would be "oh, I'd go iPad". So, if a tablet comes with Windows 8 and is the same as or cheaper than an iPad, get it.

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: Win 7

      "Can see it being good for touch screen though but touch screen for a desktop isn't exactly an upgrade over a mouse."

      I was having this conversation with a colleague and made more or less the exact same point as the above. I said that I thought it was absolutely great on a tablet, but that for a desktop, whilst it wasn't exactly a disaster, was definitely a bit of a downturn.

      They replied that the future was tablets and that desktops were on their way out. And I suddenly realized they might be right. In business use, people still want a monitor and keyboard. But outside of developers, most users would probably be happy just having Metro launch their "apps". They're not power-users. For leisure, browsing, etc. people are increasingly just wanting something they can lie on the sofa with and surf or ping friends or whatever. For which a tablet is better. There are a dozen scenarios where a proper desktop is better than a tablet. But they only add up to a smaller fraction of the total times a computer is used compared to when people are just surfing, doing v. light email and whatever. I was sure Metro was a real mistake. Now, I'm starting to wonder if MS have actually just skipped forward and taken things to their logical conclusion.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

        1. dogged

          Re: Win 7

          @AC -

          Your response indicates you think developers are too stupid to use a launcher.

          Actually, most responses in this thread seem to be "I am too stupid to use a launcher".

          And requiring business software means using the launcher to launch the business software. It's not rocket science, unless you're absolutely retarded.

          I can't believe how many people commenting on the Reg forums consider themselves to be stupid and incompetent.

  7. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?


    1. Bill Neal

      Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?

      Have you seen Gnome3? They just tried the same "Radical" "Innovative" & "belongs-on-a-damn-tablet" changes we see in Win8. I hate it just as much as Balmer's Metrosexual CP. I hope people have some choice other than what the Metro Consumer Preview looks like. At least with 'nix you have MANY choices for appearance.

    2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?

      Kde3 TO kde4 - cough sputter, cough sputter... Gnome2 to Gnome3, cough, sputter, bleah... where did the vomit bucket go.

      Windows is actually late to the "let's through decades of productivity research out of the window and make everything Tablet/Phone-like" party.

      KDE and Gnome tried to get there first. KDE is also the worst of the two by far because it tries to retain some backwards compatible look while replacing old UI concepts with "Activities" and other similar iPhonesque/Androidesque abominations in their APIs.

      1. h4rm0ny

        Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?

        At least with KDE you can spend ten or fifteen minutes turning it back into something nicer. With Unity, I was pretty much stumped as to what I could do to improve it.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. FrankAlphaXII

          Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?

          With KDE on Fedora its pretty stripped down straight off the USB Drive, cant speak to how it is on any of the other distros, but you dont even really need the 15 minutes trying to make it not look like some kind of mutated android-satan spawn.

          In regard to unity, I think the only thing that can save it is a mercy killing. And Canonical seems to behave like Microsoft, if people hate it, they spend time, money and development resources on fixing it instead of making something right the first time.

          In regard to Windows, whoever said buying the server versions seems to have it dead on, though from what I understand they're taking the GUI out of Server in the next version, which isnt the end of the world, but it will slow many many users, technicians and admins down, and honestly Id rather train to be more proficient in Bash than have to get pissed off that the Windows Shell doesn't do the same things.

          1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

            Unity? Gnome 3? KDE4? Metro/WinRT?

            Cinnamon. Problem solved.

            For Debian base:

            For RedHat base:

            (Please also contribute to the Fedora bug here to help push the Fedora maintainers to include Cinnamon as a first class desktop environment in FC17!)

      2. TeeCee Gold badge
        Thumb Down

        Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?

        Er, nothing wrong with KDE4 now.

        When it first came out though........OMFG.

      3. bean520

        Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?

        I don't know where you get your information on KDE from but it is seriously misinformed

        KDE defaults with a traditional-Windows feel with a slightly Mac-ish aesthetic, aand a lot better than that sounds. Unlike either of them two (or Gnome 3/Unity for that matter), KDE is infinitely customisable. That's where the whole Activities\Widget thing comes into it. Activities gives you a way to predefine what is displayed on the desktop (alongside desktop icons, you can get KDE to display other useful items too)

        Put simply, Activities is not about redefining the desktop by any stretch, but allowing the end user to do so for their own needs if the traditional desktop doesn't work so well for them. The whole thing is about choice. Something Win8 won't give us

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Can we get Gnome and KDE to do three-point-turns, too, now?



  8. johnnytruant


    wasn't highly rendered glass and graphically complex textures cheesy and dated when Aero was launched?

    has it ever been anything other?

  9. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    Dated and Cheesy

    Nope - it was that when it was released ... seriously - does anyone think that metro is going to make inroads into the main commercial installed base?

    The UI is getting to be really stupid for many applications - I was watching the teller at my bank entering a deposit last week ... keyboard, mouse, keyboard, mouse, keyboard, mouse, cashdraw, mouse, keyboard, mouse .... print receipt ... duh!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not necessarily the UI

      Are you sure it wasn't just because the teller didn't know to use the tab key and shortcuts?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Dated and Cheesy

      * cash DRAWER

  10. Stig2k

    This is not a title

    I went from being a die hard Amiga fan to a die hard windows fan and wouldn't have anything to do with the hated and mysterious Linux.

    Then I installed the Win8 developer preview on a spare laptop. What the f*** are they thinking? I stuck with it for a few weeks but it was utter garbage. And this was a touch screen laptop too. Now (thankfully) I've seen the last of it and, though I never thought I'd ever say it, I have Linux Mint running on the lap top.

    When Win8 is out and is the only option on new machines I'm pretty sure there will be an awful lot more people switching to a familiar windows based interface too.

    1. Bill Neal

      Re: This is not a title

      Balmer is probably going to try anything he can to make people turn to Mac for business applications instead of overpriced children's toys. Hasn't the company lost enough followers? When will he leave?

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Paul 135

        It's not bullshit, rather will be the mainstream pattern

        My own usage pattern would be similar, except I was an Atari ST fan and never the evil Amiga! :P

        After >20 years of loyal Windows usage, Windows 8 is a sign that I no longer trust Microsoft in terms of competency and judgement. I am now making plans to switch all my PCs to a KDE-based Linux distro as the main OS, possibly OpenSUSE.

        KDE 4.8 >> than Windows 7 too.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

          1. The Baron

            Re: It's not bullshit, rather will be the mainstream pattern

            > I've been platform-agnostic for years now

            You assert not only that you don't know what platform you're running on, but that ultimately it's not even possible to know? Fair enough, but you do then go on to refute your own assertion using several counter-examples...

      2. Stig2k

        Re: This is not a title

        "I call bullshit"

        You can call whatever you like, doesn't stop it being 100% true. The laptop is a touch screen acer that I picked up ex display. The win8 developer preview was highly anticipated specifically because of the touch screen capabilities of the laptop. A week after I began using it, the compulsary Metro interface was pretty much impossible to navigate. I had office, visual studio, numerous IDE's and the CS suite installed, along with lots of other tools. every single Metro panel was identical. A typical installation that might result in a folder containing 5 or 6 easily identifiable icons in the old windows start menu will result in another half screen of virtually identical plain coloured metro panels. I haven't 'run off' to anything. I have a spare laptop that I couldn't wait to get the Win8 preview off so thought I'd try Linux. I'm baffled by the complexity of Linux for the most part but since every other machine I have is running Win7 I think it'll be nice to stick with Linux on the laptop for now and see how it goes.

        My point was that when Vista came out there was a huge number of people who decided to 'upgrade' their new computers to WinXP. This time I think things will be far worse for MS. Non-technical users who have become accustomed to the look of Win7 will be more open to the idea of switching to Linux than ever before.

  11. Dr. Mouse

    Microsoft: Please U-turn!

    I was at a recent tech expo and a bloke from MS previewed a load of their up-comming technologies. For a start, I was very surprised that they worked, and worked well, even though they were all in preview state.

    Beyond that, I thought they were great ideas, even though they had all been done before (in other OS's etc), with one exception: Metro. It is great on a "slate" or anything with a touch interface. Using it with a mouse feels clunky and awkward, a bit like using Windows without a mouse attached. I could see the benefit of a single interface accross all their consumer platforms (phone, "slate" and PC), but this is not the way to do it.

    I for one will be giving Win8 a miss till touch screen monitors for PCs come down to a reasonable price (and I've tried it out to make sure it's not too awkward).

    1. MCROnline

      Re: Microsoft: Please U-turn!

      Even if they are cheaper than a normal monitor are you really going to be comfortable keep moving your hands from the keyboard/mouse to the screen every few minutes... and if you are okay with this, do you think this is an example of really good computer interface design?

      1. The BigYin

        Re: Microsoft: Please U-turn!

        Not at all. Basic ergonomics relating to the prevention of eye-strain gives a rather amusing rule-of-thumb; have the monitor beyond arm's reach.

        How the heck does one use a fangly-dangly touch interface on a fangly-dangly touch monitor in that case?

        1. The Baron

          Re: Microsoft: Please U-turn!

          Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to welcome you to the mouse of the future: A pointy synthetic finger on a stick. Now you can make full use of that fabulous touch interface without the risk of eye-strain!

  12. Tezfair


    "hated Windows Vista and perpetuated with the loved Windows 7"

    Tolerated more like

  13. MCROnline

    General consensus

    We all seem to agree that Windows 8 (train-wreck edition) is going to bomb. But will it unseat Ballmer?

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: General consensus

      Ballmer and Windows recent (misfortunes) will provide millions of students for hundreds of years material for thesis on how not to run an IT business hacking off and indeed ignoring most of your customers.

    2. dogged

      Re: General consensus

      "we all seem to agree"?

      No, not so much. "we" all pretty much hate everything MS on principle and "we've" become a little self-reinforcing club, like Apple cultists or conspiracy weirdos all telling each other how "right" "we" are.

      That's cool though. It could be hilarious if "we're" wrong.

      1. rhdunn

        Re: General consensus

        I'm sure Windows 8 will be a huge success for (a) people running new Windows 8 tablets (x86 or ARM), (b) people who are primarily content consumers, (c) people who tend to do one thing at a time on their computer. For everything else, it is going to be anywhere from annoying to a nightmare depending on what you are trying to do.

        I don't know how bad it will be at launch, but over time you will see two trends emerging:

        1/ simple applications (photo editors, image viewers, PDF viewers, etc.) will move to Metro;

        2/ complex applications (desktop publishing, advanced image manipulation, music creation, etc.) will remain as desktop applications.

        This is driven by the fact that the Metro programming interfaces lack a lot of the more advanced features (no date/time controls, etc.) and the more complex interfaces do not fit within the Metro design language.

        Couple this with the inability to say "use this application in Metro and this other application on the Desktop" means that users working in the desktop are going to be constantly kicked into the Metro world to view content (images, documents, etc.) unless they say "use a desktop version (if I can find one that works on Windows 8)" in which case the Metro experience is broken as that will put you into the desktop world when viewing those files from the Metro environment.

        I also wonder how all this is going to work on the server. Microsoft may default to the desktop there (it is for corporate/business environments, after all), then charge people extra for it.

        1. dogged


          Your comment indicates that you believe that the Metro interface is more than a glorified app launcher.

          It isn't. Use it as a launcher and it's fine. No real interference at all.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: General consensus

      Sure this is the consensus among XP, OS X and Linux 'enthusiasts' along with the Microsoft haters who look to the future through a veil of wishful thinking.

      There is also the fact that many organisations have only recently upgraded to Windows 7 and others are mid-process. Given corporate refresh cycles, another area for consensus - few expect any institutional rush to move to 8, in fact many orgs will probably skip 8 entirely except for tablets etc.

      Back in the real world the jury is still out on what the reception will be to Windows 8. Certainly there are some annoying features/bugs in the customer preview but anyone experienced with beta software will be used to that. For example those invisible hot border areas give me grief on multi monitor but not going to rant until its proved the problem isn't fixed by final.

      Windows RT devices don't even exist in the wild yet so premature to prognosticate.

      We will see what progress is seen in next months preview. I'll reserve full judgement until the project is complete.

      Bomb sound highly unlikely though.

  14. a well wisher
    Thumb Down

    Aero :glass & transparent title bars et al

    it always was and still is a triumph of form over function !

    1. Velv

      Taking a leaf out of the Apple book.

      Flames in 3, 2, 1 ...

    2. Ian Yates

      True, but the Basic theme is even worse; it just feels clunky and more like Win95.

      Can't say I've ever used that wheel task-switcher thing. (Win+Tab, whatever it's called)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        I've been using Windows 7 at work for a little over a year now and never even noticed that feature until your post. What a strange feature to add and map to that key combo considering If I move my thumb one key to the left (alt+Tab) I get a nearly identical feature.

  15. Paul Shirley

    Aero vs a pig wearing lipstick

    Many of us find Metro fugly, partly because it looks so bloody plain. It's like a visual tranquiliser fighting the stimulant of brash fugly colours. Microsoft have to simplify the desktop UI to a plainer, more metro like style, otherwise users might just choose the prettier desktop version to use over Metro and ruin the whole convergent cross promotional plan.

    Maybe they should resurrect the old Win3 look, remembering to disable any window decoration customisation and impose a monochrome look&feel. That might just be enough to drive despairing users to Metro.

    1. Dazed and Confused
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Aero vs a pig wearing lipstick

      > Maybe they should resurrect the old Win3 look

      Because retro is just so now

    2. Chad H.

      Re: Aero vs a pig wearing lipstick

      But Paul, they've spent all of this money reserecting the Windows 1 look - and its features too!

      1. Paul Shirley

        Re: Aero vs a pig wearing lipstick

        "resurrecting the Windows 1... features"

        I thought it was Windows 2 that dropped overlapped window support... (at the sharp end of a lawsuit ;)

  16. William Hinshaw

    He better be looking

    For a new job. He should have been working on something that was new and revolutionary and not pulling out Bob 1 and forcing it to mate with iOS to come out with this bastardized Bob 2 interface. While I really don't like to see anyone fired or put out of work this is one guy that clearly needs to boot put to his ass and hard so he catches some major air as he leaves MS.

    1. Bob Vistakin

      Re: He better be looking

      Along with the IE Team.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Thumb Up

        Re: He better be looking

        Couldn't agree more - the only browser without spellcheck support, I mean seriously.

  17. Pat 11

    Windows 2012

    "With millions of people using the Consumer Preview for their daily work, we’ve seen just as many points of view expressed. Many people – from David Pogue of the New York Times to Mat Honan from Gizmodo and many more – have been quite positive, and others less so, most notably in the comments on this blog, where we’ve seen the rich dialog we’d hoped for."

    "So that's all good."

  18. Shady

    Don't worry about it

    Someone will publish an aero overlay, sooner or later. I'm off to buy a few shares in Stardock

    1. johnnytruant

      Re: Don't worry about it

      Nice shell for Windows?

      I think is rather nice. if I had to use a Windows, I'd put this on it.

      1. Vic

        Re: Don't worry about it


        Looks quite a lot like Gnome2...


  19. Anonymous Coward


    I never really liked aero - it seemed like a pointless way of just using up more resources and making things on screen more complicated that necessary. I tend to revert my machines to 'classic' windows.

    Having tested the Win 8 preview on a laptop, it really doesn't work. I understand Microsoft's desire to have a uniform look and feel, but Metro on a computer is clunky and replacing the excellent start menu with search box in Win 7 with the start page is a disaster. Full screen apps ruin the whole point of a windowed OS.

    I love the look of Metro on a phone, and for tablets it will probably be great too. But forcing it on PC users will be a disaster.

    I have my fingers crossed that abandoning aero means MS is going to do what they should have done all alone - put a bit of metro look and feel on the familiar windows interface without forcing the actual metro interface on us. I am hopeful, but not very confident.

  20. Graham Wilson

    XP Anyone?

    At this rate, seems I'll be using XP until at least 2020.

    I'm also running the Win 8 consumer preview and it sucks big time.

    (If Microsoft continues on this caper much longer there just might be sufficient incentive for some Win32/64 competition.)

    1. bean520

      Re: XP Anyone?

      By that time WINE will be perfected :P

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: XP Anyone?

      That's fine until you buy some new hardware whcih will not have drivers for XP.

      That was the only reason I moved from W2K to XP, a new videa card I had didn't have W2K drivers.

      I now use Win7 for all my new kit for the same reason (I still have XP boxes in use for older hardware), but I actually prefer W7 now though that is partly because I use the 64bit version with 8GB ram which is ideal for having multiple VMWare players running other OS's.

      I have also found W7 currently runs faster than XP as it seems to have better disk performance (vastly better than Win-D'oh!s Fester).

      Personally I see W7 being MS's next XP, they will not be able to kill it until they actually have something business will buy, and noone I know who does real work with computers uses tablets.

      1. Graham Wilson

        @Anonymous Coward - Re: XP Anyone?

        I know of machines running some CNC industrial processes that are still using Windows 2000.

        When I asked the owner of the plant about W2K phaseout he said that each item of machinery was worth about $700k or more that it was not expected to be phased out for another 14 years--that was last year which makes the phaseout for these Windows 2000 installations as far off as 2025!

        (Anyone who knows a little about the metal-bashing industry knows full well that large lathes/mills etc. can have a life of anywhere between 25 and 40 years or more.)

        What many IT-ers have little knowledge about is the strange uses to which some IT products are actually put.

        1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

          Re: @Anonymous Coward - XP Anyone?

          Windows 2000 still going strong amongst my clients. Several of them sport these large bits of machinery with some computer buried deep in the guts running Windows 2000.

          Are you going to take apart a $500,000 printer the size of a car just so that Microsoft can feel good about your deploying the latest operating system? I choose not to.

          Instead, I toss a little Atom box running CentOS with a pair of NICs in between it and the rest of the network. Serves as firewall, does IDP, IDS and traffic logging. Works like a hot damn...and Windows 2000 just sits there, doing its thing.

          Microsoft's last great operating system. Still toughing it out. Keyboard, mouse, multitasking and all. Whatever happened to the days when computers were good?

      2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

        Re: XP Anyone?

        "That's fine until you buy some new hardware whcih will not have drivers for XP."

        Nah. You run XP in the VM that you are running on top of the proper OS. That way you get all the driver support and security of the maintained modern OS, plus an ability to run all the inevitable Windows apps that your job forces you to use.

  21. amanfromearth

    Same old, same old

    I'm looking forward to Windows 9 then.

    Except by the time that arrived I'll probly have switched to OSX.

  22. Phil A.

    Aero is dated and Cheesy...

    ...Whereas Metro is just shit.

    I can't think of a worse UI for a computer than Metro - it's an absolute abomination that takes everything UI designers have learned over the last 30 years and throws it in the bin.

  23. Anonymous Coward

    Still functionaly offers less than CDE

    Still functionaly offers less than CDE.

    It's true.

    But I see what they did there, they removed some overheads to the windowing system that they had previously added and thus making things more stable as less to go wrong, less memory usage, cpu, win win.

    This what we call Microsofts Shift Shaft cycle, First they Shaft you and then they Shift you. Windows Vista was in general to most a Shaft as it had new driver models, Windows 7 used the same driver models which were by then alot more robust and stable and removed some of the so called annoying demands for admin rights to do certain tasks. This was a Shift release as it Shifted more versions. This means WIndows 8 Should be a Shaft release, though until its released I could not pass judgment. Though it would appear to be affording more stability for the GUI, but it must have negatives in there to bring it inline though this could be were the ARM branch limitations come in being the common denominator may dictate the level of programs afforded interface usability wise.

    Still as long as a command/shell prompt window is the same I'll say again, nothing has realy improved since CDE.

    1. Goat Jam
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Still functionaly offers less than CDE

      Forgive me for being thick, but who or what is a CDE?

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Report from the future

    " and we are dropping the Metro interface, which may have been teh shizzle in the day, but is now looking dated and cheesy..."

  25. JDX Gold badge

    What instead?

    What do we get in desktop mode - back to W95 style or some new thing altogether?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Although I quite like that picture, the whole Windows having alternate good/bad releases thing all over the web is getting old, and it's complete horseshit. I guess people realised Vista was apparently bad, and Windows 7 and XP were OK, so then retroactively cobbled this pattern together on all previous versions of Windows despite the fact it's a load of bollocks.

      Windows 7 is just a streamlined Vista, both of which are better than XP, which is a slightly improved Windows 2000. The Windows NT line is better than the 9x line (including Windows Me) - which are all about the same. And the pre 9x versions are more like programs that run on top of DOS rather than an actual OS.

      1. Nigel 11

        Vista better than XP?

        Did you ever try to copy a folder containing 15 Gb of photographs to a thumb-drive on the original Vista?

        It was still in progress the next DAY!

        1. JDX Gold badge

          Re: Vista better than XP?

          >>Did you ever try to copy a folder containing 15 Gb of photographs to a thumb-drive on the original Vista?

          Ah yes, the standard measure of how good an OS is.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Vista better than XP?

            Usability does seem to be a reasonable yardstick for measuring the worth of an OS.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Vista better than XP?

            It is not that it is a bit broken and have bugs, no, Vista is on another level entirely: It is blatantly broken *right in yer .!.. face* at a level where even my old Aunt Oda would see the brokenness!!

            When they left such a visible bug in there, then scary, negative, thoughts emerge:

            The developers, do they actually give a shit about their work? Did anyone actually test this stuff, like, At All? Did MS lose the source code before testing so it cannot be fixed (and it wasn't)? Is this deliberate so the next version looks better? If they left this in, more must be wrong?

            And: How can MS fail to see this is a problem, are they blind, retarded, going senile, overdosing on their own marketing - Doesn't Anybody There give a shit?

            1. Goat Jam

              Re: Vista better than XP?

              "Doesn't Anybody There give a shit?"

              Why should they? You're not going to use anything else are you?

        2. fajensen

          Re: Vista better than XP?

          What do you mean "original"? Is there a pirated version that can do that before the heat death of the universe? .... the patched version of Vista is about that level of performance.

          The funny thing is that when doing the same operation through X on Cygwin, yet another fat'ish layer on top of Win32, the copy goes as fast as expected. The trick seems to be to avoid the GUI.

          1. bean520

            Re: Vista better than XP?

            By original, he means minus Service Packs

      2. Paul Shirley

        @ac: "alternate good/bad releases"

        The alternate release thing actually started back with Win3.1, after the legally crippled Win2 debacle. It's been pretty damn accurate since then with only a little fudging the release order. Vista fit the pattern far too well but didn't start it.

        [Although I personally don't find Win7 much of an improvement on Vista, I find it painful to use every time I have to fix someone's PC install]

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I beg to disagree - there was nothing good about Windows 3.1, It was slow and buggy.

  27. Fibbles

    Microsoft's drive to bring about the mythical year of the Linux desktop seems to be progressing nicely.

    1. Nigel 11

      Despite ...

      Despite the great efforts being made by Gnome to frustrate this intent.

    2. bean520

      Actually i think Gnome do have a decent UI on their hands. The trick is in the keyboard shortcuts

  28. Martin 47

    Personally I think windows from vista onwards has been great and I am really looking forward to this next one.

    All the reviews have almost tempted me to actually go back to back to using a windows OS just so I can have a good moan too.

  29. Joerg

    Metro is a disgrace. Maybe Ballmer or Gates sex friends designed Metro UI ?

    And I mean, really.

    There is no other possible explanation of committing such a clear financial and marketing suicide killing Windows8 with such an awful interface as Metro UI really is.

    Such a bad design not even a little kid could have come up with.

    Metro UI is being forced by Microsoft everywhere, not only Windows8 consumer/desktop editions but even on server edtions! THAT IS ABSOLUTELY INSANE.

    They even tried pushing Metro UI lame concepts inside the upcoming new Visual Studio!

    Metro UI sucks on Windows Phone already, that is the main reason why Microsoft is non gaining any market percentage.

    Pushing such an awful badly engineered interface that Metro is everywhere it's going to be a huge disaster for Microsoft.

    Only people paid by Microsoft would tell you that Metro is cool. Otherwise anyone using their PCs or mobile or servers for work first but even for gaming would tell you that it sucks. Because it sucks. It's just that simple. Metro UI sucks. It doesn't work. it's flawed at the core. There is nothing to fix. Only fix is getting rid of Metro UI.

    1. BlueGreen

      Metro [] going to be a huge disaster for Microsoft.


  30. jonathanb Silver badge

    My thoughts

    I tried out Windows 8 as a virtual machine on my MacBook. It is certainly faster than Windows 7, and about the same speed as XP, which is what I usually use When I need to run a Windows-only prog.

    But, the start menu replacement just doesn't work for me. Having to scroll through hundreds of icons to find the program you want to run, with no way to organise them in a logical fashion is no good. Having to find the relevant pixels to click to get the dammed thing to appear is frustrating, and pretty much impossible if you are running it in a window, either a VM window or as a remote desktop session, or if you have set up OSX to use that corner of the screen as an active corner to activate a screensaver or similar.

    For a fondleslab, it might be an improvement on the current start menu, but it is like iOS before they introduced App folders that you can organise things into.

  31. Dire Criti¢

    It looks like...

    ...there's going to be a good market for 3rd party desktop replacements a-l. WinBlinds.

    If it wasn't for Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop I'd be heading for Linux, so it looks like I'll be getting a few more years out of Windows 7.

    1. bean520

      That's assuming...

      that Microsoft allows those kind of apps on Windows 8

  32. Nigel 11

    Just bring back the windows XP UI on proper desktops.

    The post is required, and must contain letters.

  33. Old Handle

    Wow! I agree with Microsoft

    Well, only about Aero looking cheesy. On the visual appearance of Metro, a little conflicted. It does look nice and crisp, but also kind of harsh. Of course there are serious usability problems that that outweigh the good or bad or the aesthetic, so I won't be using it anyway.

    I wonder what skin they'll be using for traditional desktop applications in Win8. The could probably turn the 95/98 style skin into something very Metro-y with very little effort if the wanted.

  34. Steve Todd

    Please, for the love of mike

    tell me they're not dropping hardware compositing (offloading Z orders, drawing uncovered parts of a window etc. onto the GPU) allong with Aero. It was one of the few useful bits they added (and only then in Windows 7, Aero in Vista was broken beyond belief).

    1. qwarty

      Re: Please, for the love of mike

      As far as I know its just the chrome that changes, API, compositing etc. remains the same.

  35. Chuckl

    Channeling Canonical and Ubuntu then. Sounds like the usual 'it'd be a great place to work if it weren't for the *&^%%^ customers.'

  36. sisk

    Wait, what?

    Did I read that right? Metro is going to be the only interface choice for Windows 8? I must have misread something, because the only way that could happen is if Microsoft wanted the age of the Windows desktop to end. It's not a bad interface for mobile, but it's terrible on a PC. What the hell are they thinking?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Wait, what?

      No. Desktop is alive and well in Windows 8. Also, some twit used the term 'legacy app' to describe windowed multi-tasking applications and poor communication from Microsoft added to the fire and stirred up all this nonsense.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Same Old

    I think Metro looks modern and decent, frankly - in terms of visual appearance. Obviously, it's an ergonomic nightmare and inconsistent mess for using with a keyboard/mouse or with traditional desktop software. Should be very nice on ARM tablets though, where it's restricted to Metro apps only.

    People have moaned about every new version of Windows since the dawn of time, in this case it's probably a bit more justified, but still. At the end of the day it'll be sold on all new PCs regardless and most people will put up with it until Windows 9 comes around and we repeat the process all over again. I actually think Microsoft might well have sorted out most of the issues in Windows 8 for whatever version comes after it, as they did moving from Vista to Windows 7.

  38. jason 7


    Just feels like driving a car with two steering wheels.

    I'd just like the option to uninstall one of them.

    1. Nigel 11

      Re: Metro

      Two steering wheels ... one for reversing, and the other for going sideways. Good-oh.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I like aero. Reason being it works much better than classic (xp style) interface when you are doing CG stuff, because it uses the much faster GPU instead of the CPU.

    This has to do with how the framebuffer is used/accessed. Compare doing "playblast"s on Maya with it on and off, and you will see. Aero on Win7 causes less artifacts and works faster.

    From a design standpoint I don't care either way. As long as the UI has fewer steps to accomplish my goals (and can be made to be in dark somber colors) I'm game.

    I don't care about the (potential) battery hit at all. I'm using a dual CPU with multiple HDDs config anyway.

    1. Matthew 25

      Re: Awww..

      "I don't care about the (potential) battery hit at all. "

      Me either, I'm plugged in to the mains ;)

  40. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    New and intuitive

    Personally I'm ready to welcome the new smartphone metaphor

    There area couple of 1000 commands in one of the 3D modeling programs I use - it takes forever to find a little used function in the menus or toolbars.

    Now that there will be a single intuitive and obvious touch gesture to select between optimising hole placement by tool path as opposed to tool change time my life will be much easier

    1. Nigel 11

      Re: New and intuitive

      I completely agree, but why anonymous? The one I use, there's an option somewhere to optimise by shavings dispersion. It really matters when the shavings are Plutonium.

      (note to MI5 - this is a joke)

    2. Peter Mc Aulay

      Re: New and intuitive

      No doubt the most often used gesture will be the one involving the raised index and middle fingers.

  41. LeeAlexander

    It's the new Coke but not as we know it!

    Remember the new Coke recipe - After the public uprising against it Coca Cola went back to the original recipe....and sales actually rose better than any ad campaign they'd ever done. I think Microsoft will also revert *but* I think heads will roll at MS and the long term damage will already have been done. Developers are already cheesed off with the way MS keep changing the technological ball every few years and so maybe this will accelerate their looking at other technologies more WEB centric. Long live HTML 5 :-)

  42. Lewis R

    Another reason why I use eComStation

    I've been an OS/2 user since 1990 or so. The Workplace Shell (the "desktop" in Windowsspeak) is funtionally the same interface now as it was when Warp 4 was released in '96 or so, with enhancements added over time. Thus, once I got past the initial learning curve (and my other users did), we coyld focus on more important things, such as RUNNING THE SOFTWARE.

    Aero is hideuous, and Explorer is hardly object-oriented (whereas the Workplace Shell was designe from the ground up to be an OOUI and not a GUI).

    I'll stick with what I know and with what works.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Reality check

    Microsucks is going to get another one.

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Icons and GUIs

    Anyone want to speculate on which version of Windows will be preceded by a MSDN blog post saying that whilst the text-only paradigm of Metro is absolutely wonderful, research has showed that people often find it easier to identify coloured images at a glance quicker and more easily than monochrome text, and MS now feel it's time to evolve Metro into the next generation of user interfaces by introducing a revolutionary new concept - Icons!

    From now on, there will be little colourful images on many of the buttons and toolbars, which can be clicked just like old-style Metro text buttons!!

    Then, before the next version of Windows after that, there'll be another blog post saying that the feedback on the new coloured icons was so overwhelmingly positive that MS intends to continue evolving the concept by making all the toolbars and other chrome/widgets all colourful and tactile, with lots of gradients and 3D styling.

    Some hardcore nerd will leave a single comment under this blog post saying "But this is exactly what Windows XP looked like decades ago!?", but no one will notice it. In fact, it'll probably get a load of down-thumbs for being so nerdy and mentioning Windows XP, whatever that was. QED dictates that anything from the last century surely existed in black and white, was primitively rubbish, took three hours to start up due to slow single core processors and RAM literally measured in mere MEGAbytes, and was operated by people in top hats who spoke like Noel Coward...

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: anyone want to speculate

      Er, 9? It's hard, because one never knows what the marketroids will decide to call it. (The Win8 consumer preview is actually 6.2 as far as the API is concerned, emphasising the fact that nothing of significance has been done at the OS level.)

  45. dark1here

    Aero interface

    Theres me using Vista and the W7, and did not know I had an Aero interface. I thought Aero was a chocolate bar with bubbles in it.

    Maybe bubbles are banned in Win8, along with the start button. All the corporates I have spoken to have said that they are not prepared to pay the mega bucks needed to retrain to use Win8, which means it may have the same uptake as Vista

  46. ratfox

    Therefore replacing the windows flag, well-known for over two decades...

    With the very first windows logo, which nobody knows or remembers, skewed "to give it perspective".

    That's top work from top marketing agencies right there.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Therefore replacing the windows flag, well-known for over two decades...

      reminds me somewhat of an ancient Dilbert cartoon..

      A door labelled with "Marketing department" with the banner "Two drink minimum" over the top.

  47. Coffee Cat

    Not Clausewitz?

    OK, I'm a pedant, but I always thought that quote was from von Moltke, rather than Clausewitz, even though it probably encapsulates Clausewitz's ideas?

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: Not Clausewitz?

      I think you're right - thanks.


  48. GT66

    Hello Windows 3.1. I have wondered where you've been.

  49. Anonymous Coward

    Reverse psychology at work?

    I mean on the surface, they are trying to make people NOT want Windows 8, and as every week goes by, they just fuck things up even worse for the product. MetroUI is horrendous abortion of a mobile phone tailored UI for your 24in monitor. And now they are making you use it by making the old one intentionally shit.

    I wonder if they are trying to psych us out?

    Microsoft has a long track record of making things so shit, you can't resist them. Xbox360 for example. I must buy myself one of them, I really can't believe it's THAT bad.

  50. Anonymous Coward






    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: STOP IT

      Uhm... XP /is/ still supported ;-)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: STOP IT

      being of an older generation doesn't mean you can SHOUT at everyone ;)

      Being of an older generation myself I fully remember the arguments from people complaining about the move to the start menu, saying its slow and inefficient, the interesting thing is that they were correct it is slow and inefficient. Win 8 appears to be moving back to the more efficient method but we shall have to wait and see where it goes as its going to require some rethinking of the way you use your computer.

      As for your sticking with the old idea. Good luck with that, when your colleagues send you an office 2016 document and you cant open it.

      XP is still supported? so presumably you've upgraded, or more likely bought a new computer with win 7 or vista on it? in which case what are you complaining about? it was your choice to update, unless of course you did it because low and behold you couldn't get a new Win XP laptop with your newer hardware requirements in mind? ;)

      If you had upgraded yourself, then again that's your own fault, XP will not suddenly stop working, if you wanted to live in the past then that's fine, you can still get some AV and security software which will continue to update for a few more years, an you'll probably need it with XP. I suppose the only good reason for doing this is that if you are the last windows XP user out there then apart from saving money from not being able to buy anything new for your PC at all, you will have the luxury of using an OS that no one will try an exploit any more either, and thus you wont need your AV software any more :)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        But being of an older generation probably left the guy a little hard-hearing. That tends to cause some shouting too ;-)

  51. John Burton

    Preview version...

    I tried in. I want to call it an incomprehensible mess. But that would be unfair to other incomprehensible messes. What that on earth are microsoft thinking. it's just an awful mess, how can they possibly be thinking of releasing this

  52. Len Goddard

    After much thrashing around and downloading of Classic Shell et al I've finally managed to make Win 7 work more or less the way I want it to ... ie with the Win2000 user interface. It is not as good as Win XP was due to some upleasant behaviour from the file manager but it is tolerable.

    I don't want a new interface every time I get a new computer (which is about the only time I change the version of Windoze). The classic interface does everything I want the way I expect it to. It is not the best interface in the world but it is familiar. If I try to learn Win 8 it will have changed again long before I am half as comfortable with it as I am with Classic.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      I don't want a new interface every time I get a new computer

      By that logic we'd still be using Win3.1

      1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

        Re: By that logic we'd still be using Win3.1

        But using it on machines that can handle many cores, many GB, and periphericals with every modern bus you've ever heard of.

        You're right. It would be awful. Every action would just complete immediately and there'd be no time to make coffee or crak open a <icon>.

      2. Jess

        Re: I don't want a new interface every time I get a new computer

        Funnily enough I am still using as my primary system at home, one where the GUI hasn't significantly changed since before windows 3.1 was released. Runs on Arm chips too.

        Looking forward to trying it on a Pi, once USB drivers for it are sorted and my Pi arrives.

  53. Ian Ferguson

    Windows 9...

    ...will style a modern 'retro giant pixel' look. Curves and anti-aliasing are so last year.

    1. tirk

      Windows 10...

      Punch card input and a teletype output??

  54. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And the funny thing is....

    By the end of the day that it launches Win8 will be running on a larger number of PCs than Linux has been installed on. Just saying.

    And I am loving the weird, yet confused, mixture of emotions on this thread. There is a fear of change mixed with a bizarre sense of schadenfreude, (from the usual haters,) which is somewhat misplaced as the product has not actually shipped yet. These are the same people that proclaim every new MS product a failure before it ships but time after time they get proven wrong.

    Me? I am going to wait and see what the finished product looks like.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: And the funny thing is....

      Larger number of desktop/laptop PCs, not larger number of PCs in total. There's a gazillion Linux servers out there.

      1. P. Lee

        Re: And the funny thing is....

        not to mention all those phones and tablets running linux with android on top...

    2. bazza Silver badge

      Re: And the funny thing is....

      Ah well, it's all fine and dandy to wait for the release, but many of us have been trying the consumer preview (myself included). It would be a significant surprise if the release turned out to be very different. Personally speaking I hate the metro interface on a desktop but I can see it working quite well on a tablet.

      Two problems for Microsoft. First, there's a distinct lack of good PR resulting from the consumer preview. This might actually translate into bad PR once the mainstream press wake up. That's never good for a product launch.

      Second, a platform depends on the developers to make it successful. Now developers are never going to use a tablet for this; they do too much typing and want several large screens. They want a good desktop OS, something that Win 8 really isn't. So if their life becomes too hard they might just go to a platform where life is easier. OS X springs to mind. The most talented individuals out there will certainly jump ship as soon as they get fed up.

      The trouble is that there aren't enough devs to show up significantly in MS's usage statistics, yet in essence they are MS's most important customers. MS will ignore their views at their peril.

      I'm very disappointed with MS. When they first started talking about ARM I thought great, proper Windows on ARM, maybe Metro for mobiles, ARM servers just round the corner, etc. Looks like they've been lazy buggers and tried to do mobile on the cheap and ruined desktop at the same time, and no hint of them innovating in ARM servers.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: And the funny thing is....

        Ummm, I think you will find that MS tracks devs very, very closely. They have a large team in every country (DPE) whose specific role is to listen to and work with devs. They will be able to tell you the number of devs in each country more accurately than any other company in the industry, as well as the percentage share that .NET represents vs other platforms. MS do realize that devs are important, trust me on that one.

        The more specific question is 'does MS listen to everyone who calls themself a dev when posting on the register'. The answer to that in No. The reg does not represent a very mainstream view of the IT industry. Especially in the comments sections.

        But I am sure that MS read the comments and enjoy them immensely :-)

    3. Nuke

      @AC - Re: And the funny thing is....

      AC wrote : "By the end of the day that it launches Win8 will be running on a larger number of PCs than Linux has been installed on."

      So we mustn't discuss a new release of Windows, or compare it with Linux or anything else because there are more copies of Windows than Linux?

      Like we shouldn't discuss a new Ford model, or compare it with a Chrysler or any other car, because there are more Fords around than Chryslers?

      Not sure I get your point or follow your logic.

  55. ElsieEffsee

    Hello McBalmer! Wake UP!

    Balmer & Co need to wake up and actually look at who buys and uses their software, in particular, businesses. My company has 12,000 desktops in the UK and 40,000+ in Europe of which 95% still run XP. Why? because it's stable. Yes, we should have gone to Windows 7 much earlier but political infighting and waiting to outsource IT put paid to that. The Windows 7 rollout is going to start later this year if they think that companies like mine (and I suspect, many others in the same boat) are going to jump to Windows 8 when it's so massively different, is ridiculous. It's simply not going to happen!

    Why would businesses jump to Windows 8 when we're all using mice, keyboards and ordinary monitors - NOT TABLETS! Tablets are consumption devices, they are NOT productive devices. The Metro front end is a joke from a business point of view and even getting rid of this the loss of the start button had my tech colleagues and I going WTF?!

    When W7 came out I jumped on the pre-order bandwagon and got 3 copies for £45 each from PC World but I'm avoiding W8 like the proverbial plague. W7 ain't perfect but it works, the kids like it, my wife has got used to it - so it's staying!

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Hello McBalmer! Wake UP!

      I think the problem is that they *have* looked and have drawn entirely the wrong conclusion.

      They seen that people don't always upgrade and have concluded that the only source of revenue for a new version of Windows will be OEM sales on new hardware. In fact, this is arse backwards. They already *have* a product for new hardware (Win7), whose development costs have by now been amortised to nil. All the cash they've spent developing a new one only makes sense if they can persuade existing customers to upgrade (i.e., selling them Windows for a *second* time). Then there's the fact that an OEM licence for Windows on new hardware makes them sweet FA whereas each upgrade makes them several times as much.

      Commercially speaking, upgrading existing customers on existing hardware should be at the forefront of their minds whenever they design a new version of Windows.

  56. resle

    There is just one windows version

    And it's Windows 2000

    All those Windows versions list, Windows 98 R2 better than 98 but worse than XP... blah blah

    W < 2000 = Dos with a coughing UI on top

    W > 2000 = Windows with useless eye candy and bloated security on top


  57. Scrote

    bored of the old

    i'm looking forward to the new interface. aero's getting boring after all these years.

  58. Someone Else Silver badge


    "This style of simulating faux-realistic materials (such as glass or aluminum) on the screen looks dated and cheesy now, but at the time, it was very much en vogue."

    But big monochromatic squares are so haut couture, oui?

    Fuckin' puh-LEEZE awready! Shut the fuck up and just give is what we the customers want. (You do remember customers, don't you?)

    1. Goat Jam

      Re: Puh-LEEEEZE!

      "You do remember customers, don't you?"

      Yes, and Michael Dell thanks you for your concern.

  59. Sil

    Why force a touch-based user interface when 99.9% of people won't have touch screens.

    I love my Mango phone but I'm not really looking forward to metro on the desktop as:

    1. it doesn't work that well with dual screens

    2. While it is quite elegant (perfect for many "content-presentation" apps such as newa, stocks, entertainment) one size does not fit all and the traditional desktop feels like a second-class citizen.

    3. I absolutely despise the fact that the IE Metro is not the same as the desktop IE, with among other no support for favorites and no support for flash (hello Youtube).

    But I am happy that at least 2 people are bullish with Sinofsky.

    1. qwarty

      99.9% ? The Far East supply chain figures suggest factories are currently tooling up for about 15-20% of laptop displays being multi-touch next year. I don't have figures for monitors. Windows 8 has to look to the future not just the installed base.

      Its looking like multi-monitor on Windows 8 desktop will be a worthwhile improvement on Windows 7.

      I agree with the Microsoft line that once you've experienced touchscreen on a monitor, it feels a bit odd not to have the feature despite the fact that its still mouse/trackpad and keyboard most of the time on laptop/desktop. Most of the criticism seems to come from those who have not tried it but somehow know it will feel wrong.

      1. Paul Shirley

        "not tried it but somehow know it will feel wrong"

        I just reached out toward my closest monitor. Finger got to about 1cm away from the screen surface. Do I really have to try anything more to know touch control on it is not usable and likely to cause severe RSI?

        I look forward to the lawsuits when the RSI aspects sink in.

  60. cyberdemon Silver badge

    Reminds me of PC games

    Modern games on the PC have similar interface problems because the designers^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hmoneymen want to release simultaneously on consoles but don't want to change the interface to make it more sensible on a PC.

    E.g. the second and third iterations of Deus Ex. Absolutely disastrous.

    As for Linux - I agree Unity and KDE4 are absolute horrors, but that's why the Trinity Desktop Environment (TDE) was created. It's basically an optified fork of KDE3.5, which can coexist with a KDE4 installation and run KDE4 apps.

    Currently running it on Debian Sid. Very handy.

    1. Paul 135

      Forget Trinity

      Time for you to re-evaluate on KDE 4.8.

      1. Chika

        Re: Forget Trinity

        "Time for you to re-evaluate on KDE 4.8."

        I have.

        It's an improvement, but not yet enough of one to force me from KDE 3. Actually, I was better impressed with the previous iteration of KDE 4, so I've no idea what they did to 4.8 but it seemed a lot more sluggish to me. Possibly they added another lump of bloat to it to replace what they took out before? I dunno.

      2. AJ MacLeod

        Re: Forget Trinity

        The crunch moment for me was when all that "semantic desktop" garbage became a compulsory part of KDE and kmail in particular - I'd been using KDE very happily for most of a decade until then. Still, sylpheed's not at all bad and e17 does what I want very well, desktop wise.

        Windows has never, ever been configurable enough to achieve that, leaving aside the ten million other reasons I won't use it.

  61. Rick Leeming


    Why Bother?

    I'm using the Classic theme, because it's an OS. It lets me find the apps I want to run, and I want it to be clean.

    As long as I'm not FORCED to use Metro day-to-day i'll upgrade, otherwise I'll stick with Win7 on all my machines.

  62. TeeCee Gold badge

    Dated and Cheesy?

    I agree. Put a 7 desktop and an 8 desktop side by side and one does indeed look dated and cheesy.

    Their analysis is correct, it's their targetting that's off.

    Those Metro applications look to me like a global implementation of the UI from Windows Media Centre. I always thought that was shit too.

  63. Anonymous Coward

    Seems an earlier comment wasn't that much off....

    In a previous comment I jested at MS removing support options from Windows (keyboard / mouse) because people could be bothered with the inability to use them.

    However, this latest move makes one seriously wonder....

    Aero is /much/ more than merely a shiney interface. Its highly functional as well; the option to have status bars display in the taskbar icons is IMO invaluable. In Windows 7 you can /always/ see the progress of a download or copy action.

    In Windows 8 you should be using full screen crapola anyway, so who cares about all that Aero nonsense anymore?

    Well: I DO!

    This is yet another reason to avoid Win8 on the desktop.

  64. Sentient

    Win8 probably aint bad...

    ...and long overdue for tablets but for a desktop user there are no reasons to chose it over Windows 7.

    I really cannot imagine someone buying an upgrade from vista or 7 to 8 and definately not for the amount of money that they are charging.

    "Many remain in the dark as to how programming for this thing will work." Euhm Install the developer tools and get programming?

  65. Robinson
    Thumb Down


    So us software developers will now have to code for 3 OS's that are really quite different from one another. Believe it or not, in most corporations, XP is still the OS of choice. At the moment we have to test against XP SP3 and 7 (we skipped Vista, but if it runs on those two it probably runs on Vista anyway). Now we're going to have the craptastic 8 to throw into the mix too.

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Why?

      I think you are worrying too much. Apart from replacing the start menu with a scrolling screen of pain, the desktop experience on Win8 is not noticeably different from 7.

      As I noted in an earlier comment, Win8 is 6.2 at the API level, so you'll be able to treat it the same way you currently treat Vista. Focus your efforts on XP and 7. Perform basic sanity checks just in case you have customers blighted by having to use Vista or 8, but focus the testing efforts on XP and 7.

  66. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    For your own good

    The people have spoken and Microsoft have listened. People no longer want a grid of static desktop icons and a start menu leading into silo'd applications they want interactive live tiles bursting with useful information that only the Windows Metro Interface can provide. This is the future people embrace it

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge


      "interactive live tiles bursting with useful information"

      The tweet generation. In your home, on your desktop and inside your OS.

    2. Nuke

      @AC - Re: For your own good

      You are being funny, right?

      ".... interactive live tiles bursting with useful information ....."

      ........ priceless!!!! You should be on the stage! It was when I read that part that I went bursting with coffee over keyboard. Worth it though - I am going to remember that soundbite for a long, long time.

    3. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: For your own good

      Jeez, to judge from the downvotes as I post this, nearly 95% of the El Reg readership have a sense of humour bypass. Do we need to make the use of the joke and troll icons mandatory?

  67. KirstarK

    Metro is nasty.

    If you want a small sample, use a patches xbox 360.

    Unfortunately as I am in computer support I will have to use but it but I really do not want to.

  68. Huckleberry Muckelroy

    It Will Fail

    I have installed it and played with it. It is a disgusting mess and it will fail. I wouldn't want it on my phone. I certainly do not want it on my PC. Besides all the other faults that have been pointed out, it lacks style and dignity.

  69. Barry Tabrah

    In 5 years time

    Touch based interfaces for desktop PCs were so dated and cheesy.

    Oh, wait a minute. Did I say 5 years?

  70. FordPrefect

    Ye right on microsoft because what looks like a not too bad UI on a 4" or less touchscreen is automatically going to scale up to a 24" plus monitor using a good ole mouse and keyboard? Why not leave aero in and let the USER decide which shell they want to use! If I wanted the metro interface I would have bought a windows phone, but instead I bought an android!

  71. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Didn't notice windows Aero.

    The first thing I did, was swtich it off and go to windows classic, with the coffee bean (tiled - so I could defocus and turn it into a sird to save my short range eyesight,)

    I also switch off all the other stupid stuff their marketing staff have come up with in the last 5 years, such as menus that don't show you everything (deliberately done I think, to remove any advantage of memory muscle.) and all new features that are style over content, such as "Combine all buttons to one on the taskbar."

    My dream would be a restore of the Up button, and the removal of the Ribbon, which sucks the sweat of a dead man's balls.

    There should be a simple switch. "Make this look like a really fast, really powerful, windows 2000 installation, that shows you everything, doesn't pseudorandomly change the relative positions of things relative to each other and so on, and doesn't remove features because cocaine addled marketing types don't need them personally." which does exactly what it says on the tin.

    1. Jess

      Re: Didn't notice windows Aero.

      Sounds a bit like Linux mint (in relation to Ubuntu).

    2. Anonymous Dutch Coward
      Thumb Up

      Re: Didn't notice windows Aero.

      Awesome description of that switch. Completely agreed. I want one... or perhaps I'm not waiting for it and switching to Linux as my main desktop environment...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Windows 8 - "sucks the sweat of a dead man's balls." (r)(c)(tm)

      The entire marketing campaign in a single sentence. Perfect.

  72. regorama


    These pointless glass effects have looked cheesy even when they were introduced.

    And they where completely non-functional: Because the main part of a window needs to be easily readable, they only made the outside border transparent, while the rest of the window stayed opaque. That looked idiotic. And even on the outside border, this caused problems, e.g. for the window title. So they had to add drop-shadows to the text of the title bar, etc.pp. Jut a bad idea that they tried desperately to fix, but it did not work because it was a bad idea right from the start.

    Of course power users used the "classic mode" on Win7 because of this. I am glad that MS understands this and will fix it.

  73. Sirius Lee

    Windows 8: no choice

    Why does it matter to Microsoft if Aero is in Windows 8 or not? Surely this is a user preference. If there's a performance problem on a specific implementation, it seems to me an appropriate course of action is to make the default something other than Aero. Maybe no one uses Aero? I do. How many Windows 7 users will this affect?

    So I'm cheesy, huh? But then I have about 2 billion CPU cycles per second free so squander. How much effort does it for Windows to process key clicks (that's what my laptop does most of the day)?

    Even modern A10 chips run at nearly 2Ghz (I know CPU speed is not always a good proxy for processing speed but we don't have anything else). So another question is: what is Windows 8 doing to consume so many cycle that it can't paint the screen? Maybe malware is built in to the OS?

  74. skuba*steve


    Not being funny, but how come _everyone_ is a fricking expert? I mean come on - it's an OS, and if you don't like it don't use it. Yes, most versions of the M$ OS have been buggy in the early days - our general rule of thumb was to wait until the first SP before looking to upgrade - but having jumped ship to Ubuntu some time ago I can say the same for the LTS releases there.

    _But_ lets be realistic - with a choice of XP, Windows 7, Vista (if you are feeling sadistic) and all of the various Linux distro's - not to mention MAC - I fail to see the vitriol behind a companies release.

    News update folks - M$ didn't make it for YOU, they made it to make money. It's their train set, and if it works then great, if it doesn't, well, there'll be another along in a year or so.

    This shit is almost as dreary as the Olympics.

    Apologies for the grammar/punctuation etc, I'm doing this on mah phone.

    1. Chika

      Re: Yaaaaawn

      You have a point. From my own POV, however, what annoys me is this "we know what's best for you" attitude that Microsoft is adopting here. I want my computer to do a certain job in the way I want it to be done, not how some "expert" wants me to do it.

      So when I see that they are forcing me to change (this is a big problem here - the word "change") the interface to a method that is not suitable for purpose just to make some fashion statement, I get annoyed.

      And I HATE being annoyed!

      The wages of Metro is.... oh sorry. You nearly brought out the Virtue in me!

      But, as I said, the word "change" is the important one here. Change for the sake of change will always get up the collective noses of the great unwashed, but change in itself will always provoke some people regardless. That being the case, change should be presented properly, and Microsoft appears to have completely forgotten how to do that. Hence the comments we have here.

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Yaaaaawn

      Everyone is a fricking expert because the topic is usability and we are all users. I'd guess that most of us here are fairly heavy users and have far wider experience than average of different UIs on various systems past and present.

      Not being funny, but the real question is what are Microsoft smoking? Twenty years ago, GUIs were sufficiently close to being "designed" that vendors frequently issued design guides with references to actual research in human-computer interactions and models of how people think when they approach a computer. Every version of Windows in the last ten years is sufficiently far from those models that MS don't dare publish similar guides. They may have something called a design guide, but it doesn't reference research and is instead full of arty comments about the emotions they want the UI to inspire in their users.

      1. Goat Jam

        What are Microsoft smoking?

        The same thing the folks at Apple, KDE, Gnome and Canonical are all smoking it appears.

        I don't know what it is with UI designers and sudden onset dementia at the moment but I sure hope it aint catching.

  75. jason 7

    7 years ago they said...

    ...we'd all be using netbooks.

  76. RonWheeler

    On the plus side, VDI

    it'll save a lot of moans from Xendesktop / VMware view users who currently don't have the pointless-but-cool Aero whizzyness that their craptop wielding colleagues do.

  77. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bye Bye Windows, Hello Linux :-D

    See title

  78. Anonymous Coward 15
    Paris Hilton

    As much as I hate it

    I don't believe it will turn out to be as much of a turkey as this thread suggests. A finger doesn't produce milk, but that doesn't mean a baby won't suck on it as if it was a nipple.

  79. Alan Bourke

    To all the people saying Vista was Windows ME 2

    Are you basing this on any long-term exposure to service-packed Vista, or are you saying it because some men on the internet said it so it must be true?

    The latter, I suspect.

    1. ed2020
      Thumb Up

      Re: To all the people saying Vista was Windows ME 2

      I'm gald somebody's said that. My first experience of Vista was trying to fix it on a friend's computer. This was pre-SP1 and it was truly awful. My home PC runs Vista (amongst other OS's) and, with the service packs, is perfectly usable. I can see no reason to upgrade to Win7, let along Win8.

    2. jason 7

      Re: To all the people saying Vista was Windows ME 2

      As I have found through rebuilding many Vista Machines from scratch over the past three years, once you put on a clean build and SP2 + patches its fine.

      No more disk thrashing, sluggish behaviour etc. Works just as well as 7 really. Customers call me back a couple of days after I've rebuilt them to ask what it is I did to make it work so fast.

      The reason Vista was bad at launch was it wasn't quite ready (needed another 3 months of tweaking and the other companies to get their arse in gear and make some drivers) and all the crapware that Dell/HP/Acer/Toshiba etc. installed, wasn't really designed with Vista in mind.

  80. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I like aero.

  81. SpaMster

    Am I the only one that didnt mind the Aero interface?!?

    1. Vic

      > Am I the only one that didnt mind the Aero interface?!?

      I thought it was pointless, but I don't *mind* it - I'm just not really interested in it.

      But binning it now seems ... odd.


  82. jason 7

    This would never have happend if...

    ..MS had simply given us back the beloved feature - Custom Install.

    Oh how I miss you from Windows 98SE. When I could craft out all the crap I never used.

    How mature it felt to be trusted with choosing what I wanted on my PC. Now I have the choice of install what MS deems I must have or not install it at all.

    Unfortunately Linux or OSX doesn't do it for me either. So I put up with it. Tough shit!

    However, the main point is that MS isn't giving us the choice over Metro because it is desperate, oh so desperate to join the successful apps store bandwagon. So It's prepared to alienate a huge chunk of its currently happy user base by shameful plugging of its crappy apps platform.

    How very tacky.

  83. Anonymous Coward

    Dated a cheesy?

    IF you want to see dated and cheesy, look no further:

  84. ceebee

    Metro the new Bob?

    I have tried Win8 and the UI is basically a mess. It may be fast and fluid but it is still less productive and useable.

    I am less worried about Aero Glass than the whole mess that is the Metro start menu.

    This really is Metro vs 1 not Windows vs 8!

    Now where did I put those Bob disks?

  85. MrZoolook

    Aero was always cheesy and dated, and sluggish, a drain on video ram, and generally sucked. The same was true with XP... it looked more like a Fisher Price toy then a PC-OS.

    I have to question the mentality of anyone wanting to give over the majority of their system just to run the graphics of the UI.

  86. sola

    Linux and MacOS will thank this

    If Win8 goes into production like this, a huge number of users will migrate to Linux and MacOS on the desktop. What Vista couldn't achieve, Metro will.

    This will safely put MacOS to 10-20% of desktop market share and catapult Linux to 5-10% which will actually make it a relevant desktop OS. Apple and Linus will send a big thank you to Balmer.

    (Unless a Win8 SP1 comes out in a couple of months and quickly makes it possible to switch Metro off completely.)

  87. pctechxp

    Will they never learn

    People don't want an OS that just looks cool, they want one that WORKS.

    MS refocus your efforts on making it work and leave the UI alone.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Will they never learn

      Personally I always liked the Windows 2000 desktop. I never wanted fancy effects, fades, scrolls, transparencies or other bollocks! I want to USE my computer, not just frikkin' look at it!

      When feasible I disable the default XP and Win7 looks and go back to 'classic' Windows.

  88. Sil

    Cheesy and dated multitasking in Windows 8

    Am I the only one to think that the multitasking in Windows 8 is cheesy and dated?

    While there are no doubts that MS is optimizing W8 for concurrency and parallelism (and expecting developers to do as well in their apps) I noticed an incredibly bothering pattern in W8: it looks as if the computer isn't multitasking at all.

    Watching a downloaded channel9 video I launched the install of W8 and looking for additional infos on websites. As soon as I switched to the web browser or the setup the video stopped. Like most people I was expecting the video to continue while doing other stuff. If I want to pause the video I pause the video myself.

    I must say this behavior is incredibly annoying and I Wonder if this is a 'feature' of the metro interface.

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