Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Windows 8 Preview

Well I took the plunge and have downloaded the Windows 8 Developer Preview from dev.windows.com and thrown it onto my HP 2760P to see how it handles the touch screen and so forth - or perhaps just as importantly how I handle it.

The Install
Downloading was simple, the ISO just needed unpacking so the install could proceed from a USB key (thanks Jas). Super super smooth after hitting the setup.exe as it nicely went about the upgrade in maybe 10 mins or so with just the one restart. Most of my devices were detected by the install, not sure what I am missing yet - but the key things are there.

First Baby Steps
Well talk about a confusing start, the whole concept of the green start screen thing is quite mystifying still. Esp as the installation has hidden all my previously installed apps away from me...
The splitting up of the new apps and the more regular desktop experience feels highly disjointed. Though ALT-TAB works, this is far from the joy of the Win7 taskbar with all its clever icons, aero preview and unified logic. The idea of strangely discovering which part of the screen I can swipe over to get things to come up is odd. Plus the intuitive thing might be to swipe up at the edge to get something to appear - but to get it to go away again, why swipe up again :-)

Progress?
First real problem is getting onto the wireless network, that is just giving me unhelpful errors so far. Moving on I have started to re-install apps, that seems to be what is needed and the WIn7 versions are popping on there one by one ok so far.

Where Does that Leave Me
Well it is actually working surprisingly well in one way considering it is early days yet. The Metro interface is still a mystery waiting to be solved and I am stuck to a network cable, but the rest seems to be alive...

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A little video (not mine) of how that Metro is looking etc:

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