Windows 8 101 in 25 Links

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Windows 8, with its controversial new interface, was released on October 26th. How is it being received by consumers and IT pros? Enter the METHOD IT roundup of reviews, videos and more to bring you up to speed.

windows_8_start_screenLike it or lump it Windows 8 is here to stay.

This is Microsoft’s bridge between the long-in-the-tooth desktop/folder paradigm and the unstoppable switch to touch-screen interfaces, designed to offer the same experience across all devices.

It also lays the foundations for Microsoft’s own Apple-style walled garden, with Windows 8 Apps being purchased through the Windows Store.

The new Start Screen with its brightly colored tiles, the addition of Charms and ‘hot corners’ (familiar to Mac users), and the absence of the old Start Menu have been causing much consternation ever since the preview release.

So now it’s out in the wild, what kind of reception is Windows 8 getting from tech websites and consumers? And what kind of impact will it have on enterprise IT and software development? We’ve trawled the web for you and found plenty of answers.


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Videos

What does Windows 8 look like in action? This is a major factor in deciding how easily you will take to the OS. Tour the fundamentals in around 15 minutes with this collection of videos.

Reviews

Discover the new features in Windows 8 and find out what it’s like for the average user to work on a Windows 8 PC.

Versions

As with previous releases, Windows 8 comes in a few flavors – Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro for regular PCs, and Windows 8 RT which will only come pre-installed on mobile devices like tablets. Here’s the best, simplest breakdown of the differences we’ve seen so far:

Upgrades

For a Windows 7 user, the question is whether to upgrade or not. The upgrade to Windows 8 can be a lot cheaper than previous Windows versions (starting at ¥3,300 in Japan), but comes with its own pros and cons.

Both sides of the coin from PC World –

Hardware

The flagship Windows 8 device, Microsoft’s Surface tablet was also launched late October, marking the company’s first foray into computer hardware. Surface comes in two models, the ARM processor-based Windows RT version that will only run Windows 8 apps, and the yet-to-be-released Pro version which will also run legacy Windows software.

Developers

Putting any user interface gripes aside, there are many improvements in the guts of Windows 8 that will please developers.

Enterprise

What impact will Windows 8 have on enterprise IT?

TIP:

If Windows 8 looks to be too drastic a leap for your organization, consider upgrading your aging and potentially vulnerable XP machines to 7 instead, which MS has pledged to support until January 2020.

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