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11/19/2013
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8 Reasons To Hate Windows 8.1

Sure, it's an improvement over Windows 8. But for many PC users, Windows 8.1 is a clumsy hybrid that's a pain to navigate.
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Just how unloved is Windows 8's new interface? Consider this: One of Windows 8.1's hot new features is the ability to bypass the Live Tile user interface and boot directly to the traditional Windows desktop. It's a tacit admission by Microsoft that its ambitious goal of creating a unified interface for mobile and desktop devices hasn't exactly gotten a warm embrace from longtime Windows users.

That can't be good. Much has been written about the jarring distinction between Windows 8 and its predecessors, all of which had the same look and feel (with a few tweaks) dating back to Windows 95. Of course, change isn't necessarily a bad thing; it's often for the best, in fact, even when people resist it, which they usually do.

Windows 8 featured a new UI optimized for multitouch tablets, which Microsoft slapped on top of a crippled Windows desktop sans the Start button/menu. This one-UI-fits-all-devices approach backfired, resulting in confused end users, as well as wary enterprise uses unwilling to upgrade from earlier versions.

PC shipments began to plummet at around the same time that Windows 8 arrived. It's not fair to pin moribund PC sales entirely on Windows 8 -- for many global consumers, a tablet or smartphone is the better, cheaper choice -- but the hybrid OS was certainly a contributing factor.

A year after Windows 8's debut, Windows 8.1 is here. Is it better than its predecessor? Yes, but in small ways. The overall presentation is essentially unchanged, albeit with some needed improvements. You'll find a visual tour here.

If you're a Windows 8 hater, Windows 8.1 probably won't change your opinion of the OS. (It's worth noting that in addition to the Live Tile UI, Windows 8.x offers other enhancements, most notably faster startup times.) New features such as the return of the Start button and boot-to-desktop are welcome additions, but they might make Windows 7 users wonder: Why upgrade at all?

This doesn't mean that Windows 8.1 will fail. If touchscreen laptops and hybrid devices like Microsoft's own Surface Pro 2 prove popular with businesses and consumers, the operating system's touch-oriented UI and mobile-style apps might prove a winner in the long run. But for legacy desktops and laptops, Windows 8.x remains a hard sell.    

Here are eight reasons to hate -- or at the very least, dislike -- Windows 8.1. If you think the latest version of Windows is getting a bum rap here, let us know in the comments below.

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Longtimeuser
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Longtimeuser,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/13/2014 | 2:21:52 PM
Re: 8 Reasons to hate Windows 8.1 if you already hate it.
It's called keeping productive. I've used a Microsoft OS since DOS 4. I have no problem with changes and updates when they add something useful. But when it cuts productivity instead of helping I have a big problem. My biggest problem with Windows 8 is that it takes more keystrokes and has fewer shortcut keys to get things done and the logic is not consistent - not consistent with previous versions of Windows and not even consistent within the OS (metro vs desktop - shudder). When I'm on a roll, I don't want to break my typing to reach for the mouse (or to reach toward the screen) - why randomly kill various shortcuts?  So you can just swipe to get the charms - well it's not that easy if you use two screens - Windows 8 has no clue how to handle them. If you open an app, you cannot just drag it to the other screen to get it out of the way.  If you move the cursor to a corner, the screen you are on (it doesn't matter which) may or may not figure out how to give you the charms. 

After 6 months of Windows 8 on my laptop, I am considering whether to upgrade my desktop (I purchased 8 pro when it was $39 and have never opened the package). But after trying out Ubuntu, I may go that route - it's fast, slick, and was remarkably easy to learn. If I do go to Linux, I'll probably run still Windows 7 in a virtual window - there's some software I need for my business that is only available via Windows.
tomskaczmarek
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tomskaczmarek,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/7/2014 | 2:22:10 PM
Get over it
20 years ago after an initial break up of the Eagles, Henley and Frey wrote a song with a lesson for thos so upset with this change. Here is the first verse and chorus:

"I turn on the tube and what do I see
A whole lotta people cryin' "Don't blame me"
They point their crooked little fingers ar everybody else
Spend all their time feelin' sorry for themselves
Victim of this, victim of that
Your momma's too thin; your daddy's too fat

Get over it
Get over it
All this whinin' and cryin' and pitchin' a fit
Get over it, get over it"

Writer(s): Don Henley, Glenn Lewis Frey
Copyright: Red Cloud Music, Black Cypress Music
RoleG356
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RoleG356,
User Rank: Strategist
2/4/2014 | 2:59:09 PM
Re: SORRY Microfoft but..........
You obviously don't know what you are doing.  Your friend needs another friend that does to help them out with 8.1.  The amount of time you spend bitching and moaning in your post was longer than a short tutorial or article (readily availabe) that would have gotten both of you going full speed on Windows 8.1.  Some people are just resistant or pathetic.
RoleG356
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RoleG356,
User Rank: Strategist
2/4/2014 | 2:53:03 PM
Re: Windows 8.1 Metro Apps
If it is so hard for you, don't use Metro Apps at all.  We don't, because we don't need them at work, but not because it is difficult to swap screens.  If you are really a PC literate person, grow up and quit fighting things that are not hard to adapt to.  You are doomed in the near future if you can't get past XP or Windows 7; that will likely be the easiest thing to adapt to if you aren't already 85 years old or going senile sooner.
RoleG356
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RoleG356,
User Rank: Strategist
2/4/2014 | 2:50:00 PM
Re: Windows 8.1 Metro Apps
Adapting to Windows 8.1 is not difficult at all.  I disagree strongly that learning IOS or Android is easier than going from Windows XP or 7 to 8.1.  We have converted dozens of users to 8.1 defaulting to the desktop view, and none of them have had problems...and they are not IT staff either.
djameson910
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djameson910,
User Rank: Strategist
2/4/2014 | 12:52:04 PM
Application Recent Documents
One of the things I liked best about Windows 7 was the recent documents for each application on the Start Menu.  The only realy complaint I have about Windows 8.1 is that the Start screen tiles do not have app-specific recent documents.  I know I can still pin an application to the Task Bar, but I use too many applications to pin them all without overly cluttering the Task Bar.
DDURBIN1
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DDURBIN1,
User Rank: Ninja
2/4/2014 | 10:07:22 AM
Re: Windows 8.1 Metro Apps
ChrisN432,  Plainly put it is easier to switch and learn iOS or Android than to learn Win8.  I said nothing about Mac OS.  My comment about Mac OS is that all previous versions of Mac OS upgrades didn't require the learning curve needed with Windows 8 upgrade to continue to be as productive.  By the way there are no touch screen iMacs or Macbooks and there are good reasons which Microsoft is learning the hard way.
DDURBIN1
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DDURBIN1,
User Rank: Ninja
2/4/2014 | 9:56:32 AM
Re: Windows 8.1 Metro Apps
@ChrisN432, the move from win3.1 to win95 was a HUGE improvement.  The move from Win7 to Win8 is NOT and in fact a huge step backwards for desktop point and click users.  There is no advantage to using Metro over Desktop and forcing the user to switch between them is rediculous. Dr. Frankenstien could not have created a more skitso enviroment.
ChrisN432
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ChrisN432,
User Rank: Strategist
2/3/2014 | 8:38:23 PM
Re: Windows 8.1 Metro Apps
@DDURBIN1 I'm going to disagree. On a small level, there were several things I had to learn how to do just upgrading my iPad to iOS 7. Over the years, I'm sure there have been plenty of things that had to be learned when new iOS versions came out, the same as new versions of Windows. The big difference right now is that Microsoft chose to make a major, fundamental change to Windows with Windows 8. That's definitely going to mean learning some new things. However, that's life. We're always resistant to change. Microsoft has done something nobody else has done so far, and they took a risk doing it -- they've made everything work and look the same, from phones, to tablets, to laptops to desktops. I really like it, but that's because I could tell from the display models in stores that a non-touchscreen laptop with Windows 8 would be aweful, and I had an open mind. Not only does everything look alike, but it all knows everything I've done. I can sit down at my desktop, and start to type a URL address into IE. It can be a URL I've only ever been to on my laptop, but my desktop knows about it. It's magic!

 

As far as 8.1 is concerned, I don't know. I upgraded my laptop to it when it came out, but that was a disaster. It turned my favorite computer I've ever owned (and I've owned tham all the way back to the IBM PCjr) into the worst. That's because it reduced the sensitivity of the touchscreen to where it barely worked, and it disabled the bluetooth. There was no Windows 8.1 compatible driver for the bluetooth on that computer, and I suspect, a similar problem with the touchscreen.

 

Learning Android (I've had Android phones and an Android tablet) isn't that easy, beyond just the basics. I'm totally lost trying to do anything on my daughter's macbook. Learning Windows 8 wasn't too difficult, and I'm not a geek. All you have to do is read up on the tips and tricks stuff and watch a tutorial or two. I've been using it for over a year, and I'm still learning. however, I've been using earlier versions of Windows for decades, and Windows 7 at work, and I'm still learning things on those too. Nothing new there.

 

Were you around when they went from the old Windows 3.1 to Windows 95? That was a pretty major change, as I recall, and took a lot of getting used to.
ChrisN432
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ChrisN432,
User Rank: Strategist
2/3/2014 | 8:25:13 PM
Re: Windows 8.1 Metro Apps
Yeah. That's why I said Windows 8 sucks without a touchscreen. Don't do it!
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