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11/27/2012
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Paul McDougall
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Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?

If Windows 8 sales don’t improve soon, Microsoft might have to pull a Coke and cut its losses on its radically reengineered OS.

Windows: Goofs And Gaffes
Windows: Goofs And Gaffes
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
The early results are in, and the news isn't good for Microsoft. Indications are that initial sales for Windows 8 are dismal. The question now facing Redmond is whether to stick with this radical reimagining of its veritable OS, or revert to the familiar Windows environment of old.

First, some background. Microsoft hasn't released official sales numbers for Windows 8 or related products, like Surface RT, which hit stores in late October. But evidence is building from numerous sources that consumer response to the new products can be summed up as: "Meh."

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster and his team spent Black Friday monitoring foot traffic at Microsoft and Apple stores at Mall of America in Minneapolis. They found that customers in the Apple store bought 17.2 items per hour, while Microsoft's customers purchased just 3.5 items per hour, and most of those were Xbox games. Over two hours, the Apple store sold 11 iPads, while the Microsoft store sold exactly zero Surface tablets, according to an account of the exercise published by Fortune.

Meanwhile, 29% of the more than 20,000 would-be tablet buyers surveyed this month by Vuclip said they plan to purchase an iPad. Some 22% said they would opt for a Samsung Galaxy Tab. Only 4% said they would choose Microsoft Surface. That doesn't even come close to the 15% that plan to buy a BlackBerry PlayBook (apparently still on the market for some reason).

Last week, Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White said that his checks of the Asian supply chain revealed that Windows 8 is off to a slow start. "Much lower than ... PC makers originally expected a few months ago," said White, in a report. Also last week, Deutsche Bank cut its estimate for PC sales in the current quarter, due to "lackluster initial uptake of Windows 8," according to analyst Chris Whitmore.

[ Windows does provide a variety of options. Check out 8 Cool Windows 8 Tablets. ]

So, with all the evidence pointing to an astonishingly weak start for Windows 8, should Microsoft ditch Modern UI (aka Metro) and bring back Windows as most people know it. Such a move would be an admission of massive failure on Redmond's part, not to mention a waste of billions of dollars spent developing and promoting Windows 8.

But huge corporate about-faces are not without precedent. The most famous example of a major company cutting its losses on a widely-hyped, but ultimately failed, product is Coca Cola. The drink maker introduced New Coke in April, 1985, but reintroduced regular Coke as "Coke Classic" just three months later after bowing to consumer feedback that could be summed up as: "Blech."

Steve Ballmer himself has shown that he's not afraid to admit mistakes and kill a product that's bombed. Microsoft axed the KIN phone in 2010 just months after it was released. Aimed mainly at teens and 'tweens, it didn't catch on with anyone.

So, is it time for Windows Classic?

I'd be surprised if such a move isn't at the very least under discussion in Redmond. The sudden exit earlier this month of Windows chief Steven Sinofsky, who championed Windows 8 and Metro, means Windows' future is in play. (It's worth noting that J Allard, former CTO in Microsoft's devices division and KIN project leader, stepped down shortly before the company announced that product's discontinuation).

Here's how I believe it will play out. Microsoft will give Windows 8 at least until next summer to show it can gain traction. In the meantime, the company can start to address numerous complaints about the OS. I find Metro to be an innovative, attractive interface that sets Microsoft products like Surface RT apart from me-too Android competitors in the tablet space. But it needs a good polish.

One of the most aggravating issues about Windows 8 is that there are two ways to do almost everything, depending on whether you're in Metro mode or on the more conventional Windows Explorer desktop. What works in one often doesn't work in the other, meaning that Windows 8 users must learn two sets of commands for a whole host of tasks.

For example, both Metro and Explorer offer Ease Of Access settings. But they're completely different. In Metro, you can select a button to "Make everything on your screen bigger." It does just that. Text on news sites gets larger and so on. In Explorer, there's an Ease of Access Center that can be gotten to from the Control Panel. It has a tool to "Change the size of all items." But it only appears to affect desktop icons and text in documents, not websites. That's just one small menu item from Windows 8's rather extensive recipe for confusion.

Then there's Internet Explorer 10. Windows 8 devices come with two versions of the browser -- a desktop version and a Metro-style version. Their interfaces and command structures differ significantly. In Metro Explorer, a vertical, upwards swipe brings up tiles representing favorites and frequently visited sites. There is no corresponding command in the desktop version. That and other discrepancies could be an endless source of frustration for users, who need to remember which mode they are in, and the right commands.

Here's another example. To close a Windows 8 desktop application, you can click the familiar X in the upper right corner. Want to close a Metro app? There's no X. You must swipe from the top of the screen to the bottom. Or you can press ALT-F4, which works for most apps, but not all.

Microsoft needs to unify the user experience between Windows 8's Explorer and Metro modes. That could go a long way toward making the OS more user-friendly and increasing sales. A richer app environment also needs to emerge. As of this writing, there are no Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn apps for Windows 8. I find the former to be a particular stunning omission, given Microsoft's marketing muscle and close relationship with the social network.

But if Windows 8's fortunes haven't improved by mid-2013, I'm doubtful that Microsoft will risk another lost holiday season. In that eventuality, I would expect the company to introduce what I'll call Windows 8 Classic. It would maintain Windows 8's numerous under-the-hood improvements in security and manageability, but would ditch Metro in favor of the familiar Windows desktop, with the Start button, Task Bar and other well-known features restored.

A few months later, I would expect the rebranded OS to lose the Classic tag, just like Coke did, and simply be called Windows 8. If this scenario plays out, Metro will quietly go the way of Kin, Clippy and New Coke. What do you think? Do you believe Microsoft will ultimately ditch Metro? Let me know in the comments section below.

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alanbcohen
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alanbcohen,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 3:39:53 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
A much bigger issue is the UEFI boot restrictions that remain undocumented with virtually all new computers. I refuse to be locked in to a single operating system of dubious quality.
PMcDougall
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PMcDougall,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 3:47:06 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
agree that it's an issue for some, but only a small minority. The average consumer is not going to be booting multiple operating systems. But they do want a system that is simple and easy to use.
RobMark
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RobMark,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:08:19 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
So your Linux distribution doesn't support a secure boot and you think that is a good thing? Maybe you should be pressuring your Linux distro to support it so that you can use the faster/newer UEFI boot with improved security . . .
crushkittykitty
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crushkittykitty,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 6:22:15 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
my Ubuntu boots just fine under UEFI and as for more security um windows 8 was hacked the day after it it went public, UEFI isnt any faster either if windows 8 is shut completely down aka kill the power and watch how long it takes to boot up. The off is what use to be sleep mode. Last part if you havenGt tried linux maybe you should. here is a good place to start https://www.youtube.com/watch?...
Ever wonder why people like Linux? 4 years I have yet to get a virus bot or any other security issue, (that is with out anti virus)
johnitguru
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johnitguru,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 5:28:18 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Maybe you should EAT viruses 24/7. HELLO FOOL.... Micro-SCAM won't let Linux into their newest CRIMINAL LOCKDOWN!!!
billmelater
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billmelater,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/15/2013 | 12:18:45 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Here's the thing. I had several boat anchors that I had no choice but to put linux on. Even made it look like Windows so the users could actually use it. And they couldn't. It is faster, but it isn't Windows, and 95 percent of users use Windows. There's a reason for the adage "Linux is free only if your time has absolutely no value whatsoever." However, in the Android case, it does what users want where they have no preconceived notions, unless they were unlucky enough to have Windows Phone, or iPhone.
jimbo0117
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jimbo0117,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 3:57:26 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Don't improve soon? Geesh! How long has it been on the streets - three weeks?
PMcDougall
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PMcDougall,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 4:13:26 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
three weeks is a long time in today's tech market. in many cases it's enough to know whether a product will sink or swim. Microsoft killed KIN after just three months as the sales weren't there.
MyW0r1d
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MyW0r1d,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 7:24:52 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I have to agree with jimbo0117 on this in that 3 weeks for an OS is different than a comparable 3 weeks for any other "software" package. Remember there is still an economic situation that is not permitting as many to buy new hardware just for the OS as perhaps in the past. You were correct in highlighting the differences in IE operation is one of the primary detractions in my opinion. The other would be the vendor support. For example, I had recently bought an HP and upgraded to the Win8 only because it cost less than a lunch to do so. After the upgrade, I had to go to HPs website to download drivers as the installation did not contain the latest drivers available and found most of the HP branded software was not available for download (only the most critical HW drivers are). It will not matter to most who do not like the vendor software anyway, but it may indicate the lack of commitment of these vendors to the new OS or it could simply reflect on HPs current identity crisis. But if others do not produce Win8 compatible software/apps in the short term, it could be an issue.

In short, in going through the criticisms I see a lot that will be there anyway (criticizing is a favored pasttime), Win8 is following the standard software development strategy of recent times used by all (get it on the market and then perfect it through subsequent releases or phased implementations), and comparing it to the old is a futile exercise (it was meant to be new with new methods and appearance). Considering it seems more than anything else an effort to develop a standardized cross platform user experience (desktop, tablet, phone) and reduce MS development costs, I accept a few quirks on the desktop platform (if we believe the future of computing will transfer to mobile devices and cloud services).
stoneyh
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stoneyh,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 8:18:50 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
C'mon on man... You're really going to pull the dog-years argument. I don't think so. Products are still only now making it to market that highlight the touch oriented features of Windows 8. Additionally this is Windows... not KIN and certainly not Apple... Apple is still selling into an unsaturated market.
Windows is selling into a market already well saturated with their own existing and widely liked product, Windows 7. A large percentage of the Windows market is the enterprise where Widows 8 is not likely to see the light of day.,.. not because of product quality one way or the other, but because that's just not how things work. No... three weeks is not a long time in the operating systems market.. it might be in the consumer devices market.. so certainly things don't look good for RT right now (which I think should have been somewhat expected) but Microsoft customers are not cult-ish zombies rushing to get a slightly updated statement device.. This is a different product type, different audience and a different clock... just search Google for Windows 7 articles from three weeks after its release... it was all the same kind of tripe.. The tech press is like reading reports from Lunar scientists who hate the moon...
Faye Kane, homeless brain
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Faye Kane, homeless brain,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 10:27:38 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
==--

> "in the enterprise, Widows 8 is not likely to see the light of day... not because of product quality, but because that's just not how things work."

Right, it's not product quality, per se, and it's not "the way things work". It's corporate suicide through greed and arrogance. Any IT manager who forced 8 on his users the way Ballmer is forcing it on the consumers would find himself hanging in the elevator shaft from a cat 5 cable that the angry mob wrapped around his neck.

The industry press did an EXCELLENT job of warning MS about metro ever since last summer, but does Ballmer listen to anybody but himself?

Noooo! His response was to send an army of marketing shill slugs to rudely and crudely troll the comments sections, declaring the reviewers "biased". Anyone who pointed out that the Emperor's new clothes are imaginary was declared "afraid of new technology", "childish", "unprofessional", and "an old person".

Didn't work.

How DREARILY predictable.

HEY: you can't bully and force your customers to buy your crap anymore, Microsoft. Cap'n "wrong-way" Ballmer's last mistake was the rMS Titanic's iceberg. Now, Gates' once-great ship gets to take a close-up look at the mid-Alantic ridge.

========

Good Column, Paul, but forget about morphing and kludging 8 into being "Coke Classic". We already HAVE Windows 7. Last summer, Sinofsky could have steered a different course, but now it doesn't matter how they arrange the deck chairs. There's only one option left for the arrogant bigwigs in Redmond:

Drown.

"In two hours, the Apple store sold 11 iPads, while the Microsoft store sold exactly zero Surface tablets"

AHH HAHAHAHAH!

-- faye
stoneyh
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stoneyh,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 7:26:43 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Enjoyed your comment immensely Faye and while we agree on some points - you and I have some fundamental disagreements.

We both agree in thinking enterprise admins don't roll out the flavor or the month operating system or applications software to hundreds or thousands of users. I know plenty of places that are upgrading as I write this.... to Windows "7" (I wished there was a capital or uppercase 7. it would have been much more emphatic). Even if Windows 8 were being heralded as the best operating system known to mankind and Tim Cooke was cutting his own throat, Windows 8 would never see the light of day in most enterprise environments... its just not done that way. XP (excellent Microsoft product) is being retired because support is ending in 2014. Window 7 (even more excellent MS product) is time-tested, conventional and will be supported till 2020. Its the next place to go for IT grownups making career decisions. .. PERIOD.

Other than that I think your comment was complete non-sense..
1. the "industry press" does not constitute a reliable source of expertise or useful source material for making decisions. Why would Ballmer or Sinofsky or anyone else care what a bunch of writers have to say? They write the news... they don't drive the industry.
2. I see trolls on comment sections of all kinds and with a wide variety of affiliations and loyalties (BTW being devoted to a brand or corporation of any kind is pathetic) .. The common thread seems to be that the ones with the most venom on ANY side of the argument seem to be the least informed and the least qualified to render an opinion.
3. Microsoft does not force anyone to buy their software.. the pioneer in that realm would be Apple, which is a great company that I love but lets call it what it is.
4. Microsoft sold 40 Million copies of Windows 8 in the first month of release.. that is roughly twice what Windows 7 sold in its first month...
5. In September Apple announced that it took nearly two months to sell just 7 million copies of Mountain Lion... And nobody said a word.

So for those who like to use the ridiculous by the hour sales figures.. Microsoft sold roughly 55,500 copies of their OS upgrade an hour and Apple sold under 5,000 an hour.

AHH HAHAHAHAH!

-stoney
UberGoober
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UberGoober,
User Rank: Strategist
11/29/2012 | 5:41:09 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Licenses sold do NOT equate to installations. My company owns about 100 Vista licenses, but we've never installed even one - its all about the downgrade rights.
stoneyh
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stoneyh,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/8/2013 | 6:23:03 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
You're absolutely correct Goober - I just got a ton of licenses for Win8 via MS assurance program and again, few if any will be installed. Same was true for the Windows 7 licenses I got back when it came out. People who think Windows 7 to Windows 8 will be too painful also realize Windows 8 to Linux or OS X would be even more painful and make even less sense from a management and applications standpoint.
Account22
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Account22,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 4:18:18 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
No honourable mention of Microsoft Bob?
jhkjhk
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jhkjhk,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 4:18:30 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Side note: New Coke lives! Coke had been looking for a flavor to replace Tab in diet colas in the mid-80s. New Coke passed the taste test, and was so well-received, they tried forcing it on their customers with a sugar recipe. Today's Diet Coke is New Coke with Nutrasweet. I can't stand the stuff; glad they did what Pepsi did (Diet Pepsi, or Pepsi with Nutrasweet) and came up with a Nutrasweet version of Classic Coke: Coke Zero.
David Berlind
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David Berlind,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 5:24:48 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
There's a related story to this over on BYTE.com (sister to InformationWeek). One (http://www.informationweek.com... discusses how Windows 8 is at least doing better than Android, but how both account for such a low percentage of overall Web traffic.

Also, for people looking to put the old interface on Windows 8, there's the open source project called Classic Shell (http://classicshell.sourceforg... and there's also another software out there called Start8 from Stardock (http://www.stardock.com/produc...
Faye Kane, homeless brain
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Faye Kane, homeless brain,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 10:43:21 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Your link doesn't work.

pcbackup
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pcbackup,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 4:32:52 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Link works with the ending ")" removed from the URL

However, I suggest you don't bother reading it, as the stats that reflect how Win8 is slightly better than Android came from microsoft-news.com, and the actual data from StatCounter is very different than what is shown, with Android actually about 7 times the percentage shown. In fact, Android appears to have grown to ~5% of web traffic during the last month, making Win8 about 1/6th of Android's share of web traffic.

I don't trust whatever analysis generated their numbers - either somebody over at microsoft-news.com is very bad at math or misused/abused the StatCounter data! It's a pity that Larry Seltzer didn't do his own checks before copying their graph in his BYTE.com column, as he includes it as the primary point of his entire column!
RobMark
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RobMark,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:05:52 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
You are compairing an established store location with a base of established customers with a new store with mainly new products that are competing with each other and you wonder why one has more people? I think MS is doing very good for a start at competing!
Leo Regulus
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Leo Regulus,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:13:20 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Very close to my feelings. Unfortunately, we tolerate (who? Us? Tolerant?) Microsoft's basic 'Detroit Model' of development and marketing.

Yes, we do have options.
moonwatcher
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moonwatcher,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 6:14:29 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I simply don't like it. I don't see how it is any better than Windows 7 for desktop use. I don't want my desktop to look or act like a freaking phone or tablet. I don't want to be reaching to swipe my screen (and get fingerprints and streaks on it all the time, and since I do CAD work, I want it clean and clear at all times). Windows 7 does everything anyone needs. Why change it just for changes sake? Besides, when will Microsoft figure out that users want the operating system to manage files, run programs, and get the heck out of the way, and not be in our faces all the time? It seems like they paid a bunch of game programmers to try making using Windows "cool", instead of making it more useful. Well, I can do without the "cool".
citogiulini
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citogiulini,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 3:21:50 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Ditto!!! Couldn't have said it any better. Having to clean the screen is enough work for just reading emails, much less graphics, cad, etc... enough with the cool factor already!
brendan's nickname
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brendan's nickname,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/31/2013 | 7:57:10 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
OMG I HATE it !!! What on earth is the point of changing the location of well known controls and interfaces? Who has time in the business day to relearn basic controls? I'm looking at an Explore directory window of a lot of files, right now, listed by NAME and IT"S NOT ALPHABETICAL. It's grouped by date groupings (last week, today) and I can't find my files to get my work done!!! This is NOT funny. It's like running with your pants down around your ankles. What the hell are they smoking?!?!?

Even though I will invalidate my new Dell warranty, I'm switching back to 7 Pro. I have no choice, this operating system is a crippling user experience!!!!!
UberGoober
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UberGoober,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 6:32:44 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
The infernal Tool Ribbon is *still* with us, and Vista lasted for its full product cycle. I'm afraid Microsoft's arrogance and hubris won't allow mere customer dissatisfaction to get in the way of their marketing department's plan for squeezing more upgrades out of the masses by obsoleting their older products via gratuitous UI changes.
CarGod01
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CarGod01,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/31/2013 | 10:13:07 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
The designer(s) of the ribbon should be tattooed on his(their) forehead(s) with the word "PEDOPHILE" and thrown in prison, right after we are done waterboarding him(them). I actually learned to live with Open Office rather than dealing with the garbage the Ribbon made of MS Office.
I believe 'The Ribbon' is a worse idea than Microsoft Bob, worse than Vista and worse than the Metro interface being the default in W8.
I have gasoline and matches and I want someone 'fired'!!
mrosstrevor100
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mrosstrevor100,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:37:35 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I think a bigger issue is that to really "benefit" from Windows 8, you need a multi-touch screen. I work at a global company with over 130,000 employees, so we have 130,000+ desktop and laptop PCs. As our upgrade cycle is approximately 5 years, we won't be getting multi-touch screens for a while, so upgrading to Win8 is a long way off. On a global basis, we've only just upgraded to Win XP from Win2k. Personally I would love to create new applications for our users with multi-touch functionality, but when all is said and done, they don't need it in any of their current applications.
Faye Kane, homeless brain
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Faye Kane, homeless brain,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 10:51:52 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Right. Not only that, but you can use Win 7's touch extensions to write an app for the guy who actually needs it, and buy HIM an expensive monitor. As much as I rail against 8, I'm actually thinking of doing that myself. Touch would be great in my current position, which is horizontal (the screen is mounted 12" in front of me). With touch capability, the screen would be like the control panel in an Apollo capsule. I actually think it will be pretty cool

...just not in the work-oriented enterprise.
FritzNelson
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FritzNelson,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:40:26 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I just think that there isn't a pressing need for something new. When users buy new laptops, they'll have to consider whether it's good enough, or even necessary. I think Microsoft is in this for the longer play here and they'll muddle through slow sales, and address complaints and fix problems and . . . it's not going away. And like others here, I agree, it's way too soon to judge this as a failure.
tigger2
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tigger2,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:49:25 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I've always said that Redmond doesn't understand networking. We've had several people where I work bring their new Windows 8 laptops to work - none of them have lasted a week. They all went back to Windows 7, because they couldn't get their machines to consistently work on the network. Management has given up trying to help them, because nothing seems to work.

And I agree about the Tool Ribbon - what a waste of space. It should be used to strangle whoever thought of making it part of Office.
Tom P
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Tom P,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:51:09 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
To me, the fix is quite simple and the users have been telling them over and over -- but they refuse to listen. (1) Allow the user decide the default environment that the user boots up to and (2) bring back the start menu for those who want it. Do those and I'm buying it today.

To be sure, having the Metro interface available brings a lot of value connecting the desktop to the device world. But making it the default was an incredibly poor decision that ignores seventeen years of people's lives and habits. And the very thought of having hundreds of icons on a never-ending scrollable desktop instead of my nicely organized start menu makes me ill.
Number 6
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Number 6,
User Rank: Moderator
11/27/2012 | 10:41:15 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Anyone remember when the general consensus was that the Start button didn't make sense? Now we miss it.

Still missing the Windows 3.1 program groups on the Desktop.
premier511
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premier511,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 11:13:33 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
If you use your computer heavily for work or an IT pro, you should hardly need to use the Start button. You geezers ever heard of keystroke commands(Win+X). C'mon people!!! Are you all that lazy to learn something new. Microsoft can't sit back and just wait on enterprise to support it (mrosstrevor100's company is still using win2k and just upgrading to winxp). It needs the majority windows user that use their computer for simple things like web surfing, email, and social networking to continue buying windows cause if not they will lose out in the end.
Faye Kane, homeless brain
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Faye Kane, homeless brain,
User Rank: Strategist
12/5/2012 | 6:22:33 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
==--
Sorry, Redmond shill, that jes' don't feed the bulldog. -

Do I really need to point out that interfaces moved FROM keyboards TO intuitive devices like GUIs and mice? -That's with good reason. - The ultimate in usability will be when the CPU reads your silent commands-via brainwaves. The ultimate in the other direction is instructing the PC in binary code entered with switches, like with my long-dead friend, the PDP-11. That's the direction MS thinks it can herd us into going by paying you guys to insult us on forums like this one.

> "If you use your computer heavily for work or are an IT pro, you should hardly need to use the Start button."

Surely you jest! Everyone, everywhere uses the start button! That's how windows was designed. Just who are you trying to fool, anyway? This isn't Fox News; smart people read Infoworld.

> "Are you all too lazy to learn something new?

That's what every one of you shill posters asks. You expect us to ask that question to our angry users?

Yeah, we'll learn something new if it's better, like multi-touch on tablets. But we're not going to return to the old, clumsy, pre-mouse interface we used 30 years ago in Word Perfect (Shift-F7 to print) just to protect Ballmer from being fired.

> "Microsoft can't sit back and just wait on enterprise to support it"

That's good, because they'll be sitting WAY back and wait a LONG time for IT managers to force this Metro scam on our innocent flocks!

"Since enterprise Windows ops are our prisoners, the *hell* with what they want! Let's tear basic usability features out of the O/S and make I.T. kiss off a hundred grand for touch monitors and half that again to retrain the users for absolutely no reason. That way, when they want a tablet or a telephone, they'll buy the same interface!"

Ballmer reeeeally screwed up this time, and when the board wises up and listens to the shareholders, he's not going to get a chance to repeat it with his next disastrous decision.

-- faye
CarGod01
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CarGod01,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/31/2013 | 10:22:15 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
LOL, I have only been using keyboard shortcuts since 1969.
Do you remember HP Basic?? Fortran, Cobol, Compiler...???
Computers had no video, no hard drives, no mouse...
If you think going back to keyboard shortcuts is the solution to W8 being designed wrong, you need to move to a different desk there in Redmond...
sewing041
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sewing041,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 6:55:09 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Windows 8 is all about competing with Apple IOS running on the iPhone and iPad. If Microsoft can successfully market a single product (well a single GUI) that can be used on phones, tablets, laptops and desktops by large enterprises then they may be able to recapture the people that are running to Apple due to the ease of use of IOS and the coolness of iDevices.
Dillon!
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Dillon!,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:11:10 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I'm not in total agreeance on this article. Yes there are two different ways of doing things in each version but everyone already knows the "classic" way; and learning the new way (with the option to use the classic way while learning) isn't as difficult as everyone having to learn Android (which changes slightly in every version released) or IPad.

The real problem is they jumped into the game too late against Android and IPad and now that people are more attracted to those two because of their apps, "coolness" and ease of use, they're having a harder time competing.
SD.Jason
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SD.Jason,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:12:08 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
My own feeling (and from a consumer standpoint) is that the "fizzle" is heavily related to Microsoft's marketing fumble, and not as much to do with Windows 8 itself. The fumble and its contribution to the fizzle was completely avoidable, or should have been. I think it was a grave mistake to for Microsoft to showcase the Surface this summer as they did, which, in my own mind, became the specific poster child for Windows 8 itself, and then only release the limited-capability "lite" version of the Surface at the time of the Windows 8 debut. while at the same time promising something even bigger and better "very soon to come." This future promise (along with the poster-child association with Windows 8) is what I think has helped to derail the immediate interest while dramatically reinforcing a natural "wait and see" approach. Something now (unnecessarily) feels half-baked because the "real" Windows 8 Poster Child has yet to hit the scene. No sober person would dare to expect robust success in the consumer market with that sort of debut strategy. Had the Surface Pro come out simultaneously with the debut of Windows 8, I think the general level of enthusiasm (and sales) would have been higher and the spotlight on the Surface *and* Windows 8 much brighter. This delayed arrival of the poster child also casts an avoidable shadow on the debut of the Surface running Windows RT - the spotlight, in minds like mine, is still pointing offstage while the current Surface is already on stage and standing in the dark. So rather than offering the RT Surface as a customer's strategic choice, instead it seems like an all-you-can-get-for-now imposter of the real thing. That is a shame - it has its own independent merits, but I'm too distracted by my anticipation of Surface Pro to really care - I can't evaluate their different benefits side by side and choose; I'm still left "waiting." That's a terrible notion to associate with Windows 8. In the end, I feel that the way I perceived Microsoft's hype of the Surface and Windows 8 has left me still waiting for the true "star of the show" to come out on stage (or even arrive into town). The whole debut strategy, as it has turned out in the end, seems a bit like hanging Elvis's jumpsuit on stage while promising that Elvis himself is going to show up in a couple *months* to perform an entirely new, exciting show as the start of a miraculous comeback tour, but... in the meantime, please enjoy our cover band wearing a low-grade jumpsuit imitation. Seriously?! Who's going to care about the cover band or Elvis's jumpsuit with that sort of approach? No wonder there were resignations involved.
majenkins
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majenkins,
User Rank: Moderator
11/27/2012 | 7:18:23 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I don't think they will ditch metro completely, they need it for tablets and phones, but they may ditch it for desktops and laptops.
gfish66
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gfish66,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:19:49 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I hate the whole concept of Windows 8's ridiculous interface being foisted upon corporate desktop users and even into the server products. I have Software Assurance, so I already own the licenses, but I wish there was some way I could show MS that I have not and will not deploy Windows 8 or Server 2012 in their current form, as a matter of protest. If I deployed these at my company, management would probably fire me.

I had Windows phones for years, and truth be told, they were pretty bad. Zero innovation. When Android phones came along, I bought one and never looked back. No way I'm going back.

Windows 8 looks like a dumbed-down version of Windows 2.x. When Microsoft stops innovating, and instead chases the likes of Apple and Google, it's never good. I don't know what is wrong with those people in Redmond. Get a clue.
jreuter809
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jreuter809,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:27:06 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I don't want Windows Classic, I just want Windows 8 with all the great improvements it does have (boot time, system restore, etc.) but with the regular start menu interace for my desktop use. Save the interface formerly known as metro for tablets, thanks. On my desktop I prefer a Windows that actually does windows for all my applications, not just 'legacy' ones.
Greg50111
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Greg50111,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:31:47 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
It is ludicrous to expect businesses to purchase touchscreens for their employees. Can you picture a suite full of employees leaning over their desks to swipe this way and that? I cannot imagine myself sitting about 2 1/2 feet away from my monitor, reaching over my desk to constantly swipe at the display.

I would guess that within a very short time I would have arm cramps and back aches.

It is a horrible UI and an insult to desktop users. My PC is not a toy for running apps. It is a workstation for running applications.
MRODGERS000
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MRODGERS000,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:40:01 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
It is amazing to me how the press has pushed this style of operating system and now.....they wonder why it doesn't sell. I agree with MoonWatcher. I don't need a smart phone experience on a desktop PC. I use a PC to read emails, work on spreadsheets, play games, etc. I think MicroSoft is fixing a problem that only existed in the minds of journalists. I never asked for a small screen experience on a desktop.
DumbPhoneUser
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DumbPhoneUser,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:45:16 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I remember being taught how to use a mouse on a scroll bar. In 1991, I had to teach 25 salespeople with million-dollar quotas in a software company HOW TO DOUBLE-CLICK so they could use their brand-new Windows 3.0 PCs. It took me months to learn that the iPad 'Press and Hold' was a different dynamic than 'Tap' ... I never heard of 'swiping' before ... now I own three touch-screen devices ... and then they put 12 strangers in a room and cannot figure out why they cannot look like rock stars instantly on a new OS? Shezz.
DumbPhoneUser
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DumbPhoneUser,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 7:57:20 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
As far as sales of iPad over Surface (or any keyboard-enabled tablet), people do not YET realize how annoying and limiting a tablet is until they have to live with it a while. There is MAJOR TABLET ENVY rampant in the world today driving purchasing. Get used to seeing a lot more <5 - word emails (would not be all bad). Famously, Steve Jobs was once overheard at a trade show insisting you "do not need color on a PC monitor" - the Mac (Toaster-sized all in one) had just launched. It was B&W (ie monochrome). Fast forward - "tablets smaller than the iPad1 will be DOA" (again, Steve Jobs) ... next, the iPad Mini. Fast forward ... iPads and other tablets are abandoned as users reject 'thumb-typing' mechanics for a familiar, productive QWERTY experience. These things don't happen? Why are there NO Game Console touchscreen controllers? Look at the Flip Phone. Look at the first smartphones (ie iPhone 3 - where is the Note? The Galaxy III? How do they differ? The Nokia 920? The single-button mouse? DOS 5.0?)
Binary Bill
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Binary Bill,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 8:10:18 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Interesting, too, how Microsoft has strong armed PC producers into only offering Win8. You can't even get a new PC loaded with Win7 now. Looks like they thought that might have been the problem with slow/nonexistent Vista adoption, when everyone kept choosing XP over Vista with new PC's. Rules don't make for a successful adoption. Attractive, stable, improved product features do!
dkerber028
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dkerber028,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2012 | 8:23:46 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
How about a service pack that just allows the user to change the default UI to the "Classic" mode, rather than always booting into Metro? I'd be surprised if they dump Metro completely. I really think they should go back to 2 separate versions/interfaces, one aimed at business and power users, and one at consumers.
moonwatcher
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moonwatcher,
User Rank: Strategist
11/27/2012 | 8:52:56 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
It seems the bottom line for us desktop users that actually do WORK with our PC's, is that we simply don't want the clutter of Windows 8 that is designed for moble devices. Fair enough. Microsoft should get a clue and let us boot directly to the desktop as a default choice (and give us a good old START menu too).

The other thing is jeez, I could not imagine teaching how to use Windows 8's confusing interface to anyone over 65. Even the kid at Staples was having trouble demo-ing it, and he thought it was "cool". I don't want to get into a idiotic OS flame war, but what I'll do when it comes time to replace XP on my older relatives PC's is put Ubuntu on them, and show them how to open up Office documents, open up Firefox, get on Facebook, etc. and let them run with it. They'll "get it" a lot faster than trying to buy them a new PC with Win 8 on it.
Andrew Binstock
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Andrew Binstock,
User Rank: Author
11/28/2012 | 5:50:31 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
"That doesn't even come close to the 15% that plan to buy a BlackBerry PlayBook (apparently still on the market for some reason)." I don't understand the gratuitously snarky remark. It's OK for Microsoft to be in the market with its tiny share, but a vendor with greater market share in your eyes is inexplicably still selling its products?
Mike_Acker
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Mike_Acker,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 12:16:49 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
"do i look like i care" ?
I switched to Linux/Ubuntu.
guess what: It does run better.
try switching back and you'll get the full impact.

yes: you'll have to adopt some new programs. But the Linux programs are excellent!
Firefox rather than IE10
Thunderbird rather than Outlook
LibreOffice rather than MS/Office
"gThumb" is my choice for photos
they have oodles of music programs
huge library of app programs you can play with

it's definitey worth a look and you can start by just running a trial off a Ubuntu/Live CD
Greg MacSweeney
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Greg MacSweeney,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 1:33:32 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I think it's too early to tell. Yes, 3 weeks is a long time in the tech world, but this is an OS, not a phone or tablet. When most consumers go to buy a new laptop, they are looking 1st at chip speed, memory, display and other features. Oh, it has the new Windows OS too? Ok...but it's not a primary driver for the buying decision. (I know many on this site would have already read all of the reviews about Windows 8, but most consumers don't...they read reviews about the device, not the OS).

However, just to hedge here a little: if the reviews of a new OS are really bad...so bad that everywhere you hear how bad/horrible the OS is, then, yes, that will also impact device sales, which will slow adoption of that particular OS.

But, i think waiting until after the holidays will give a more realistic view of the longer term prospects for the new Windows.
davesg
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davesg,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 2:12:35 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
UEFI whatever blah blah blah. I'll tell you about a big disappointment that happened in my area. Microsoft store was opening in the area, and they sent a "Business" representative up to meet with our shop, as I can imagine they did with others. We were all excited about Microsoft, the Surface, Windows 8, the Microsoft store, the phone etc...

So this guy comes up, we are chatting with him, asking all kinds of questions. He hypes up everything, which is fine, we were hyped up too. We asked some questions about release dates, upgrading options, features, Hyper-V, licensing, lots of questions. He answered some of them, most of them he side stepped or gave ambiguous answers. After a while it became apparent he was what I will call a "hype generator" and really didn't know the products like I expected. He left off the visit with "email me any questions you have". Which we did, and we received similar ambiguous responses or no response at all.

One question we asked was in relation to a website that was selling Windows licenses fairly cheap. The company was listed as a Microsoft Certified Gold partner on Microsofts own website. I asked our Microsoft guy if it was legitimate, and told him they were even listed on Microsofts website as a certified gold partner. He said he'd look into it. I sent a follow up email, nothing in response. So he shows up a few weeks later at our shop with Surface coupons that would guarantee one in stock for us if we wanted one. I took the opportunity and asked him about the licensing I had emailed him about. His response was something to the effect of "oh yeah corporate got back to me and said they do so much volume and they have a special deal...". Great right? Well 2 or 3 weeks later the software site is down and it is reported that they were nailed for illegally selling software. So our Microsoft guy probably didn't even know and gave me another one of his BS answers just to satisfy the question.

I've visited the store with similar results. Attended an event. Talked with other people there. Thier 3rd party tech guy is less than desireable. Most of the employees fit the sales type "hype generator" profile and don't really seem to know the products.

After all of this, I'm like "Meh". I'm just not excited about it any more. I can't in good conscience send people to the store. They are likely to get fed a lot of fluff and who knows what will result from that. Anything bad that does will reflect on me because I referred them.

In any case, I still have hope for the x86 Surface that is coming out in a few months. I can see how it would integrate into my daily life and make things more convenient. I hope I am not disappointed.
habraham559
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habraham559,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 3:05:35 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
If I had a dollar for every copy of Win8 sold in the first month I would retire, buy myself an island home, and read how Information Week thinks 40M copies in four weeks is considered a dismal failure while wriggling my toes in the sand and sipping pi+a coladas.
PMcDougall
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PMcDougall,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 3:26:14 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
what percentage of that 40 million is installed on PCs that are sitting on store shelves or in warehouses? Microsoft won't say
ANON1236119637772
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ANON1236119637772,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 4:28:36 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Reminds me of Windows ME (Millenium Edition).
RobertEstes
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RobertEstes,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 6:57:24 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
40 million so far. Seems like a hit. Remember, the Windows market takes time to churn because of the critical nature of how important the Windows ecosystem is. You "analysts" want to kill. I love what I've seen so far.
elleno
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elleno,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 7:01:24 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Windows 8 is Microsoft's new Coke moment.

"What damn fool went and changed the interface of our most successful product".
Reiner K.
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Reiner K.,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 7:29:35 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
My thoughts on Windows 8 4 weeks on the market:

1.Between the time this article was edited and my writing this comment the sales numbers for Windows 8 have been published. With 40 million in the first 4 weeks sales are better than back when Windows 7 was introduced.

2.We all are cautious enough NOT to go for the very first versions of a new MS OS let alone of a rather radically new OS as Windows 8. So who is sincerely surprised that this release is not being blindly run for as with Apple products? While Apple aficionados go and buy just because itGs out on the market MS friends use a reasonable amount of caution. So letGs give it a couple of months and a first service pack and judge the market then.

3.I agree that there is still a way to go before Windows 8 is a smooth product. But is it a shortcoming of the old Windows Explorer desktop not to answer to the same commands as the Metro? Or is it rather a compromise towards the Gǣold schoolGǥ windows fans to offer a GǣClassicGǥ alternative? The usage is so different that it will take a while for some of us to handle it with ease. But all of us discussing here in this thread are IT savvy, people. Go and ask the Gǣnot so savvyGǥ crowds out there, to them the button "Make everything on your screen bigger." Should do precisely that. Asking them numerous details as to how and what is just confusing them. Their response always will be Gǣwhat part of "Make everything on your screen bigger." Did you not getGǥ.

So what IGm trying to say is G there is really something new here from a user experience, and it will take some time for us to get familiar with, but we all will be surprised how much faster the brought masses of home users will jump on it once they Gǣget the hang of itGǥ. Windows 8 (using Metro) is a great new opportunity for consumers.
I admit that I am somewhat more cautious about my success predictions in corporate environments.
fuzzedagain
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fuzzedagain,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/28/2012 | 7:38:58 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
It started with downloading the 32bit version where I wanted the 64bit! Thanks MS. @#$@#$. Then once loaded I end up spending a lost of TIME downloading 3rd party apps which CHANGE the Win 8 metro into a Win 7 desktop. The ONLY reason Win 8 is still taking up space on my hard drive is it starts up and shuts down faster, and I like IE10. Otherwise it is a failure! Save your time and money, wait for another version BUILT for the DESKTOP!!!
RobMark
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RobMark,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/29/2012 | 1:13:02 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
If 40 million in sales (not installed, but on the books for MS financially) in one month is fizzling, how many million in sales is just doing OK?
ANON1237925156805
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ANON1237925156805,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/29/2012 | 10:47:00 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I agree that it's too soon to get out the casket and shovel, but things don't look good for the crtitical holiday season.

To me part of the problem is that Microsoft has deservedly gained a reputation for making gratuitous changes to the user interface at the expense of tightening up what's under the hood, the thinking apparently being that these superficially dramatic changes will make the often expensive upgrade feel important.

That's not what happens from my point of view. I resent that Microsoft creates unncessarily steep learning curve. I'm a technologist but the PC technology is not an end in itself; it's a tool for doing my other work. I need it to be invisible. I'm still mastering rarely used features of Office 2010 and Windows 7 that I knew cold in older versions going back a decade. How is that helpful?

After suffering through several iterations of this behavior it's not surprising that users are skeptical. To me it's conceivable that Microsoft may need to offer a "classic" environment, even if it's only the option to completely turn off Metro on desktop/tablet at install time. Or, because Metro truly is clever and cunning rather than superficially different, it may catch on. Time will tell.
Mike_Acker
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Mike_Acker,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/30/2012 | 1:05:35 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
It's Twilight Time,.... for x86 and for Windows
moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
12/1/2012 | 12:11:45 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Metro is just a horrible UI. It looks as if a dog ate a box of crayons and barfed them all up again, plus the utterly annoying and permanently changing live tiles. Metro can be used to induce seizures at best, but as a UI it looks butt ugly and is totally dysfunctional.
bwilkes117
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bwilkes117,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/1/2012 | 7:49:07 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
The article and comments are amusing and entertaining. I don't think the actual market is in upgrades. As hardware improves, the operating system must be improved. And there are many, many new users (first time users) buying the currently available hardware with preinstalled operating systems. These users are learning OS for the first time. And many are already familiar with the iPads and Smartphones, so their learning curve will not be as steep as that for someone upgrading.

I'm retired now, so I don't have to be efficient in my use of time. And I am more concerned about cost of things. If I have an older system with a Microsoft OS installed, I can upgrade to Windows 8 Pro for $39.99. Way to go.

So I dug out a dual core laptop I had laying around, put in a new hard drive, and started to install a legitimate copy of Vista Business 64 bit. This was on a Dell Inspirion. It took me three days to get it running. Problem is you forget things. Where do you look for the specs on a system? Go to Dell, put in the Service Tag number and go from there. Except the service tag number is on the bottom of the laptop so you have to turn it upside down and get a magnifying glass to read it. Another problem is that you can't connect to the Internet without installing the network drivers first. So you need another system and a USB memory stick. Enter the tag, get the configuration information, select the drivers, save them to the USB device, then transfer them to the installing PC and run them.

However, other than general titles, it wasn't clear which drivers I needed since the configuration data was neither accurate nor clear.

So I copied them all and tried to install them all. It took a while.

Then (a bit too late), it occurred to me to look at the BIOS set up screen. The Service Tag number was right there on the top. And much of the installed hardware was listed. Too bad I didn't think of that first. But to get that far, my eyes had to be good and finger fast. The first time, as it flashes by, you see that F2 is required. Then cycle through restarts trying to hit F2 fast enough. Ah, for the good old days.

You would think the detail data would be in Device Manager but it isn't.

Then the problem of running the driver install exe files. Unpacking, creating new directories, storing, and then running setups. Of course they don't all apply and they don't always run the first time. You can't simply point to a driver directory through Device Manager and expect it to work.

And you are continuously restarting so that the drivers "stick". More amusement. Finally, believing all installed, I can verify through Device Manager that I have no yellow exclamation points. Hurray!

Some of the drivers or applications don't work because the system doesn't have the required environment (which you can't get until you have connectivity).

Finally. Oh, but wait. We have to get authenticated. I was lucky with this one, still had the DVD in the envelope with it's product ID on it. That is not always the case. I wish I had a clean Code Generator just to cover the software I already own. I've started a database to record the product IDs when the software arrives. If on DVD or CD, I write the code on the disk using a silver indelible ink pen. I'm not the most organized person.

Now, automatic updates. I click to get the Dell updates, but that takes me to the Microsoft updates. It runs a while and then presents over 100 required updates. Wow.

So they run and the system recycles a few times.

Is that it?

No, now that the first wave of updates is complete, I get another list of more that 100 updates of the updated files. Etc.

And now that I have it set up, I am very reluctant to buy and upgrade to Windows 8.

What we need is an AI program that can run on a system, identify all the hardware or merely test the hardware to determine interface requirements and then create appropriate drivers for each device. Sort of the way universal remote controllers are supposed to work, but never do. Maybe then I'd be able to use the unusual items I bought for earlier systems where the manufacturers went out of business and therefore current drivers are not available.

And all the while, my wife is yelling at me about playing on my computer all the time.

Now I have to find out if I can set up a dual boot so I can buy the $39.99 upgrade and not lose all the effort I just went through.
CarGod01
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CarGod01,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/2/2012 | 9:15:09 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I don't see the point of Metro.
I don't like ANY of the smart phone interfaces, and I certainly don't want that garbage on my desktop.
There should be a OFF FOREVER button or a patch to KILL METRO!

I just want to get to my applications with the least possible interference.
I want my applications to run WITHOUT interference from the OS.
I still use XP at home, on my 14 machine network. I do tri boot my own machine with XP/Vista and W7. W8 on my i7 16GB testbed machine sucks.
I was a beta tester for everything from W95 through Vista.
I quit the Vista beta shortly before release because MS wasn't listening to the many testers who said...don't do this..it's garbage. I think the results have borne out that opinion.
W7 seems to be what Vista should have been, but years late.
What kind of Moron decided this W8 interface should be a giant step backwards.
Did you use Tabworks with W 3.1? Metro looks like a badly updated version...
From what I have seen of W8 so far, I think it's as bad or worse than Vista.
theBestT2
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theBestT2,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/6/2012 | 3:40:01 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Amen, brother. I paid extra for XP when Vista was what came by default on laptops. I still use it for my home network.

As far as Metro - I attended a 'sneak preview' demo, and was stunned into silence by the kindergarten-ish color blocks in bad-season-at-Old-Navy colors. The interface was the antithesis of intuitive, and my fellow attendees were all making trying-to-be-nice noises. It was as though the emperor was naked, and everyone tried really hard to pretend that he was nicely dressed anyway.
TreeInMyCube
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TreeInMyCube,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/5/2012 | 6:25:32 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
People criticize certain holidays like "Sweetest Day" or "Bosses Day" as being created by the greeting card industry, for their own benefit. I see the tech media creating a story out of Windows 8 sales which some talking head has decided is not strong enough, so very early in the adoption cycle. Get a grip, people! It has been observed and reported on multiple occasions, by multiple sources, that most people buy the OS that comes with their box, and rarely purchase an upgrade. We will see adoption of Win8 that parallels the purchases of new PCs, especially since there is no "downgrade" option (Win8 -> Win7) like there was with (Vista -> XP). Just chill out, and wait until we have 6 months or so under our belts.
DDUNCAN840
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DDUNCAN840,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 2:44:29 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
My daughter received a brand new Toshiba laptop for Xmas. It has Win 8 on it. She is very dissapointed in the user interface. Wants me to downgrade it to Win 7. She is a typical, average electronics consumer. She is very dissapointed in it. I think the UI may be fine for a touch tablet or smartphone, but it is confusing and annoying as hell using keyboard and mouse. MS should give laptop and desktop users an option, either, or, and (win 7 UI, win 8 UI).
dleippe
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dleippe,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 4:43:38 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
The fact that Microsoft wouldn't give non touch screen users the right to set the desktop as the default screen complete with Start Button and Start Menu was a big line in the sand. Windows 7 will live longer than Windows XP....
glauer913
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glauer913,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 5:15:55 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
My clients are, for the most part, small professional practices. Just ask an accountant to learn a whole new way of doing things. There is also another problem. The computer vendors have accepted W8. Buy a new desktop, you get W8. Try downgrading to W7 -- no drivers are available. The answer from two major suppliers is "tough luck".

This OS makes Windows Millenium look good!.
johnitguru
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50%
johnitguru,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 5:26:17 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Can you say WindoZe 8 is a "CLUSTER F_CK?????

moonwatcher
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moonwatcher,
User Rank: Strategist
12/29/2012 | 5:47:48 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Bottom line is that there is a lot to like here...IF (and that is the big if) Microsoft would give us the option to boot to the familiar looking Windows 7 desktop and not FORCE us to learn a touchy-feely mobile interface that many of us who have bought into Apple mobile devices will NEVER, EVER, EVER (like the Taylor Swift song) use. Forcing people to do something they don't want and wasting their time on the learning curve for the new Metro or Modern UI is not the way to endear an operating system to them.
p3isys
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p3isys,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/29/2012 | 6:51:19 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
Windows 8 itself isn't the problem. There are two simple issues that make it unusable:
1. The Metro Interface is unusable for productivity.
2. The Start menu is gone.

Deploying Classic Shell or another Start menu replacement fixes the second issue. Once that part is done it's possible to simply ignore Metro and Windows 8 becomes a pretty good incremental upgrade from Windows 7, but I do miss the Aero transparency. Metro is a non-starter because it's not really Windows, is it? It has no Windows, just full screen apps.

It would be relatively trivial (on a technical basis) for Microsoft to restore the Start Menu and decouple Metro from the OS. Microsoft has doubled down on forcing the issue by dumping the Metro brand and calling it "The Windows 8 Interface." This is a mistake. Instead they should fork the Windows 8 brand and the Metro Brand. Metro may thrive on tablets - the market has yet to speak on that issue. But on the business desktop, Metro is another Microsoft Bob. Perhaps
Metro has a future in the tablet and touch screen space. But if Microsoft insists on conflating the Windows 8 brand with the horrible Metro interface, it's doomed, and deservedly so.
remmeler
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remmeler,
User Rank: Strategist
12/29/2012 | 6:58:23 PM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
You can get a third party Start Button. You can boot directly to Desktop (just google it),

I have upgraded an old slow dual core system and it is faster, more responsive, and useable now. I kept the Metro because I want to play with it, but I just brought tiles over from Apps of the programs I use a lot and clustered them with the Desktop icon. I then put icons of the programs I use on the bottom strip of the Desktop. I can go anywhere near the lower right corner and get to the power and search buttons.

Seems pretty close to my XP or Win 7 set up but faster. I may get to like Metro or not, but it is there if I want it and if I wanted to boot directly to Desktop in the future I can. Also there is a program included (I don't remember the weird name right now) that allows you to bypass the MS login also.
jgawn570
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jgawn570,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/31/2012 | 3:40:16 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
My daughter is using Windows 8 on a new Lenovo laptop-tablet convertible, and is very happy with it. She is very knowledgeable about computers but they aren't her life. Me, I'm older, am a computer professional, and pretty happy with Windows 7. My laptop does not have a touch screen and my tablet is an iPad. I'm not about to rush into Windows 8, at least not until they bring back the Windows 7-style Start menu.
Jim Gawn.
aprice913
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aprice913,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/1/2013 | 1:41:38 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
I am just getting ready to upgrade from Windows 7 to 8. From what I read in previous articles it would be good to upgrade. Through out the history of Microsoft it seems that their products should be cheaper, tighter code, more fluid with there command ribbons and actions, and more feature rich per command. This doesn't mean I don't like there products, I do. When Office 2007 came out I installed that and I love the ribbon it makes it easier to accomplish things.
billmelater
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billmelater,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/15/2013 | 12:10:57 AM
re: Windows 8 Fizzling, Time For Windows Classic?
IF you know enough to make win8 boot directly into desktop, IF you needed the pro features, and IF you were savvy enough to get it for 14.99, then it is a fantastic bargain, as it is faster and has some nice touches over win7. For the other 98 percent of the world, bigger disaster than Microsoft Bob. I have 3 units running at work that users have no problem with, as well as a laptop with an 80 year old former xp user that is not having problems. Why? Because I spent about an hour on each unit banishing Metro. I needed Remote Desktop Server, and win8 pro for 14.99 beats win7 pro at 199.00. And that is probably the reason there were sales early. But as an OS that the average user could use, Bigger Fail than ME, and Vista. Seems that folks have no problem using Android and Windows. So why not two different systems from Ballmer, or at least an OS smart enough to figure out which interface you need? Oh. Balmer. Developers! Developers, Developers! Win 1 Commercial. Ballmer is a Buffoon. Or a Bassoon, the ill wind which no one blows good.
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