Windows 8 Consumer Preview–First thoughts

Sunday, April 1, 2012

I finally got around to installing Windows 8 this week and I am have now been using it in anger for a few days. I installed Windows 8 via a USB key to a bootable VHD  to test it whilst still having access to Windows 7, just in case some of the programs have incompatibility issues.

First impressions are mixed on a laptop without a touch screen, it isn’t intuitive how everything works, but a quick search revealed all the short cut keys available, there are many – it is going to take a while to remember all of them, I wonder if your standard user will actually learn these seeing as most don’t even know CTRL+ C and CTRL + V for copy and paste.

I am familiar with the metro interface, having a windows phone.  Pinning applications and arranging them is easy and switching to the “New Start Menu" is easy  enough. For a desktop user the Metro Interface is in effect the start menu, once you get it the principle makes sense. Opening an application from the desktop has to be performed  via the metro interface, if you don’t have the application pinned then start typing the name of the application and a search is launched.

 Current Issues

1. The windows button doesn't always take you to the desktop. If you launch IE in metro then hit the windows key you are first taken to the metro interface then back to IE, if you are on the desktop hitting the windows key takes you to the Metro interface, hitting it again takes you back to the desktop.  I get what the windows key does, but when I hit the windows key expecting it to take me to the desktop I end up in IE.  It is like the desktop is being treated as any other application when it is far from that.

2. Using Internet Sharing on a Windows Phone I find that when the connection to the network drops off and is re-established Windows 8 does not pick this up. To get the connection to work again I have to turn off Internet Sharing and turn it back on again.

Update 11-04 - seems a lot better, not done anything to fix this.

3. IE10 in Metro – it doesn’t work – not sure why.

Update 11-04 - this now works, see below.

4. IE10  - I cannot reach any websites on the same domain as my login account, even at home. This is a big issue and isn’t anything to do with a proxy server as I have tried everything to get this working.  Apparently this is something to do with a known change in the security of IE10 to do with subnets. What ever change this is a big issue for me, easily solved by installing Chrome but not something that I should have to do.

Update - 11-04 - this was down to a security setting in IE10 Enable protected mode was ticked by default. Still having issues with Metro Apps connecting to the internet, I haven't got to the bottom of this yet.


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