"Gramp's shop" wrote in message
Brought home a new laptop today with Windows 8 installed. First impression:
they let a few nutjobs take over the design of this OS when the A-team was
out to lunch. Nothing is intuitive. Simple things, like moving a file from
one folder to another, require one to use Explorer. Even "my computer" no
longer resides on the desktop. There are two interfaces -- the tiles
version and one that kinda mimics the familiar XP version. The former is
loaded with a lot of junk.
It's going to take me hours to get this machine set up -- hours that I could
spend more enjoyably in the shop.
BTW, this is being written on my old machine, which needs to be returned to
my employer come retirement date (May 3).
After considerable work, and the addition of a couple third-party utilities,
I've got my Windows 8 system running so that it's almost indistinguishable
from the Windows 7 system that preceded it. As a software developer, I find
the Win8 UI completely useless. It's not unusual for me to be flipping among
six or eight different applications that are all running at the same time
and spread across two monitors. Win8's one-application-at-a-time
orientation, with nothing but full-screen windows and maybe a sliver of
another at the side of the screen, just doesn't work for me.
The key to the conversion was a start menu replacement called Start8 from
Stardock (http://www.stardock.com /), for a big $4.99. I restored my sidebar
gadget environment with another called 8GadgetPack
(http://8gadgetpack.bplaced.net /). The Start8 software has many options that
let you avoid the Windows 8 UI experience, including booting directly into
the desktop. There are other start menu replacements available, perhaps even
for free, but Stardock's been in this business a long time, and Start8 is a
smooth piece of software.
There's a variety of other tweaks that completed the setup. Google or Bing
for Windows 8 tweaks or Windows 8 tips and you'll see a bunch of things you
can do to avoid the parts of Windows 8 that you don't like.
Yeah, I know, it's a lot of work that you shouldn't have to do - that was
the point of your post - but it can be done and the result is at least as
good as the OS you were running before.