Windows 8 Problems & Drawbacks

I have been using Microsoft Windows 8 for quite sometime now. While I spoke about the goodness of Windows 8 in my posts What’s new in Windows 8 & Windows 8 Reviews, here I come with my views about Microsoft Windows 8 problems or UI Issues. Mainly the issues are with respect to the user interface so far also can be called as the usability issues. As far as functionality is concerned it is working great even on my Windows Vista PC bought in the year 2008.

Microsoft Windows 8 Problems

Shutdown Restart Accessibility

The ShutDown / Restart button is far off. You need to navigate a lot. You need to follow 4 steps to actually shut down using the User Interface. A quick option is to go to the desktop and press CTRL + F4 and then choose from the options (typical Windows shutdown prompt).

Step1 to shutdown

Step2 to shutdown

Step3 to shutdown

Step4 to shutdown

Of course you can create a shortcut on the desktop to enable you to shutdown, restart, hibernate, lock the screen of your Windows 8 without actually navigating too much.

Right-click on your classic desktop, go to New/Shortcut and type in one of the following commands:

Shutdown: shutdown.exe –s –t 00
Restart: shutdown.exe –r –t 00
Hibernate: rundll32.exe PowrProf.dll,SetSuspendState
Sleep: rundll32.exe powrprof.dll,SetSuspendState 0,1,0
Lock: Rundll32.exe User32.dll,LockWorkStation

To enable a shutdown timer to shutdown after certain period of time, read more at Schedule Windows Computer Shutdown

Name them the way you want and choose icon for each of them from the library. Put them in the folder “%appdata%\microsoft\windows\Start Menu\Programs\” and you should be able to search / find them on your start screen!

The first Screen after login

The default screen that you see is the Start Screen when you sign in. It is true that you would want to open some applications like Internet Explorer or Windows Explorer when you login. However, the tiles that are seen by default are of social media, photos, messages, emails, etc. I always go to the desktop first then open my fav browser from the task bar. Microsoft should track the most used apps and bring them to the start screen so that it is easily accessible and doesn’t any horizontal scrolling.

Misguiding Tiles on Start Menu

The People’s tile, shows the pictures of your friends. Sometimes you see a new picture of a close friend and click on that part of the tile where the picture is appearing “thinking” that it will take you to the friend’s profile directly. However, in reality, it opens the application. This is in a way misguiding user unless the user is really aware of it already. And when you are aware of this fact that it will not take you to your friend’s profile directly, you refrain from clicking on that tile! Yes. It has happened with me quite a lot of times. A picture appeals me to click on it but since I know that I would be taken to the default app not the friend in particular, I avoid clicking it. It is like you are seeing an entrance to a “specific” room, but you hit with a glass door when you actually try to cross the entrance.

Annoying Side Bar Menu

When you are trying to close a window (e.g. a browser), you move your cursor towards the close button on the top right corner. However, when you click, it actually shows up the right opaque bar that contains some quick buttons. Although these buttons are kept on this hover effect to make it easy for users to quickly reach, for example, the settings; it is also a hurdle when you are closing a window. You have to ensure that you dont actually touch the corner to avoid that annoying popup.

closing window in win8 problem

No direct Close Button

You have no close (X) button to close a certain app. You have to have fair knowledge of computer shortcuts like ALT + F4 Keys to close the app.

no close button for windows 8 app win8 problem

Top Windows 8 apps must have

Apart from the  basic apps that come with your PC, I find the following apps quite useful and interesting and they are in my top windows 8 apps list.

Check the top windows 8 apps and install them on your Windows 8 today!

Top Windows 8 Apps

Norton Satellite (Free)

Norton Satellite Top Windows 8 AppsIdentify unsafe files in Dropbox, on your PC, and external storage devices before sharing with friends. Scan your Facebook feed for malicious links. You can customize to scan specific stuff.

OneNote (Free)

OneNote app for Windows 8Take notes that save to the cloud so you have them when you need them. Quickly write up to-do lists with check boxes. Use your device’s pen to draw in your notes as you would on paper. Take photos with your device’s camera to put in your notes. This is one of the essential top Windows 8 apps. You might need this often everyday.

Wikipedia (Free)

WikipediaThis app doesn’t need any explanation. The child in mother’s womb also knows about Wikipedia. So, simply have it on your Windows 8.

Sky News (Free)

Sky News Sky News brings you the latest breaking news and top stories, together with Live Sky News TV, so that you can keep up to date with all the latest stories, whatever you are doing.

What’s new in Windows 8

Now that we discussed about windows 8 reviews, let’s take a look at the features and what’s new in windows 8.

These are general features of overall Windows 8 offerings. For version comparison, visit comparison page on Microsoft.

What’s New in Windows 8

Start Menu

The Metro Tiled start menu is the main attraction of windows 8. The start menu comprises of Live tiles arranged in metro style.

The live tiles shows the content randomly or latest from the source. For example, it will show you the latest emails subject on the email tile. Similarly, it will show latest unread sms on messaging tile. This feature is cool unlike the static icons.

Messaging

The messaging can be used as a hub that combines messages from various sources like Facebook, Gmail, Windows live, etc.

Startup / Login

When you start Windows 8, it asks you to start with live account, now known as Microsoft account. If you don’t have an internet connection, you will have an option create a local account.

When you link the Microsoft account, the data like contacts, emails, etc start getting synchronized. You can control what to and what not to synchronize.

Ease of use on multiple computers

If you have multiple computers lets say one at office and other at home, both having Windows 8 and if you access that using same Microsoft account, you don’t have to arrange that again in another PC. It automatically synchronizes the settings. Of course you can control this too.

Internet Explorer

Windows 8 comes with new Internet Explorer 10. The new IE10 is quite fast and responsive. Enhanced privacy, optimized for touch ease-of-use.

Apps

There are a lot of apps in the apps store and you can download apps – free and paid. Check out the top must have apps on Windows 8. These apps appear as tiles on the start menu of the new Windows 8. Instantly download new apps for Windows 8 and Windows RT.

Some apps, like People, Mail, and Calendar, are built in to Windows 8 and Windows RT—they’re already on your Start screen when you sign in to your PC. See a list of basic apps that come with your PC.

Corners of the screen

The corners of the screen on Windows 8 are sensitive. Moving mouse on right top or bottom shows the general menu of settings, devices, etc. Touching the left top shows the tabs that are open. The bottom left shows the Desktop on start menu and vice-versa.

Picture Password

The new way of screen lock is a divine feature. You can choose your favorite picture and draw a pattern on it to unlock it. Check the video below to know how to use the picture password.

Windows 8 Reviews, the first glance – Microsoft is back in the market!

Microsoft is back in the market with Windows 8. So here are my Windows 8 reviews.

It is an amazing new operating system. I installed it yesterday and still can’t get over it. The new tiles on start menu is amazing. The live tiles keep you alive unlike the older static icons. The metro user interface makes it more appealing.

Continue reading “Windows 8 Reviews, the first glance – Microsoft is back in the market!”

Enabling Sound Drivers on Windows Server 2008

There was an urge to listen to a devotional song this morning at work because a client call canceled.

But my machine is Windows Server 2008 which doesn’t have the Sound Drivers automatically installed. I logged a ticket to Helpdesk too!

Tried plugging in the headphones jack to different ports but that did not work.

Finally, went to control panel, clicked on Sound icon and it asked me a pop-up saying that the audio is diabaled and if I wish to enable it.

After enabling, woooa! The sound started playing!

If you still face problems listening the audio, ensure that the jack is inserted into the correct port. Sometimes the port present in the front (easy access panel) may not work. In such, cases, insert the jack into the port behind the CPU, if its not laptop 😉

 
– submitted by a myworld

Cancel Scheduled Shutdown Command

  1. Use Win+R to open the Run dialog.
  2. Type “cmd” without quotes and hit Enter
  3. In the command line window as shown below, type the command as below for canceling or aborting the shutting down of the computer after 5 hour that was scheduled earlier as discussed on page Schedule Shutdown Computer Without Additional Software. shutdown /a
  4. After executing this command, you will see a notification in the taskbar.

Schedule Computer Shutdown

You may have something being downloaded that is going to take another 1 hour and you are so sleepy and you don’t want to keep the computer on further. Or maybe you want to go to sleep with some relaxing music at the same time want that the computer or the laptop shuts down automatically after sometime. You don’t have to worry any longer. Here is the secret:

  1. Use Win+R to open the Run dialog.
  2. Type “cmd” without quotes and hit Enter
  3. In the command line window as shown below, type the command as below for shutting down the computer after 5 hour. shutdown /s /t 18000
  4. The number 18,000 is the time in seconds. 18000 seconds means 5 hours (300 minutes).
  5. After executing this command, you will see a notification in the taskbar as below.
  6. To cancel the shutdown, check Cancel Scheduled Shutdown Command