Windows 8 Public "Consumer Preview" Beta is Live
February 29, 2012 9:21 AM
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Meet the Windows of the future
[UPDATE 1 ] Tues. 2/29/2012 10:03 a.m.
Windows 8 Consumer Preview (a beta build) is now officially live on Microsoft's servers, so get ready for the rush.
Travel here to get it
Windows Chief Steven Sinofsky
at the unveil event stated, "We are really excited to be here. This is a day that's been long in coming for the Windows team. I just got a picture of the operations center where they're getting ready for the downloads. They've been up since 3 AM."
Let's hope they're ready -- in
2009 a similar beta of Windows 7
saw so much demand that it
crashed Microsoft's servers
. It was all for a good cause, though -- the beta process
found and fixed 2,000 bugs
in Windows 7 and proved a key part of its
record-smashing commercial success
. Microsoft hopes to recapture that success with Windows 8.
If you download it and try it, be sure to leave a comment letting us know what you think.
A crucial step in the road towards the launch of Microsoft Corp.'s (
) next commercial personal computer operating system is set to be taken in just minutes or perhaps hours from now. Microsoft will unveil a public beta of Windows 8 to the world. It is pitching the beta both to consumers and to businesses, who might not have jumped onboard the earlier MSDN/TechNet preview builds.
The new OS brings a slew of improvements including
a developer-friendly 20-80 Microsoft-developer split
for high-grossing apps,
less painful Windows Update process
decreased OS resource consumption
improved file transfers
streamlined upgrade process
for the initial installation, and switching to a primarily online sales distribution model.
Like Apple, Inc.'s (
forthcoming Mountain Lion
, Microsoft is pushing hard to "appify" traditional programs, bringing them in line with smartphone apps in terms of app store distribution, icons, and interfaces. Microsoft is also pushing its SkyDrive -- its cloud storage scheme.
A slew of Metro Ui apps in Windows 8 [Image Source: The Verge]
The new Windows 8 beta is being launched in Barcelona, Spain, at a
2012 Mobile World Congress
event. The location is appropriate given that Microsoft's new operating system
heavily focuses on tablets
, for the first time.
Ahead of the launch, some of the built in wallpapers have
, an Italian website. You can grab the 23.6 MB package from
(Click to enlarge)
The entire Windows 8 download (X64) is expected to be a bit under 3 GB.
Update: The X64 download is 3.3 GB for the English version, while the 32-bit version is 2.5 GB.
Microsoft has published
[PDF] for business. It suggests how business can put Windows 8 on a USB stick for quick and painless managed boots at remote locations. Given current USB stick capacities have
reached 128 GB
, it shouldn't be hard to squeeze a managed copy of Windows 8 on there, space-wise.
Microsoft's business guide also brags about SmartScreen Application Reputation, a feature that screens downloads. When you go to open a download, if it is a suspect file type and not from a trusted source a warning is given suggesting the user to abort.
The new OS should go live shortly, we will post a link when it does.
Remember, you can install the new operating system as a fully bootable operating system on a single-boot or multi-boot configuration, or more convenient pop it in a virtual machine like VMWare, Inc.'s (
) VMWare Workstation.
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I do not fu***ing understand
2/29/2012 2:26:58 PM
This is a great tablet OS and all, but switching app is a nightmare! Windows had the best task switching of all: THE TASKBAR!!! Open a program, it's on the taskbar, just click on it to minimise it or to go back to it. Open a gazillion of apps and pages and switch to the one you want INSTANTLY even if yoou opened 10000 after it. I never used their alt-tab thing, their stupid flip 3D or other way to swith apps. Just click-double click on the taskbar did the trick faster, even on my vista tablet PC.
Why are they getting rid of it in metro is beyond me. Hidden charms bar is long. Left corner and move down to see tumbnails is not as fast. Just keep the damn taskbar in metro and let us switch between metro apps and desktop apps! I can live with the other changes.
Written from metro explorer 10, and the bloody text box is so small and you can't zoom i only see 8-10 words.
RE: I do not fu***ing understand
2/29/2012 2:28:08 PM
You can bet i won't upgrade my non-touch laptop and my HTPC, i'll even buy another OEM copy of Windows 7 before they go out of print.
RE: I do not fu***ing understand
3/1/2012 3:52:48 PM
Better get retail copies of windows 7... the EULA in the OEM copies locks it to a motherboard.
I just bought 2 copies of Windows 7 Ultimate im preparation for skipping Windows 8 until Windows 9 brings back a reasonable desktop interface or I migrate to Linux / Hackintosh
RE: I do not fu***ing understand
3/2/2012 8:57:00 PM
Using Windows 8 for me was pretty maddening the first few hours, and I hated it also. Like everyone here, I was just too used to the start button/task bar.
Then I just started using the Desktop "app" as my primary interface, and thought of Metro as more of a full screen Start menu. It sort of works in the same way if you think about it. The Start button is still there in a way...you just click on the bottom left (like you did in Win7 and before). Hit on the Windows button on your keyboard and Metro ("Start Menu") shows up. Within Metro, just start typing, and you can do a search like before (for Programs, Documents, etc)
The Desktop app is just like Windows 7 then. You can still pin your frequently used apps to the task bar, etc. I guess it just took me to rethink where things are before I liked Windows 8.
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