• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
programming forums Java Mobile Certification Databases Caching Books Engineering Micro Controllers OS Languages Paradigms IDEs Build Tools Frameworks Application Servers Open Source This Site Careers Other all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
Marshals:
  • Campbell Ritchie
  • Paul Clapham
  • Ron McLeod
  • Bear Bibeault
  • Liutauras Vilda
Sheriffs:
  • Jeanne Boyarsky
  • Junilu Lacar
  • Henry Wong
Saloon Keepers:
  • Tim Moores
  • Stephan van Hulst
  • Jj Roberts
  • Tim Holloway
  • Piet Souris
Bartenders:
  • Himai Minh
  • Carey Brown
  • salvin francis

New laptop, new Windows; same old crap

 
Bartender
Posts: 10777
71
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Just bought a new laptop and got my first peep at Windows 8. And my first impression?

LOATHE it.

Even more than I did Vista ... although I was finally starting to get used to that when – of course – it finally crashed on me forever, after months of taking 9 minutes to boot.

What's that damn Start Screen all about? And why do I have to keep clicking the Windows key + 'D' to get a proper desktop? And where have the Start Menu and things like Control Panel gone?

I ended up having to use Ctrl+Alt+Delete to reboot/shut down the damn thing.

So anyway, after about ten minutes of faffing around, checking out the tutorial and being dismayed at the 126 topics I’d have to read about, I decided to try plugging in my portable drive in to play some music.

Result: A nice plink, and absolutely b**ger all else.

No icon; no "I've found this, what would you like to do with it?"; no Explorer window; nothing - on the Start screen, the "old" desktop, or anywhere else that I could see. Of course it didn't help that the version I had was in Dutch (I live in Belgium) and – again of course – didn’t come with any re-installation media.

And once I did finally find manage to get an Explorer window open and clicked on a bit of Jamiroquai? Sound was fine, but I get this monster XBox (or iBox, or some other such nonsense) window that blocks out everything else, with tiny little controls that are really difficult to work – although it has to be said that the clicker on my unit’s trackpad is rather stiff (probably the worst part of the machine, and lots of complaints about it; but not a huge deal for me as I prefer to use a mouse anyway).

Oh yes…and the ‘Esc’ key doesn’t work any more.

Congratulations Microsoft; you’ve outdone yourself. If this is what “tablet technology” looks like, you can shove it. I’ve got a 17” laptop, not a 3” smartphone. I’m installing Linux Mint today; and I’m not even going to bother trying to make it “dual boot” – which no doubt Win8 will try to make as difficult as previous versions did anyway.

Bring back XP.

Winston
 
Bartender
Posts: 11445
19
Android Google Web Toolkit Mac Eclipse IDE Ubuntu Java
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10777
71
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Nice one. But Mint is free...and they don't keep changing it.

Winston
 
Maneesh Godbole
Bartender
Posts: 11445
19
Android Google Web Toolkit Mac Eclipse IDE Ubuntu Java
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Winston Gutkowski wrote:Nice one. But Mint is free...and they don't keep changing it.

Winston


Ah Mint! Breath of fresh air!

Found another one. Looks like fun!

source
 
Java Cowboy
Posts: 16084
88
Android Scala IntelliJ IDE Spring Java
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Is it really that bad, or is it just because a number of things are different than what you are used to?

I also have a new laptop, with Windows 8.1. My new laptop has a touch screen, and I think the start screen would be a lot less useful without a touch screen. The touch screen is really something made for tablets; according to me it wasn't a great idea by Microsoft to put the same interface in Windows for laptops or desktop PCs.

Winston Gutkowski wrote:What's that damn Start Screen all about? And why do I have to keep clicking the Windows key + 'D' to get a proper desktop? And where have the Start Menu and things like Control Panel gone?


With Windows 8.1 you can also configure it to boot directly to the desktop, if you don't want to use the start screen. Finding things like Control Panel is really easy: on the Start screen just start typing "contr..." and it will show you.

Winston Gutkowski wrote:I ended up having to use Ctrl+Alt+Delete to reboot/shut down the damn thing.


In Windows 8.1 there's a shutdown button in the top right of the Start screen.

If your new laptop has Windows 8 and not 8.1, then I recommend upgrading it to 8.1 (it's a free upgrade that should be available from Windows Update).
 
author
Posts: 23887
142
jQuery Eclipse IDE Firefox Browser VI Editor C++ Chrome Java Linux Windows
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

After getting burned with Windows ME, I seemed to have learned my lesson. I held onto Windows XP for a very long time, avoiding Windows Vista altogether. And now, I am going to delay upgrading again, holding onto Windows 7, until there is something better. If history is an indicator, I may be on Windows 7 for a very long time...

Henry
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10777
71
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jesper de Jong wrote:Is it really that bad, or is it just because a number of things are different than what you are used to?


It's really that bad; and the two are completely linked. This is, what, the third "new look" that has MS come out with in 7 years? Why? Mint has hardly changed in the 7 years I've known it, and the interface isn't actually that different to what I was using on Solaris (CDE) back in 1996. I highly doubt that Mac users have had to go through all these "improvements".

I also have a new laptop, with Windows 8.1. My new laptop has a touch screen, and I think the start screen would be a lot less useful without a touch screen.


Yeah, I read that too. So why can't the boot software detect whether you have a touch-screen and ask you if you want the Start Screen or not? I'm sure that part of the problem is the fact that it's "pre-installed", and that MS wants OEMs to show the "new look" to ramp up sales; but if that's the case, for chrissake give us an installation disk so that we can re-install it if we want.

The touch screen is really something made for tablets; according to me it wasn't a great idea by Microsoft to put the same interface in Windows for laptops or desktop PCs.


Amen.

With Windows 8.1 you can also configure it to boot directly to the desktop, if you don't want to use the start screen. Finding things like Control Panel is really easy: on the Start screen just start typing "contr..." and it will show you.


Fine. So make that the FIRST thing you read about in the tutorial: "differences from previous version(s)" or "how to access stuff you're used to".

In Windows 8.1 there's a shutdown button in the top right of the Start screen.


There is? I looked high and low for one, but I couldn't find it. That's when I hit Ctrl+Alt+Delete and prayed...

If your new laptop has Windows 8 and not 8.1, then I recommend upgrading it to 8.1 (it's a free upgrade that should be available from Windows Update).


And how do I find that out? So many things seem to be hidden, or accessed a different way...

TBH, it's been such a bad experience (waaay worse than Vista), that I'm not sure I can be bothered. I may check if Asus will send me an OEM installation disk for the cost of the media, because I really don't fancy having to learn all the Dutch words for "open", "close" etc; but if it costs more than a tenner I'll probably pass, because that's all I think the OS is worth.

That said, I do like my new toy. Screen is superb and the sound is delicious. Thanks Bang & Olufsen.

And you get a cow for your concern Jesper.

Winston
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10777
71
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Maneesh Godbole wrote:Ah Mint! Breath of fresh air!


Indeed. Minty freshness. Although, from what I hear, OpenSuse 13 is supposed to be quite good too...

Your image reminds me of buttons that did the rounds at one of the old Computer Shows I attended way back when: Windows 95 == Macintosh '87.

Winston
 
Jesper de Jong
Java Cowboy
Posts: 16084
88
Android Scala IntelliJ IDE Spring Java
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Winston Gutkowski wrote:Mint has hardly changed in the 7 years I've known it, and the interface isn't actually that different to what I was using on Solaris (CDE) back in 1996. I highly doubt that Mac users have had to go through all these "improvements".


In the desktop Linux world things are changing too - the Gnome 3 desktop environment for example, or Ubuntu's Unity, are also new and different from traditional desktop environments, and many people there are complaining too. Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu but they have their own desktop environment which is closer to the traditional desktop without all those new "user friendly" features.

Winston Gutkowski wrote:TBH, it's been such a bad experience (waaay worse than Vista), that I'm not sure I can be bothered. I may check if Asus will send me an OEM installation disk for the cost of the media, because I really don't fancy having to learn all the Dutch words for "open", "close" etc; but if it costs more than a tenner I'll probably pass, because that's all I think the OS is worth.


It's not that hard, open = openen, close = sluiten, etc. My Dell laptop also came without installation media. There's a special Dell program installed to create a system restore image on a USB stick (not on a DVD - my new laptop does not have an optical drive). Maybe your laptop also has something to create an installation disk or USB stick.

Winston Gutkowski wrote:That said, I do like my new toy. Screen is superb and the sound is delicious. Thanks Bang & Olufsen.


Mine is the new Dell XPS 15 model, with super high res touch screen (3200 x 1800). The screen is great, photos look very sharp on it and the colors are also very good. Unfortunately not all programs deal with the super high resolution very well. For example in IntelliJ, some of the icons and texts are really small.
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10777
71
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jesper de Jong wrote:In the desktop Linux world things are changing too - the Gnome 3 desktop environment for example, or Ubuntu's Unity, are also new and different from traditional desktop environments, and many people there are complaining too.


True, but anyone whose interested will probably load it in addition to the regular one, so that they can learn about it when they want to, and can do it at their own pace (in my case: SLOW).

It's not that hard, open = openen, close = sluiten, etc.


No, maybe not; and if it had been in French (or German), I might not have minded as much. I already speak two of the three official languages of Belgium, and I'm 57; so I doubt I'll ever be very proficient in 'Vlaams' - beyond being able to order a beer in Antwerp of course.

There's a special Dell program installed to create a system restore image on a USB stick (not on a DVD - my new laptop does not have an optical drive). Maybe your laptop also has something to create an installation disk or USB stick.


I'm sure it does, but I suspect I'll still get the "Dutch" image. Also: I plan on installing an SSD and seeing if I can mirror it with the existing (old-fashioned) disk, so that I have a truly redundant system and, from what I understand, those "restore" images need a blank disk. I want an installation disk, not what someone decides they're prepared to give me.

Mine is the new Dell XPS 15 model, with super high res touch screen (3200 x 1800). The screen is great, photos look very sharp on it and the colors are also very good. Unfortunately not all programs deal with the super high resolution very well. For example in IntelliJ, some of the icons and texts are really small.


Yeah I've heard about those (HD2?). They sound like a nightmare to me because I'd probably be hitting Ctrl+Shift+'+" all the time (I stubbornly refuse to buy reading glasses, because then I'll be officially "old" ). This one's just 1920x1080, but it's wide-view and it's a matte screen; not those 'orrible glossy things that reflect everything in the room. To be honest, I'll probably be using the '+' key with it a fair bit too...

Winston
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 789
Python C++ Linux
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Winston Gutkowski wrote:

Bring back XP.

Winston



Ubuntu reminds me of xp in a that it's small and fast, the way it feels. It doesn't remind me of xp in that it will not get virused and boogered. Fix yourself a Ubuntu memory stick to boot from to try it out and you may never touch Windows again. A lot of people favor xp over later windows and I think most of them would like Ubuntu better still if they knew about it.
 
Maneesh Godbole
Bartender
Posts: 11445
19
Android Google Web Toolkit Mac Eclipse IDE Ubuntu Java
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ubuntu! I love Ubuntu. It's really awesome!
However I fear their move to Unity has pissed of sooooo many people. I hate it and find it totally unproductive. Fortunately one call install Gnome to replace Unity. I really wish they got rid of Unity
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10777
71
Hibernate Eclipse IDE Ubuntu
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Maneesh Godbole wrote:However I fear their move to Unity has pissed of sooooo many people. I hate it and find it totally unproductive. Fortunately one call install Gnome to replace Unity. I really wish they got rid of Unity


The standard Mint distro (Mint is based on Ubuntu) comes with a desktop called Cinnamon, which is very XP (or Gnome) like. Apart from a couple of very minor irritations - one being that you can't point your desktop backgrounds to a different directory (I'm a keen, but sporadic, photographer) - I've not really had any problems with it. It's very stable, and the "lite" version is just amazing. I installed it on an old (and I do mean old - 128Mb, 30Gb hdd) HP laptop, and it booted faster than my Dell desktop (3Gb, two 350Gb SATA disks) running Vista.

And the great thing is that you use it just like Windows. I can't recall the last time I went into the Terminal program - and I was a Unix/Linux admin for 12 years.

Winston
 
Guillermo Ishi
Ranch Hand
Posts: 789
Python C++ Linux
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Winston Gutkowski wrote:

Maneesh Godbole wrote:d I was a Unix/Linux admin for 12 years.

Winston



I can't imagine why you are messing with Windows then. But actually I have a Vista partition that I keep around for a few old Windows-only programs. There are a few little utilities and the like that I need to keep that are Windows only.

I like the Unity desktop in part because it gives me more useful screen area on my little laptop. You can set the launcher bar to go away until you hit the left of your screen with your cursor with a force you can adjust. You can boot into Gnome instead, your choice.

I like the terminal for sentimental reasons mainly. I was using MS-DOS well into the Windows era I thought Windows was disgusting from the start but of course I was forced to adopt it eventually...

 
Guillermo Ishi
Ranch Hand
Posts: 789
Python C++ Linux
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Something else to consider is Virtualbox, free from Oracle. I have just played with it a little bit using FreeBSD on it.

Somehow I accidentally hacked my post just above this one. It looks weird and the edit button is not there for me.
 
Bartender
Posts: 2407
36
Scala Python Oracle Postgres Database Linux
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've been using Linux Mint on a dual-boot Windows 7 machine for over a year and it's great. At home I only boot into Windows to do stuff related to my wife's business where we have to use MS tools. Otherwise, it's Mint all the way for me.
I used to use Ubuntu occasionally, but the "modern" UI really stinks. So I switched to Mint and never looked back. Pretty much all the benefits of Ubuntu and none of the UI pain.
My workplace has only just (last week) made the move from XP to Windows 7, which is a kind of an improvement I guess. Luckily, my current project is all Linux (Ubuntu and Mint), so I'm in a relatively Windows-free zone right now.
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic