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Tech Decision Maker
Windows 8 infographic: Pros and cons at a glance
Takeaway: TechRepublic polled its members as to whether they had plans to upgrade to Windows 8. We also have the top reasons why they will or won’t.
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Some good, some bad
1. Common user experience across platforms - agree
2. Windows 8 to go - is this really a big thing? I'm not planning on using at all for my small to mid-size clients but then again, they typically wouldn't be the ones licensing a Windows OS in the manner to have access to Windows8 To Go so I'll have to rely on other more corporate administrators to give their opinions.
3. Push button reset - I've tried it and it worked ok. It made me wish Windows 8 restored more items automatically via it's cloud sync. I haven't looked into the technical details but it's probably just a matter of time until the right virus cracks this method and makes the benefits of the clean slate evaporate.
4. Touch log in - I prefer using a PIN but to each their own. Surprised this is a highlight.
5. Faster boot time - much improved, agree.
6. 3g/4g support - Have to wait to see how this works out. My Slate doesn't currently have built-in 3g/4g and my Verizon LTE dongle isn't supported yet.
1. No start menu, worth mentioning, agree that it should be pointed out but I'm not quite sure it belongs necessarily in the bad column as a single item as it really is more about the retraining as the start menu's functionality for the most part has been replaced by other elements. Also, in most environments, I tend to find that users use desktop icons and taskbar icons more than the start menu regardless but it might be a crutch for users regardless. I would think the biggest task for IT would be to make sure that the users icons are on the desktop, pin'd to the start screen and pin'd to the taskbar and that would eliminate most questions though the topic of the start menu WILL come up as a training issue.
2. Training, yes, agree but I think that people will 'get it' after a day or so primarily because most of their day is spent in the apps and very little of a day is spent performing system tasks like opening applications, shutting down or logging off. I don't think 'massive' training programs will be necessary and probably a 'things to know' list and some screenshots would be more than adequate.
3. Fragmented Ecosystem - I really do think that ARM's non-support of native Active Directory is not that big of a deal and here's why: If AD support is necessary, there are x86 options that are rumored to have good battery life (~10 hour range and more for the transformer models when used with keyboard). The typical Slate which would be the only real option for ARM cpu's, is not really meant to be used primarily in the office. Why by an ARM powered slate for a non-mobile employee? And if they're mobile, why use AD to lock them down when their attack surface is much much smaller than typical Windows. For security conscious persons, there are methods for managing ARM devices remotely via non AD tech though I do agree that it would be best if ALL management of Win8 devices (ARM and x86) were done via a single interface though I doubt Microsoft would transition them to native AD/GPO and will probably merge their support in System Center.
4. Desktop abandonment - I'd argue against this one. The desktop is pretty much as good as it can get. What innovations are really left for 'the desktop' that can't be added to or offset with 3rd party software for those unusual/non standard user demands? So assuming that the desktop is 'finished' in terms of innovation, why would you assume it's abandoned because Microsoft has rolled in other methods of usage? It's like if I praise an employee's performance when getting a task done, am I at the same time automatically saying the other employees have performed badly? No, I'm just noting good work. Microsoft by adding a touch mode is just saying 'here's another path and we're proud of it' and that doesn't automatically mean that the desktop is 'abandoned'. This seems more to me of a worry/perception issue than an actual issue.
5. Hardware Outlay - Seriously? Windows 8 runs better than Windows 7 and from what I've read, it's ran pretty well on the same hardware that runs XP. Now, specifically you mention touch interfaces: There's NO requirement for Windows 8 that you purchase touch hardware and if you are specifically looking at touch for your mobile workforce, the touch requirements are exactly the same as any other touch operating system (iOS, Android, etc). You wouldn't touchify your desktop for mobile usage, you'd buy a mobile device with built-in touch capabilities.
To counter, here's my list:
1. Common user experience shared on PC and Phone
2. Possibility for using a single device for most usage scenarios (desktop, mobile and couch) resulting in decreased costs for mobile oriented employees when compared to mixed vendor solutions (desktop/notebook+ipad vs single Slate device)
3. Increased security and resiliency to infection (should Metro be used more than the desktop for data access outside corporate mandated apps, it probably would be as the store would be the source for app installs and IE metro is sandbox'd more so than before)
4. Faster startup / Decreased boot times
5. Windows store for easy access to apps selected and approved by IT
6. Mobile print support
7. x86 versions support remote desktop/screen sharing applications for easier remote support
8. Hyper-V support allows for easier packaging of legacy systems across servers/workstations
9. Native USB3 support
1. Requires additional user training than previous Operating System upgrades. Start menu removal, system task adjustments and processes, etc.
2. Inconsistent experience quality for mobile users across hardware brands/models (iPad is pretty much the iPad always apart from storage and versions where different Windows vendors may provide different levels of hardware quality - this applies more to Windows itself rather than Windows 8 as a traditional problem with desktop and notebook devices but now that it's intended as a viable tablet platform, it's worth re-iterating for mobile devices)
3. The Metro UI may present graphical issues for Remote Desktop/Citrix installations due to the heavy use of animations in the Metro UI
4. Legacy or niche device incompatibilities due to missing, incomplete drivers - USB security devices may no longer work or not work properly
I'm sticking with Windows 7
I have no smartphone or tablet, and no plans to upgrade to a product that doesn't allow me my 40-odd desktop icons where I want to see them and 10 Quick Launch icons. If MS doesn't revert to sanity by Windows 9 or 10, I'll be converting to Linux. I feel played, with MS wanting to implement Gates' decades-old dream of making monthly subscription fees a reality, and treating us as if we were Apple sheep. I won't stand for it. Classic Menu Forever!
User training is an ongoing expense and a cost of doing business...
Also, I meant massive in terms of the size and scale of the effort having to be put into the retraining by IT: You don't have to print signs, produce instructional videos, hand out t-shirts or write supportive messages on white-boards (We can do IT!). In those terms, it wouldn't require a massive effort. In terms of financial impact, you have a point but like I said, it's a cost of doing business.
a few people have said how it's so easy to get to the desktop AFTER
Product does allow all you want of it
Boot time, BFD.
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