and I'm running it on my multi-mon desktop which is what you would consider older hardware and so far some of the conveniences have outweighed the drawbacks. I like that you mentioned VPN support in Windows 8 specifically because despite the other things that I like about Windows 8, I absolutely hate the VPN implementation.
Before Windows 8, I hated installing 3rd party VPN clients but now I actually prefer them than the built-in method because if you're debugging a VPN connection, it's constantly kicking you back and forth between the charms bar and the desktop. It's absolutely brutal but it's also the only brutal thing I've experienced in Windows 8. I know 'why' VPN connections are in Metro because the 'network connections' portion is in Metro and they want to manage the entire 'network connection' experience from Metro but as far as the Windows VPN client goes...it is not happening so much so that I'm actually going to put time into learning that new Direct method that's come out in the last couple of years but been refined in Windows 8/Windows Server 2012. Maybe that will save me from VPN support nightmares.
All that being said, I mostly prefer the convenience of having some of the metro apps on my desktop like the Xbox Companion (Smart Glass) app. I have a 360 in my office connected to my stereo and I use the companion app to select the music I want to play and to add it to my queue. It brings up clickable buttons that correspond to various inputs on the 360 controller so I can actually 'control' the 360 from my desk without looking for controller. It's neat and I do prefer the OneNote MX app over the full OneNote app for the very basic simplicity of it. It just 'works' and I don't have to fuss around with the more advanced features.
I kind of find it odd how 'examined' the Windows 8 experience is and how many assumptions and inappropriate user tests are held up as examples. I'm not saying the system is perfect, obviously the VPN metro/desktop fiasco shows that it isn't, but I think it's funny the 'conclusions' that are being made before it's really gotten out there in the hands of the average users.
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