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Windows 8 pros and cons

Updated on April 19, 2015

Should you upgrade to Windows 8

Since it is the first desktop OS that supports mobile computing, it has been a topic of discussion since when Microsoft had announced their intentions for this operating system. Now when it is finally in user's hand it seems like they have really provided a fitting answer, although it was a very bold step but it turned out a great move.

Read about the pros and cons of Microsoft 8 before you upgrade or buy that new computer.

Photo Credits: Windows.Microsoft

Windows 8 Performance

Pros of Windows 8 - A new look and it is mobile

  1. Unified experience: The most remarkable and eyecatching improvement is the new look, they call it Metro that provides a new refreshing user interface that is compatible with every platform, either it is desktop, laptop, tablets, or mobiles. This has eliminated the clutter and tied different aspects of the OS together which we have not seen before. The the sync tools allow you to carry your preferences, apps and many more with you anywhere on nearly any device listed above.
  2. Better Performance: It has been designed to provide a snappier OS which takes advantage of the current advancements in the processing tools and the software & hardwares. In terms of performance Microsoft has improved this version of windows which turned out to be faster and high performance operating system. It boots up faster, loads applications and software quicker, and manages every task very efficiently. It is also designed to save the energy through its intelligent system
  3. Easier To Build Apps: For a developer, this operating system is going to make it even easier to build Metro apps, you only need to know web formatting and scripting languages like HTML5, CSS, JavaScript. It makes the software development process simple, quicker and more efficient.

Cons of Windows 8 - Are you ready for the new changes?

  1. New Hardware Requirement: To utilize this new operating system to its fullest you may need to upgrade your hardware also to support touch sensitive aspects and higher graphics demand. If you are already running Windows 7 you may not have to make any major changes except the touch screen. If your system is using an AMD chip you may have to change your hardware because the process of connecting to the active directory is a little difficult from an AMD chip based system.
  2. Steep Learning Curve: There are lots of changes made in this operating system that you will have to be familiar with to use it. You will not find the traditional task bar and the new ribbon based for the first party application is something new that you will have to learn.
  3. Not compatible to older software: Every time Microsoft upgrades their operating software, it makes it less compatible or not compatible at all to older software that you own. If upgrading on your computer, you may have to buy the latest Microsoft Office, games, etc.

Check if you have the basic requirements - See the system checker

Is your computer up to date?

Now you know the pros and cons of the Windows 8 upgrade, you should also know that you will have to check if your system fulfills the basic requirements of this operating system. Microsoft has released a software through which you can check if your system is ready for Windows 8 or not, you can run the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant.

As per my knowledge and explained on the Microsoft official website, you system should support PAE (Physical Address Extension), NX processor bit, and SSE2 (Streaming SIMD Extension 2) which refers to the features of the processor.

In all, Windows 8 is definitely an ambitious step into the future of desktop and mobile computing. But it will take time for any average user to get used to its confusing UI design, but one thing is comforting that it will support all windows 7 apps and software.

Posters of windows - Windows of another kind

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© 2012 Sandy Mertens

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    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 2 years ago from Wisconsin

      The Examiner-1, At the time that I first wrote this the assistant had a capability tool that checked your computer to see what you need to upgrade. Visiting it now has a helpful Q&A and the upgrade assistant is there with a link to go to. I will make that adjustment in the hub. Thanks.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 2 years ago

      This was an interesting article Sandy. I have been wondering whether or not I should upgrade from my Win 7 to Win 8 for a while and this helped me learn more. The only thing which did not make sense to me was your link to "Win 8 upgrade assistant". All that it showed was Win 8.1 - it even mentioned having Win 8 and switching to 8.1. Except for that I voted it up, shared and pinned it.


    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 2 years ago from Wisconsin

      DzyMsLizzy, interesting that it is doing updates. I really like XP much better. My other computer would have a lot of catching up to do if there were updates. Maybe those updates are for the hardware and not the operating system.

      Good that your husband knows computers.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 2 years ago from Oakley, CA

      We do have a fully updated virus scanning program, as well as malware bytes, and I run ad blocker plus besides. My husband used to work as a hardware-software configuration manager; he knows computers.

      It amuses me, however, with XP supposedly 'retired' and no longer supported, that about every other time I shut down my machine, I get the message, "Windows is installing not turn off your computer." Yeah..they SAID they were no longer supporting it, but it seems they are continuing some back-door support for those still using the old systems.

      If I were to HAVE to switch, it would simply deny me having any online presence at all: there is simply NO money leftover from our meager budget for either a new machine or a new OS, so I'll have to take my chances. (We live on disability and social security at about $1400 per month. Half goes to the mortgage; the rest goes to utilities, insurance, and food: there is nothing left for savings.)

      But, I think I'm good for a while...Thanks for your concern.

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 2 years ago from Wisconsin

      DzyMsLizzy, you are talking the chance with all sorts of intruders. Windows has retired XP and no updates are available. This makes your computer and information vulnerable. I know it is expensive but having your computer hacked and your information stolen is worse.

      Not that I am trying to scare you. I do have XP Pro on my other laptop. But I retired it from the internet.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 2 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Interesting and useful article, and so voted. However, my comment on Microsoft is but one word: "UGH!"

      I am stuck using Windows XP Pro, because I cannot afford a new machine or even a new OS. Their products are far too expensive. Since I got this computer, our financial situation has deteriorated irrevocably; husband on disability, myself retired on social security acting as his caretaker.

      Unless I miraculously win the lottery without even spending a buck on the ticket, we are officially 'screwed' here... :(

    • kaseyrivenburgh profile image

      kaseyrivenburgh 4 years ago

      Very helpful information.

    • ITWorksInc LM profile image

      ITWorksInc LM 5 years ago

      Thank you for the great lens - I was on the fence about Windows 8 for the last month or so, since I saw the commercial for the Surface, but when I found out there's no 16G version because Windows 8 is so bloated that it takes 17 GB just to exist, I gave up on it. Then I saw this lens and the fact that the hardware would need to be upgraded too; well that was the clincher. Currently on Windows 7 and using other versions of SBS, and I think I'll stay where I'm at. Thank you!

    • CornellMarCom LM profile image

      CornellMarCom LM 5 years ago

      Well you must be a MicroCrap employee...or affiliate. I have it and under no circumstances would I recommend it. I went with Chrome and stopped all the frustration. PLEASE tell people to send MicroCrap 8 is terrible/

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Wisconsin

      @CornellMarCom LM: My dear confused friend. First, I am not a MicroCrap employee or affiliate. Second Chrome and Windows 8 are totally two different things altogether and there is absolutely no way that you can compare the two. Chrome is a browser and Windows 8 is an operating system. Chrome will not run your operating system. Before you write your comments, understand what you are writing about.

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Wisconsin

      @blessedmomto7: That is the downfall with upgrading.

      With keeping up with, tax software, firewalls, anti-virus software and the fact that Microsoft eventually fades out upgrades for older systems, there is a point where a person has to upgrade. But there is still time with Windows 7 and working software and updating.

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Wisconsin

      @Petzard: I usually wait too. But got a good deal on a laptop on Black Friday.

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Wisconsin

      @anonymous: Everything seems to be going mobile. But I can see your point here.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I'm not impressed. I hope to avoid 'upgrading' until the next version which, hopefully, won't try to shove a mobile feel onto those of us who neither have nor want a stable of mobile devices. I have heard that once you get past the initial interface, it's much like Windows 7. Begs the question "What were you guys thinking, Micorsoft?"

    • Petzard profile image

      Petzard 5 years ago

      I always wait for some time before I buy new windows system, simply because I expect some less problems with new âenvironmentâ (like bugs, updates,â¦).

    • blessedmomto7 profile image

      blessedmomto7 5 years ago

      I am thinking that I will stick with Windows 7. I don't want to have to upgrade/update everything. I think Windows 8 is great for touch tablets, but not for my computers.