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Windows 8 – The new Vista?

The much anticipated release of Windows 8 has come and gone. What I can tell you is business should not be quick to adopt the new operating system.

The high cost of training and loss of productivity will undoubtedly impact your bottom line.

I have been using Windows 8 for some time now and even for a seasoned IT professional it takes some getting used to. The biggest change is the elimination of the traditional start button and program navigation. It has been replaced with a start screen which is a tiled full screen alternative to the start traditional button.

At first glance this changes your PC from a standard PC to a touch screen tablet (assuming you have a touch screen). For those who have a desire to purchase and use touch technology this may be a great feature. For those who are looking for the standard desktop experience the new start screen is cumbersome to use and inefficient at displaying your programs.

For me, I had to jump through a bunch of hoops to get Windows 8 operating like its predecessors. I rarely, if ever use the start panel. Upon boot-up I quickly click on the desktop tile to get back to what appears to be a normal Windows 7 style desktop. If I need access to a program, I don’t have a shortcut for on the desktop I use the new toolbar on the right side to perform a search for my program. This search tool oddly looks like the finder tool which every Mac user is very familiar with.

Although I applaud innovation I also know that change needs to be gradual. Windows 8 is a grand departure from what has made the Microsoft desktop operating systems successful. Windows XP morphed into Windows Vista (which was a bust). Windows Vista morphed into Windows 7 which was actually well accepted by business because it improved on its predecessors. Windows 7 kept what worked well from Windows XP and Vista while improving performance and stability.

Windows 8 will lead to increased training costs and decreased productivity in the short term. Given the economy and how many businesses are closely monitoring their bottom line, any additional costs are not welcome. So, much like most businesses avoided Vista like the plague I see the same (at least in the short term) for Windows 8.

I will be requesting new computer orders to be preloaded with Windows 7 for my clients. How about you?

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