Windows 8 doesn't need saving

Windows 8 doesn't need saving

Summary: This week's Great Debate topic is: "Can Windows 8 be saved?" Here's a news flash for you and the debaters — Windows 8 doesn't need saving.


Someone needs to consult the Mayan calendar, a Sumerian tablet, or the Oracle of Algernon, because I'm actually on the same side as Ed Bott in this week's Great Debate argument, "Windows 8: Can this OS be saved?" Well, except for one thing: I don't think that Windows 8 needs saving. So to me, the debate's premise is kind of moot. It will be interesting to see the arguments on this one, but seriously, Windows 8 doesn't need saving. Hold off on lowering the lifeboats.

Every time Microsoft releases a new version of its operating system, there's a bit of controversy and fighting that takes place. And I understand your love for Windows XP or your attachment to Windows 7, but it's time to embrace the future.

In my mind's eye, I imagine two nerds getting into the argument about whether Windows 8 can be saved and ending up in a slap fight that eventually is broken up by one of their mothers. Scenarios like this just make me hang my head in embarrassment. But that's the nature of IT folk. It's kind of like arguing Windows vs. Linux, or PC vs. Mac.

Religion is belief-based. Technology is observation-based. Learn the difference before taking a side. 

Now having said that, I will tell you that in my humble opinion, Windows Vista and Windows Me were totally bogus and completely unnecessary efforts. Sorry, I know that I said in a previous post that I'd never dog Vista again, but it's such an easy target that I can't resist. The mere mention of it is like Kryptonite to me. And I'm positive that too much exposure to Vista would eventually kill me. I digress.

The bigger questions for me are, "Why does Windows 8 need to be saved?"; and pray tell, "From what does Windows 8 need to be saved?"

I don't get it.

I've been to several retail stores and one discount store around town, and I've seen Windows 8 on several systems. New laptops with touchscreens, desktops, netbooks, and, of course, the Surface tablet line.

I installed it on a laptop and have yet to see anything wrong with it. Admittedly, I'd enjoy it more if I had one of the new touchscreen, models but there's nothing wrong with Windows 8. And I've put it through its paces. I haven't been nice to Windows 8. I hated it at first, but I forced myself to change with the times and work with it. The Windows 8 Metro-style interface is the future of computing.

The mouse will be a thing of the past very soon in our post-PC era that one of the debaters writes about so often. If you, and he, truly believe that we are now into the post-PC era, why the heck would you need to save Windows 8?

Windows 8 is a full operating system that can run real applications. There's no need to apologize for it. It's a good operating system — every bit (pun?) as good as Windows XP, and in many ways, better than Windows 7. One of my favorite features of Windows 8 is its impressive boot time. Thirty seconds from power on, I'm opening apps. Windows 7, conversely, takes several minutes on the exact same hardware.

Windows 8 doesn't need saving any more than Windows 95 did. People are afraid of something new, but in this case, they shouldn't be. And neither should you. Windows 8 is a good operating system that deserves a respected place in history alongside other innovative technology advances.

Let me put this in personal terms for you: Windows 8 is what you wanted. Seriously.

You wanted an operating system that would run on the hardware that you have now because you don't want to spend the money to upgrade. Done. You wanted an operating system that runs on a variety of hardware so that your user experience is the same on all devices. Done. You wanted an operating system that's easy to use. Done. You wanted an Apple-like experience with swipey icons and an app store. Done. You wanted an operating system that doesn't take a long time to boot up — hence all of the geeky tales of "going to get a cup of coffee while it boots". Done.

There's absolutely no need to save Windows 8.

So don't feel compelled to lower those lifeboats just yet. In fact, you can proceed on the Windows 8 journey with no lifeboats at all because this ship is unsinkable.

What do you think? Do you think that Windows 8 needs saving, and if so, what do you suggest? Talk back and let me know.

Topics: Microsoft, Mobility, Windows, Windows 8


Kenneth 'Ken' Hess is a full-time Windows and Linux system administrator with 20 years of experience with Mac, Linux, UNIX, and Windows systems in large multi-data center environments.

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  • Bingo

    Ram U
    • Is there any other choice?

      If someone has an issue with going with Win8, what is their choice? Win8 like it or not is the path of least resistance. Any other choice will be more difficult. If an upgrade from XP to Win8 is a problem, think about the increased difficulties associated with moving from XP to Linux or Mac.

      Don't say it doesn't matter because apps have or are migrating to the Web. Windows is still the best / cost effective development environment. Browser compatibility is a nightmare and the Windows development tool box is much bigger. What is the easiest development platform? Windows? Android? Browser?

      Which is most stable? Which has the largest selection of apps (the kind people use and need).

      I assume MSFT is heading toward a single development platform for Browser, desktop, tablet, and mobile phone.

      There is no way anyone would use Chrome if they read the Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. Same goes for mobile phones. Either do not use the "free" features or give up your privacy.

      Like it or not there is no better choice. People have resisted major upgrades e.g. DOS to Windows, 3.1 to 95, and now Win8. It's just a matter of time before this Win8 Debate ends.

      I am still using XP myself. I went the Browser route (PHP, mySQL, JavaScript) rather than Win7. I will some day have Win8 because XP runs out of memory. Not because it is no longer supported. I turned off updates in 2008.
      • You should probably update your machine.

        Just saying.
        • ForeverCookie just to let you know.........Windows 8 doesn't need saving

          Because its alerady FAILED worse tha Me or Vista ever did. The prof is something called BLUE is already in the wings to take its place for another $40.00.

          Redmond sure does know how to bleed its customer base.
          Over and Out
          • "BLUE is already in the wings to take its place for another $40.00"

            By that logic Apple's OSX has FAILED because it gets replaced at least once a year for $40. What's more where has it been said Blue's going to cost anything to upgrade. As I understand it, it's bascially just a service pack. In that case I guess every single version of Windows since at least XP has FAILED.

            Is Windows 8 perfect? Heck no. But neither was XP when it came out. Sure, I personally am not going to be moving to Windows 8 anytime soon but that's because I only change OSs when I change computers, not because I don't believe it's worth giving a chance. I only left XP because the computer died. I only stopped using Vista because I bought a new machine. And I'll probably only start using Windows 8 when I need to do the same with my Windows 7 box.
          • Heck, Windows XP wasn't even finished when it was released!

            It was pushed out the door almost 2 years ahead of schedule because ME was so bad. SP1 was what finished the OS and got it to the point Microsoft was planning to release it at.
            Jason Joyner
          • Heck, Windows XP wasn't even finished when it was released!

            Could you be thinking of Windows 2000? It is OS that came out after Me. 2000 was a very stable, excellent OS, though it was somewhat incomplete. XP was as nearly complete when it arrived as an OS could have been then.
          • Windows Me came out after 2000

            Windows 2000 was released in 1999. Windows Me was released in 2000. Windows Me was part of the 9x series, 2000 part of the NT series. They had no real relation. The whole "Me was an attempt to merge 98 and NT" line was totally bogus, by the way, and yet I still see it posted all over the place. They're so fundamentally different that there was no way to "merge" them. At best you take to googly eyes from one and glue it to the other.
          • wrong

            Blue is a update not a new os.
          • There is no evidence at all to indicate ...

            ... that "Blue" will not be a free upgrade from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1.
            M Wagner
          • Yes there is

            You missed it. MS is no longer issuing free SPs.
            Blue, essentially Win8 SP1, will not be free.

            They are trying to shift to Apples "cheap yearly update" model.

          • Could we get a link on this?

            As I said above I haven't seen anything personally.
          • wrong

            blue is a update you nit wit
          • Name calling ...

            only reflects poorly on the person doing it.

            Also, if you read some of the other articles, you will see that "Blue" is not an SP. There is almost no actual information - just assumptions, speculations, and wishful thinking - as to what will/will not be in MS's next OS.
          • I think forevercookie

            was refering to the fact that he turned off updates in 2008 not updating to W8
          • Another Dim View.

            You continue to make posts that contradict themselves and each other.
            If Windows 8 is a total failure (hence nobody is buying it) then how is MSFT bleeding it's customer base with this update...since according to you there is no base.
            But thanks for your post, we needed another dim view.
          • what is BLUE

            BLUE is service pack 1 for windows 8! Linux fan boy troll somewhere else!
            Peter Blank
        • I agree I should upgrade from XP

          I tried. I paid for the Win8 Upgrade and it did not work. Even with every USB device disconnected. Close. The Blue Screen said Windows 8 will start in 1 Second. Never did. Asus motherboard and i3 processor. I think the problem was the SSD which was formatted with an image from a standard hard drive. Other than running out of memory every couple of weeks XP still does what I need it to do. For me, the upgrade was not worth the hassle.
          • Sounds like you gave up too soon ...

            ... or you did not follow Microsoft guidelines for upgrading form Windows XP.
            M Wagner
          • I also couldn't upgrade from XP

            I followed every guideline I could find. After an hour or so it says it won't work and it restores my XP. No diagnostic info. Tried in 4 times and gave up. What am I missing?