As I've said before, I like Windows 7. In fact, I like the OS a lot. It reminds me a lot of the good ol' NT4 days. I wouldn't go as far as to say that I've fallen in love with Windows again because times are different and I enjoy a polyamorous existence where I use several different OSes. But Windows 7 has reminded me of the fact that when Windows is done right, it can be a cracking OS.
But all this emotion directed at a big pile of 0s and 1s doesn't mean that I don't see room for improvement. In fact, I've already drawn up a Windows 8 wishlist, which I'll share with you here.
Look, it's the 21st century. Installing the OS on one drive and setting it up so that the data is stored on another drive should be a trivial matter that's handled during setup. The current installer is simply prehistoric and I hope to see dramatic improvements in Windows 8.
Better support for compressed file formats
There are are a number of very good, free, open source tools for handling compressed files out there. My favorite is 7-Zip and it's capable of handling all sorts of exotic archives. However, I'm still sort of surprised that apart from supporting .ZIP archives, Windows still can't handle any other commonly used compressed file format.
This seems like a no-brainer to me. Microsoft should bring all the security software under one application in the next incarnation of Windows.
Updated Task Manager
The Windows Task Manager is a very useful tool. However, it's very long in the tooth and overdue for a revamp (apart from some minor additions, it's the same Task Manager that was present in NT4). It doesn't need to be as complex and fully-featured as Sysinternal's Process Explorer, but more features could be useful.
Software install center
Microsoft has a lot of cool, free software on offer but unless you know where to look for it, you'll never find it. Linux distros such as Ubuntu have a Software Center where users can download new stuff from. Microsoft needs something similar, along the lines of how it delivered Ultimate Extras to users.
End to 16-bit/32-bit support
There a time and a place for dumping legacy support and moving on. Windows 8 should be that time.
If you can already update certain Linux distros without requiring a reboot, we should be able to do the exact same thing in the next version of Windows.
Yes, Windows 7 allows me to natively burn .ISO files to disc, but why do I have to scrabble around like a raccoon in a dumpster looking for a tool in order to be able to create and mount these files? Again, the next version of Windows should be able to handle .ISO files natively.
Thoughts? What do you think should be added to the list? Should anything be removed? I look forward to hearing from you!