01-20-2014, 03:43 PM
#1
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Old fart here. You were warned. Biggrin Curmudgeon too.

Reference the recent thread regarding Windows8. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>Click here<<<<<<<<<<<<<

I recently had Dell build a computer for me and I knew better than to get it with Windows8 (thanks wif'ey). Maybe with the Classic Shell (shareware/freeware) it would be tolerable, but I haven't installed it on the wifes W8 computer yet. So I wasn't going to chance it on my computer.

Anyway, I got W7 HP 64bit and the transition from XP to W7 is fairly seamless. It has an "I've been here before" feel to it. Something completely foreign to W8 which is from a galaxy far far away.

I was concerned that things wouldn't work with the new 64 bit OS, but so far only one program doesn't. There was a small problem installing the 5 in 1 printer, but it was minor and after removing it and reinstalling it's working fine.

The new computer? The old computer was a screamer in it's day, but that day was quite awhile ago so it was a dinosaur before the change over. The new computer is another screamer. The only things I want to change are to fully populate the MB with RAM (Dell didn't have that as an option), and the mushy keyboard is the pits. The old PS2 IBM keyboard (20 years?) simply won't work with it so a new Keytronics is on order. The docking station that I bought for the new/old SATA HD (part of an upgrade for the old computer to insure that data would carry over) doesn't work with W7, so another one is on order.

Frankly I hate change and I was NOT looking forward to this change over, but it was fairly seamless. Where I expected problems there were almost none, where I expected no problems I have them. Typical I suppose. Plan for everything, but be aware that plan C or D is probably the one you'll employ.

I really hate this keyboard. I could get accustomed to it I suppose (and I am), but why should I? Smile It's just a hair better than a laptop keyboard and I absolutely detest those. YMMV, definitely. I simply can't use them. My Keytronics will be here shortly. Hey, I'm an old fart and I've been computing since folks had to build their own PCs and RAM was limited to 64k (S100 bus). I know what I like. This keyboard isn't among my likes.

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 01-20-2014, 04:53 PM
#2
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Glad the changeover left you relatively unscathed, Krampert.

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 01-20-2014, 05:49 PM
#3
  • Arcadies
  • Senior Member
  • Greeneville, TN
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I tried Windows 8 on another drive for a few months during pre-release. I found it was very polished, menus and tools in explorer (the file/OS interface, not Internet Explorer) were more intuitive and well thought out. I actually liked it, the only thing I didn't like is it didn't play nice with a few of my older games.
However, I enjoy changes when they improve usability and I never really used the start menu that often and being more of a hotkey/shortcut user than clicker..it wasn't a hard transition. I didn't care for the metro junk, I never really used it to be honest and pretty much stayed in "desktop" mode.

I've been back on Windows 7 for a while now, but I grabbed a cheap $15 copy of 8 during that promo they had before New Year and I have been considering going to Windows 8 permanently on my main pc and upgrading the den pc from ancient XP to 7.

Actually, my only real "beef" with windows 8 is the fact that you can't just install Windows 8.1 (that I've found anyway) you have to install Win8 and then go through the metro store and upgrade to 8.1..which is kind of a backasswards way of doing it, not to mention unnecessary hard drive grinding shuffling around and re-writing files that could have just been copied once in a full 8.1 install. It would be much easier and less complicated to be able to slipstream 8.1 into an ISO and either burn a install disk or use a bootable flash install. Angry

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 01-20-2014, 06:35 PM
#4
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Good luck with the transition, Brian.
I must be an older dinosaur as I am still using my 13-year-old Compaq Presario with the Linux Ubuntu older OP system.
Works great, though! Biggrin

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 01-20-2014, 08:10 PM
#5
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(01-20-2014, 06:35 PM)celestino Wrote: Good luck with the transition, Brian.
I must be an older dinosaur as I am still using my 13-year-old Compaq Presario with the Linux Ubuntu older OP system.
Works great, though! Biggrin

I would have been perfectly happy to not be forced to make the change, but it was getting slower and slower and that couldn't be ignored any longer. I suspected malware, but no software I ran found any. Oh well, it's done now.

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 01-21-2014, 12:13 AM
#6
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For those who can't get used to the new "Metro" UI in Windows 8, there is a very simple solution. It's called "pin program to taskbar." This works in Windows 7 as well and is guaranteed to save you a lot of time. Here is how it works:

Go launch a program (in Win8, one that works in desktop mode.) You'll get an icon along the bottom of the screen for that program. Right-click on that icon and say "pin this program to taskbar." (You can also right-click on the program icon from the launch screen and do it that way too.) You've probably noticed that some programs will set this up automatically or ask to do it, but you can do it for anything even folders containing photos/music.

Now, once you are in desktop mode, you don't need to use the Start Menu, or Classic Shell, or Metro, or whatever to launch apps. Just click on the pinned icon. Want to launch it again (like a second browser window or something)? Right-click and select the name of the program (which should be third from the bottom, above 'unpin' and 'close window.'

I started doing this on recommendation from a co-worker and it saves me a ton of time no matter which flavor of Windows I happen to be using, because 90% of the time whatever I need to launch is going to be something either I've already pinned or I should. Even in a decent size monitor (my old 19" Samsung) I can fit about twenty program icons there.

The other benefit is that you can keep the icons in whatever order you want (just drag them around), so you get some muscle memory about Word being in the same spot each time.


Short version - you can go to Desktop mode and basically stay there without fiddling around with anything.

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 01-21-2014, 01:01 AM
#7
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(01-21-2014, 12:13 AM)insomniac Wrote: For those who can't get used to the new "Metro" UI in Windows 8, there is a very simple solution. It's called "pin program to taskbar." This works in Windows 7 as well and is guaranteed to save you a lot of time. Here is how it works:

Go launch a program (in Win8, one that works in desktop mode.) You'll get an icon along the bottom of the screen for that program. Right-click on that icon and say "pin this program to taskbar." (You can also right-click on the program icon from the launch screen and do it that way too.) You've probably noticed that some programs will set this up automatically or ask to do it, but you can do it for anything even folders containing photos/music.

Now, once you are in desktop mode, you don't need to use the Start Menu, or Classic Shell, or Metro, or whatever to launch apps. Just click on the pinned icon. Want to launch it again (like a second browser window or something)? Right-click and select the name of the program (which should be third from the bottom, above 'unpin' and 'close window.'

I started doing this on recommendation from a co-worker and it saves me a ton of time no matter which flavor of Windows I happen to be using, because 90% of the time whatever I need to launch is going to be something either I've already pinned or I should. Even in a decent size monitor (my old 19" Samsung) I can fit about twenty program icons there.

The other benefit is that you can keep the icons in whatever order you want (just drag them around), so you get some muscle memory about Word being in the same spot each time.


Short version - you can go to Desktop mode and basically stay there without fiddling around with anything.

Thanks! I discovered that in W7. I'll show the wife how to do it in W8. I didn't know.

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 01-21-2014, 03:18 AM
#8
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The Keytronic keyboards looks nice... even if I'm considering a WASD Keyboard with Brown Cherry switches myself. Not cheap though Undecided

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 01-21-2014, 04:41 AM
#9
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(01-21-2014, 01:01 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote:
(01-21-2014, 12:13 AM)insomniac Wrote: For those who can't get used to the new "Metro" UI in Windows 8, there is a very simple solution. It's called "pin program to taskbar." This works in Windows 7 as well and is guaranteed to save you a lot of time. Here is how it works:

Go launch a program (in Win8, one that works in desktop mode.) You'll get an icon along the bottom of the screen for that program. Right-click on that icon and say "pin this program to taskbar." (You can also right-click on the program icon from the launch screen and do it that way too.) You've probably noticed that some programs will set this up automatically or ask to do it, but you can do it for anything even folders containing photos/music.

Now, once you are in desktop mode, you don't need to use the Start Menu, or Classic Shell, or Metro, or whatever to launch apps. Just click on the pinned icon. Want to launch it again (like a second browser window or something)? Right-click and select the name of the program (which should be third from the bottom, above 'unpin' and 'close window.'

I started doing this on recommendation from a co-worker and it saves me a ton of time no matter which flavor of Windows I happen to be using, because 90% of the time whatever I need to launch is going to be something either I've already pinned or I should. Even in a decent size monitor (my old 19" Samsung) I can fit about twenty program icons there.

The other benefit is that you can keep the icons in whatever order you want (just drag them around), so you get some muscle memory about Word being in the same spot each time.


Short version - you can go to Desktop mode and basically stay there without fiddling around with anything.

Thanks! I discovered that in W7. I'll show the wife how to do it in W8. I didn't know.

Glad to be of assistance Smile

Also one side note on Win8 - I get better battery life on my laptop. I have a three year old Acer, and get another 45-60 minutes on my "6 hour" battery. It's pretty nice when you are flying and doing work or watching a movie.

I may be able to answer other questions - I don't work in the Windows division but know people there, but I do work at MS; that's more of a disclaimer. I'm not pushing their products here, just trying to be helpful when I can.

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 01-21-2014, 07:05 PM
#10
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Hans, Keytronics makes the IBM keyboards. If you've ever used one it's "clicky". Once you get used to it you'll come to love it. I bought an IBM computer more years ago than I care to remember and have used it on every computer since. Except for this one. I put a PS2 to USB adapter on it and it simply won't work with this computer. It was time to replace it anyway. I think it was at least 25 years old and had an untold number of keystrokes on it, certainly in the millions.

BTW, McAfee (not my choice, Dell just installed it) kept me from going onto the BBQ website where I'm a mod'. It allowed me to if I disabled it, but that's why why one has protective software. I contacted their tech service and the gent couldn't figure it out. He basically wished me luck and "try this when you have the time.". Then a mod' on the BBQ site told me to "check this" . Sure enough, that was the problem. I figure that if McAfees techs don't know how to troubleshoot and fix an easily found switch in the program, they can't protect my system. This is the 2nd Dell I've had with McAfee on it and the 2nd time I removed it almost immediately. Now I have Kaspersky watching over the show.

Steve, do you know how to force my computer to use the hardline I have going to the router? When I started the computer up it automagically connected wirelessly. I'd prefer the hardline. It does have a network connection in the back, and the cable was plugged in at power up, but it ignored the connection.

TIA for any info.

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 01-21-2014, 09:55 PM
#11
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Had an IBM model M for many years - built like a tank, but like most clicky keyboards very noisy. Hence why I'm looking at a keyboard with the Cherry Brown - tactile bumps, but virtually silent in comparison.

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 01-21-2014, 10:44 PM
#12
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(01-21-2014, 07:05 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Steve, do you know how to force my computer to use the hardline I have going to the router? When I started the computer up it automagically connected wirelessly. I'd prefer the hardline. It does have a network connection in the back, and the cable was plugged in at power up, but it ignored the connection.

TIA for any info.

You mean prefer the ethernet cable if it's plugged in, otherwise use WiFi? It should be, how do you know it's ignoring the cabled connection?

It also might be a weird thing with Dell, check the BIOS to see if there is a setting that lets it prefer the cabled connection.

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 01-22-2014, 12:04 AM
#13
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Precisely. The computer should prefer the better cable connection over wireless.

I did check the bios. I don't see an option. I assumed it was W7.

Smile Frustrating, as are many things computer. But keeping a smile and knowing it's just a matter of figuring what in the logic is causing it.

I know it's not using the cable because with XP the connection was wall to wall and not an issue, with W7 it's merely fair; same location within inches. A cable connection is far superior to a wireless connection and the cable is in place and hooked up. Right now everything from the 'net gets to this computer via wireless, so it's an obvious bottleneck. I just downloaded a 2.7 gb file and while I don't know why it took so long, if I can reduce my overhead I'll know it isn't on my end.

For what I'm contemplating doing a really good throughput to and from the 'net will make a huge difference.

I suppose I could move the router to get a better connection if I can't force my computer to recognize the cable. But that's a lesser choice if I can do it in software.

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 01-22-2014, 05:44 AM
#14
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(01-22-2014, 12:04 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Precisely. The computer should prefer the better cable connection over wireless.

I did check the bios. I don't see an option. I assumed it was W7.

Smile Frustrating, as are many things computer. But keeping a smile and knowing it's just a matter of figuring what in the logic is causing it.

I know it's not using the cable because with XP the connection was wall to wall and not an issue, with W7 it's merely fair; same location within inches. A cable connection is far superior to a wireless connection and the cable is in place and hooked up. Right now everything from the 'net gets to this computer via wireless, so it's an obvious bottleneck. I just downloaded a 2.7 gb file and while I don't know why it took so long, if I can reduce my overhead I'll know it isn't on my end.

For what I'm contemplating doing a really good throughput to and from the 'net will make a huge difference.

I suppose I could move the router to get a better connection if I can't force my computer to recognize the cable. But that's a lesser choice if I can do it in software.

I'm pretty sure this is something they changed in Windows 8, since I seem to remember my work laptop having this problem; my "workaround" was just to hit the "disable WiFi"/"airplane mode" button on the keyboard whenever I needed to download/upload something large.

Here are a few links to try to actually fix this behavior:

http://lifehacker.com/force-windows-to-u...-482614663
http://helpdeskgeek.com/networking/force...-wireless/

Windows 8 (well, at least 8.1 since that is what I am running) does the right thing now, as I haven't had this problem at work since upgrading, and I just tried to repro this behavior with my home laptop last night with no success.

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 01-22-2014, 06:50 AM
#15
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omg guys - all this seems very complicated W00t

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 01-22-2014, 01:33 PM
#16
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Using the info' from the 2nd link I was able to change the metric, but it didn't help. So I changed it back.

I wanted to make both changes as he suggest, but when I pull down the bar by pressing ALT I don't have the option of advanced settings.

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 02-12-2015, 11:05 PM
#17
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bumping an old thread.

just got the wife a new dell laptop today that has windows 8.1 professional installed on it.  I'm already trying to find out if I can downgrade to windows 7...

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 02-13-2015, 05:20 AM
#18
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Andrew - 

Don't downgrade. I have been on the Windows 10 preview for a while now, and it is very good - and so much like Win7 that most people will have no issues adjusting. I'll admit to actually having no issues with Win8.1, though I didn't see the point of it on my non-touchscreen laptop. 

Win10 should be available soon, and the preview builds are already stable and downloadable, if that takes your fancy. 

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 02-13-2015, 09:46 AM
#19
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(02-13-2015, 05:20 AM)yohannrjm Wrote: Andrew - 

Don't downgrade. I have been on the Windows 10 preview for a while now, and it is very good - and so much like Win7 that most people will have no issues adjusting. I'll admit to actually having no issues with Win8.1, though I didn't see the point of it on my non-touchscreen laptop. 

Win10 should be available soon, and the preview builds are already stable and downloadable, if that takes your fancy. 

I imagine windows 10 is going to be $$$

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 02-13-2015, 10:02 AM
#20
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(02-13-2015, 09:46 AM)andrewjs18 Wrote:
(02-13-2015, 05:20 AM)yohannrjm Wrote: Andrew - 

Don't downgrade. I have been on the Windows 10 preview for a while now, and it is very good - and so much like Win7 that most people will have no issues adjusting. I'll admit to actually having no issues with Win8.1, though I didn't see the point of it on my non-touchscreen laptop. 

Win10 should be available soon, and the preview builds are already stable and downloadable, if that takes your fancy. 

I imagine windows 10 is going to be $$$
I believe it's going to be free the first 12 months for W7 & W8 users, if you act within the timeframe.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/2873214/w...users.html

W7 was having issues with our CPU and drivers but W8 works fine. We installed the app to bring back the start menu so don't use the tiles.

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