jump to navigation

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: All Apps Comes Of Age March 1, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Paul Thurrott, Software, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: All Apps Comes Of Age

homepage

If you’re familiar with Windows Phone, you know that this system presents a dual view user experience, with a primary screen called the Start screen that is filled with pinned tiles and a secondary screen called All Apps that lists every single app installed on the device. In the Windows 8 Developer Preview, however, only the Start screen was readily available. To get to All Apps, curiously, you needed to instantiate a search.

Guess what just got a lot easier?

In the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Microsoft has fixed All Apps, making it much easier to access and, as important, making it even more useful than the similar feature in Windows Phone.

To access All Apps from the Start screen, swipe up from the bottom of the screen to reveal the new App Bar and then tap the All Apps button. (With the keyboard, you can tap WINKEY + Z. Or, with a mouse, just right-click the Start screen.)

ss_app_bar

The new All Apps interface, shown below, includes a few improvements, too.

all_apps

First, as you install new applications, the All Apps screen will segregate each of the app’s various executables into groups so that they’re together. As you can see above, there are groups for internal items (Windows Accessories) as well as applications that were installe separately by the user (Microsoft Office).

Also, the presentation is denser than it was in the Developer Preview, providing more apps onscreen at once.

Microsoft tells me, however, that one more change is coming. What’s missing, currently, is a way to easily get back to where you just were. So between the Consumer Preview an RTM, Microsoft will add an App Bar to the interface with a button to go back.

Note that you can still search for apps as before, and that’s true whether you’re in the Start screen or the All Apps view. To start a search, simply start typing any letter.

search

Advertisements

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Developer Tools March 1, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in Beta, BlogoSphere, Downloads Links, Paul Thurrott.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Developer Tools

vs11_beta

Microsoft included a pre-release version of Visual Studio 11 in the Windows 8 Developer Preview, of course, giving developers the tools they needed to get started on Metro-style app development. But with the Consumer Preview, these tools are available as a separate Beta download.

Last week, Microsoft provided a sneak peek of Visual Studio 11, though it didn’t speak much about Windows 8 developer issues specifically. I can tell you, however, that the Windows 8 platform–the Metro-based environment–was finalized about two months ago, so the versions of the APIs and platform we see now with the Consumer Preview is pretty close to complete. Too, the Visual Studio 11 Beta is close to final from a user experience standpoint.

So before we discuss anything else, you’ll want to get that download (and installation) going.

Click HERE to download the Visual Studio 11 Beta

(Note that the Beta will include separate downloads of Visual Studio 11 Ultimate, Premium, Professional, Test Professional, Team Foundation Server, Express for Windows 8, Express for Web, and Team Foundation Server Express. Visual C++, Visual C#, and Visual Basic Express editions are not available for this release.)………

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Windows 8 App Previews March 1, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Paul Thurrott.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Windows 8 App Previews

homepage

There’s been some confusion about the apps that are included with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Many of these apps resemble Metro-style versions of apps that Microsoft currently includes in Windows Live Essentials, and that’s not a coincidence, as they too "complete" the Windows 8 experience. But they’re included only to provide testers with this more complete experience. They’re not part of Windows. Rather, most of these apps will ship with Windows 8 on most new PCs, and will be available separately, and for free, from the Windows Store.

So what’s an App Preview? According to Microsoft, its own internal apps developers began work on these apps at about the same time that external developers received the Developer Preview code at BUILD. And with the underlying Windows 8 platform only complete for about two months, these apps are not as far along as is the OS. So they’re branded as App Previews to differentiate them from the underlying system, which is more robust and mature.

To be clear, not all of the apps included with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview are App Previews. For example, the two included games, Pinball FX2 and Solitaire, are not. I think the naming here is telling, though, and not just for the fact that each app is incomplete.

In any event, here’s a quick rundown of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview App Previews…….

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: Improvements to Mouse and Keyboard Navigation March 1, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Paul Thurrott, Software, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: Improvements to Mouse and Keyboard Navigation

homepage

While I probably had more experience with the Windows 8 Developer Preview than almost anyone–I used it as my primary PC platform for several months until the release of the Consumer Preview–it didn’t take much time with that version of the OS to realize that something was missing. And that’s because it was missing. Yes, Microsoft had nearly fully realize the touch experience for Windows 8 in the Developer Preview, because that was essentially a new interface paradigm for most users and the company wanted to get it right. But users of PCs with traditional keyboards and mice–i.e. almost everyone–noticed that the Developer Preview was quite lacking. And the complaints pored in as expected.

Folks, it’s all fixed…….

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: User Experience and Fit and Finish Improvements March 1, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Paul Thurrott, Software, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: User Experience and Fit and Finish Improvements

homepage

With the Windows 8 Developer Preview, Microsoft made a promise about the future of Windows, a promise that is only now coming to fruition in the Consumer Preview. And that promise is this: While the major user experience changes in Windows 8 are indeed inspired by, and tailored to, multi-touch, they will work equally well with traditional PC interfaces, including keyboard, mouse, and trackpad.

Users who braved the Developer Preview hoping to garner some hint at this future, as I did for several painful months, came away disappointed. But that was by design, in the sense that Microsoft knew it had a certain amount of time to get the new, touch-based interfaces right, and it thus focused its efforts on shipping the new user experience first, while knowing that the keyboard and mouse/trackpad improvements could follow in a subsequent milestone.

But the Developer Preview wasn’t just incomplete from a user experience standpoint, it was also in some ways fundamentally incorrect. That is, because there were unfinished user interface bits, Microsoft had to implement small hacks just to get the Developer Preview out the door in a way that could be used………..

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Top 8 Features February 29, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Paul Thurrott, Software, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Top 8 Features

homepage

Anyone using the Windows 8 Consumer Preview will be struck by how much more complete the experience is this time around, how the seemingly disconnected strands presented in the Developer Preview are all coming together suddenly, and wonderfully. Yes, there will be lingering questions from power users about the interoperability of the Metro environment and desktop apps. But really, the sheer amount of polish on this release should be a wake-up call to anyone who thought Microsoft would never pull this thing off. Windows 8 isn’t just real. It’s in great shape.

As you probably know, I have a ton of content for the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, and tons more to come. But before moving on to the next stage of my coverage, I thought I’d take a step back and reflect on the handful of things–OK, 8, what the heck–that really stand out in this release.

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: What’s New in the Consumer Preview February 29, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Paul Thurrott, Software, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview: What’s New in the Consumer Preview

homepage

According to Microsoft, there are literally of thousands of improvements in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. But if you’re familiar with the previous milestone, the Developer Preview, and only want a high-level view of the major changes, go no further. Here’s a comprehensive list of the most important changes Microsoft made to the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Some are obvious, sure. But some may surprise you.

Note: This is by no means a complete list, and of course you should check out my many other Windows 8 Consumer Preview articles for even more information about the changes in this release.

Metro style app development February 29, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in Microsoft, Software, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Metro style app development

image

Download the tools and SDK

Get the tools to build Metro style apps for Windows 8. Our free download includes Microsoft Visual Studio 11 Express Beta for Windows 8 and Blend for Visual Studio 11 Beta to help jumpstart your project.

Download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview

Experience the newest version of Windows and see for yourself how apps are at the center of the Windows 8 experience.

Explore the documentation

Our docs are optimized to make you more productive. Discover everything you need to plan, build, and sell great apps.

Read the developer guide

Windows 8 Consumer Preview introduces many powerful features for developers. Discover the new features for Desktop, Web, and Metro style app developers.

Windows 8 Consumer Preview ISO formats February 29, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in *New Products, Beta, Downloads Links, Microsoft, Software, Uncategorized, Windows 8.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

 

Windows 8 Consumer Preview ISO formats

Windows home

Windows 8 Consumer Preview ISO images

420965_10150603174698721_20528438720_9242330_625369686_n[1]

Windows 8 Consumer Preview ISO files (.iso) are provided as an alternative to using Windows 8 Consumer Preview Setup. If you are on a PC running Windows and want to install the consumer preview on another partition, another PC, or a virtual machine, we recommend you download Windows 8 Consumer Preview Setup and use the built-in tools for converting an ISO image into installation media, such as a DVD or USB bootable flash drive. You can find additional information, including a list of supported upgrades, in the FAQ.

Note before you download: Windows 8 Consumer Preview is prerelease software that may be substantially modified before it’s commercially released. Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information provided here. Some product features and functionality may require additional hardware or software. If you decide to go back to your previous operating system, you’ll need to reinstall it from the recovery or installation media that came with your PC.



ISO images

An ISO image must be converted into installation media stored on a DVD or a USB flash drive. Instructions are provided on this page. Developer tools are available for download from Windows Dev Center.

English
64-bit (x64) Download (3.3 GB) Sha 1 hash — 1288519C5035BCAC83CBFA23A33038CCF5522749
32-bit (x86) Download (2.5 GB) Sha 1 hash — E91ED665B01A46F4344C36D9D88C8BF78E9A1B39
Product Key: DNJXJ-7XBW8-2378T-X22TX-BKG7J