Green Room

Did Windows 8 kill PC sales?

posted at 5:00 pm on April 12, 2013 by

For the first time in more than 20 years, I didn’t have any machines to update when Microsoft first released Windows 8 (although I later did play with it a bit in a virtual drive on my Macbook and Mac Mini).  My, how times have changed.  Where in the past a new Windows release would have prompted a big increase in computer sales, Windows 8 seems to have turned into sales poison.  Or is it the emergence of full-power tablets?

Has the shift from PC to tablet finally reached the point of no return? There’s been chatter about the “post-PC” era for years, particularly after the introduction of the iPad. But recent data suggest that we may finally have reached the tipping point.

Since the start of the year, the PC market has seen its steepest quarterly decline ever — 13.9 percent, according to a report from International Data Corp. That news comes on the heels of a Gartner report predicting the PC market will shrink as much as 3.5 percent over 2013 in favor of ultra-light notebooks and tablets. …

None of this is particularly surprising. But it is bad news for Microsoft, whose new Windows 8 system is being partly blamed for the market’s poor performance. When the company introduced Windows 8 in October, the operating system was supposed to help a flagging PC market gain — or at least lose less — ground against tablets, with a new touch-based interface. Instead, sales of PCs have dropped faster, and analysts are saying that sales aren’t coming back.

“At this point, unfortunately, it seems clear that the Windows 8 launch not only failed to provide a positive boost to the PC market, but appears to have slowed the market,” said Bob O’Donnell of IDC in a press release. “Microsoft will have to make some very tough decisions moving forward if it wants to help reinvigorate the PC market.”

Yahoo Finance is much less diplomatic about it.  The PC sales market tanked this year, and a large share of blame goes to Microsoft:

As if that news wasn’t’ troubling enough, it appears that a pivotal makeover of Microsoft’s ubiquitous Windows operating system seems to have done more harm than good since the software was released last October.

“This is horrific news for PCs,” said BGC Financial analyst Colin Gillis. “It’s all about mobile computing now. We have definitely reached the tipping point.” …

In an attempt to keep the PC relevant, Microsoft released a radical new version of Windows last fall. Windows 8 has a completely new look that’s similar to the design of the software running the most popular smartphones and tablet computers. The overhaul requires a relearning process, a leap that many consumers and corporate buyers aren’t ready to take.

All signs so far point to Windows 8 being a flop. …

The newest version of Windows is designed to work well with touch-sensitive screens, but the displays add to the cost of a PC. Together, the changes and higher prices “have made PCs a less attractive alternative to dedicated tablets and other competitive devices,” O’Donnell said.

From the very limited experience I had with Win8, I was … not impressed.  Win7 was a much better desktop and laptop experience, far more intuitive to existing users and more stable than the last several Windows products, at least in my experience. I was a little surprised that Microsoft dumped it all for a completely fresh start. It should be noted, though, that running Win8 in a “virtual machine” caused a lot of performance issues, which I knew was the case, too.

Honestly, I think I’d still prefer a Win7 environment to the MacBook OS, as it seemed as though I had better control over performance.  But if Win8 is the only option, I think I’d prefer to stick with what I have.

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Two different queations. The “user experience” for Windows 8 is… different. As far as less-than-desktop computers goes, many are finding that they can get most tasks completed w/o the additional cost of a laptop or desktop.

CiLH1 on April 13, 2013 at 11:01 AM

Used the Beta version of Windows 8 on a Windows Vista office computer, and it was a major step up in stability and interacting with the office’s other Windows and Mac computers…

…but the interface options for a non-touchscreen computer are annoying. When space is at a premium as on a tablet or smart phone, hiding commonly-used options in the corners makes sense; hiding them on a desktop or laptop simply forces the user into extra mouse moves or touch-pad gestures.

There was no reason why Microsoft couldn’t have set Windows 8 to allow the customer to designate their device during initial start-up, and allowed desktop and laptop users to opt for a less hidden interface (and when the Best period expired on the office computer we did stay with Windows 8. The final version seems to be less cooperative with the rest of the office network than the Beta, but it’s still better than Windows Vista (a nail gun to the head is better than Windows Vista). However, when I had to replace my XP laptop about the same time, I went with a Windows 7 closeout).

jon1979 on April 13, 2013 at 11:08 AM

I’m using W8 on a new computer. It is much faster than W7, but the metro pane is useless on a desktop. Quite fun on a tablet though. If you’re running the standard desktop programs, it really is unnecessary.

LaughterJones on April 13, 2013 at 11:48 AM

My new laptop has Windows 8 and I bought it because it was the latest, not because I have the slightest idea what to do with it other than visiting HotAir. If I can get on the internet, done! I will say that the anti-virus program that came on the lap top was incredibly annoying with constant pop ups nagging me about this and that. I may be a computer illiterate of the first order but I can uninstall a program.

Cindy Munford on April 13, 2013 at 12:15 PM

Cindy Munford on April 13, 2013 at 12:15 PM

You really should keep your antivirus. It’s annoying for a reason. There are baddies out there who love taking data from you and otherwise taking advantage of your ignorance.

If you’re just browsing the internet and not doing any online banking or care about your personal data, etc, you can get by without it, but it’s best to keep it on there.

Imagine you were to do your banking online… If you run your PC without antivirus and get infected with a key logging application that records your key strokes, they could conceivably see that you went to Comerica Bank’s website at 3:45pm and then ask themselves. What were the keystrokes this user input after visiting the login page? They could then ferret out your username and password to your banking website and then login and do some bank transactions online as you. They could steal your identity. Clean out your bank, etc…

Get Kaspersky Internet Security or Kaspersky Pure 2.0. Both great protection for you but it can’t stop you from clicking and allowing actions you shouldn’t do. It can run in quiet mode so that it’s not always bothering you but when it prompts you about something, it prompts you for a reason. Think about what you’re doing.

Go download and install Classicshell to get yourself a start menu.

SauerKraut537 on April 13, 2013 at 12:31 PM

There’s always Linux.

Socratease on April 13, 2013 at 1:16 PM

There’s always Linux.

Socratease on April 13, 2013 at 1:16 PM

Agreed, but even there you run the risk of infection or being compromised. Some protection is better than nothing, and as other operating systems (Mac/Linux) take up more of the market share for home users, they too will start having virus/worms/trojans written to take over those systems and give back door access to hackers as well.

I always hear the fallacious argument that if people just switched to Mac or Linux they would be safe. “You don’t need antivirus or antimalware for Mac or Linux! Their operating systems are “secure” and “unbreakable””. Only as long as they maintain that small market share will they be “protected”.

Why write virus/malware for “obscure” operating systems that “nobody” uses?

If you’re a virus writer or hacker, you write your compromising software to attack the operating system that has the most users so as to broaden your chances of gathering something useful.

SauerKraut537 on April 13, 2013 at 1:54 PM

SauerKraut537 on April 13, 2013 at 12:31 PM

I will get something to add to the firewall the internet provider has but this a promotional that came with the laptop and it was just doing pop ups to get me to purchase.

Cindy Munford on April 13, 2013 at 2:46 PM

SauerKraut537 on April 13, 2013 at 12:31 PM

Oh and thanks for the suggestions. I limit banking to our desk top and the credit union requires that you register it but I am not against add protection.

Cindy Munford on April 13, 2013 at 2:49 PM

I’d rather become a radical (ooops!) Muslim than a MacJihadi. The MacJihadi all swear to PC users that they never had a problem with any Apple product, but a simple visit to any Apple/Mac site will show they are fibbing…big time!

If any OS were going to seriously dent MS market share it would be one of the Linux versions. I’ve tried Linux several times over the past 13-15 years…useless beyond a nitch (OK, niche) market. Tried Puppy, Mint and Ubuntu very recently…cute, at least Mint is. I use a Verizon Jetpack 4G Hotspot with a Linksys Wireless USB adapter for each computer. Apparently Linux has never heard of Linksys (and maybe not even wireless?!?). Searched their forums for info on an adapter…hours wasted on that. Newegg has a USB adapter or two that claim support for some Linux OS’s, but I was done trying…AGAIN, and just bought a new full Win 7 version from Walmart ($175+-) instead. My printer, a 6 year old basic Lexmark home printer is not recognized either. No one is going to take away MS market share for desktops and laptops. No one is even close.

I have two $50 Win 8 upgrade versions, and will try to get use to them, in case MS doesn’t fix their mistake with it. My two Win 7′s will last for a long time though…

Karmi on April 13, 2013 at 3:56 PM

I guess it’s a matter of taste. I changed from Windows to Mac 5 years ago and will never go back.

Gelsomina on April 12, 2013 at 10:02 PM

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve had to fix Windows PCs from this problem to that problem for my family, while my Mac always works fine, never crashes more than an app at a time, and the only thing that crashes is stupid Adobe flash.

If I added up all the wasted hours trying to save PCs from their ruinous selves, it makes the Mac far cheaper by comparison.

John the Libertarian on April 13, 2013 at 4:14 PM

Yeah, I’m not enjoying it. Came on a laptop I bought my wife for Christmas.

My theory is that like the Czars of old who would kill their architects so that they couldn’t duplicate their masterpiece for someone else, Microsoft must kill all its engineers after every halfway decent version of their software.

TexasDan on April 13, 2013 at 6:14 PM

I’ll stick with Windows 7… which itself I’ve customized to look like Windows XP / 98 as much as possible.

Stoic Patriot on April 13, 2013 at 8:58 AM

Brother!

Gingotts on April 13, 2013 at 7:37 PM

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve had to fix Windows PCs from this problem to that problem for my family, while my Mac always works fine, never crashes more than an app at a time, and the only thing that crashes is stupid Adobe flash.

If I added up all the wasted hours trying to save PCs from their ruinous selves, it makes the Mac far cheaper by comparison.

John the Libertarian on April 13, 2013 at 4:14 PM

Blah blah. And I’ve been using PC’s for 20 years and never had a single issue. What’s your point? That your family doesn’t know how to use a computer?

njrob on April 13, 2013 at 10:04 PM

You’ll get my WinXP when you pry it from my cold dead hands.

Dusty on April 13, 2013 at 11:31 PM

You’ll get my WinXP when you pry it from my cold dead hands.

Dusty on April 13, 2013 at 11:31 PM

Gonna be interesting to see if Microsloth is made to push back their end-of-support date for XP. Businesses are still not totally over the Vista disaster, and most of them have very little use for 8′s tablet-like interface.

Blah blah. And I’ve been using PC’s for 20 years and never had a single issue.

njrob on April 13, 2013 at 10:04 PM

You’re lying. Nobody uses PC’s for 2 decades without any issues whatsoever, even if you missed the experiences of Windows Mistake Edition AND the Vista mess. And you’re a smarmy pr!ck to boot.

MelonCollie on April 13, 2013 at 11:41 PM

How are you held hostage by a computer that you just said can run Mac OS or Windows (or Linux)?

Ronnie on April 13, 2013 at 1:49 AM

If it were just the computer, I’d say “hey, let’s pay 1.5 times the cost of any competitor’s computer because I like the color white and that aluminum seems so substantial.”

But it isn’t. The OS is designed not to run on any other computer, and so it would be the software which would hold me hostage.

When I first went out looking for a personal computer, I went to a store which sold both the Macintosh and the Compaq Deskpro. When I asked about the OS, the sales guy showed me a beautiful OS running on the Macintosh, and a rather clunky OS (MS/DOS) running on the Compaq. Then I asked about expandability. The guy popped open the case of the Deskpro and showed me four expansion slots — and showed me a bunch of cards such as 14.4K modems and upgraded graphics cards, etc. When I asked about the Macintosh he said “you can’t open that without voiding the warranty. There is one internal expansion slot and no current cards available for that slot.”

I bought the Deskpro and got a free 4M EMM card from Intel when I bought their 8087 coprocessor with the same purchase for number crunching. Even better — I installed both myself without voiding my Compaq warranty. My estimation was right — how much market share does Apple have in comparison to the IBM PC compatibles?

That Deskpro lasted about five years — until OS/2 came out which needed an i386 processor as a minimum (the Deskpro only had an 8086 — which I’d upgraded to a Toshiba V2 processor because of the extra bit manipulation instructions available on that processor).

My son had an iPhone at one point (the first in our family to dabble in Apple’s pond), and he traded it in for an Android — because Apple would not fix software issues which prevented him from sharing his pictures with other non-iPhone people (I think the phone people use the term “tethered service”). The first thing he did with his Android phone was to root it and install a module that allowed him to activate his HDMI port to view movies stored on the phone on his 1080p TV. And that’s why Android sales will exceed iPhone sales this year — it’s the expandability.

And ask any game player what computer and OS they need for their favorite game — and I doubt many will say “Apple”.

Now, aren’t we lucky we live in America where we can make these kinds of choices?

unclesmrgol on April 14, 2013 at 2:34 AM

Gonna be interesting to see if Microsloth is made to push back their end-of-support date for XP. Businesses are still not totally over the Vista disaster, and most of them have very little use for 8′s tablet-like interface.

MelonCollie on April 13, 2013 at 11:41 PM

They won’t. And Windows 7 end of service is still 10 years out. I much prefer 7 over XP — much smaller footprint.

I have a Gateway netbook that I upgraded to an AMD L310 dual processor ($15+$5 for CPU paste) and then upgraded to 4GB main memory (which Gateway says is impossible, but who am I to argue?) After benchmarking the “new” machine using XP, I swapped its hard drive for an identical unformatted one and installed Win7 (which Gateway only supports for dual core machines). Win7 beat XP in performance numbers, so I went to step 3 and swapped out its hard drive for an identical unformatted one and installed Win8 on that drive. Win8 isn’t really designed for pure mouse/keyboard operation (which is why new Win8 laptops have touchscreens), but the performance was identical to Win7 — which makes me believe that, under the covers, Win8 is Win7.

I left Win8 on — because the cool thing about Win8 is the cloud capabilities for the apps you buy (your user identity resides in the cloud, so you can use it on ANY machine in which the admin has allowed you to install your id). I use a local login for administrator, and all the cloud guys are “normal users” (no administrative privileges).

As for Windows ME — I have no idea what’s wrong with it other than end of support. I used it for years, and the software I installed on it still runs under XP and on Win7 in VMXP emulation mode…

The upcoming Microsoft crap that galls me is the new UEFI bios — which basically will only allow one to boot Microsoft Windows — or any other kernel which has gotten a “key” from Microsoft (which costs about $40). So, here I am with Linux — and kernels I build myself — and if Microsoft has its way the only Linux I’ll be able to install is Red Hat’s (because they’ve bought the key).

When that happens, I’ll consider Apple again, because Microsoft will have made the PC hardware industry bow to it, and the hardware software choices will be identical on both sides of the aisle.

unclesmrgol on April 14, 2013 at 2:56 AM

About 10 months ago, I bought a new router/WAP/Security Appliance.

Using the Security Appliance, I turned off the network’s ability to transmit “Active X” type transactions. Since then, my anti-virus software reports NO attacks have gotten through to disrupt any server or workstation in my mixed Win 98/98SE/Win7/Fedora 9/Fedora 16 Samba network. Nothing I use seems to need these protocols except the notoriously buggy MS Office!! HOW SPECIAL!!!

So my long-time suspicions are experimentally confirmed: Microsoft has been sabotaging its own customers by continuing use of the brain-dead “Active X” and like protocols, which allow others to take control of your application programs and your data with absolutely NO PROTECTION, NO ACCESS CONTROL, and NO SECURITY MONITORING.

SOLUTION: DUMP unnecessary, insecure and/or Microsoft proprietary protocols. Turn off any automatic updating: do not install ANY “UPGRADE” which cannot be explained or which does not offer a clearly defined, well documented and proven benefit.

This allows you to actually get work done on your computer…instead of wasting your valuable time debugging the latest stupidly-written software “escape” from Microsoft. We use Word Perfect and other non-MS packages to do get our real work done. To accommodate the occasional need for data interchange with MS, the packages we use can read MS files and dump the crash-causing garbage out of them simply by loading and then saving the data files.

For most work, we use Fedora: it is consistently SIX TIMES FASTER than Microsoft when running the SAME APPLICATION on the SAME HARDWARE!!

landlines on April 14, 2013 at 3:00 AM

Win8 is fine.

It’s the hardware that hasn’t made massive gains. In this economy, there’s just not the reason to upgrade to a brand new computer from any fairly-modern one.

I’d wager that installing an SSD on your 2009 PC would get you far, far more speed than buying a whole new computer. And much cheaper too, if you buy a small SSD and make it your O/S-only drive.

Not to mention most people don’t need a new computer to do their accounting or surf the web.

eforhan on April 14, 2013 at 7:21 AM

“Were it possible to keep WinXP and run 16GB of RAM, what reason would there be to upgrade?”
A pointless expenditure as Win XP 32bit cannot address more than 4Gb of ram.

“Unfortunately, XP is no longer supported by Microsoft (I think)”
Incorrect, Microsoft Win XP support continues till next year.

Regarding Win 8, it’s essentially Win 7 with a different GUI. If you download and install Classic Shell for Win 8 you can have your Win 7 user screens back.

Hth.

Jabba The Cat on April 14, 2013 at 8:00 AM

How bad is Win 8? Dell is offering tablets for $299 with purchase of a $799 desktop.

Why would anyone want to touch/finger their monitors? Well, maybe tablets and such are fine, but holding my arm out to my 24″ monitor in order to maneuver about sounds idiotic and tiring…not to mention damage done to monitor or cleaning requirements.

ClassicShell is cute, but an obvious poor attempt at fixing some serious problems. Hope it uninstalls easily.

How bad is Win 8? They sold me two upgrade versions for $39.99 each!?!

Karmi on April 14, 2013 at 9:23 AM

Win 8 is sweet. I have a Samsung slate and an MS Surface Pro and personally I love the interface, so much so that I catch myself swiping the screen on my old non-touchscreen Win 7 laptop that I use only for online banking.

The great thing about Win 8 is that it has Win 7 available, touch your “desktop” tile and boom you’re at Win 7. As for Win 8 I like being able to sit in a chair and scroll to the things I need easily and quickly, beats the hell out of plopping a laptop on my knees and trying to cram my hands together to work the touchpad and keys.

For a “work” PC Win 8 isn’t so hot because of having to reach up to the screen from your chair. You can use a mouse/touchpad with Win 8 but it’s a pain to scroll. So…back to the original point, tap your desktop tile and work in the Win 7 environment.

And finally, we’re a gaming family so we get the same interface on our Xbox, Win phones, and Win 8 ‘puters. Xbox rocks.

Bishop on April 14, 2013 at 10:39 AM

How bad is Win 8? They sold me two upgrade versions for $39.99 each!?!

Karmi on April 14, 2013 at 9:23 AM

What’s bad about that other than they “suckered” you into paying for two upgrades?

SauerKraut537 on April 14, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Regarding Win 8, it’s essentially Win 7 with a different GUI. If you download and install Classic Shell for Win 8 you can have your Win 7 user screens back.

Jabba The Cat on April 14, 2013 at 8:00 AM

That’s great! Just installed it, and now I can forever forget about Metro. ;)

Thanks!

eforhan on April 14, 2013 at 11:06 AM

What’s bad about that other than they “suckered” you into paying for two upgrades?

SauerKraut537 on April 14, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Hobby of mine, and getting anything from MS for less than $100+++ was surprising, i.e. the price was telling. I also bought the “Backup DVD” (just in case of download problems) for $14.99 with the first version I bought…they were selling the DVD “Out of Box” edition for $69.99 (LIKE $15 more than the download and backup DVD)!? I believe MS knew they had a disaster on their hands and were desperately trying a way to cover or fix it. High sales would’ve looked good, but didn’t happen even at bargain basement prices. I would’ve never bought it if it hadn’t been offered so cheaply…

Karmi on April 14, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Its a combo of things. A bad economy, new UI that sucks, and competition from different devices. Tablets however are content viewers, not creators.

Win8 is a new UI, it takes time to get used to new things and most will hate it. Personally, I think the hate is deserved. It is not a desktop/laptop OS, its for tablets with finger slide gestures and a lot of the new UI ideas are not intuitive for old users or even new ones. If it takes me longer than 30 seconds to figure out how to shut the damn thing down…

I’ve been dealing with windows systems since 3.1/95 and I was about ready to chuck out the window my sister’s new HP laptop with win8 last Christmas. Some silly thing got changed on her UI and I could not figure out how to change it back for her. I ended up apologizing to her for daring to make sure all her security apps/programs were updated. Doesnt help that HP et. al put on mcaffee or norton AV on those things.

Its usually easier to just to do a clean format/install of windows to get rid of those things the day you buy the machine anymore. If, they gave you a win8 install disc.

I skipped vista after hearing/seeing all the compatibility nightmares. The general rule for years has been to wait for at least service pack one on any new MS OS, if not SP2.

As for the apple/PC debate… meh. I still remember OS9 on the G3 machines supposedly being super computers and faster than P2 chips. Yet most of them were overpriced and came with minimal ram. I could crash them every time I went into my uni’s mac lab just by trying to run a web browser and office or photoshop at the same time. Hard reboots required. All due to a measley 128mb of system ram.

“The upcoming Microsoft crap that galls me is the new UEFI bios”

Wow, something I’ve completely missed. Thanks for this, I’ve not been paying much attention to win8 and uefi stuff.

oryguncon on April 14, 2013 at 11:20 AM

1080P killed off the PC more than anything else. I love my 1200 x 1980 monitor but no no no. No longer are they sold in any numbers. Five years ago it all just went backwards never to return. Now all they sell is TV’s made out as monitors 1080P only.

It is just plain stupid that a 10 inch tablet has four times the resolution of a 27 inch monitor. Or if you want more resolution it cost five times more for one of the very few available NewEgg 169 for a 27″ 1080P but $630 for a 1440P (2560 x 1440) 27″ Monitor. Insane.

Why but a PC when you are stuck with only one resolution 1080P that even your 5″ Smartphone has. Insane.

Steveangell on April 14, 2013 at 2:38 PM

LOLOL.

pambi on April 14, 2013 at 3:10 PM

Loved the old Mac desktop, until it couldn’t upgrade to OSX .. LOL.
Since then, we LOVE XP (1 desktop, 2 lappies)
Also loving Win7 after 8yo xp couldn’t accept new bizz software. .
LoveD this first gen iPad, until the latest upgrade (5.1, IIRC) screwed it all up.
Also LOVE Samsung’s 10 tab so much that hubby just bought me one, just like his. TODAY ! :-)
Geek son just got himself an 8, but has been uncharacteristically quiet about it.
Almost afraid to ask him about it.

Just in a lovin mood, today … LOL.

pambi on April 14, 2013 at 3:20 PM

Here’s a funny, animated review of Windows 8:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WTYet-qf1jo

theCork on April 14, 2013 at 3:43 PM

For a “work” PC Win 8 isn’t so hot because of having to reach up to the screen from your chair. You can use a mouse/touchpad with Win 8 but it’s a pain to scroll. So…back to the original point, tap your desktop tile and work in the Win 7 environment.

And finally, we’re a gaming family so we get the same interface on our Xbox, Win phones, and Win 8 ‘puters. Xbox rocks.

Bishop on April 14, 2013 at 10:39 AM

You can actually install two apps that make Win8 much more like Win7. A Start App to give you back that start button and another that lets you do windows with Metro Apps.

But the real problem with Windows PS’s is that there is no real choice on a Monitor they are all very low 1080P resolution. In fact even for $1,000+ the best you get is 1600P about the same as an IPad 4 (2,048 by 1,536) though a bit wider at 2560 by 1600.

Give me 2160P at a decent price please.

Steveangell on April 14, 2013 at 4:02 PM

Why but a PC when you are stuck with only one resolution 1080P that even your 5″ Smartphone has. Insane.
Steveangell on April 14, 2013 at 2:38 PM

I wonder about people’s sanity if they think it’s a great leap forward to watch a panorama blockbuster film epic on a screen that’s smaller than their hand, with the cast of thousands looking smaller than sugar ants running around.

whatcat on April 14, 2013 at 4:03 PM

For a “work” PC Win 8 isn’t so hot because of having to reach up to the screen from your chair. You can use a mouse/touchpad with Win 8 but it’s a pain to scroll.

Bishop on April 14, 2013 at 10:39 AM

What’s to scroll? Arrange your tiles with the most important apps on the left-side group, press the Win key on your keyboard to display the Start tiles when you want them, click and go.

PackerBronco on April 14, 2013 at 4:17 PM

You’re lying. Nobody uses PC’s for 2 decades without any issues whatsoever, even if you missed the experiences of Windows Mistake Edition AND the Vista mess. And you’re a smarmy pr!ck to boot.

MelonCollie on April 13, 2013 at 11:41 PM

Well aren’t you just a sweet thang. All full of sugar and such.

As for your remarks, I’m not lying. I am applying my own anecdotal experience to counter John’s own biased anecdotal experience.

I knew better when I avoided Millennium Edition, Vista and others because they were buggy experiences. I tested 7 so I knew it was solid.

I’ve used a pre-Windows IBM PS2, Windows 95, 98, XP, and now 7 without any issues. Sorry you haven’t been so lucky. Cheer up.

As for your last remark, what’s your point. We’re talking tech here, not politics. You’ll call me a name in this page then support my statement on another 5 minutes later. We don’t have to agree on everything you know.

Hugs and kisses.

njrob on April 14, 2013 at 4:34 PM

I always hear the fallacious argument that if people just switched to Mac or Linux they would be safe. “You don’t need antivirus or antimalware for Mac or Linux! Their operating systems are “secure” and “unbreakable””. Only as long as they maintain that small market share will they be “protected”.

SauerKraut537 on April 13, 2013 at 1:54 PM

Some of it is “security through obscurity”, yes, but for some flavors of Linux, at least, you have to hold a virus’s hand and walk it through security step-by-step! This is partly due to access control and the way users are encouraged to manage their systems, but also because vulnerabilities that are found can be patched quickly. You don’t even have to wait for the exploit to be in the wild or wait for someone else to work out a solution; you can examine, test and patch things yourself. Most people aren’t inclined to do that themselves, but those of us who are so inclined tend to share.

I’m not familiar with Windows beyond 98 — I actually never had any issues even then because I’m a control-nut and never let the OS, or IE, have free rein — but my recollection is that MS products steer users ever-further away from the kind of behavior that would keep them safer. Unfortunately a lot of GNU/Linux distros and applications are doing the same thing reasoning that the typical user just wants to do X without having to worry about Y and Z, so let’s take those options away. They’ll likely just hurt themselves anyway, right? We can’t trust users to take care of their systems, just like Democrats can’t trust their voters to take care of their own lives.

But if I don’t like what they’re doing I can fork, or take the pieces I like and stitch together my own. It is difficult and time-consuming, but satisfying. Sorta like kids, except you can replace them when they go bad.

VerbumSap on April 14, 2013 at 5:06 PM

Here’s a funny, animated review of Windows 8:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WTYet-qf1jo

theCork on April 14, 2013 at 3:43 PM

Yes, a recall works! I’ve been waaaay too kind about the disaster that Win 8 is.

Karmi on April 14, 2013 at 5:35 PM

Sooooooooooooo consensus is Vista sucks? I have Vista, never had issues, but then I got rid of all the stuff I knew I wouldn’t use.

My machine is for banking emailing surfing gaming blogging writing and uploading images and downloading/ripping music…it works fine.

I have always used Norton as my security system, had one issue once, none since, it is imho very reliable.

I downloaded Linux one time and somthing got in with it and really messed up my laptop, won’t do that again…

I have been using a desktop or laptop since 1994…

One day I would like a tablet, and a smart phone…

For what I use a pc for everything is adequate, tho I did add more ram to my Presario CQ50… :-)

Scrumpy on April 14, 2013 at 6:28 PM

I tend to look at this a bit differently than the big giant heads called analysts.

It’s not that tablets are taking over and PC’s will disappear, rather, its more that PC’s are no longer a growing market. I know plenty of people, and businesses, that still use Windows 7, Vista, XP, and even a few that still use 2000. Desktops these days are used for browsing, and typing out paperwork, spreadsheets, or for general writing, they’re modern day typowriters and used as such. None of these functions require particularly powerful hardware, or a particularly feature rich operating system. As such, there is very little reason for people to upgrade to new desktops when more recent models come out. Unless you’re using PC’s for gaming, the more powerful hardware, or better OS, has very little appeal.

Microsoft was hoping that, simply adding a touchscreen function, and a UI to take advantage of it, would be enough to get people excited about upgrading. The problem, however, is that at the end of the day desktops are still just modern typowriters for most people. Putting multi-touch on a typowriter is like looking multi-touch on a toaster or refrigerator, its just pointless for most people. To make matters worse, multi-touch desktops and laptops cost significantly more than traditional models, so Windows 8′s killer feature isn’t even visible to most people.

Despite all this, desktops, and laptops aren’t going anywhere. Tablets, at the end of the day, are interactive magazines to most people. They’re used on couches for browsing, reading, movies or simple games. I know very few people that do anything that requires serious amounts of typing on a tablet, because even with a keyboard attachment they simply aren’t very good for that.

What tablets are doing, are splitting off some of the functions that people used to use PC’s for, into a separate more specialized device. This of course takes away sales from the PC market, but doesn’t actually fully replace the desktop or laptop market.

People still need full sized, full power workstations, for various purposes that a tablet couldn’t replace. People still need portable machines for business, and tablets aren’t suitable laptop replacements for that purpose.

So, the market is diversifying, at the expense of the traditional companies like Microsoft and Intel. That isn’t a bad thing for consumers, nor does it mean certain doom for Microsoft or Intel.

WolvenOne on April 14, 2013 at 6:50 PM

I was planning on buying a new computer this summer, but I really don’t like Windows 8. I much prefer Windows 7. So I’m putting off upgrading for a year to see if at that time there is an OS I like more. If it comes down to it, I might just buy individual parts and slowly upgrade the same machine over time. But Windows 8 most certainly cost them a sale from me.

Vegi on April 14, 2013 at 7:14 PM

Desktops these days are used for browsing, and typing out paperwork, spreadsheets, or for general writing, they’re modern day typowriters and used as such. None of these functions require particularly powerful hardware, or a particularly feature rich operating system.
WolvenOne on April 14, 2013 at 6:50 PM

For a great many others it’s more than a “typewriter” – think content creation – for example: editing audio, video, creating flash presentations – there are many activities that need some solid hardware to perform. Poking at a smartphone just doesn’t cut it. There will be a need for serious machines for some time to come.

whatcat on April 14, 2013 at 7:44 PM

WolvenOne on April 14, 2013 at 6:50 PM

Hit the nail on the head.

njrob on April 14, 2013 at 8:24 PM

Well aren’t you just a sweet thang. All full of sugar and such.

njrob on April 14, 2013 at 4:34 PM

I confess ignorance regarding this topic. I’m only reading to get an idea what Win8 is like to other people.

But I guess you need to be reminded & perhaps it has to be brought to your attention that you, Sir, were a d!ckwad first:

Blah blah. And I’ve been using PC’s for 20 years and never had a single issue. What’s your point? That your family doesn’t know how to use a computer?

njrob on April 13, 2013 at 10:04 PM

That reply smacks of being a smarmy pr!ck. And if that’s not what you intended, perhaps you need to learn some tact.

Badger40 on April 14, 2013 at 8:26 PM

For a great many others it’s more than a “typewriter” – think content creation – for example: editing audio, video, creating flash presentations – there are many activities that need some solid hardware to perform. Poking at a smartphone just doesn’t cut it. There will be a need for serious machines for some time to come.

whatcat on April 14, 2013 at 7:44 PM

This. I need a machine for photo editing in the RAW & I also need it for video/photo slide/movie presentations.

Badger40 on April 14, 2013 at 8:28 PM

Tablets/smartphones are readers, internet access and mobile applications devices and I might add, amazing and extremely useful. However, they are NOT a replacement for a computer. The first thing you miss is the general purpose file system. Applications have to provide their own if they need one or expect files to live in the “cloud” somewhere. If you have successfully replaced a computer with a tablet in your everyday computing experience, you have not been using a computer in an especially robust way.

Win8 seems to me to be the perfect metaphor for the Obama years. Bizarre and unnecessary changes (no Start button), features dumbed-down or deleted (no Aero shell, plain color schemes), functions hidden (Windows Update) and this ridiculous tablet interface that feels like a cancerous and useless elephant-man appendage on a non-tablet system.

Yes, with some substantial effort, you can configure Win8 to operate mostly like Win7…and it is quite stable. However, really MS??? REALLY?

starman on April 15, 2013 at 1:18 AM

♫ Windows 8 killed the revenue star ♫

hurricain on April 15, 2013 at 9:26 AM

starman on April 15, 2013 at 1:18 AM

From what I see, I agree with you, even though I’m no computer expert.
If I wanted a tablet/smart phone interface, I’d f@cking buy one of those, not a damned desktop or laptop.
I have a desktop bcs I need power & memory.

Badger40 on April 15, 2013 at 9:48 AM

The fact is MOST people just don’t need a PC for the things they do on a computer.

For those that do, such as my university engineering student, good luck finding a CAD program that will run supported on Win8.

Carnac on April 15, 2013 at 9:58 AM

But if Win8 is the only option, I think I’d prefer to stick with what I have.

there is no reason to leave Win7, even if you chose to upgrade. It isn’t hard to get an OEM copy of Win7, which you can then use through many upgrades.

Simply put the Install CD into the drive of the new PC and reboot. It should boot off the CD (If not you may need to hit F10 or the DELETE key to bring up the boot menu right after you start the PC) And it will present you with an option to install Windows 7. Just chose the “advanced” option and chose to delete everything on the C drive. It can also save your software and data if the PC has been used, but if it’s new, just wipe everything and start clean. Your PC will reboot a couple times to complete the install, but eventually you will be shown a Win7 “First time use” screen, you can set up your username and password and off you go!

You may have a couple extra drivers to install (Win7 can use Win8 drivers) but that will pretty much be it as far as setup other than installing your software of choice.

If that is too daunting, you can still get PCs and laptops with Windows7 pre-installed. And some pretty nice ones too.

Microsoft will likely release a “service pack” for Win8 that brings back the Win8 start button and allows one to choose “Desktop” or “Tablet” mode with the touchy crap disabled in “Desktop” mode. They better, or they are TOAST. And that would suck for me as a Windows admin. I’d have to go back to school for Linux administration. (May still happen if MS keeps cutting it’s wrists like this.)

wearyman on April 15, 2013 at 10:14 AM

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