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Wall Street Journal writer claims “Windows 8 unmitigated disaster”

With Windows 8 retail just around the corner, it would appear that the general feeling from the press is that the operating system might be a step backwards from the excellent, current Windows 7.

One of our writers, Harrison recently tried to install Windows 8 on his Core i7 desktop system and was presented with a “This PC doesn't meet system requirements”. A reader responded with “The “CPU isn’t compatible” / Error code 0x0000005D message is caused by NX (No eXecute) or XD (eXecute Disabled) not being enabled in your BIOS, either because the default option is disabled or because a BIOS update disabled it – a common issue on Asus motherboards like the Asus Maximus IV Gene-Z/Gen. 3.”

It raises the point, why can Microsoft not detect the processor properly from (their own) Windows 7 operating system when third party tools such as CPUz have been doing it for years?

John Dvorak wrote an article on the Wall Street Journal, published a few days ago. He has some major concerns with Windows 8 saying “Windows 8 looks to me to be an unmitigated disaster that could decidedly hurt the company and its future.”

His opinion isn't based on one of the early betas, but the latest release candidate which will be predominately the retail version, shipping in October this year.

He says the problems aren't with the appearance, which he says looks ‘slick and modern', but more with the unintuitive nature of the design.

Dvorak says “The real problem is that it is both unusable and annoying. It makes your teeth itch as you keep asking, “Why are they doing this!?”

First of all, the system-software product is mostly divorced from all the thought and trends developed by Windows over the years, as if to say that they were wrong the whole time, so let’s try something altogether new.

No business will tolerate this software, let me assure you. As a productivity tool, it is unusable.”

He said most programs cannot be scaled down, and therefore take up the full screen, regardless of whether you want them to or not. He adds “To even get out of these “apps,” you have to ram the cursor down into the lower left corner and click. That puts you back onto the vapid “Metro” start screen, where you can begin another miserable adventure.”

He raises an interesting point, why are they assuming that the interface used on Windows Phone will be a success on a tablet? Will those people want the interface on a desktop?

“The potential for this OS to be an unrecoverable disaster for the company is at the highest possible level I’ve ever seen. It ranks up there with the potential for disaster that the Itanium chip presented for Intel Corp. It’s that bad.

I have no idea why Microsoft would take such an enormous gamble on its cash cow like this. Incremental changes were a theme at Redmond, Wash.; this is a radical departure.

What is this departure based on? It’s based on the pipe dream that the unsuccessful user interface used by Windows Phone will turn into a success on the tablet — to such an extreme that people will also demand it on the desktop, so all the platforms can have the same look and feel.”

Would you really want a 24, 27 or 30 inch touch screen monitor for your desktop machine? This is the only way that the Metro interface makes any sense. I don't know about the Kitguru readers, but I am constantly cleaning my monitor and the sight of a fingerprint on the screen really irritates me.

Is Metro going to be forced onto the customer, with reliance on a third party software company to remove it from the mix? “I admit that I did not like the Metro interface from the minute I saw it. But the early developers’ beta of Windows 8 did show some promise of letting me hang out on the desktop and avoid Metro completely. This no longer looks to be the case.”

Kitguru says: Windows 8? Going to be worse than Windows Vista in regards to public complaints? We think so.

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