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Why does Win 8/7 suck so much?


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I remember reading somewhere that Microsoft developers are all given very fast machines with SSDs to write code on. Maybe their performance testing gets okayed on the hardware THEY have.

 

Yeah, maybe.  It's probably not too terribly unreasonable to expect people to use relatively new hardware with a modern OS, though.  It's a non-issue if the hardware's good.  This has always been true to some extent.  Hardware grows in capability to run the software of the day.

 

You will thank your stars that you migrated to SSD, and will never be able to go back.  Everything gets a lot more responsive when millisecond latency turns to microsecond latency.

 

-Noel

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Explorer doesn't sort when you copy-paste, rename or create new item on the root of a local drive, on a removable drive or on a network share. It auto sorts only inside subfolders on local drives. Auto sorting of files in Explorer is like a evil bully b***h snatching something from your hands and running away with it.

 

Interesting.  I don't work in root folders very often...  I just verified that it works (er, doesn't work) just as you described - the items in a root folder remain unsorted until a refresh or one of the columns is clicked.  For what it's worth, it doesn't sort the root folder even on a ReFS-formatted drive; I just checked.  Possibly the most irritating part is that someone at Microsoft must think that's "good enough".

 

I also tend to sort folders by modification date when I care to see recent work all in one place.

 

Self-examining why I don't think things seem so bad with modern systems while others do - which seems at odds with the fact that I'm a bit of a perfectionist - I've come to the conclusion that I tend to shy away from doing things that yield inconsistent or unexpected results, and instead develop usage habits that make my work environment more consistent and enjoyable.  Thus I guess there are many gotchas that I just don't fall into.

 

-Noel

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NoelC, on 29 Jun 2014 - 10:26 PM, said:

Self-examining why I don't think things seem so bad with modern systems while others do - which seems at odds with the fact that I'm a bit of a perfectionist - I've come to the conclusion that I tend to shy away from doing things that yield inconsistent or unexpected results, and instead develop usage habits that make my work environment more consistent and enjoyable.

Thus I guess there are many gotchas that I just don't fall into.

And this is a sound and perfect approach :), this is how humanity managed to survive and evolve (avoiding dangers or learning to deal with them)  :thumbup .

Still, Nature and wildness are "tough" and "suck", while you are trying to write a new "Walden" transposed to computing.  ;)

The issue here is that *somehow* you are seemingly affected by a new syndrome :w00t:, which I will name "Redmond Syndrome" which is not entirely unlike "Stockholm Syndrome" :ph34r: :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockholm_syndrome

Anyway, "Redmond Syndrome" is not such a serious illness and can be cured easily (though it might take some time):

the-doctor-is-in-300x298.jpg

:D:P

jaclaz

 

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Nope, no syndrome here.  What I'm NOT driven by is conspiracy theory and emotion.  Hard facts.  How it works.  Those are the things I care about.

 

I was against Win 8 - vehemently against it - for a long time.  It represents Microsoft turning away from serious computing. 

 

But I wasn't so affected by my emotions that I wouldn't allow myself to work with it.  To get to know it.  Even though it represented the dark side, I felt the good in it.

 

During the public "previews" to start the sheeple manipulation process by Microsoft Marketing, and then after Win 8 was released I ran it in virtual machines, configuring it, augmenting it, and playing with it with the goal of trying to determine if a configuration could be found that was worthy of using

 

I did a detailed return on investment analysis, trying to account for such tenuous things as the value of "keeping current" (i.e., how much value actually IS there in an ongoing Microsoft partnership any more?). 

 

I focused on practical matters...  Most important were "does it do everything its predecessor did that we need" and secondly "what can it do better than its predecessor that we need".

 

I made a number of working configurations, wrote it all down, tweaked, and tuned - but I never did decide Windows 8 was worth adopting before Windows 8.1 was released.  Thus we remained on Windows 7 here.  Windows 7 was stable, functional, mature, and usable.  We had Windows 7 because I'd done it all before and determined our configuration was more powerful and productive than we'd been able to develop on the Windows versions that had come before, including your beloved XP.

 

In evaluating Windows 8, one of the things I discovered along the way were that Microsoft has done very little of substance to the kernel, instead concentrating almost exclusively on "window dressing" (e.g., this ridiculous high-school level Metro/Modern initiative).  Thus it's not surprising that Windows 8 really isn't faster, more capable, or less stable than its predecessor.  It's really just Windows 7.1 with different draperies.

 

With the release of Window 8.1 I did the analysis again, and this time I found that the scales *just* tipped.  But probably not for the reasons you think.  It was mostly because of the leading-edge industry moving (being forced) AWAY from older versions of Windows rather than any improvements Microsoft made.  New systems started to become available with Windows 8.  Driver implementation started to focus on Windows 8 first, Windows 7 second.  But also a number of 3rd party solutions really matured - things such as Classic Shell and Aero Glass for Win 8.1 - that solved a number of "can't get there from here" problems Microsoft had created by simply removing code.

 

So I decided to upgrade to Windows 8.1 - which I did not on the cheap but by getting the software on disc, in a box, and doing a full, clean installation.  Not surprisingly, I had a fully functional, powerful setup inside a day.

 

At this point everything works for us here in Windows 8.1.  Is it MUCH better than Windows 7 for what we need in a serious engineering envioronment?  Not really - just more like what you'd expect if Microsoft had just kept putting out updates on the same code base - which is reasonable since don't use any of the new Metro/Modern BS, instead focusing only on ongoing desktop use.

 

But Windows 8.1 IS better - if only marginally.  It's stable, it's functional, and it's current.  There is no feature or function we're having to do without, and what for what we need it in an Engineering software development environment and business operation environment it delivers quite nicely.  I haven't had to futz around to deal with any problems in quite a while now.  I have time to do my work AND have a life.

 

In response to your suggestion that I visit a 5 cent psychiatrist I suggest that an emotional allergy to some parts of new technology shouldn't block you from taking advantage of the other, good parts.

 

-Noel

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Sure :), but I was only providing a quick explanation (kidding of course) to what you ALREADY confessed :w00t: :

 

 

Self-examining why I don't think things seem so bad with modern systems while others do - which seems at odds with the fact that I'm a bit of a perfectionist - I've come to the conclusion that I tend to shy away from doing things that yield inconsistent or unexpected results, and instead develop usage habits that make my work environment more consistent and enjoyable.  Thus I guess there are many gotchas that I just don't fall into.

 

 

jaclaz

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Yes, but you imply that this year, with Windows 8, is the first time anyone's had to deal with a quirky, broken, unstable, error-prone, difficult to master, unprofessional, stupid, borked user interface.  News flash, I've been practicing "make the best of the situation" in computing for a long, long time.

 

Frankly, I feel I have found a niche in Windows 8 usage that I believe forces LESS of that on us than any prior version of Windows.

 

I remember plenty of gotchas using XP's Explorer.  Different ones in Vista and still different ones in 7.  And gawd, before XP...  I wonder how we ever got anything done.

 

But the NT kernel is not bad - not then and not now.  Carve away many of the things wrong with Win 8.1 via a bunch of tweaking and 3rd party stuff and it's actually possible to get things done with it.  To like it.  A couple of years ago I'd have predicted I would not be able to say that.

 

-Noel

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As a matter of fact I personally find the NT "kernel" and the overall working of the NT based OS's exceptionally good and stable, since the good ol' NT 4.00 days (NT 3.51, never used NT 3.1, was a bit "quirky" but it was really "new"/"experimental" at the time), and I believe that the same (or at least at the same level) good guys made a lot of improvements in 8/8.1 at the "core" level, but that these (good efforts) are partially crippled by the "wrong" UI and new usage paradigm.

 

What you managed to do (because you have the knowledge and the interest in it :thumbup ) was a long and I believe troublesome path :ph34r:, by using third party tools, "tweaks" and "hacks", to (partially) "tame" the OS to behave as you would like it to, and it took you some time to go through it.

 

Notwithstanding the above (good and hard work you did), there are still some (of course minor) inconsistencies/little queer things in your setup that - since you are very honest in your approach - you just admitted trying to "remove" by changing (even slightly) your workflow or habits to avoid them.

 

I believe that most "common" users will not have the time (and the knowledge/capabilities) to tune the OS to the same level of near perfection that you managed to obtain, and you also have to admit how matters have become much more complex.

 

Since a lot of years - just as an example (remember that de gustibus non est disputandum) - I normally run XP without Explorer as shell and without Explorer as "main" file manager, as I find (for my particular uses) blackbox and 7-zip good enough replacements for them, they simply work better for me than the "default" the good guys at MS provided us with, but changing the OS from "stock" to this alternate shell/filemanager has been easy or at least not as complex as it is now to "evade" from the Windows 8/8.1 UI.

 

Still, when working on someone else's PC (running either XP or 7) I find that while my system personal tweaks are better (obviously), there are only a very few things that I miss (like a valid "Command Here" contextual menu option, as an example) for all the rest I can live with (and work on).

 

Same goes for the Office ribbon, if I need to work on someone else's Excel 2007/2010, I can do it, it slows me a bit, I miss some of my personalized toolbars, and every single time I have issues in finding the "page setup", but keyboard shortcuts have remained the same and all in all I can work on them fine.

 

I am not at all implying that 8/8.1 "sucks" as an OS, I actually believe it to be as good as or as stable as previous NT based systems, I declare publicly how it's UI and a number of changes that were made to the "usage paradigm" suck, and suck big, and what really upsets me is the way they made complex to change those to more "normal" settings/behaviours.

 

Talking of the mentioned (little/minor) quirk with "auto sorting" how much would have cost the good MS guys to have a setting "disable auto-sorting in explore folder view" somewhere AND document it? :unsure:

 

What I have done over the years (and I believe you did as well, though possibly a bit differently) on:

  • NT 4.00
  • Windows 2000
  • Windows XP
  • Windows Vista <- No, I am joking, actually never touched it, not even with one of my custom made sticks
  • Windows 7

was attempting to better or made more productive/useful a UI/workflow (besides when needed/possible tweak some aspects of stability, etc.), what you have done to 8/8.1 is the same "bettering" progress, the difference is the starting point, till 7 you changed something already working into something working better, with 8/8.1 you had to change something from partially working to fully working.

 

If you prefer, somehow you underestimate or forget the amount of work you have done. (still the "base" is solid/reliable, as it was before, possibly as you state, even better)

 

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz
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We are on the same page.  Yes, I have had to put an unprecedented level of effort into making Windows 8.1 "not suck".  I do, however, have a pretty accurate metric of that effort.  For a few versions now I've written how-to books on doing it, and I follow them religiously myself start to finish to create a well-setup development system.  Of course we subsequently add things beyond what's in the book, such as particular applications, though I do try to capture new tweaks I learn about.  The books started as my notes decades ago and have matured.

 

FYI, my Win 7 book is 107 pages.  For Win 8 it's 124 pages.  Not a fundamental difference; 15 to 20 percent more. 

 

FYI, we did it with Vista x64 too, which actually can be settled down to be a dynamite system (on high-end hardware) - extremely reliable.  That too took me a couple of YEARS to do after Vista was released.

 

I think the bottom line - and which we may try to agree upon (noting and agreeing with your wording "already working" vs. "partially working") is that the current Windows 8 system, right out of the box, has lost public "critical mass" and actually does "suck" for the average user.

 

-Noel

Edited by NoelC
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I think the bottom line - and which we may try to agree upon (noting and agreeing with your wording "already working" vs. "partially working") is that the current Windows 8 system, right out of the box, has lost public "critical mass" and actually does "suck" for the average user.

 

Good :), then it's agreed. :yes:

 

About the length of the books it is also possible that getting older :ph34r: you became a little more wordy :w00t: I wouldn't take that as valid metrics.  ;)

 

However, we've got a deal.  :thumbup

 

And now, for NO apparent reason:

tumblr_masgq6hvlo1qk1j3lo1_500-5eb2a86c4

 

jaclaz

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I also run Windows 8.1 and have never really encountered problems, it's really smooth and fast, lately I really thought it was slower when I did things, but I was actually wrong it ran quite fast on my hardware even though my system is not the newest and latest. I mean if people really need the start menu back they can add a custom one like StartisBack, which is what I use and to me it's one of the best especially since you can customize it. Though if you don't like it you don't have to run it, it's really your choice.

Edited by Bakuchris
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Last night I got a call, and went over and helped a good friend resurrect a Windows 7 system that had corrupted his partition table and MBR.

 

We used the Win Recovery Environment and a few diskpart command lines and got it working.

 

I hadn't used the Win 7 WinRE in a while.  It's definitely clunkier than the Win 8 one.  And it turned out incapable of automatically fixing some very basic things (like the primary partition not being active) on its own.

 

Once we got it working again, I hung around until we had tested the system a bit, made him his own System Recovery Disc, and started a System Image backup to a MyBook - so he'll be prepared for the NEXT time his disk fails.  Hopefully all his data is a lot safer now.

 

I mention this because my overall observation during my several hours experience, having been immersed in WIndows 8.1 on my own workstation myself lately, is that Windows 7 actually felt clunkier than Windows 8.1

 

I'm not just talking about look and feel, but actual usage.  Now, I need to temper that with the observations that I'm comparing someone else's long-used desktop setup with my own highly optimized for me desktop setup, and my system is a good bit more powerful than his to start with.

 

Maybe I'd feel the same way if I were comparing my highly tuned Windows 7 setup from last year instead of my current Win 8.1 setup, I don't know.

 

But wow, I never thought I'd say that a Win 7 system seems clunky by comparison.  This reaffirmed my decision to move forward into Windows 8.1.

 

-Noel

Edited by NoelC
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Now, I need to temper that with the observations that I'm comparing someone else's long-used desktop setup with my own highly optimized for me desktop setup, and my system is a good bit more powerful than his to start with.

Then temper it! ;)

A half-botched, unoptimized system (possibly on the lower level when it comes to processor speed and amount of RAM) HD based vs. a powerful, optimized and tweaked system based on SSD's (and specifically finely tweaked to your specific likings).

And the second seemed less clunky than the first in your comparison. :yes:

Hardly surprising. :no:

Just for your interest, I have just driven a friend's BMW 535i over a few hundreds kms trip.

Although I have never had a particular liking for BMW's, I have to admit that my 12 years old Mercedes Class C is less comfortable and noticeably slower.

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz
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Thing is, I'm perceptive and smart enough to see past the physical differences.  It's just barely possible I've been able to create a slightly better configuration based on Windows 8.1 than I was able to do on Windows 7 (on the same hardware).  That would mean that Win 8.1, the way I've set it up, sucks less than Win 7, which sucked less than Win Vista, which sucked less than XP, which sucked less than Win 2000, which sucked less than NT4, which sucked less than NT3.5, which sucked less than Win 95, which sucked less than Win 3.1 for Workgroups, which sucked less than any prior version...

 

It also may say that despite a whole realm of bad decisions, that some parts of Windows (and 3rd party applications) are still getting better, moving into the future.

 

-Noel

Edited by NoelC
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It's just barely possible I've been able to create a slightly better configuration based on Windows 8.1 than I was able to do on Windows 7 (on the same hardware).  That would mean that Win 8.1, the way I've set it up, sucks less than Win 7, which sucked less than Win Vista, which sucked less than XP, which sucked less than Win 2000, which sucked less than NT4, which sucked less than NT3.5, which sucked less than Win 95, which sucked less than Win 3.1 for Workgroups, which sucked less than any prior version...

Not only it is possible, but it also very probable. :thumbup:

 

But this could also be caused by the fact that over the years and with the experience gathered in fighting the increasing dumbness of the parts of the OS that you find dumb and that you replace/fix/tweak, you have become much better at it. ;)

 

So, not only you may say  that "some parts of Windows (and 3rd party applications) are still getting better, moving into the future." :yes:, but you could add that at every new release you are faster and more successful in tweaking it to actually make the overall feeling/usability even better.

 

 

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz
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