Thursday, 3 January 2013

Windows 8 Touch | Tutorial and Review.

For Christmas I was lucky enough to get a beautiful new laptop. My old Samsung netbook was a few years old, ran on Windows XP, and Dylan the dog decided to step on it, which resulted in the screen cracking, so I needed a new one. It took me a while to choose which one I wanted, but after testing them all out in Harrods, I settled for the 11.6inch Asus S200 touchscreen notebook, with Intel Core i3 processor and Windows 8 Touch. 

I know Windows 8 has had bad write-ups, and I've heard a lot of people aren't sure whether to go for it or not. Personally, I love Windows 8! It took me about a day of playing around with everything to figure things out and get used to it, but I got the hang of it, and although there are silly little things I don't like, in general I love it.

FYI: My desktop is Windows Vista, my old laptop was XP, and my work computer is Windows 7. Although I'm no expert on technology and don't know much about it, this is a tutorial and review from one normal every day consumer and user, to another. This review and tutorial is on Windows 8, not the laptop.

Windows 8 Start Menu.

The Start menu is clean, slick, and looks awesome. It really is visually stunning. A lot of people have complained about the Desktop 'changing' and the start menu 'disappearing from its normal place'. So what? The new start menu is amazing; it's designed for social networking, so you can choose whether or not you sync Facebook, Skype, emails etc with the start menu. If you do this, your notifications come up in the 'blocks' designated for each 'app'. 

If you do want to control things from the old style desktop, you can do this by clicking on or tapping the 'Desktop' block, where you can access your folders and 'desktop' and 'network' sections.

To get to the start menu from an app or the desktop, you drag the right hand side of the screen across with your finger, or drag your mouse arrow to the top right hand corner of the screen and then go down the bars to 'start'. This is also how you get to 'search', 'share', 'devices' and 'settings'. You can also go to the bottom left hand corner of the screen to get straight to the start menu.

Windows 8 Folders System.

The folders system is slightly different. On the start menu you have a block for 'gallery', which is essentially 'my pictures'. If you go into desktop and click on the folder icon, you can access D drive (where I store all my photos). The look of it is slightly different as you can see from the photos. To create a new folder you have to go to the top of the page and click 'home' then click 'new folder'. To adjust how you see your folders and documents (ie; details, large thumbnail etc), go to the top of the page again and click 'view', and then choose which one.

Windows 8 Photos.

The photos is relatively simple. There is a 'Photo' app, but I don't use this. I use the old folder system as mentioned above. If you open up a photo, it will automatically open up in the photo app, which is really annoying as it's quite difficult to get out of it or skip to the next photo, so I changed the settings to open it in the old 'normal' Windows Photo Viewer. The one thing that isn't on Windows 8 is the option to 'fix' and edit photos, which annoys me, so I'm gonna see if I can download it.

Windows 8 Personalize and Move Apps. 

The start menu is completely customisable, as is almost everything else on Windows 8. I chose the dark pink colour, and then I also chose a pattern, as you can see from the photos. I also moved the 'blocks' of apps around into the places I wanted. To move the blocks, just grab one, pull it downwards, then move it across the screen to where you want to place it.

Windows 8 Switching Between Apps.

It took me a while to figure out how to close apps and switch between them without going through the right hand side and then the start menu. All you do is drag the mouse into the left hand corner of the screen, and a smaller thumbnail version of the other apps you're using will appear, just click on which one you want to go on to. You can also close an app by right-clicking on the app you want to close in the bar.

Windows 8 Logging Out and Shutting Down.

It isn't completely obvious how you do this, but to log out simply go to the start menu and click on your username, it'll come up with the option to change account picture, lock, or sign out. Sign out. To shut the computer down just click the power icon in the bottom right hand corner of the log-in screen.

Windows 8 Annoyances.

The biggest annoyances I have with Windows 8 is that every so often it will flick between apps if I press on the mouse-pad too hard. I'm quite heavy-handed so for me this is a major problem! Also if you press the mouse-pad too hard in a certain place, the screen suddenly goes to full-screen, which is really annoying. I'm not sure if all these things are the computer or system. As I said, I'm no expert, just a humble consumer and blogger, so if anyone can tell me how to fix this or stop it, I'd be really grateful! It also annoys me that there isn't a close 'cross' in the top right hand corner of the internet browser, so I can just close all tabs if I wanted to and get back to the desktop or whatever. Those are my only issues though!

Have you got Windows 8 or are you thinking of upgrading? 
Let me know your thoughts and feel free to leave any links to reviews etc!


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