Lets talk about the Best reasons to switch from Windows 7 to Windows 8. Though Windows 8 may seem a little misplaced to be used on a desktop PC or laptop due to its interface, when you look at all the useful improvements made, you sure would be tempted to use it. You need to know about the improvisations before considering upgrading. The removal of the traditional ‘Start’ menu and the new interface are the only features restricting users from considering Windows 8’s desktop upgrade. Let us one by one look at the improvisations.
The boot time has been observed to drop to 15 or 20 seconds from 30 seconds, on the existing hardware. This is possible because, whenever you shut down, Windows 8 saves the state of the kernel and other low level softwares such as hardware drivers to the disk and restores them when you boot the system up. Basically, the trick employed in decreasing boot time is that Windows 8 hibernates low level system software instead of shutting it down. New Windows 8 PC with UEFI will boot even faster as compared to systems using BIOS.
The file copying in Windows 8 is much more advanced and systematic when compared to other versions. You can view multiple files copying in the same window and also pause one or many of the file copying operation. File conflict management is much easier. It has a simple interface and also ‘More details’ to view more information like graph of file transfer speed over time.
One of the best improvements in Windows 8 is respect to its Task Manager. It has a Startup software manager that allows you control which software you want to load at startup. It has color coded resource usage columns which are easily readable and the program names are human friendly! If there is a mysterious process running, you have the option to search about it online. Just right click on the process and use the ‘Search online’ option.
Better monitor support
In case you have to use multiple monitors, you can make the changes in taskbar properties and there’s no requirement for a third party software. Windows 8 allows users to place separate taskbars and monitors on different monitors.
Storage Spaces on Disk
A feature of Power-user, it allows the combination of multiple physical memories into one logical volume. Physical hard disk space can be combined to create a large volume of storage space. The large volume of storage behaves as if it were a single hard disk.
Improvements in file explorer
Windows Explorer, now called File Explorer, has had a few changes, including the new ribbon interface which has made it a lot easier to access. Powerful tools like viewing hidden files can be easily accessed without going through menus or dialog boxes. The ribbon is easily collapsible. Now you can easily mount ISO and VHD files just by double clicking them. The ‘Up’ button that was removed in Windows 7 is now back in Windows 8.
Create your own out of the box virtual machine using Windows 8’s Hyper V feature. Previously used on Windows server, Hyper V replaces the Windows virtual PC virtualization solution used for Windows XP mode on Windows 7. You can use it to install any OS virtually, without using a third party software.
Refresh and Reset your device
With Windows 8, you can refresh your device and reset it to factory state. Though considered a tablet feature, it is available for PCs with Windows 8 installed too. You have the option to create your own image file and refresh Windows to it and reset Windows 8 to a fresh installed state. You save a lot of time this way when you have to reinstall Windows.
Security of your device
With an integrated antivirus, Windows 8 had paid a lot of attention to Security. The antivirus, Windows Defender, is a renamed version of Microsoft Security Essentials, ensures that every pc has an antivirus. But, you can easily disable it and install any other antivirus product of your choice.
Assuming you are using a PC with UEFI and not BIOS, the Secure Boot feature provides protection from rootkits that hijack the startup process. Secured Boot is used to lock down ARM based Windows RT processor. You can also disable secure boot in Intel x86 PCs or add y our own keys to Secure Boot in UEFI firmware so that you in install Linux.
To help prevent less experienced users from installing or downloading malware, Microsoft’s Smart Screen Filter has been integrated. It gives a warning saying the software to be installed is either known bad or hasn’t been seen before.
Low level changes made to memory allocation and ASLR make security vulnerabilities harder to exploit even if loopholes exist.
Optimizations made and a few low level changes implemented should result in more power efficient operating system with a longer battery life in case of portable computers or tablets and the removal of Aero ensures the same for Laptops.
These changes make Windows 8 a worthy upgrade from Windows 7. Though the new interface might seem odd, but these and few other features are worth the upgradation.