Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/194942/windows-8.1-update-2-is-here-but-its-a-big-letdown/
The update formerly known as Windows 8.1 Update 2 — now known as the August Update — was released on August 12. You probably didn’t even notice. It’s a small update that barely adds anything.
Concerning the source (Microsoft) are you even a tad bit surprised?
Yes the start window and booting was a major issue but luckily I found a free program that resolved that shortly upgrading to window 8. Now it is a non issue. By the way it is Called POKKI found in the windows store. Now I boot to desktop and have a start button that I find very user friendly. I dont need to be paying for upgrades for features that should have been included in the first place.
Actually, this update was pulled by Microsoft and is no longer available via Windows Update (they even pulled all the download links too) until they fix the issues here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2982791.
Also, it's rumoured that Windows 9 will be a free update for those who have windows 8/8.1.
More cynically, it’s possible Microsoft is holding back the Start menu to Windows 9 so they can charge Windows 8 and 8.1 users an upgrade fee to get it.
I don't think that this is 'cynical' at all. If you run a business that wants to make a profit, that approach makes sense.
8.1 is over the hill. Even with those additional improvements, the excitement would be muted.
I really don't know why MS are just making it more and more difficult for normal IT folks to support their stuff. We are the ones at grassroots level that fixes their stuff when it breaks and it breaks bigtime.
8/8.1 is just a pain to support. Laptops are still going out with just 8 on them so I have to waste my time upgrading them before they go out. If a machine breaks down you have to rebuild it with 8, add some updates and then slap 8.1 over it. Sure you can fudge it but why mess with whats on it already. It just takes more and more time. There was a time when a lot of lock ups and crashes could be fixed with simply booting with F8 into safe mode and rebooting into normal but no you cant do that simply any more either.
Folks adding the 8.1 update on themselves and then getting confused because they feel they have to add a bloody useless MS account to the machine.
No license codes on the machines for Windows 8. Oh no problem they say, its tucked away in the BIOS. Hmm you tried it yet? I have several times. Not got it to work once, even when I've managed to dig the key out of the BIOS. If you don't have the specific OEM build that came with the machine you are screwed. What happens when the HDD fails...oops!
It's just getting so tedious and too difficult. What took a couple of hours to fix with XP/Vista and 7 now takes three times as long with 8/8.1.
I battled on through win 8.0 with no Start menu on the desktop but when 8.1 came out I installed Classic Shell which includes Classic Menu, Classic IE, and Classic Explorer. It was a worthwhile addition to the machine. The integration is good and it all works well. The only complaint that I have is that there are so many settings for the Menu that it may be a bit confusing for some people. I find the settings to be tedious but worth the effort.
One complaint that I have about Microsoft's win 8.0, 8.1 etc. and Office 2013 is the size of the updates. It's getting to be the norm that the OS updates are 100 megabytes or more but then you get another 800 or 900 meg for Office 2013 and you get a significant load each month. I have 2 machines with 5 partitions in total and 2 of them have Office 2013. The monthly updates are around 2 gigabytes. I am fortunate that my line speed and data allowance mean that this is trivial but many people in Australia use mobile connections only. The costs to them must be very significant or you turn off updates completely.
This statement tells all:
But Microsoft didn’t want to imply that Windows 8.1 would receive an “Update 2″ because they really didn’t know what they were doing.
Except I would change the word "didn't" to "doesn't".
I thought computer and technology is about advances and progress, not staying the same and retaining the same. I have Windows 8. It is different from Windows 7, but the system was easy to master and easy to use. I am not savvy with tech stuff, but if I could use it without stress, most people should be able to.
I didn't upgrade to 8.1 for 2 reasons. I have a large number of "apps" (I still call them programs) on the machine and the thought of physically re installing them all scared me stiff. If they call it an upgrade, it should not change all the programs you have installed. The second reason reason is I have been unable to access "Store: to get it. This is not a biggy as Microsoft are missing out on revenue from myself and thousands of others, so the joke is on them.
Accept change, provide positive support for change and help Microsoft improve. The option of Apple and there control of everything you do on the computer is far worse. And Linux is not a consideration for people like me.
I do not understand why anyone wants a start menu. When it was first introduced into windows, I and most users I knew thought it was a bad design. I still think so and do not miss it in the slightest.
No more of a let down than Windows 8 and UEFI. The nails in the coffin of the PC are getting bigger and they are all being shot by Microsoft dragging hardware vendors in tow. Linux users beware! Whenever something great like the PC and the internet come along some greedy conglomerate has to come along and kill it off cause it's competing with "product".
People are being drawn into buying ever expensive tablets and smartphones that have a shelf life of weeks what does that make us.
Using Windows 8/8.1 is fine after a while. No problems there. It's the underlying support/update/fixing methods that are just getting way to restrictive and cumbersome to almost make reinstalling Windows on a corrupted laptop financially non-viable as a business.
Windows 8/8.1 update service more reliable than 7? Put your hands up. Nope, don't see no hands.
Some aspects of 8/8.1 just seem kludgy or not very well thought out from a support perspective.
Why are so many software reviewers and critics boring endlessly on and on about the Start Menu; when it will be brought back, whether it will be brought back, how crucial it is to a mass of users? The Start Menu is available now, as is the ability to run apps in desktop windows, and for that matter, for those who love them, gadgets.
I have been running Windows 8.1 Pro for several months with the Start Menu, with apps in desktop windows, and with all my old favourite gadgets, plus a desktop icon organisation program, courtesy of Stardock applications Start8, ModernMix (apps), WindowBlinds (for Windows-7-style Aero windows), and Fences, at a total cost of around $27. The gadgets come courtesy of 8GadgetPack, for free.
Not only does the cost undercut any possible Windows upgrade fee (except free of course), but also Stardock's implementation is stellar, probably much better than Windows' own will ever be. I virtually never see the Start Screen, since I boot directly to the desktop.
I also almost never run Microsoft's pathetic apps - which were presented as the way to go for gadget users, on the grounds that gadgets were insecure. Gadgets, of course, are no less secure than any other application run on a computer, being capable of being scanned and watched by anti-malware software, and safe in any case if obtained from a reliable source. I just wanted to keep Core Temp, Top Process Monitor, Network Meter, and one or two others from the core well-tested gadget suite, like the Windows Clock and Calendar for instance, nothing exotic. I found it rather traumatic to lose Solitaire, and even found a way to run Windows 7 Solitaire on Windows 8, but now I run the MS Solitaire Suite, in a windows and started from a desktop icon.
So there isn't a problem. It's solved, done and dusted, ready now. Let's move on.
Because people shouldn't have to pay $27 to get back features that they didn't want to be taken away from them in the first place.
That's the whole point.
the more i read about microsoft, the more i hate them.
Hate is such a strong and (I think) over used word. I think it should be pity. Because with all their money and history, with the right thinking/planning/attitude, they could do/be so much more and have so many more people cheering them on.
I just got tired of Windows 8. I even purchased Start8 and Modern Mix to make it work the way I wanted it to work. Windows 8 was still a big problem. Things stopped working for no reason (i.e. wireless mouse, sound, etc.) and it was a big hassle to find things that were previously accessible. It was too much work to keep it going. My windows 8.x upgrade was switching to a completely different operating system that ran. And it runs good. I can even make it look like Windows 8 with a few clicks.
If it's off topic or anything, feel free to remove it
I have Start8 but there are free alternatives.
I hardly ever use Start8 because the replacement for the start button is generally better than the old, dated start button - The Start button is so last century. The 8.1 Start page is quicker, more customisable, more useful, more interactive. The Win 9 Start page will be even better. From the pictures of Win 9 Start button, I don't imagine that I will prefer this to going to the full Start page for anything other than initially finding a newly installed program to put it where I want it in the Start page or to access an infrequently used program or utility.
The real reason why all the tech journalists keep on going on about 'how bad Windows 8/8.1 is'?
Well thats simple. What drives the commercial internet and especially commercial internet journalism?
So your click rate is a bit down. What do you do? You throw out a nice bit of click bait like "Why Windows 8 Still Suxxs!" and sit back as thousands of clicks hammer home. Comments section turns into 18 pages of stupid misinformed herd rage.
Windows 8 has been a saviour for lazy tech journalism and a great deal of you fell hook line and sinker for it. Had they all written honestly "Well since Windows 7 I haven't really used the Start Menu and had switched to using the Taskbar 98% of the time so I didn't really miss it and if I did I could find a free simple replacement! Other than that and a couple of minor niggles Windows 8 is a pretty slick OS on the whole!"
They would maybe have go a few hundred clicks and 6 comments.
Instead we got previously supposedly respected Tech journalists writing crap like "It took we two weeks to find out how to shut Windows 8 down!"
Frankly I've lost faith in Microsoft. Vista showed their reluctance to copy good ideas from Linux and implement them properly. For instance, in Linux you are a restricted user. When you need superuser privilege you are prompted for the administrative password and you continue. In Windows you must log out of your account and into an administrator account. They copied an idea they didn't even bother to understand and botched it up. It's still botched today.
Microsoft survived the Vista debacle because of fear. People were simply afraid to learn a new operating system and felt trapped, buying Microsoft time to fix Vista with a new front end called Windows 7.
But while they were sleeping the world has changed. The ubiquity of smart phones means that people have already had to learn an alternative operating system: Android. And they love it! There's no fear whatever of "it's so different" or demand it is too unlike Windows. Like Linux, Android understands Windows formats better than Windows. Android has entirely removed people's fear of switching operating systems, the only brand loyalty Microsoft ever had. The paltry 1.8% penetration of the Windows Phone is an indictment of Microsoft Windows for the Desktop.
And now Linux is ready for prime time. Steam has even brought great games to the platform. Many distros are dead simple to operate and unless you're a hotshot Visual Basic for Applications wizard in Excel you'll never miss the Microsoft operating system or applications. You'll just continue doing what you've always done with your computer. Except for free. Except more reliably. Except with an operating system that makes sense on a computer desktop and doesn't emasculate your computer, making it a cell phone eunuch.
The Unity desktop on Ubuntu, after years of hand wringing and tweaks really is the best cell phone/computer compromise going right now. There's no analog to the operating system formerly known as Metro, thank god. Linux runs all applications on the computer as full-blown computer applications.
So brand loyalty, thanks to Android, is gone. Linux is ready for prime time. Whether Microsoft buys a vowel or just dies the customer has already won.
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