Archive for the ‘Windows 8’ Category

Windows operating systems have seen additions of several highly useful features throughout the evolution cycle of the OS. From Windows XP to Windows 7 was the most major leap that the Redmond company ever made, both in aesthetics and in the feature set that the operating system had to offer. Jump lists, aero Snap and dynamic search are just some examples that one can quote in this context. However, that doesn’t mean that highly revered features didn’t exist prior to that. Windows XP was the first operating system to introduce Hibernation, and beyond doubt, that was one of the most useful power features that the operating system came with, allowing the user to save the state of the whole machine when powering it down, and consequently resuming work much faster than a cold start.

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Whether you use a Mac or a PC is obviously a matter of preference, but it’s not unheard of for some people to want to use one platform but have the interface look like the other. Skinning Windows to look more like a Mac is something that has been done for years, and with each new version of both OS X and Windows, these tools have had to adapt.

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A couple of weeks back during Microsoft’s annual BUILD developers conference, we got wind that the software giant would be reinstating the traditional Start Menu for those running desktop versions of the famed OS. At the very least, it was said, the option would be there for traditionalists looking to restore a sense of familiarity to proceedings, and although we knew that it wouldn’t be arriving with the just-released Windows 8.1 Update 1, it seemed almost certain that a subsequent release would reinstate one of the operating system’s longest-serving features. Now, a new report has indicated that said feature will indeed re-emerge this fall.

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Last week at the BUILD developers conference, Microsoft unveiled its latest changes to the Windows operating system with Windows 8.1 Update 1. Designed with the desktop user in mind, the release offers a bunch of optimization features for those using the traditional keyboard-and-mouse set-up, and on a day that has seen official support cease for the 12-year-old Windows XP, the newly-updated edition of Windows 8.1 is now available to download.

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Thanks to extensions, browsers like Firefox and Chrome can be tailored to suit the needs of the individual users. Once a mere component of the wider computing experience, our browsers are like an OS unto themselves, and every element – irrespective of whether it may be aesthetic or function-related – can be adjusted by means of the many thousands of extensions available.

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Microsoft finally released its long-awaited update to the Windows 8.1 operating system on Tuesday, and while the original Windows 8 build was very much focused around the touch-based future of the OS, Windows 8.1 Update 1 has brought quite a few optimizations for those on the traditional desktop. As has been discussed quite a lot during the past couple of days, Windows 8.1 Update 1 makes it much easer for keyboard and mouse users to navigate their way around, and to help ease consumers into the new software, Microsoft has released a series of walkthrough videos.

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Yesterday at BUILD, Microsoft unveiled several new updates to its software range, and as well as finally taking the wraps off Windows Phone 8.1, the software giant also dropped Windows 8.1 Update 1, with a clear emphasis on improving the experience for desktop users. Today it has emerged that folks tethered to the MSDN developer program can download the ISO image of the new build right now, ahead of the official, Windows Store end-user release scheduled for next Tuesday.

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It’s immediately apparent, when checking out the new features of the Windows 8.1 Update 1, that Microsoft is pandering to the large faction of users still running a traditional desktop PC rig. From tweaking the way that the search and power options are accessed to ensuring that Windows Store apps play nicer with the keyboard and mouse, there’s no doubt that today’s announcement at BUILD 2014 was aimed squarely at the traditionalists. Following the announcement of the new Windows 8.1 Update 1, Microsoft’s Terry Myerson also took the opportunity to showcase how Windows 8.1 will eventually offer users the chance to roll back the clock with the return of the traditional Start Menu.

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Tutorial on how to set or run animated screensaver as desktop wallpaper on Windows 8 or Windows 7. True, it’s nothing new thanks to the fact that the trick of having a screensaver as a wallpaper has been around for some years, but we’d forgotten all about it and, we’re willing to guess, so have you. It’s really so simple that everyone should be at least giving it a try.

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With Microsoft officially ceasing support for the antiquated Windows XP early next month, the company has been making some last-ditch attempts to get customers running the software to switch to something a bit more contemporary, pushing a series of very attractive trade-in programs. In the latest, those on Windows XP machines looking to upgrade to Windows 8.1 will, in return for lugging their old rig to their local Microsoft Store, be the recipient of a $100 savings voucher against a purchase of a computer over the $599 mark, and if you’ve been meaning to grab yourself a new computer and still find yourself languishing on XP, now’s the best time to take the plunge.

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It has only taken the best part of 18 months, but VideoLAN has finally come through on its promise to tailor its famed VLC media player for users of Microsoft Windows 8 / 8.1. Finely tuned for seamless integration with the tiled interface, VLC for Windows 8 is now available to download, although unfortunately for Windows RT users, the RT edition is not quite ready.

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Microsoft looks set to showcase the first major update to Windows 8.1 at the BUILD developers conference on the first week of April, but with some weeks to go until the improved release is officially unveiled, an internal leak of Windows 8.1 Update 1 is already upon us. Having trickled out into the wild just a short while ago, some users managed to get the build up and running on their machines by tweaking the registry or downloading patches, but although the registry hack doesn’t seem to be working anymore, you can still check out this internal release by grabbing the necessary patches.

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