Breaking: Windows Blue will be a free update named Windows 8.1 | Ars Technica.
Microsoft is trying very hard to fight back the negative fallout from Windows 8. Giving away the Windows Blue update later this year is a good start. To be known as Windows 8.1, it promises to fix the things you don't like. What do you want to bet that it is easier to navigate, and that Microsoft replaces the Start button? What do you think needs to be updated or changed?
Microsoft Windows Blue Will Bring User Improvements and Support for Smaller Tablets to Windows 8 - ABC News.
In response to the many complaints about Windows 8, Microsoft has announced a major upgrade, Windows Blue, that promises to answer many of the complaints, and to make the OS more friendly to new small tablet form factors. While not promising the return of the Start button, Microsoft has promised that it has listened to the complaints. In a few months, the new features of Blue will begin to be disclosed. We shall see. In the meantime, you can make Windows 8 work just like Windows 7 with Stardock's $5 add on, Start8. Windows 8 is actually a safer computing environment, so you have little to lose by updating. If you don't like the new interface, you never have to see it again.
Windows 8 moved the cheese, Windows Blue doesn't put it back | ZDNet.
This is a cogent article about the slow adoption of Windows 8 in the consumer space. While users hate the removal of the Windows Start Button, and companies like StarDock are making money putting it back (see my posts on Start8), only the users in the Enterprise who are forced to make the change will adapt quickly. If you are in a large law firm, and the powers that be tell you to use Windows 8, you will adapt and learn. I like the Corps motto: Adapt and Overcome, for that reason. Savvy computer users will always find a way. However, the typical consumer gets stuck, and they often won't want to learn new ways of doing things. They will resist change. I have faced this often when I recommend change to clients. The moral of this story is clear. If you move somebody's cheese, you need to find out if they have the motivation to go find it themselves, or if you have to purpose a rat to help them. Otherwise, you are going to be eating a lot of uneaten cheese.
How to Reinstall All Windows 8 Modern Apps on a New PC.
I don't know when Metro became Modern. But, the apps you install from the Windows 8 store that sit on the main Windows 8 screen, and which are optimized for Windows 8 are now called Modern Apps. I will continue to call them "the apps formerly known as Metro". But, I digress. What if you get a new Windows PC? Or you wipe the old one? Much like Google Play Store, the new Windows 8 Store gives you a one click option to reinstall all your Metro (Modern) apps. Easy.
How to Run Windows 8 Metro / Modern Apps in a Regular Desktop Window.
Stardock is fast becoming one of my favorite software developers. First, it allowed me to have the security and speed of Windows 8 without dealing with Metro, and allowing me to restore my trusty Windows 7 Start button. All for the huge price of $4.99. Now, for the same price, I can run Metro apps (some of which can be useful) in a Window on my computer, which doesn't have a touch screen. Some of the Metro apps are very nice; but, I am not going to leave my Windows desktop to use them. Microsoft is so desperate to make us use the Metro interface, that going to the desktop makes all the Metro apps disappear. Thanks, StarDock, you've done it again.
Note: I refuse to stop using the Metro name for the new interface. I am tired of saying "the interface formerly known as Metro" or some other combination. Brevity and clarity are my watchwords.
Sign in to your Microsoft account.
I am a Google person. I use GMail, Google Calendar, Google +, Google Reader, and a host of other Google connected apps. I store documents, and other stuff on Google Drive, and pay extra to get 50 Gigabytes of storage. Why on earth would I also set up a Microsoft SkyDrive, and store files and documents there? Why not? Redundancy is always good; witness Curiosity, which just had to switch to its redundant computer after Computer A failed. And, SkyDrive is actually quite easy to use, and comes with web enabled versions of Word, Excel, Presentations, and a free 10 Gigabyte storage box. You can never be too thin, too rich, or have too many apps. I will never be thin. I will never be rich. So, at least I can have a bunch of apps.
Windows 8- Run everything as Administrator - Neowin Forums. Okay, some things about Windows 8 are pretty annoying. User Account Controls, made famous in Vista, want you to run everything as a Standard Account, which prohibits you from doing things that Windows thinks may not be safe. The trouble is that, as a Standard User, I am always running across legacy software that doesn't get it. They require administrator privileges. If you try the tips in this Forum listing, you will make your computer less secure. However, you won't get any more annoying warning messages and you will have full Administrator control again. The poster who recommends using the Slider control to turn off notifications, doesn't realize that Windows 8 won't let you change from Standard user to Administrator any more. It requires the registry hack in the third post down. Not for the faint of heart, but I did it. Just type PowerShell in the command line box. Then past the registry code provided. The system will restart, and you will have the power of God over your machine again. This does involve some risk; but, then, what is life without risk?
How To Overwrite Free Space Securely in Windows.
As a keeper of client confidential data, lawyers have higher obligations than the average computer user. We must always exercise reasonable controls over the data we store, and restrict its access to the best of our ability. That means taking reasonable safeguards to protect that data. But, what about the stuff we delete? What about the stuff we no longer need? When we hit the delete button for a document, what happens to the data? Well, long time computer users know that the OS merely deletes the indexing data to the document, and does not delete the document itself. The bits and bytes remain on the disk, until another program writes new data over it. Low level software can easily recover that data, and all that is needed is possession of the drive. In the case of investigations by proper authorities, this can be a good thing. For us lawyers, however, it is a bad thing if we intend to protect our clients' documents. Using simple command line commands, as an Administrator on a Windows computer, the user can write over data in the open space on the drive as many times as is necessary to make it inaccessible to anyone. Check out this article to learn how. And, learn this before you pay good money for a commercial software package that promises the same result.
PDF Converter Professional - PDF Converter Professional | PDF Converter Solutions Create PDF - Nuance.
Longtime readers are aware of my problems, in year's past, with Nuance, who acquired the best paper and scanning file system software, PaperPort, and who also now own and sell Dragon Naturally Speaking voice recognition software. However, since the coming of Version 12 of PaperPort, and now Version 14, Nuance has got its game together, and PaperPort 14 is the software I use to save every scanned document, and all pleadings and papers from my cases. Now the Florida is going full bore into mandatory Efiling, having moved into the Probate arena last year, and also requiring, since last September, that all documents be served on other attorneys via email, the choice of PDF software and scanning software has become more important. Since PaperPort scans all documents into PDF format, it is a simple task to serve a copy via email, and it will be a simple task to efile the document with the appropriate Court Clerk. The new version of PDF Converter Professional permits the manipulation and use of PDF files, and supports Windows 8. $99 for full function PDF software...It's a bargain.
Bins%u2122, by 1UP Industries.
I am already addicted to Start8, which, for $5, has enabled me to bypass Metro, and go straight to the Desktop when I boot. In fact, it feels just like Windows 7, except faster. Additionally, I got my Start button back, and I couldn't get along without it. Now, for another $5, I have downloaded and installed another Stardock utility, Bins, which allows me to group apps in the taskbar. I use the Taskbar all the time, to launch my most used apps with one click. However, I sometimes have so many that the Taskbar goes to two levels, which is a pain. Now, I have half of the TaskBar back, and my apps are grouped according to use and category. Stardock and the FutureLawyer...dedicated to making your Windows 8 experience as unlike Windows 8 as possible.