Tech-Friendly: Windows 10 Technical Preview is a big yawn

Paul Gorski
Paul Gorski

By Paul Gorski

Microsoft recently announced Windows 10 and released a technical preview version of the new operating system so you can test it out. I would wait. This version is just a preview and is not ready for prime time yet. In addition, if you were looking for the latest and greatest version of Windows to be substantially different from Windows 8, you will be sorely disappointed. I have it, and I am not impressed.

Admittedly, Windows 10 is still a long way off from final release and Microsoft has quite a bit of work to do on it. From the Microsoft website: “Windows Technical Preview is here today, but it’s a long way from done. We’re going to make it faster, better, more fun at parties … you get the idea. Join the Windows Insider Program to make sure you get all the new features that are on the way. If you’re OK with a moving target and don’t want to miss out on the latest stuff, keep reading. Technical Preview could be just your thing.”

You will find the quote above and more warnings about installing the preview version at: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/preview-faq#faq=tab0.

The preview looks and feels a lot like Windows 8, and if you are not a fan of Windows 8, I do not think you will love the interface. The two biggest Windows 10 features are: the Start Menu is back and you can now have multiple desktops. The Start Menu is, well, like from 20 years ago. Microsoft removed it from Windows 8, but long-time Windows users complained about missing the Start Menu. So now, it is back.

Multiple desktops? Linux and Mac OS operating systems have had multiple desktops for years. This is not news; it is simply playing catch-up. Not to be unduly harsh, I will quote Microsoft’s proud statement about this feature: “Create desktops for different purposes and projects and switch between these desktops easily and pick up where you left off on each desktop.” It does not sound very exciting, does it? Multiple desktops can be useful, but as a Mac and Linux user, I find myself only using them on my Linux installations. I just never felt the need to use them on my Macs.

The biggest news about Windows 10 is the question why Microsoft chose to call this version Windows 10 and not Windows 9. I tend not to worry about such trivial matters, but the version number skipping has some tech writers all abuzz. That is a problem. The most exciting news about your product should not be the debate over the product name. The biggest news should be about features, security and how you cannot live without it.

To be clear, Windows 10 is not ready for regular use right now. Microsoft is offering the preview to people who want to test the operating system and report likes and dislikes to Microsoft. If you are interested in testing Windows 10 Technical Preview, download it here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/preview. Happy testing.

Paul Gorski (www.paulgorski.com) has been a technology manager nearly 20 years, specializing in workflow solutions for printing, publishing and advertising computer users. Originally destined to be a chemist, his interest in computers began in college when he wrote a program to analyze data from lab instruments he hard-wired to the back of an Apple lle.

Posted Oct. 7, 2014

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