Saturday, September 21, 2013

Windows 8.1 digital download will be released October 17, full retail launch October 18

For all Windows 8 users:

Remember what I  mentioned to you in our post of July 30, 2013? :

"Windows 8 has been here for over eight months and whether you love it of hate it, if you buy a new computer you are stuck, therefore try to make the best of the situation.

I have received many comments and complaints concerning Windows 8, from people I help with computer problems. Most of these point out that it is difficult to all of a sudden, navigate from years of XP, Vista and the much loved Windows 7 to an almost unrecognizable and frustrating computing experience.

This is not exactly fair, because Windows 8, (once you get into it), is in my opinion, quite an exciting transition.

Sure enough, Microsoft may have gone a little too far and may have miscalculated how frustrating some of the changes may have been. "Where is the start button ?", "I have quite a problem navigating around this crazy system", "How do I turn off the computer ?" "How do I create a repair disk and a mirror image of my system ?" These are all serious problems for those who all of a sudden get introduced to Windows 8 in their new computer.

Microsoft has also listened and fortunately has released a much improved Windows 8.1 preview pack, (just a beta format), that anybody can download and play with. The formal release of Windows 8.1 will be officially available later this Fall.

Many improvements that make using Windows 8 more palatable have been created, including a start button, not quite as useful and adaptable as our old friend we all were used to... But more about Windows 8.1 in a later post, "...

I downloaded the Windows 8.1 preview pack a couple of months ago and have been checking and experimenting all the new improvements offered  with this upgrade. Frankly I like it a lot better than the original version.

Those of you who have Windows 8 in your computers, will be able to free download  the new upgrade Windows 8.1 pretty soon. Here is the latest news as published by PCWorld a few weeks ago by Mr. Brad Chacos:

"A day after rampant rumors hinted at an October release date for the impending Windows 8.1 update, Microsoft has gone ahead and let the cat out of the bag: Windows 8.1 will roll out to users via the Windows Store at 7 A.M. Eastern time on October 17.

Microsoft's blog lists the technical release date as October 18, with the digital floodgates opening at midnight New Zealand time. Indeed, beyond its early Windows Store availability, The Verge reports that Windows 8.1's full-blown retail launch—boxed discs, new hardware, etc.—will be on October 18. Microsoft's manufacturing partners are expected to receive the final RTM version of Windows 8.1 by the end of August, giving them time to prepare for the launch.

While Windows 8.1 won't win over desktop diehards who loathe the new-look modern UI with a deep and utter hatred, the update is a true lesson in course correction and will do a lot to smooth over Windows 8's roughest edges. Windows 8.1 is chock-full of new features, new apps, new highlights, and yes, even new (and awesome!) secrets. And hey, even reluctant Windows 8 upgraders will find plenty to like. The switch between the dueling modern and desktop interfaces is no longer quite so jarring, and Windows 8.1 will even let you boot directly to the desktop.

Not too shabby for an update that's coming out just shy of Windows 8's one-year anniversary on October 26. Microsoft's also tossing business users a bone, with R2 versions of Windows Server 2012, System Center 2012 R2, and the latest update to Windows Intune being released at the same time as Windows 8.1.

Intrigued? Incredulous? Impatient? Just plain interested? Microsoft's already offering a preview version of the Windows 8.1 update for those daring souls who don't mind delving deep into unfinished software. Check out PCWorld's guide to installing the Windows 8.1 preview to give all the new features a whirl today".

There you have it, all you have to do is wait until October 17, 2013.

George Freire

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