Windows 7 to Windows 8: The system's biggest improvements

Windows 8 has so much more than just a revamped interface.

By Ian Paul, PC World |  Windows, Microsoft, Windows 7

Where to get started: Right-click from Desktop > Personalize > Window Color

Windows 8 has a new feature that automatically adjusts the window color in the traditional desktop to match your background image.

If you have an image of the sky, the windows and the taskbar will turn blue. If you have an image heavy in brown tones, the windows and taskbar will go brown.

Faster startup times

Where to get started: Power button

Windows 8 includes a new hybrid system that Microsoft says will dramatically improve boot times compared to Windows 7. The new hybrid boot combines processes used in cold boots and hibernation mode, including kernel-session storage and the employment of multiple cores in parallel during boot.

New chkdsk

Where to get started: Computer > right-click Local Disk (C:) > Properties > Tools > Error Checking

A close cousin to the Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) is the Black Screen of Come On Already! (BSOCOA!), also known as chkdsk (check disk). Chkdsk is a utility that tries to fix file-system corruptions.

In Windows 8, the GUI version of chkdsk can scan an active drive, something the Windows 7 GUI version can't do. To fix problems, you still have to reboot in Windows 8, but the process is much faster.

File History

Where to get started: Control Panel > System and Security > File History

Microsoft has upgraded the Windows Backup and Restore features of Windows 7 with a new, easier-to-use Windows 8 tool called File History.

Settings app in the Modern UI

Where to get started: Charms bar > Settings > Change PC settings

Mucking around in the Control Panel can sometimes be a pain, but in Windows 8 you can access some basic tasks via the new Settings app in the Modern UI. You can use the Settings app to adjust your system date and time, reinstall Windows, manage your HomeGroup, or access Windows Update.

You'll still need to use the Control Panel for most security tasks, power options, and power-user features (such as BitLocker encryption).

Search in Windows 8

Where to get started: Charms Bar > Search


Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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