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Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

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ayjaycee's picture
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Firstly, sorry if I have posted this in the wrong forum but there is a ‘Windows’ section under ‘Smartphones & Tablets’ but not under ‘PCs etc’.

I have three ‘active’ computers:

1.   Samsung 13.3” Notebook with a 2.1GHz AMD A6 Processor and 6 GB RAM running Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit.  Used mainly for internet, MS Office applications, reading PDFs, video viewing (AVI, MP4 & MKV), photo viewing and, occasionally, photo editing with Photoshop.

2.   Acer PC with 2.4GHz Intel Quad Core Processor and 4GB RAM and a separate 2GB Video Card running Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit.  Used mainly for the same as the netbook but with a lot more Photoshop work.

3.   Medion 10” Netbook with Intel Atom 1.6 GHz and 2GB RAM running Windows XP.  Used mainly for internet inc. downloading and plugged into a 42” TV.

They are all perfectly well suited to the uses that I put them to - I am not into gaming or video work and do not need a ‘Power PC’.

When I bought the Samsung Notebook, it came with a cheap (£15.99) upgrade offer for Windows 8 Pro and I am now trying to decide whether to upgrade or not (and also eventually do the other two using the £24.99 upgrade offer open to all).  Any advice should be appreciated from you good people who were early adopters of Windows 8 and might now have a lot of experience.  Research on the net has turned up a lot of mixed opinion ranging from it’s not worth the upgrade if you don’t have a touch screen (which I don’t on any of the above) to it’s worth it on a notebook / laptop if only for the extra battery life it gives to neutral but faster start up is a bonus.

My instinct is to buy the cheap upgrade and install it on the Samsung Notebook and see how it goes but I guess my questions boil down to:

1.  Is Windows 8 worth the upgrade on a conventional (ie. non-touch screen) computer?

2.  Is the install fully reversible if I don’t like it?  I don’t care about the £16 for the upgrade but I do care if I don’t like it but cannot easily go back to the earlier Windows 7 configuration.

3.  Any comments on extra battery life Window 8 gives on a notebook / laptop?

4.  Has anyone used it on a netbook with a similar spec to mine – the MS upgrade adviser reckons it should be OK but..........

Thanks in anticipation.

 

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bigboss's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

I upgraded to Windows 8 Pro on day 1. I really like it. It's much faster to load & the Windows 8 UI is very good. The learning curve can be a bit steep, but afterwards it's a joy to use. Sure it has its quirks, like jumping to Windows 7 interface for certain programmes which can look a bit odd.

Details here:

http://www.whathifi.com/forum/windows/windows-8-early-reviews-look-promi...

To answer your questions:

1) Mine is a non-touch screen laptop, & it works perfectly fine. Touch screen functionality definitely helps but is not necessary.

2) If you buy Windows 8 Pro version (not the other versions), then you can revert back to Windows 7 if you don't like it. Try it for a minimum of 4 weeks to really judge it.

3) Not measured battery life so can't comment. All I can say is that it hasn't had any adverse impact on battery life.

4) The specs required to run Windows 8 is actually less than Windows 7. I don't have an Intel Atom PC, but my laptop's specs are lower than your other 2. You should be fine.

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visionary's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Suggest you run the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant on the Windows website.

This will tell you how much of your current stuff will still work.

I upgraded to 8 from XP Pro using the Upgrade Assistant (having cloned my hard drive first to make sure I could go back to exactly where I started). Their website says you CAN'T go back.

Half of my software wouldn't work on Windows 8. there's no inbuilt e-mail client (not a problem for some but I've always used Outlook Express because it does what I want).

All my files were locked and I apparently did not have permission to read or change them. Sorted eventually but should not have been necessary.

Final straw was the complicated way to actually shut down the PC. Made clicking "Start" actually seem logical Smile

It lasted a week and then I went back to XP Pro

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bigboss's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

visionary wrote:

I upgraded to 8 from XP Pro using the Upgrade Assistant (having cloned my hard drive first to make sure I could go back to exactly where I started). Their website says you CAN'T go back.

It is possible to downgrade to Windows 7 & Vista but not the earlier versions. In my case, the only programme incompatible was the Bluetooth driver. Uninstalled that, & then installed the Windows 8 version after the upgrade.

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Bedroom Samsung UE32C6510, PS3 slim white, Apple TV, Sonos S5, Sonos ZP90, Audioengine 2, Oppo OPDV971H

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bigboss's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

visionary wrote:

there's no inbuilt e-mail client (not a problem for some but I've always used Outlook Express because it does what I want).

What's wrong with Windows 8 mail?

http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/web-apps-help/set-up-email-in-windows-...

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Bedroom Samsung UE32C6510, PS3 slim white, Apple TV, Sonos S5, Sonos ZP90, Audioengine 2, Oppo OPDV971H

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Papalazarou75's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Personally battery life was halved on my acer laptop,i put this down to the upgrade so did a clean install with all windows 8 drivers - no different,,, mmm.

 

performance wise i don't really find it any faster in real world use , ok boot tmes are good but hey if that's all that matters then fine.

I do think it is really aimed at touchscreen users &  usability for the desktop is kind of by the by for this.

if you want to increase performance whack a solid state drive in your pc's then everything will be improved.

 

as far as atom netbooks go, i had an acer aspire one, with xp it was clunky, win 7 is fine ,try ubuntu on it & it will fly.

the atoms are quite underrated & with a bit more ram they do the job quite well Smile

only you can decide if windows 8 is for you, i've been testing it since the beta releases & did buy it on day one, found it dissappointing to say the least, I will come back to it maybe in 6 months or so when some early bugs have been resolved.

for now i say ther's nowt wrong with windows 7 & if you do like cutting edge linux is much much better ,although most windows users won't agree with that .

kena's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Would say definately upgrade the XP system. It will make you current (XP support ending soon) free copy media centre for £24.99 bargain.  More a personal thing re Windows 7 , uses less resources so a bit more battery life for Netbook but otherwisse pretty cosmetic unless you plan to get a touch-screen. As mentioned earlier run the upgrade assistant  , note that may say NX not supported but it probably will just be disabled in BIOS. 

 

Edit Just noticed you have a option for the £14.99 upgrade -  Upgrade XP system with the offer and if you feel it's  worth it do the windows 7 systems , remember you have till 31st January to make your mind up. 

chebby's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

kena wrote:

Would say definately upgrade the XP system. It will make you current (XP support ending soon)

Although I agree that Win 7 is worth upgrading to, there is no need to panic about XP support quite so soon. Microsoft themselves are quoting 8th April 2014 as the 'Extended Support' end date. So you've got just over 16 months left.

 

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kena's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Agree no need to panic but ideal opportunity to upgrade it for £14.99 leaving him with 1 x Win8 and 2 X Win 7 systems

Cofnchtr's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Hi,

Is anyone having USB 3 problems? 

I have an Intel USB 3.0 eXtensible Host Controller which according to the upgrade advisor is not compatible.

Read on other forum that Windows has a default driver but it does not give USB 3.0 speeds - maximum is USB 2.0

Apparently Intel will not release an updated driver as Windows has one built in.

Not up on the ins and outs of the above but it seems to point to possible problems with any USB 3.0 devices connected to the PC?

Cheers,

Cofnchtr.

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kena's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Check the following link , sorry if i'm stating the obvious but ensure your using a USB3 cable , not connected to a USB2 switch port etc.   Hope this helps let us know.

Cofnchtr's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Hi,

I haven't upgraded but I am tempted as the disc is £49.99 in Tesco, as the other half works there, we then get a further 10% off.

I have seen it for £24.99 as a download on the Windows site however.

Windows upgrade advisor reported a problem with the USB 3.0 eXtensible host controller thang so was just checking as I didn't want to end up with an OS I couldn't use!

Cheers,

Cofnchtr.

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kena's picture
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RE: Is it worth upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

Do the download and select install later create ISO option and burn to DVD yourself and save £25 , You will be fine worst would be it would only be USB2 but doubt it will be a problem.