8 Things I would Love To See in Windows 8

Yes, yes, I know, there are a zillion leaked screenshots already and a small peek by Microsoft at the recent D9 conference. However, I’m not really dissecting them or adding my few cents to the reams of paper and megs of bytes already devoted to the same.

windows-8-start

Following is my earnest wishlist for Windows 8 – features and capabilities I’d like to see in the operating system and the native applications that would allow me to have a seamless and productive computing experience work, web, or multimedia.

Networking

Windows Vista and Windows 7 brought about several enhancements to networking, such as seamless connection to Wi-Fi networks, Network Map, and network troubleshooting. The Homegroup feature in Windows 7 added to the convenience of home networking. However, it is still tough to manage a mixed network on Windows where I’d want to connect to Linux machines and Macs. Whatever the OS, I would want Windows 8 to immediately recognize the machine and show me available options to interact with it.

Multimedia

I’m a big Windows Media Center fan because of it’s easy-to-navigate interface and library management. I love Zune software for its zany design and podcast support (and it also connects to my Windows Phone). I’m quite used to having Windows Media Player as my default player and the improvements done in Windows 7 have been great. Get the drift? I want an integrated multimedia experience on Windows 8 podcasts, TV, streaming content, online subscriptions (Hulu, Netflix, etc.), and music and video.

Installation

In the times of average capacity SSDs, Windows 8 should allow for split installs where the user directory can be moved off C: drive. As of now, It is possible to point individual user folders like Documents, Music, etc. to be pointed to a folder on different disk/drive, but why not extend it to applications and other user data.

Windows 7 installs at a fine speed if you install via a USB drive. However, for some like me, it’s not a preference but a compulsion since most netbooks don’t have an optical drive. I would seriously hope that Microsoft considers selling Windows 8 retail on a USB drive.

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