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Windows 8

The name of the base system (platform): Microsoft Windows
Developers: Microsoft
Last Release Date: 2014/04/03
Technology: OS


Windows 8 is the operating system of the American corporation Microsoft of the Microsoft Windows family provided in 2012. Support is stopped in January, 2016.

Windows 8 became the first operating system of family which was completely adapted for touch screens from the very beginning. Developed the special graphical interface (reminding the Windows Phone 7 interface), providing access to basic functions for this Microsoft. The separate version of a system for tablets was not supposed - a system became universal and was established on all available types of devices.

Together with a release of Windows 8 earned the app store of Windows Store created on a prototype of similar shop Apple for users of Mac, he allowed to buy software, without opening from the computer screen.

Windows 8.1

Main article: Windows 8.1


2018: New Windows applications 8 will not be after October 31

At the end of August, 2018 Microsoft called for third-party developers the term to which the company will adopt Windows applications 8 and Windows Phone 8. The publication of the software (packets of XAP or APPX) created for these and older versions of operating systems in Microsoft Store will come to the end on October 31, 2018. Read more here.

2016: Support termination

On January 12, 2016 support of Windows 8 stops. Thus, Microsoft advanced this operating system only a little more than three years that is unusual for the American corporation.

As reported in the section of support on the website of Microsoft, since January 12, 2016, security updates for Windows 8 will not be released any more. The company recommends to users of this OS to pass to fresher Windows 8.1 or Windows 10, for them updating is free.[1]

Windows 8 is released in October, 2012, and its support stops earlier, than at older Windows Vista and Windows 7 which Microsoft will support till April, 2017 and January, 2020 respectively.

On January 12, 2016 support of Windows 8 stops
On January 12, 2016 support of Windows 8 stops

As support of each new version of Windows, as a rule, lasts 10 years since launch, initially it was expected that "eight" will remain in the market at least till 2022. However Microsoft decided to remove this product before normal and explains it to the following:

Unlike service packs (Service Pack, SP) which usually contain a set of corrections, Windows 8.1 offers new features and opportunities. We developed Windows 8.1 to give to clients an opportunity to develop updating in the same way with what they involve SP packets therefore we use the acting policy of support of service packs in Windows 8.1.

The main support of Windows 8.1 will last till January 9, 2018, and expanded — till January 10 of the 2023rd. Lifecycle of Windows 10 will come to the end in October, 2025.

As notes the ZDNet edition, as of December, 2015 Windows 8 is installed approximately on 30-40 million computers in the world that corresponds to 2-3% of a total quantity of devices. For comparison, shares in the amount of 55% and 10% respectively have Windows 7 and 10.[2]

2014: FBI arrests the Russian's employee for distribution of Windows 8

According to the investigation, in July-August, 2012, being an employee of Microsoft, Alexey Kibkalo distributed through own account SkyDrive the Windows 8 RT code and a packet of the Microsoft Activation Server SDK tools which the corporation uses for the system of activation. Besides, Kibkalo transferred the code created by Microsoft for distribution there is nobody the French tekhnoblogger. In more detail about an incident here.

2013: Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 OS received FSTEC certificates

In November, 2013, about a year later from the beginning of sales of Windows 8 in Russia,Microsoft announced obtaining this OS of the certificate of conformity of FSTEC. In it it is specified that versions of the Windows 8, Windows 8 Professional and the Windows 8 Corporate are software of general purpose with the built-in means of protecting from unauthorized access to information which is not containing the data which are the state secret.

Similar certificates were received by the products Windows Server 2012 Standard, Windows Server 2012 Datacenter, Windows Storage Server 2012 Standard, Windows Storage Server 2012 Workgroup, Windows Server Essentials 2012 and Windows Server Foundation 2012.

The received certificates show what given software can be used during creation of automated systems to a class of security 1G inclusive and when providing in information systems of personal data processing of levels of security of the personal data following from accepted by the customer on the basis of requirements of the legislation of internal regulations.

Microsoft notes that not only products, but also the accounting system and distribution of the certified updates organized for them by Federal State Unitary Enterprise Enterprise for Deliveries of Products of the Presidential Property Management Department of the Russian Federation and "The certified information systems" became subject to certification.

The last means that customers will be able to receive any quantity of the certified products necessary for them during all validity period of the certificate. Besides, buyers of the certified versions of products will receive the certified updates that will allow them to conform to requirements of the Russian legislation constantly.

"We recommend to users of outdated software, such as Windows XP, to upgrade to newer versions of software solutions of Microsoft to provide the high level of information security confirmed with more than 50 certificates of conformity of FSTEC and FSB", – said in Federal State Unitary Enterprise Enterprise for Deliveries of Products of the Presidential Property Management Department of the Russian Federation.

The Russian representative office of Microsoft did not comment on a question of the planned dates of receipt of certificates of FSB for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 OS. The previous version of Microsoft OS -Windows 7 which sales began fall of 2009 in Russia was certified by FSB at the beginning of 2012 together with Windows Server 2008.


40 million licenses OS are sold

By the end of November, 2012 of Microsoft it was succeeded to sell 40 million licenses of the new Windows 8 operating system released a month earlier. Tami Reller, the marketing and sales director of Windows, made the statement already traditional for corporation in recent years, having called Windows 8 "one of the most successful products of the company".

Reller also made the statement according to which Microsoft Surface RT Pro will be available in January, 2013. Earlier the company announced that the computer will be available at the beginning of next year. By words Raller, which in fact is reincarnation of Hotmail service already attracted 25 million users.

Tami Reller gave also other digits, testimonial, according to her, about success of Windows 8. In particular, the corporation knows that about 1.5 billion times users called the starting screen by means of remote telemetry. "So we were convinced that it became the basis for users as we also calculated", - she noted. In the first three weeks from the moment of product release the average client added on average 19 blocks on the starting screen in addition to those which were preset.

Besides, 90% of users of Windows 8 use those functions which were not in such form in earlier versions of a system: it is, for example, search and opportunities for exchange of falls. They are used on average by 2-3 times at each start of the device. More than 85% involve a desktop at the first start of a system and about a half visits app store. The quantity to the program in corporate app store of Microsoft at the same time doubled since system launch a month ago. A row from them more than 1 million times were already started.

SAP was ground under Windows 8

In November, 2012 SAP announced the whole series of the actions directed to support of operability of the systems in the environment of Windows 8 including a fast exit of six customized mobile applications for business coachings, recruiting and sales.

One of six applications is for the first time developed especially for the new Microsoft operating system. The application is called SAP WorkDeck and allows to integrate separate sources of information and processes into uniform work area. Managers will be able to use the application, for example, for control of workflows from the mobile device.

Also all six new applications are used by possibilities of touchscreen which are put in Windows 8, including an operation mode on two screens. Since launch they can be downloaded in Windows Store on the terms of the test version and also to purchase for permanent use.

Besides, SAP also stated that SAP Mobile Platform supports development of custom applications on HTML5 and JavaScript using Microsoft Visual Studio for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 now.

Also German corporation announced that the management system for the mobile devices SAP Afaria is also available to tablets on Windows 8 and other devices based on the Intel processors Atom and Core now. SAP plans application development also for Windows RT and Windows Phone 8.

At the moment SAP offers systems controls of mobile devices also for platforms Apple iOS, Android and BlackBerry OS.

In addition to SAP WorkDeck five other new applications represent:

  • SAP Manager Insight for decision making in the field of personnel management
  • Learning Assistant for carrying out on-the-go of trainings of training
  • Interview Assistant for the organization of process of recruiting, viewing data on applicants and record of results of interviews
  • Customer Financial Fact Sheet for access through the account to financial data, invoices and orders in real time
  • GRC Policy Survey for employees of the companies which will be able to monitor significant changes in corporate rules with its help

The price of applications were not announced.

Bill Gates told about Windows 8

Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, in the video message told on October 22, 2012 about the new operating system and about its influence on a company performance in general.

Bill Gates with enthusiasm told about new product capabilities and about what hopes are laid by Microsoft on Windows 8.

"It is very important product. It keeps Windows to the world of touch screens and low-power devices: world of tablets and smartphones, - he says. – In a new product the company integrates different methods of an input in PC World".

Bill Gates told that the new product will allow all users to have access to the data, favourite applications and documents any minute from any place. "The technology of senseorny devices approaches as it is impossible by the way for accomplishment of modern requests of buyers. and Microsoft in a new product tried to combine all that was in several devices earlier", - Bill Gates continued.

According to him, one more uniqueness of Windows 8 is the fact that during the work with documents, either photos or other data, everything automatically remains in a cloud environment thanks to which the user can have access to the information not only from the mobile device, but also from any other device.

Speaking about entertainments Bill Gates told about already existing hundreds of thousands of applications which will help to have a rest to the user.

Also he told about the new Microsoft Surface tablet computer. "Surface improbable product. It is executed in a tablet form factor, however on functionality it is the full-fledged personal computer, with its performance and other parameters", - Bill Gates continued. - I have a black Surface option and I use it almost round the clock everywhere where an opportunity only appears".

Error: Piracy Windows 8 Pro can be licensed via Windows Media Center

At once on several Internet resources only a month later after official start in sale of Windows 8 information on a possibility of free transition from pirate copies of the operating system to new Microsoft OS appeared. On November 21, 2012 ComputerWorld reported about it.

According to the edition, users of the pirate copies Windows 8 Pro can upgrade programs to the license version, having set the free version of Windows Media Center to receive updates to Windows 8 Media Center, offered Microsoft.

Such opportunity appeared thanks to the built-in function in Windows 8 Media Center on providing a key to license Windows 8. However, according to experts, access to legitimate OS temporary. The possibility of free updating to Windows 8 Media Center will last till January 13, 2013.

According to ComputerWorld, for receiving a key to license OS it is enough to have the working e-mail address and registration for receiving updates of Microsoft. The matter is that in the course of updating of Windows 8 of Media Center a system will not verify authenticity of the installed OS on the user's computer.

Process of providing a key happens via the KMS servers - Key Management Service which were developed especially for that corporate clients could receive updates of the products. This service is temporary and each 180 days it is necessary to update an activation code. However, the users of the pirate copies Windows8 Pro who used this hole claim that at activation of OS, there are no instructions on temporariness of a key.

Microsoft so far did not react to similar actions in any way and did not comment a situation.

The head of Microsoft in Moscow. Demonstration of Windows 8 in 20 demos zones of MTS

Microsoft together with MTS started the program of strategic partnership within which in 20 salons of the operator demos zones with devices on the basis of Windows 8 will be organized. About it to journalists general directors of MTS Andrey Dubovskov and the chief executive of Microsoft Steve Ballmer at a ceremony of opening of the first zone in Moscow godasoobshchit on November 6, 2012.

Demos zones are located in three cities: Moscow, St. Petersburg and Yekaterinburg. In the capital there are 18 zones, and in other cities - on one. It is until the end of the year going to increase quantity of a demo zones, however on how many and in what cities to expect expansion neither in MTS, nor in Microsoft did not specify.

Also in MTS specified that all equipment expenses of special racks and also filling by their devices the companies separated paritetno. The amount of investments into MTS was refused to be called.

Steve Ballmer noted the importance of the Russian market for the company and hoped that by means of such zones clients will be able to appreciate all innovations and conveniences of Windows 8.

The president of Microsoft in Russia Nikolay Pryanishnikov noted that Moscow a demo zone - one of first-ever. He told that the global speed of distribution of Windows 8 and also in Russia, allows to hope for fast expansion of the project on bigger quantity by MTS salon.

It not first partnership of the operator and Microsoft. So in 2011 began to sell to MTS in the retail network mobile devices based on Windows Phone 7. As of the end of the 3rd quarter 2012, sales volume of smartphones based on this OS made 5.1%.

The beginning of sales of Windows 8 in Russia

Windows 8 since October 25, 2012 is officially available in Russia, and technically from 12 o'clock in the afternoon on October 26, 2012 in retail channel Microsoft, journalists were reported about it on October 25, 2012 by the president of Microsoft in Russia Nikolay Pryanishnikov.

He said that until the end of 2012 to Russia more than 200 thousand devices with the preset Windows 8 operating system will be delivered. "It in 10 times more, than was delivered at start with Windows 7 OS for the same period", - Nikolay Pryanishnikov told.

Also he noted that one of the main advantages of new OS is its personification and portability.

"You can carry the Windows 8 with yourself on the USB stick and work under the account everywhere. At the same time all changes automatically remain only on the USB stick. You can select applications which are necessary only to you from new OS, thus it will be the personal operating system", - Nikolay Pryanishnikov told.

In Russia several special offers of OS will work: till January 31, 2013 Russians can purchase the box version of Windows 8 Pro at the price of 2190 rubles, and the key for this version can be downloaded, having paid 1290 rubles. For users with Windows 7 OS since July 1 and until the end of 2013 updating to Windows 8 will cost 469 rubles.

At the same time the normal box version of Windows 8 will go on retail sale since February 1, 2013.

Start of sales: October 26, 2012

Completion of development of Windows 8 was expected in the spring of 2012. According to the accepted turnover cycle of versions, new Windows had to be submitted in June, 2012.

Only on July 18, 2012 Microsoft at last designated date of official release of the new Windows 8 operating system: its sales start on Friday, October 26, 2012. It was announced by the representative of corporation Brandon LeBlanc in the official blog of Microsoft.

Date did not become big surprise as Windows 7 went on sale on October 22, 2009. Industry analysts assumed that sales of Windows 8, following this logic, will begin on October 25, 2012.

It was announced that since October 26 users Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7 will be able to update the version of the operating system to "eight", updating cost concerning other products of the company is rather low and is $39.99. Clients will receive for this amount of the order Windows 8 Pro.

The first updating of OS before start of sales

Microsoft officially announced on October 4, 2012 in the blog the prepared first updating for Windows 8 which release was planned for October 26, 2012.

According to the official statement of the company, updating will concern some built-in applications, such as: Bing, news, weather, photos.

The first application which updating - Bing search engine concerned. Developers claim that they added function of storing of applications and to search in local applications. Also there will be a function of storing of the page for its further use in other applications.

Will have the email application with updating the support improved by IMAP and also an opportunity to accept or reject the invitations sent via e-mail.

The news application to allow to collect content of partners now without need to make out a paid subscription. however, it will concern only limited by the partner by a set of information.

Also in the official blog it is said that till October 26 when the platform is officially started, Microsoft will present still a set of updates and processings in existing applications[3].

Overview of graphics, browser, optimization of the text and rendering

At the end of July, 2012 Microsoft in details told in the blog about those improvements which will be in Windows 8 in relation to the previous versions of the operating system. Here short list of these improvements.

  • Graphics: Several days before the staff of corporation already placed a post that graphic opportunities of Windows 8 will significantly exceed Windows 7: in particular, DirectX which earlier had an opportunity to process 3D will be capable to work as well with "mainstream" now graphics, having become this graphic API platform for all content types: web browsers, e-mail, calendars and applications.

  • Internet Explorer 9: The ninth version of IE will include Windows Live Mail and Windows Live Messenger, including their work will be optimized based on DirectX.

  • Optimization of the text: Text data are of great importance for users of Windows so the corporation worked over acceleration of display of text information on web pages, in programs e-mail and IM clients.

  • Geometrical rendering: Microsoft also reports that it made "radical improvements in work of 2D geometrical rendering". Geometrical rendering is used for creation of tables, charts and elements of the user interface. Improvements in Windows 8 include focus on the high performance of HTML5 Canvas and SVG in applications of Metro of the interface and also Internet Explorer 10.

  • Rendering of images: A number of improvements is also connected with rendering of images and photos in the JPEG, GIF and PNG formats. For example, faster decoding due to expansion of use of SIMD on all types of processors will be provided.

For example, users of video games will be able to suffer improvements of rendering of graphics: in process the browser needs to update "picture", but the text. Now using optimization in DirectX the browser will load data only on a part of the image on the screen in process of scrolling. It will reduce an amount of time, necessary for copying of data in memory and also energy consumption batteries of devices.

Scaling of the interface on screens with the resolution from 1024х768 pixels

Emergence of new iPad with the well-known display of high resolution Retina without delay caused in Network a wave of hot discussions of screens, density of pixels and everything that is anyway connected with it. Microsoft decided not to lag behind the outlined trend and on March 22, 2012 David Washington, the senior manager of programs occupied in line-up of the team of User Experience published article about scaling of the graphical interface of the new version of OS on screens with the different permission in the official blog Building Windows 8.

File:20120323 Announce Microsoft Windows 8 1.png

The most widespread types of screens with different permissions, aspect ratios and density of pixels supported by Windows 8

In particular, her author obviously and unambiguously specified the minimum display resolution maintained by Windows 8, – it will be 1024х768 pixels. It is very important parameter for the creators of the applications compatible to the new Metro graphical interface. A part of developers considered it expedient to lower a level to 800х600 that is relevant for owners of inexpensive netbooks. Microsoft, obviously, considers these devices unpromising and stakes on functionality and external attractiveness of the interface.

File:20120323 Announce Microsoft Windows 8 2.png

The minimum resolution of 1024х768 pixels, according to Microsoft, will give developers a free hand and will allow to create applications with functional and externally attractive interface

According to a number of reliable sources, the release of Windows 8 is planned for October – this month the most successful OS appeared Windows XP and Windows 7. It is expected that new OS will differ from the predecessors in a bigger universality, it equally well should suit devices based on different processor architecture ARM Intel (or), different form factors with different sizes of displays (from tablets with small screens to notebooks, large monitors of desktop PCs and multidisplay configurations) and density of pixels (up to HD). In other words, Microsoft nourishes really Napoleonic idea and aims at one and all client devices.

Optimization for work with wireless networks

On January 25, 2012 Microsoft published technical data on optimization of the Windows 8 operating system for work in the mobile and wireless networks. The new system architecture implemented in this OS offers the whole tool kit for automatic switching between mobile networks and available networks Wi-fi, proceeding from the traffic price. Besides, fast switching between networks, viewing all available networks, including Wi-Fi, mobile networks 3G and 4G and also Bluetooth, in one interface is supported. The new version of Windows will be able even to save connection to network even when switching the PC in the mode of the lowered energy consumption – in the mode of a dream or at the switched-off screen.

Strengthening integration of instruments of wireless access to the Windows 8 system, the company refused obligatory installation of separate hardware drivers. For this purpose the universal wireless driver capable to work with the majority of the known devices is built in a system. This driver does not need to be loaded and activated when the wireless device is connected to the computer.

A system offers the built-in tools for work with networks, controls of radio modules and settings of connections now. All information, necessary for setup, is displayed in uniform summary dialog. In Microsoft even implemented the so-called mode "in the airplane" with shutdown and switching off of all radio modules at once. Many years this mode was available in mobile phones, and now appeared also in the PC.

Process of reconnection to Wi-fi networks is significantly improved – now it takes literally second when the PC enters a wireless network from a standby mode. Such acceleration is reached due to optimization of network components and anticipatory providing connections to the Wi-Fi-adapter of the complete list, networks and other information connection to networks.

Future Windows platform 8 offers support of all popular methods of authorization for Wi-fi networks, including WISPr (Wireless Internet Services Provider roaming), EAP-SIM/AKA/AKA Prime (authorization on the SIM card) and EAP-TTLS (it is often applied in university campuses).

The method of loading of updates of the operating system is changed. At the included automatic update the module Windows Update will postpone background loading of all updates, except the most critical until the computer is connected to network with free or unlimited traffic, for example, to the home router.

The standard Task manager provides the most detailed data on the number of the data transferred and accepted by each of the working applications now.


Demand forecast on Windows 8 from IDC

According to forecasts of Research Firm IDC, first of all in transition not the new version of the operating system from Microsoft, Windows 8, users of laptops had to be interested, and here the new release most likely had to leave owners of stationary PCs indifferent.

Microsoft faced the serious competition in the market of the operating systems (OS) so for it Windows 8 is first of all chance to integrate in one solution the offer for two different segments of the market – tablets and personal computers. "Windows 8 will be as a result not rather relevant to PC users", - analysts consider. "We expect that large-scale upgrade with Windows 7 on Windows 8 in this form factor will not be", the report says.

Explaining this forecast, the analyst of IDC Al Gillen said: "Users will ask a question, "of what value Windows 8 is for my computer?". And the only real answer which I see is the accessibility to app store of Windows app store".

For the first time Microsoft confirmed in August that Windows 8 will provide access to app store and that it will open, in turn, when this release enters a beta stage.

According to Gillen, compatibility issues of applications and also that circumstance that recently most the enterprises passed to Windows 7, will slow down penetration of Windows 8 on the PC.

The analyst of Gartner Michael Silver agrees that Windows 8 will not be in demand in business market. Acting earlier, it repeatedly described this syndrome as "fatigue of business from migration" (on earlier versions of Windows). "After all efforts spent for transition to Windows 7, the organizations will think twice before selecting Windows 8", - the expert considers.

Windows 7 became one of the most successful versions of OS according to the estimates of Microsoft. In total as of September, 2011 450 million licenses of this system in comparison with 240 million in October, 2010 were sold

However, Gillen is more optimistic about the future of Windows 8 on tablets, but its success, he considers, will depend in many respects on capability of Microsoft to convince developers to create software under the new platform or to port already existing programs under the eights Metro-interface.

Criticism of the picture password at authorization of the user

At the end of 2011 it became clear that the graphic feature of Windows 8 which gives access to users to a system at contact of certain points on the image in the correct order can seem to users amusing, but it is not really good in terms of security.

"I think that it is not serious protection", - Kenneth Weiss, the company executive of Universal Secure Registry working on the systems of three-factor authentication said.

According to him, the main lack of the picture password is that drawing by a finger according to the photo on the touch screen is easily fixed by a video at distance that does this procedure quite easily compromised.

Developers of digital-alphabetic passwords assumed such probability and reacted, showing password characters in the form of points in data entry fields so it cannot be copied visually. Designers of the procedure of login of Windows 8 created an alternative to the traditional password, perhaps, realizing this shortcoming, Weis noted.

Considerable problems are presented by creation of the backup copy of the drawing of touches in the procedure of an input. "It is possible to make the description of this sequence, but it is the large volume of records", he told. In general, according to the expert, the authentication system of Windows 8 is more similar to a toy, than to the serious procedure of secure access to the computer. Nevertheless, it is better, than nothing, he and by that awareness of need of safe login increases emphasized.

Failure from software updating of third-party developers

On November 15, 2011 Farzana Rahman, the manager of group on development of Windows Update, in the blog reported that the new operating system will not update the software of third-party developers.

"The broad spectrum of mechanisms of delivery, instruments of installation and the general approaches to updates of all range of applications makes impossible delivery of all updates by means of the mechanism of updating Windows, - told Rahman. - Kind of it disappointed, but it is an important part of an ecosystem at which we cannot look just like that from the available software base".

The statement Rahman as clear as day let know that Microsoft is not going to sponsor other applications. At this time the company offers the clients of updating of drivers for Windows (the working operating system is necessary for updating of files of third-party developers) – by means of the Center of updating of Windows (Windows Update), and from time to time disconnects third-party controls of ActiveX in Internet Explorer (IE) on requests of vendors. And so will be further, told Rahman.

According to her, the company understands and agrees that people should work with several systems of updating in one operating system and it is not optimal.

"Each apdeyter (updater) of the application provides other practice, you should remember that should be started each apdeyter for installation of updates, you do in advance not know when and as they will work that they can make and so on. People prefer to have one system of updating in the program environment", - she told.

With Rahman Wolfgang Kandek, the technical director of the company of Qualys and the supporter of updating of all environment of Windows the centralized mechanism of Microsoft agrees.

"Having taken all updates under control, Microsoft very would increase thereby the prestige, and took a huge step in security", - he emphasized.

He considers that though Microsoft and has resources for check of updating no all appendices, certainly, it can focus on software of the most important suppliers whose products need permanent updating. For example: Flash Player and Reader from Adobe company.

"I would tell that there are several companies, and Adobe one of them where it would be possible, - Kandek told. - Such vendors only a little. These are the solid companies with well checked updates".

Both Flash Player, and Adobe Reader used patches several times this year: by this moment of 2011 of Adobe released nine security updates for Flash Player and five for Reader.

The Danish tracker of vulnerabilities Secunia and group of readers of the blog Rahman appealed to Microsoft about use of the uniform mechanism of updating of all programs of Windows.

Two years ago Secunia offered the standard of updating, but did not get a little broad support. Then Secunia released the PSI 2.0 utility which scans a broad spectrum of the software by the machine Windows, defines when and what software became outdated, and directs users to the corresponding websites with updates where they can download the latest releases. But solution of Microsoft, it seems, final.

OS interface unacceptance for business tasks

Design features of Windows 8 demonstrate that it is rather an a product for private users, than for business. Therefore the enterprises can not make migration on "eight" at all and to wait for the next version, experts consider.

Microsoft released the version of the Windows 8 OS for familiarity by developers recently. Steven Sinofsky, the president of division of Microsoft Windows, called this implementation "impudent transformation".

Really, the new version of Windows differs markedly from Windows 7, Vista and Windows XP. But not always "sharp" differences mean "best". To see improvements in Windows 8, the enterprises should strain quite strongly. Preston Gralla, the editor of the edition, considers that business can just ignore the new version.

Windows 8 offers the new interface which Microsoft called Metro. It completely differs from ever seen in Windows earlier. Being based on the mosaic Windows Phone 7, Metro interface it is obviously intended for tablets. After loading of Windows 8 the user is included directly in the Metro interface, ​​ which consists of a set of large, bright color tiles. Tiles can display changes of information, such as the share price or updates on social network - everything that is preferred by the user.

Clicking a tile outputs the full-screen image, the same as application on the tablet or the smartphone. These windows have no usual menus of Windows, their controls and the size cannot be changed. They are simple in use and are obviously intended for normal consumers.

Windows 8 interface

Windows desktop - other application is simple. After clicking a tile the Desktop the user sees something very similar to a familiar desktop of Windows 7 with normal clickable icons for applications launch, a task bar with sketches and so on. There are some changes – clicking of the Start-up button (it received preference unlike the starting menu) will lead to the Metro interface - but in general, what was seen will be very familiar there.

Nevertheless, for the enterprises the Metro interface can become a problem. Updating to Windows 8 can involve considerable costs of time for retraining of personnel. Possibly, the large volume of reprogramming will be required. Most likely, there will be considerable load of personnel of a support service. To put it briefly, migration can become a nightmare.

Metro, according to Grall, has no clear corporate advantages. The analyst Michael Cherry told that Microsoft yet not "made a product so that the enterprises wanted it".

There is a probability that Microsoft will allow the enterprises or equipment suppliers to disconnect this interface, ​​ or at least to shift it on a background and to give the chance to users of direct loading of the old familiar interface of desktop Windows. But in that case, what sense to the enterprises to install Windows 8? In Developer Preview, at least, there is nothing new to desktop PCs and, therefore, for the enterprises exists the bases for carrying out updating.

It is quite possible that, releasing Windows 8, Microsoft intentionally ignored business. According to the analyst of Gartner Michael Silver

"Microsoft means that Windows 8 passes a turnover cycle. After all works on deployment of Windows 7 are carried out, the organizations want to take a break as were tired of the previous migration".

If so, then Microsoft seized the opportunity of creation of the operating system focused on the consumer and optimized for tablets is that sphere where the companies should be played a game of tag. The enterprises, most likely, should wait for Windows 9, Gralla considers.

Users demand from PC makers of freedom from Windows 8

In October, 2011 producers of personal computers are exposed to pressure from users and non-profit organizations. Communities require that users were given freedom of choice of loading of Linux OS or other operating system except Windows 8.

The Free Software Foundation (FSF) organization urges PC users to sign the application requiring that the OEM suppliers applying UEFI Secure Boot (safe loading of the unified expanded interface of microprograms) to the Windows 8 installation implemented installation process so that users could disconnect UEFI. Or that PC makers provided "a reliable method" of installation and start of the operating system at the choice of the user. It is said in the statement that existence of such choice will provide protection of user rights and security.

FSF also hinted at setting out of purchase of computers from Windows 8 OS. "We undertake not to buy and not to recommend purchase of the computers imprisoning users extremely necessary, and we will actively call people in our communities - to avoid acquisition of similar operating systems", - FSF concludes.

The organization branded "Windows 8 Secure Boot" as "Restricted Boot" (limited loading) as "it can become catastrophic restriction for users of computers, and not a safety feature at all". On Tuesday morning, when the message of fund began to be carried on network, the website of FSF became suddenly unavailable because of "technical issues".

Application of Secure Boot was planned as the mechanism of protection Windows 8 intended for prevention of those types of cracking which are initially aimed at sectors of loading of the operating system. The idea is that only the signed "good code" will be loaded. Ensuring accomplishment of UEFI only in the Windows 8 system will mean that any PC running Windows 8 OS delivered only by OEM partner and keys from Microsoft will not load unlicensed assembly of Linux.

Operation of the UEFI Secure Boot mechanism

The alarm was given by the employee of Red Hat blogger Matthew Garrett and professor Ross Anderson from the Cambridge university. According to Anderson, application of Secure Boot will lead to violation of the law about the competition in the territory of the European Union.

Meanwhile Microsoft shifted responsibility for use of Secure Boot to PC makers. Responding in the blog to disturbing statements of the public, the team member of ecosystems of Microsoft of Tony Mangefeste wrote: "OEM manufacturing are free in the choice of how to them to include this support, and will be able to configure in more detail settings as it is described above to provide uniqueness of offers for the clients".

However, it seems, that producers are not free in Secure Boot use choice. Mary-Jo Foley, the analyst of the ZDNet edition reported earlier that last month at a conference of Microsoft the company expressed obligatory support to UEFI Secure Boot as one of requirements of certification of Windows 8.

In the blog Mangefeste, however, claims: "Eventually, the client himself controls the PC". Answering it, Garret called a denial of the company "in general factual exact" and added "but misleading" as PC makers and Microsoft will hold control over the keys necessary for signing of the code using which the PC will be loaded.

"The truth is that the step of Microsoft discharges the end user of management and transfers him to hands of Microsoft and equipment suppliers. The truth is that [UEFI Secure Boot] does more difficult for start everything, except Windows. The truth such is that UEFI Secure Boot is the valuable and standing mechanism which Microsoft abuses for receiving stricter control over the market. Honestly is that Microsoft did not even try to approve other", - Garrett in reply to the employee of Microsoft wrote.

UEFI — Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) — the interface between the operating system and microprograms managing low-level functions of the equipment, its main destination: it is correct to initialize the equipment at inclusion of a system and to transfer control to the operating system boot loader. EFI is intended for replacement of BIOS — the interface which is traditionally used by all IBM PC compatible personal computers.

Windows applications 8: on what to write also what will work

In September, 2011 it was announced that the Metro UI applications are offered to be written on XAML or HTML/CSS, native - in HTML/JavaScript, C, C ++, C# and Visual Basic. All software created under Windows 7 will work in Windows 8 as the new Operating system uses a former framework. It will be possible to load programs from Windows Store through which Microsoft is going to extend not only programs under Metro UI, but also normal software. Unlike Apple shop for the Mac platform, Windows Store will not be the only distribution channel - developers will be able to sell the software to clients directly.

The statement for reduction of the used RAM up to 280 MB

The constructed based on Windows 7, new system is less exacting to resources, the president of division of Microsoft Windows and Windows Live Steven Sinofsky reported in September, 2011. It showed that the started Windows 8 occupies about 280 MB of RAM of the personal computer against about 400 MB which are necessary for Windows 7. For a full-fledged work there will be enough 1 GB of RAM and the Intel processor Atom of first generation, reported in Microsoft.

Support of ARM processors

In Windows 8 for the first time in family there will be a support of processors with ARM architecture, those which stand almost in all smartphones in the world and also in tablet computers - from Apple iPad to BlackBerry PlayBook. Leading manufacturers of semiconductors by August, 2011 already announced cooperation with Microsoft in this direction. Windows 8 will become the first "desktop" OS from Microsoft which in addition to architecture of Intel x86 will support ARM. However in the developer version provided in September, 2011 it was not yet.

Distribution to developers of 5 thousand tablets with Windows 8

It was expected that the computers equipped with Windows 8 will turn on almost instantly. In September, 2011 Microsoft distributed to participants of the action 5 thousand Samsung Slate PC Series 7 tablets from the preset Windows 8 Developer Preview. Time of start of the device equipped with the Intel processor Core i5, 4 GB of RAM, the solid state drive on 64 GB and UEFI technology is about 3 seconds.

Graphic opportunities

Image:Windows 8.png

Screen of blocking Windows 8

  • Windows 8 actually contains two graphical interfaces and the new Metro interface borrowed Windows Phone and displaying labels of applications in the form of the live tiles updating information in real time will be by default available. So the user will be able to learn instantly, for example, what temperature now on the street whether there is a rain and what affairs at it are planned for the present day - all this information will be available on the home screen.

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Home Windows 8 screen by default

With Metro UI the corporation departs from a usual paradigm - this interface does not support simultaneous opening of several windows. Each application occupies completely all screen and can be or is opened, or is closed. In the closed status it, nevertheless, can receive updates from network. At the same time Windows 8 has the mode which allows to support network connection in a stanby mode.

Image:Windows 8 Экранная клавиатура Metro UI.jpg

Screen Metro UI keyboard

Without leaving Metro UI, the user will be able to start Internet Explorer 10 in which support of multitouch gestures is implemented. The interface of the browser is adapted for the general concept of Metro UI. Work with files is also simplified. For example, the user can cause everything written in a refresh RAM and select action which he wishes to make with them.

If necessary the user will be able to start a usual desktop and to use normal applications.

The first message about Windows 8 in the blog of Microsoft

August, 2011: "Windows 8 will change idea of Windows", - the first blog entry of Microsoft which the president of division of Microsoft Windows and Windows Live Steven Sinofsky addressed to software developers begins such words.

As told Sinofsky, Microsoft for 100% aims to make so that the new platform supported all program and the hardware created counting upon compatibility with Windows 7. The top manager added that for August, 2011 in the world more than 400 million licenses Windows 7 is sold. 

Chapter of Microsoft Windows hinted in what direction Windows 8 developers move. "Today two computers from three and even are mobile systems more: laptops, netbooks, tablets, transformers, etc. Almost each computer has wireless communication. The sizes of screens vary from less than 10 inches to the multiscreen HD systems. Amount of data increased from megabytes to terabyte, and data began to be stored in a cloud. Emergence of touch phones and ample opportunities which they offered forced us to change a view of usual things. For the majority the computer is first of all applications and communication, than operating systems and data. These cardinal changes motivate us to make significant changes in Windows, from processors to interaction methods". 

Apparently, means the new graphical interface for work on touch devices by methods of interaction of Sinofsky. It was possible to gain the first impression about it in June, 2011, after when the company provided the first sketches. 

In relation to the other hardware, including the display size, permission and volume of an internal memory, Windows 8 promises to be the most flexible that corresponds to its formula: cover the maximum variety of devices and form factors. 

"We are familiar with people for whom ample communication opportunities, with those who invest in storage systems are necessary and who wait for the corresponding innovations, with developers, professionals and gamers, each of which expects to receive something special, - Sinofsky writes. - Windows 8 includes such mass of things that we will need considerable time to reveal each of them". 

In the conclusion the top manager said that Microsoft intends to study on the errors - in particular, to make development of the platform more open, to interact more closely with developers and more attentively to listen to their opinion. Sinofsky urged to share thoughts of everyone, having added that the first test releases of a system will become accesses to the coming months. According to ZDNet, the beta of Windows 8 will appear in September, 2011, and the RTM version - in April, 2012. 

According to Andrew Lis (Andrew Lees) from Microsoft, in 2015-2016 the company will cease to release Windows in its present format. By this time important technology transition which will mark the beginning of an era of the universal operating systems which are not depending on device type will be made. 

  • In September, 2011 Microsoft at the Build conference which opened in California submitted the preliminary version of the new operating system, Windows 8 Developer Preview. At the same time the company continues to consider "Windows 8" a code name therefore the commercial name of a system can be other[4].



The head of Microsoft understands that the updated Windows 8 is big risk

On December 8, 2010 information on plans of Microsoft on release of the next version of the operating system - Windows 8 got to the press. Everything began with the unexpected statement on the website of Microsoft in the Netherlands where it was said that in two years of Windows 8 will strike blow to the market.

Accidentally or intentionally, but Microsoft allowed information leak about what potential the new information system Windows 8 will have. In particular, representatives of the company at the last Microsoft Professional Developers conference showed the slides suggesting an idea of an exit of the next version of Windows Server in 2012 though usually this product is updated after a version debut for desktops. The CEO of Microsoft Steve Ballmer, having warmed up rumors, told in one of an interview that the next version of desktop Windows will be "the most risky product".

It is known that Microsoft is not afraid of risks even if sneer at it. According to some experts though Windows Vista (without SP1) also earned bad reputation on a number of reasonable excuses, this risk was necessary as Microsoft considered its effects and improved Windows 7 security system constructed on the basis of Vista. Meanwhile, Vista will become history as one of the worst versions of the operating system.

Whether it is meant by Ballmer when he speaks about risky release of the next version of Windows? And whether there will be Windows 8 of the following failure OS, and Windows 9 will be met by embraces? It is necessary to hope that history repeats itself not so soon.

Scenarios can be the most different. For example, Windows 8 will be only 64-bit and 128-bit, and Windows 7 - the last 32-bit OS. But most likely, the corporation means risk of other plan. Possibly, the economy will not be ready to the new version of Windows if it involves more costs for updating of the equipment from the enterprises. Plus to everything, those who are updated with Windows XP on Windows 7 will not begin to pass to Windows 8 if its functionality is not rather convincing.

Whether there will be this release significant to stimulate transition of the "lagged behind" users of XP and Windows 7? To answer this question, it is necessary to know about opportunities of new OS. PC World announces such potential "centers of gravity": laptops, tablet PCs, desktop PCs and family centers of multimedia. Notebooks will have possibilities of tablet devices, desktops – figurative PCs, and the PC for family will become the next generation of Windows Media Center in which the TV and other devices of media will be connected.

One of possible functions which attribute Windows 8 it "My computer knows me" (My PC Knows Me). She will use the sensor of detection of the movement in the room and, for example, to turn on the PC at appearance of the person. When the user sits down at the PC, a system will scan the person and will provide access to a system. Multiple accounts of users will not be a problem – a system will switch between them. It is interesting function, for example, from the point of view of parents. Even if the child learns credentials of mother, he will not be able to bypass recognition of the personality at the included parent control.

One more new feature of Windows will be equivalent to App Store or iTunes Store from Apple. Microsoft already worked on it in Windows 7 and Vista in the form of games for Windows Marketplace. In connection with the last announcement of Microsoft Office 365, the successor of Business Productivity Online Standard (BPOS) the "cloud" server of Microsoft which is integrated with Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials (Aurora code-named) it is logical to assume their close integration with Windows 8.

There was information that the next version of OS will be called "Windows 365" in which communication of a desktop with "cloud" will be implemented. One of the assumptions: key changes of files of a kernel of Windows 8 will be made via "cloud" servers. Such implementation will allow Microsoft to provide updating of a system (presumably without reset) with big files. Besides, it will help to prevent piracy. If connection about the Internet will be interrupted, the backup copy of files of a core will be used until connection with the Internet is recovered.

According to Preston Gralla (Preston Gralla) from Computerworld, in new release is expected increase in efficiency of use of energy, fast start of a system, improvement of the help and support. It is mentioned that the button of reset (RESET) will allow to restart Windows without loss for documents and applications. Management of the identified profile will be allegedly expanded that will allow it to exist in a cloud and to move together with the user from one computer to another. It is not something improbable too and, for certain, will appear in the next version of Windows.

The first details about future Windows 8

In August, 2010 there were messages that Microsoft works on essentially new and, perhaps, even not one operating system for PC. Microsoft still officially does not comment on future operating system which by the previous analogies already christened Windows 8. However, as always happens, the first espionage information on future version of the desktop operating system of Microsoft company leaked to the Web. On what functionality will load the following operating system after Windows 7, it is possible to tell with confidence that it will be "taking out a brain" the platform - the operating system of the future, wrote to media.

One of former employees of Microsoft with confidence called the middle of 2011 as start date of sales of OS. Then issue of MS Office 15 was expected.

  • It is expected that new OS will be much faster and will reduce energy consumption of devices. Performance penalties at accomplishment of background processes will sharply be reduced.

  • Possibility of authorization on the computer via the webcam, according to the image of the user. It is not necessary to remember a lot of passwords any more and to spend time for their set. And though earlier similar already met on some notebooks, now is going to make such function in a system. And, being authorized according to the image, it will be possible to get access and to resources of the Internet.

  • Still, it is supposed that possibilities of interaction of the equipment with the user will appear soon. In "the future computer", according to Microsoft, the presence sensor which will transfer the computer to the dream mode will be located if the user for a while leaves a workplace, and again will awaken the computer after its return.

  • Data arrive that Microsoft decided to finish an era of Start-up Button which began with the advent of Windows 95 OS.

  • Further development will be gained by it, already pleasant phenomenon as more "transparent" interface.

  • Owners of notebooks for certain will estimate support of dynamic brightness - the option allowing to change in real time lighting of the screen of the notebook depending on amount of light falling on it.

  • There will be a possibility of "reset" of the PC before initial settings with preserving of the user files. This functionality can be useful when the user changed a lot of settings and a system began to work atypically. And though system recovery in case of problems already exists relatively long ago on notebooks or in the form of separate programs, but now this function will be implemented directly in OS.

2009: The first messages about development of Windows 8

When in Russia only began to implement Windows 7 OS, the Microsoft company already started development of the Windows 8 and Windows 9 operating systems. 

Microsoft conducts works on development as 128-bit architecture of a kernel of the Windows 8 and Windows 9 operating systems. Besides, the corporation already conducts negotiations concerning support of 128-bit architecture with the main partners, such as Intel AMD, HP and IBM.

Earlier it was reported that Windows 7 will be the latest version maintaining the 32nd and 64-bit architecture. And Windows Server 2008 R2, the server version of Windows 7, will have only 64-bit architecture. So far it is unknown whether Windows 8 will support 64 and 128 bits, however Microsoft moves on such way, and Windows 9, most likely, will appear with support 64th and 128 bit architecture.

Besides, in the new version of Windows of change will affect support of clusters (cluster support) and support of replications (support for one way replication). Changes will concern also a system core. Improvements will be implemented also in an access mechanism to files.

It is supposed that Windows 8 OS will be released not earlier than 2011. However the most probable term of release of the new version  of the operating system call 2012.