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An Overview of New Features

Windows 8 is Microsoft's next major release of Windows, due to appear on the market in late 2012. Windows 8 comes with many changes making it one of the most significant instalments of the operating system since Windows 95. Following is a list of the major changes that people can expect to see in Windows 8.

Metro interface: The start menu and taskbar that have been around since the days of Windows 95 are gone with Windows 8, although a taskbar and desktop are still available for running older software and other programs not designed for the Metro interface. The Metro interface uses shortcut tiles and a full-screen interface of a similar style to the Windows Phone 7 operating system. It is particularly well optimized for touch-screen devices.

Windows 8 Store: The new Windows 8 Store is Microsoft's version of Apple's iTunes in many ways. This is where you will be able to purchase all of the new applications for the Metro interface.

Integration of Windows Live Services: Windows Live services such as Hotmail, Skydrive and Messenger will all be integrated into Windows 8 and you will even be able to log on to Windows using your Windows Live password.

Better performance: Windows 8 boots up a great deal quicker than Windows 7. This is due to the partial hibernation mode as well as various other tweaks to the operating system. On newer computers, Windows 8 starts up in under then seconds. Windows 8 also uses less memory thanks to cutting down on the number of running processes.

Better support for multiple monitors: In desktop mode, the taskbar can now span two or more monitors without requiring any additional third-party software. It's also possible to have different desktop backgrounds on each monitor without needing a third-party utility.

Better task manager: The new task manager has vastly improved. The advanced view allows you to see all sorts of performance information, disable startup programs and track system resources.

Windows Explorer changes: The ribbon interface which was introduced with many Windows 7 applications has now reached Windows Explorer, providing easier access to the most frequently used features. Windows Explorer also provides native support for ISO files and virtual hard disks.


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