Windows 8 doesn’t suck – if you tinker a bit.

In my previous 3 posts I’ve spoken out against Windows 8. I am no fan of the metro UI, and a tablet OS and tablet apps have no place on the desktop.

I have been a fan of the good stuff in Windows 8,¬†noticeably the vastly improved 2d rendering performance and the visibly less routine IO, makes your system feel snappier and your SSD’s last longer or your traditional HDDs quieter. Built in Hyper-V is also a bonus. But the metro stuff, err excuse me so called “Modern UI” was up until now a show stopper.

This is until I came across an interesting way of obliterating the Metro UI. You can do this by installing the Windows 7 explorer.exe shell Рcompletely replacing Windows 8 shell, and at the same time get all the performance benefits. There are some minor drawbacks but it is possible: http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/157302-windows-7-explorer-for-windows-8/

Another excellent alternative is just to use Classic Shell : http://classicshell.sourceforge.net/. This means you still have metro lurking around, but you’re in control of when you want to enter “Metro land” – more or less. And you demote Metro from being King of the realm on your PC, to being the lowly peasant it deserves to be.

Once you’ve done this, Windows 8 starts looking like a real operating system, and actually a better operating system than Windows 7, but there are some problems still.

If you’re into skinning your OS, Windows 8 hasn’t caught on to skinning. You get one default look and that is it – this will change as more people adopt Windows 8, but right now not even Stardock have a working product. Windowblinds isn’t yet compatible with Windows 8.