If you have Windows 8 or 8.1 you probably think that Windows 10 isn’t going to be a lot different. You will see from the screenshots below that there isn’t a lot of navigation differences. What you will see is performance difference. Not just the look of the icons but the true performance differences when navigating and moving across your network.
The first operating system truly made for touchscreens and pcs.
In the screenshots below, we go from 9879 to 9926 with Cortana. And where is the Charms bar? It’s not there. Look for Settings in the menu (See the last pictures below)
The login primarily stays the same as Windows 8.1. The login screen contains the date, time, network status and battery information. After swiping the screen or hitting enter, you’ll see the familiar login where you can select a user, restart, shutdown, reboot, network and accessibility options.
The desktop icons are the first appearance difference you’ll see. If you are use to Windows 8 or 8.1, you’ll notice the right click is still in place but right clicking the menu you’ll see a menu that combines the best of Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1 is in place.
What makes the new menu powerful is the fact you can customize the menu by resize the app icons or make it bigger. While we can by no means show you all of the available options, you’ll find the options simply by looking for the resize icon or by right clicking and customizing the menu.
Basic features that have been around since Windows XP, Vista or 7, such as MSconfig is still in place.
Navigation in the left pane allows you to travel between devices, libraries, folders, drives and more.
The manage your computer option is still available by right clicking on This-PC (computer). The device manager is more detailed and the left pane’s menu remains the same.
System information is available in several locations but the most popular place (right clicking and going to the properties of your computer) still gives information about your computer that you’ll be familiar with. Control Panel, Remote settings, System Protection (which is not used by consumers the way it should be), advanced system settings, security and maintenance and Windows Update.
Double clicking This-PC shows the familiar listing of libraries and drives that are available. The navigation pane on the left remains the same but the performance when moving between files, drives and your network is much faster.
While this is a virtual computer that we are using for testing, we see no delay in performance and actually see an improvement in speed.
Users should remember that hitting the Alt key a menu will appear on all areas of Windows explorer offering many more options from mapping drives, burning DVDs, mapping drives, bitlocker and dozens more options.
If you always want to see the menu (and I believe this should be the default that Microsoft loads), you can click on options and folders and select always show the menu. The average consumer is unaware of the Alt key to show the menu muchless the folder options to always show the menu.
The security and maintenance area offers an area very few people travel to. Troubleshooting can fix and resolve problems usually with a few clicks, Recovery can get them back on track in the even they load malware or viruses or even a program that wrecks your computer. Troubleshooting takes into consideration the most needed fixes. One feature, fix problems with Windows Update, is the most overlooked.
If you select get help from a friend, you can use the problem step recorder to record what is wrong with your computer. This can save time when describing the problem. It allows your friend to ‘see’ the steps you took.
Did you know you could save a file history of important documents so that when you edit them you’ll always have a backup. You can chose where to save the files and how often.
Microsoft Windows has to have one of the best settings screens – the Control Panel. There are so many options inside of the control panel, Microsoft literally makes it easy for advanced technicians and home users. While there are very few things that are new, there are options that have been added to help home users and techs.
Are you a multitasker? A true multitasker? You can easily add a desktop to organize yourself even more.
The charms bar has not gone away. That’s ok. If you understand that the Charms bar is a quick shortcut to items you may change the most frequently. No it’s not new but you really should see what is over there.
A quick save or send to email or Onenote, a device menu to allow you to quickly connect to a projector or to print and more.
While the settings menu takes a lot of criticism, you need to understand that it is a quick look at the settings that change frequently. PC Settings allows for updates, data usage, synchronizing your pictures and data to the cloud and tons more.
Did you know if you have more than one Windows computer, tablet or whatever that you can synchronize settings?
As of this writing I’m installing 9926. The new preview released several weeks ago with dozens of new features.
Microsoft’s got it together and Windows is better than ever.
The Charms bar is now the Setting icon (above). You’ll notice if you click it and select a setting below, the settings will appear from where the charms bar was before.