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Windows 81 features that make upgrading a smart move

first_imgIt’s not uncommon to be nervous about updating to the next version of an operating system on release day. In other words, if you haven’t made the jump to Windows 8 yet, you are not alone. Upgrades uses to be fraught with problems and potential hazards that could render a perfectly good machine perfectly useless, all in the name of having the next-best-thing. Fortunately, that’s not the case with Windows 8.1 — it’s very much worth the installation if you are running Windows 8 already.If you’re looking for a few good reasons to update to Windows 8.1, we’ve got them for you right here.Windows 8 tutorialsWe’ll start off with the biggest failure of Win 8, and how Microsoft delivered in a huge way with Windows 8.1. The first time you boot a Windows 8 machine you get a large screen with a background that is constantly shifting colors with calming statements about how your computer is almost ready for use. Tossed in with that is a quick blurb about how the new start menu works, but that’s all you get. This was a huge deal for Windows users who have gone from a UI that has been around for well over a decade to a completely new “Modern UI” setup. There was very little explanation, and on a laptop or desktop it could take a while for the user to figure it out on their own. Frustration was high in the early days of Windows 8.Windows 8.1 users are greeted with giant interactive arrows that explain how many of the features work. You get one for the Start button and a brief explainer of how the Start Page works. You get one for the Charm Bar and a brief explainer of why that exists, and you get one for the multitasking feature in Modern UI, which is a big deal for some. You don’t get one for closing apps in Windows 8.1, but we’ve got you covered.Improved Modern UI multitaskingOne of the really cool features to come from the new Modern UI was the ability to set apps up in a split screen mode. You could have a Modern UI app open in one third of the screen and anything from a browser to the Desktop open in the other two thirds. This turned out to be a really cool feature for a lot of users, especially those who used apps like Twitter or email and wanted to keep them open without letting them take over the rest of the system. Unfortunately, in Windows 8 you could only split the screen into thirds.Windows 8.1 has increased the functionality of the screen split, allowing a pair of apps to split the screen. The previous implementation was good for smaller apps, but now you can split just about any app and share it with anything else in your system. This is particularly useful for Xbox games or Xbox Smart Glass if you’re sharing with the Desktop or Skype. This is a great system for multitasking once you have adjusted to using it, but new users will find it strange at first because the Modern UI apps behave a little differently than traditional desktop apps.Next page: Improve or skip the Start Page, and Microsoft’s Remote Desktop App… 1 2last_img read more

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