For the record, I’m not a fan of Windows 8.1 as a desktop or laptop operating system. Surface Pro is another story. My first recommendation for a business with a desktop or laptop is to remove that operating system and install Windows 7 Pro because of 8 high learning curve and incapability to many legacy windows applications. With that said, downgrade to 7, wait for Windows 10 if you can or get a Mac but here are some solid Windows 8.1 support questions answered if you are stuck with it.
- Windows 7 never required you to sign up with the cloud when setting up your windows user account profile. In Windows 8 you feel very inclined to do so or you may be missing out but on what? Microsoft created a hooptie version of Apple’s app store and Time Machine. Anyone coming from the Apple environment knows the App Store by Apple has a bazillion apps and it makes the iOS very fun for the consumer and productive to a business professional. The Time Machine does an excellent job of recovering not only your data but your applications for both iPhone and Mac OS upon restoring your device or Mac. These are all under the umbrella of icloud.com.
I call Microsoft app store hooptie because the apps in the “metro app interface” are simply not there or deficient for most people’s needs like Google’s Play and Apple Apps Store. I’m quite not sure of the branding of Microsoft’s version of Time Machine but it does a very poor job if there are trying to perform similar backup results. It backs up the app store apps “metro apps” that no one uses, the desktop background, favorites, and Sky Drive. You are pretty much SOL on legacy windows 7 documents, picture, video, and desktop data. Make sure you download something like Mozy Home Free Edition to cover your backup to the cloud needs. Bottom line, create the Microsoft App account but it is not necessary for most of your computing needs. The alternative is simply creating a “local account” and cruise around like its windows 7.
- Is Windows behaving crummy for whatever reason? I recommend downloading the ISO of the windows 8.1 and burning it to DVD. This actually really cool because the most basic version of windows 8.1 does not require the factory Windows recovery DVD. It uses something called SLIC BIOS in combination with UEFI to install without you having to input a license but I digress. Downloading and burning the ISO will allow basic windows 8 support San Diego for situations like:
– System refresh of windows
-Transfer data to backup when the computer won’t boot.
-Built in safe mode for windows if the computer won’t load.
Alternatively, safe mode comes up if you power off and power on back on midway through the boot. Not recommended but a quick way to get to safe mode.
- Change BIOS to load CSM for enabling the ability to load legacy OS DVD and bootable CD utilities. CSM may also be labeled as UEFI. Feel free to disable that for troubleshooting purposes. UEFI works differently in that does not load the OS from the boot sector of the hard drive. Feel free to google more on that subject.
*SIDE NOTE: The original Windows Keys for Software and OS are located here. Use this before wiping the computer. Windows 8 key located here (OA3Tool) for downgrading the OS.
- Be prepared if you are a user of Windows 8 and would like to upgrade to 8.1. Some device drivers may not work and therefore something like your wireless network card or you keyboard may stop working. Back things up prior to the upgrade for minimal down time.
- Microsoft Security Essentials is a pretty good free virus protection program you can download for Windows 7. There’s no need to download and install this program for Windows 8. Windows 8 uses defender that is basically rebranded Security Essentials.
- It is extremely advisable that you download Classic Shell to regain a similar look and feel as Windows 7 start button.
- The dreaded auto reboot fix can be found here.
Hopefully, this helps you navigate the relatively new operating system. Microsoft has done a poor job mixing tablet features and cloud apps all while trying to maintain their old windows client base. Understanding these quirks will help you avoid future problems.
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