Windows 8: the joy, the tears, the remove-myfingernails-with-pliers-is-less-painful……

Ok, I admit I use Windows all day everyday.

I started with Windows when it was version 1 on 5.25″ floppy drives and took 6 hours to install on a 80286 computer…  (yep, that old !)

The pain of Windows Me, further failure of Vista, and numerous ‘do not update until Service Pack 1 is tested by others’, the grief with UAC, etc. However, the pain of Windows 8 makes all of that pale into insignificance.

Stupid tiles on a desktop corner settings that require the precision of threading silkworm threads through pinholes, and the assumption that we like the iPad therefore we must like Metro.

Bah, humbug!

Ok. So I have my new Toshiba Kira notebook with touch-screen but I really prefer the old-school desktop. Shades of XP with Windows 7 but not Metro.

So today I embark on ridding myself of the Windows 8 settings that irk me.

First up, the extra picture lock screen that I have to dismiss to get to the login screen on start up.

For this there is a simple group policy edit setting.

1. The group Policy option: from the Start screen (the tiles screen) type ‘gpedit.msc’ (ignore the No apps found message as you type – it will come up when the full filename and extension is complete) and press Enter to run it.

2. Select Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Control Panel -> Personalisation

3. In the Setting list is ‘Do not display the lock screen’, just Enable this Setting option and Apply or OK.

4. Close the gpedit application and the lock screen will no longer appear.

Next I want the desktop to be my default screen with the task bar at the bottom with the apps I need constantly. I might be being old-school but the Start screen with bulky icons is not useful for me. So desktop view, menus, a Start button all led me to Stardock Start8 which installed in 20 seconds, configured in less, and only costs $4.99!

Not sure what I’ll find next that needs fixing in Windows 8 but with these items done, I think I can get back to real work.

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