Microsoft launched the Windows St0re for the Metro apps along with their release of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview,which was released initially with the Metro based apps for the new Windows 8 platform.
Though the Windows Store would primarily feature the purchase and downloads of the Metro based apps,Microsoft clearly mentioned at the release of the store that the desktops apps can be listed in the Store,which can inturn link to the original sellers site for further purchase and download.
As reported earlier by CNET Microsoft Office 2010 became the first desktop app to be listed in the Windows Store.Though unlike the Metro apps which allows the direct install and purchase option for the Metro apps,This listing points to the external links from where the customers can buy and download the apps.So for the desktop apps the links will open up in Internet Explorer to the particular sellers site.
Though this is an indirect way to sell the desktop apps,we can expect some changes to the Windows Store in future to boost the sells of the desktop version of the apps.
When the WAIK has finished downloading, mount it (using the Virtual Clone Drive) and then open the installer which will appear as a CD drive. Once the setup loads click ‘Windows AIK’ from the sidebar and follow through the installer.
Once the installation is complete navigate to (If it was installed to the default location):
C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools
If you have a 64 bit computer open the “amd 64” folder. Alternatively, if it is 32 bit open the “x86” folder. Copy the “imagex.exe” file and paste it in the root of the C drive (C:\). If a warning message appears click ‘Continue’.
Next, mount the Windows 8 Consumer Preview ISO. Then open command prompt by typing “cmd” in the start menu. Right hand click on it and select ‘Run as Administrator’.
Plug in the external hard drive or USB stick. WARNING: All existing data is going to be erased from the device.
Next, enter the following commands:
All the disks currently connected to your computer will then be displayed.
Replace * with disk number you are going to be installing the Windows 8 Consumer Preview on.
select disk *
create partition primary
format fs=ntfs quick
Replace @ with the virtual CD drive letter (the mounted ISO).
Replace # with the drive letter of the external hard drive or USB stick.
C:\imagex.exe /apply @:\sources\install.wim 1 #:\
bcdboot.exe #:\windows /s #:
To finish the installation you will now need to restart your computer. Make sure that it boots from the USB stick or external hard drive. (If you don’t know how to do this check with your PC manufacturer or look in the bios settings). The computer will then restart several times (make sure it boots from the USB stick each time).
Next, enter the product key and confirm you agree to the terms and conditions. Then fill out the personalization settings to complete the installation.
You now have a portable copy of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Remember not to remove the USB stick or external hard drive whilst the computer is running the Windows 8 Consumer Preview.
All of us know that Windows 8 beta is coming in February along with the release of Windows 8 Store which will also feature free apps at the launch of the store next month.
Last month while previewing the Store Microsoft also started a contest for developers who are eager to bring their creation first up to the Windows 8 Store.The developers who advance to the next levels of the competition would get a private version of Windows 8 build for testing out their apps with a NDA for the same.
ZDNetcaught up with some of the developers working to bring the first breed of apps to the Windows 8 store to discuss about their experience with the Windows 8 development.Here’s what some of the developers had to say about it,
Tim Greenfield who has developed PuzzleTouch Jigsaw Puzzles said,
Beau Gunderson who developed Read it Later for Windows 8 store said,
I’ve been a Windows developer for a long time. I started out with a copy of Visual Basic 4.0 a friend’s dad who worked at Microsoft gave me when I was in middle school. I’ve written desktop apps (none of which are commercial) and have worked freelance on some ASP.NET web applications. Most of the Windows applications I’ve written are available on Github:
Some of the common issues the developers had is the lack of proper documentation and some things are documented keeping in mind only one specific computer language.With the updates coming to the windows 8 beta we can expect a vast improvement on the documentation front and some other minor issues to get fixed.
Microsoft has earlier showed Windows store during big events like the CES which is believed to be one of the biggest feature in Windows 8. Windows Store would be seen in action during February 2012 when Microsoft releases the beta version of Windows 8 to public. Yesterday the guys at Microsoft has written a detailed post on the Windows Store for developers blog showing most of the features of Windows 8.
Wang writes in the post-
The fundamental building block of our Store design was to ensure that people could easily discover and quickly acquire apps. While this is a somewhat obvious goal for a catalog or marketplace, it’s actually pretty challenging when the size and diversity of the catalog grows as quickly as we expect to happen in the Windows Store.
Further he discusses all the major parts of the Store in detail like the landing page, editorial topic pages, data-generated lists, app listing pages, and the search, browse, install, and update experiences.
Wang has stated in the post that the main emphasize was on content instead of the UI, so the so the store lending page shows the app instead of other things. All the new and exciting content would be featured on the Store landing page. Browsing between the apps has been made very easy with just a flick of a finger.
Searching in Windows Store has been made simpler and indeed searching is one of the most common way for the customer to discover apps. You can easily search by tapping the Search charm. You can search app either using categories or using the more general search query. Also the apps will appear immediately as soon as you begin typing in search box.
Installing and updating apps using Windows Store can’t be more simpler than this. Here is what Wang states-
Because we strongly believe in aiding app discovery, we’ve made a conscious decision that the customer shouldn’t be taken out of their context once they’ve started installing an app. We don’t believe you should have to stare at a progress bar and count every second as it goes by. Likewise, staying on the app listing page for the app you just acquired leaves you at a dead end with nothing to do. Instead, as soon as the installation starts, we take you back to the previous page you were looking at, so you can continue your shopping experience; in many cases, that’s the landing page, or a category page, or another list of great apps to try that you were previously looking at. Our lab research validated that people liked the continuity of getting one app and then going on to discover more.
Wang has also specified that you can install one app which you have purchased on upto total of 5 Windows PC and if you want to install on the 6th PC you have to uninstall from one of your devices. Further if you have made settings on one device, the settings would be preserved on other devices as well.
For what we all know at the moment is that Windows 8 is coming in the second half of 2012.Talking about more specific dates,if we have a look at the history of launches from Microsoft,October has always been one of the favorite spot to bring in new product,be it Windows 7,be it Window Phone 7.
To add some more to the recent history is a recent report by Pocket-Lint,as while talking with Janelle Poole, director of public relations of the Windows Business Group, said:
“We haven’t talked about the release date and we generally don’t. We are talking milestone to milestone, so for us right now we’re talking about the next milestone being the consumer preview happening in late February.
“One of the things that I think is a good guideline though is we’ve always said that Windows releases come round about every three years and this year will be three years in October since we launched Windows 7. So I think that’s a good guideline to consider.”
So with the manufacturers also lining up their Windows 8 based ultrabooks and tablets during the similar timeline,this might very well turn out to be a fact.We’ll keep an eye on the release of Windows 8,Watch this space for more Windows 8 Scoop.
We are just a few weeks away from the official Windows 8 beta launch along with the Windows 8 store launch,but that won’t stop us from a glimpse of what’s in store for the beta.
At CES 2012 Tom Warren who’s now representing TheVerge at CES,got a hands on with the Windows 8 pre beta build.The newer build of Windows 8 8175 to be precise includes a bunch of new features like touch gestures,closing Metro app from the view also the new Music/Video app can be seen.
There have been many leaked screenshots floating around over the past weeks,showing some color customization in Windows 8 for the custom Start Screen,those leaks were indeed the real deal as confirmed by Microsoft .
Now as reported by Win7Vista via WZor the Windows 8 Beta build has been signed off and the final windows 8 beta build will be 6.2.8175.winmain.111217 -1215.The build is already doing the rounds on the devices of small close circle of testers from Microsoft.So there’s a chance that we might get a glimpse of it at the CES 2012 event if Microsoft decides to showcase the beta build to the attendees.
In a recent event when Microsoft revealed the Windows 8 store also revealed the tentative Windows 8 beta release slated for February 2012 along with the Windows 8 Store release,but now with this news of Winodws 8 beta already being prepared we might very well see the leaks floating around the web sooner rather than later.
One of the newest and innovative features of the upcoming Windows 8 Operating System from Microsoft is the Log On Picture Password Feature which uses Touch Inputs and Gesture patterns to log the user into the system.
Till now there were no such noticeable criticisms regarding the feature functionality until now,Kenneth Weiss the creator of 2 factor authentication system,who runs a business of 3 factor authentication called Universal Secure Registry criticized the feature saying that it’s rather a cute feature,but it doesn’t provide serious security,as reported earlier by NetworkWorld.
According to Kenneth there are some major flaws to the Windows 8 picture password feature like,one can record the touch pattern on the screen from a long distance,so can compromise the security of the system.Those who have designed the alpha-numeric password security are well aware of this flaw and as a counter measure they have responded to it by having password characters appear as dots on the screen so the password can’t be copied down.
Kenneth also said that the Designers of Windows 8′s picture login feature are also aware of it hence have made a traditional password as an alternative login method.He also put forward yet another concern about backing up the pattern saying,”To put down a description of the sequence is possible, but that’s a lot of writing”.
What do you think about the new Picture Password Feature of Windows8 ? Let us know in the comments.
The leaks of Windows 8 screenshots continue with the latest one coming from Win8China.The latest screenshots reveal the installation of Windows 8 Beta build which is slated to be released in late February along with Windows 8 Store.
The first screenshots shows the Product key screen,the major difference is that the installation is now optimized for the on screen keyboard unlike the previous versions,so you can straight away switch to the OSK mode to type the product key right from the touch input method.
The new Windows 8 beta setup shows up options for “keeping windows settings”,personal files and apps or choose to “keep nothing” from the previous Windows installation.So when you choose the Keeping windows settings option your previous windows system files and apps will be retained after the installation while the keep nothing option won’t move the previous version files to the newer version,so those earlier files won’t be retained in the new system installation.
Last week we reported about windows 8 beta being in the final stages and that the last build is being signed off,so it won’t be a surprise if we get an early windows 8 beta release even before the tentative release.
There is no stopping the leaks of the Windows 8 Store,yesterday we saw some leaks showing up the music beta app from the Windows 8 Store and now Win8China have added some more leaks to the Windows 8 Store list.
The latest leaked pictures of the Windows 8 Store reveals the Panoramic Mode of the Windows 8 Store.As we can see from the First Screenshot below the panoramic mode of the Windows 8 Store shows up various app tiles like the Weather app,Socialite app then the games,music and other apps in the panoramic view.
You can see the zoomed in screenshots of the App tiles from the Gallery below,The first block reads:”Have a new computer, but are not sure where to start? To your computer to install the necessary applications.”
Then it shows up the Weather and Socialite app as mentioned above,the 2nd block in the panoramic view lists the Games in the Windows 8 Store,3rd and 4th blocks shows up the Music app,video and the books and references apps while the 5th and 6th block showing up news and weather and some other stuff.
[click on the thumbnails to enlarge the images]
Windows 8 Store will launch along with the Windows 8 Beta release in February next year,but that won’t stop the flurry of leaks of Windows 8 and Windows 8 Store pictures over the web.We can expect some more leaks in coming days.