Microsoft insider

Microsoft announce three versions of Windows 8

There will be three different editions of Windows 8 to choose from at launch.

By Matt F-Smith 17/04/2012 12:52

Microsoft will offer a simplified range of editions for its next operating system. For PCs and tablets powered by x86 processors (both 32 and 64 bit) users only need choose between Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro.


Windows 8 will come in three different flavours. Image Microsoft



Windows RT (the newest member of the Windows family and third edition ) will be available pre-installed on PCs and tablets powered by ARM processors.


For most home and casual users, the regular Windows 8 will be more than capable of serving your needs (you can upgrade from Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic and Home Premium).


For businesses and PC enthusiasts go for Windows 8 Pro edition (Pro will allow upgrades from Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate respectively).


Windows 8 Pro includes all the features found in Windows 8 plus a few additions that offer encryption, virtualization, PC management and domain connectivity tools. Windows Media Center will be available as an economical “media pack” add-on to Windows 8 Pro.


Windows RT will help enable new thin and lightweight form factors with impressive battery life. It is also the only version of Windows 8 that will include touch-optimized desktop versions of the new Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote straight out of the box.


A table detailing 'some' of the new features found in the various Windows 8 editions can be viewed on the official Windows blog.

18/04/2012 11:58

I am looking forward to Windows 20, it will be operated by your eyeballs, in

3D, by a chip embedded in your brain.


18/04/2012 17:37
I have been beta testing Windows 8 on my touchscreen desktop computer and although some items and programs are good in windows 8 - I feel that unless you want to go down the road of Apple supporters where only their products can be used on their tablets, phones and computers and run on nothing else, then stick to windows 7 and don't bother paying a massive price to line the pockets of Microsoft's shareholders for a new operating system which will be frustrating to learn and use and is of no use to many people.  This is just a way of getting regular money out of purchasers as Apple do all the time with regular upgrades and expensive add-ons.  Many popular programs on XP and windows 7 are missing in windows 8 and unless you use a Microsoft compatible phone and a Microsoft X-box this will be of little use to you unless Microsoft reinstate many of the favourites they have removed.  Many XP and windows 7 programs will not run in windows 8.  I'm sure that you will hear this over and over again from many other people so please listen and read the comments carefully.
17/04/2012 16:18
As I keep saying, unless you add in the old start menu on the desktop tile, this WILL be a Vista .. have fun failing, Microsoft.
17/04/2012 17:52
So I would lose my Media centre unless I upgraded my version of "7" first, and for what? I have already tried the "test for compatibility" mode, and yet again, a lot of what I have will be obsolete, and this for a top spec PC only 18 months old! Will doing all this change my life for the better. No! So I will stick with "7" until I absolutely have to change, it's quite a rip off for Microsoft to continually bring out new systems that really are no improvement on XP Pro!
18/04/2012 06:21
If i want something that looks and operates like a windows phone then i will buy a windows phone.but what about all the programs and hardware that are not compatable with windows 8 ???. yet another rip off from microsoft just like vista was. i for one will stick with windows 7 untill i have no choice but to change but maybe by that time microsoft will be almost bust becouse of 8 and give the punters what they actualy want.
20/04/2012 19:04
Tried the Windows 8 Consumer Preview and have to say didnt like the look at feel and as others have said, the absence of the old start button and programs was a real nuisence.   Did find a trick to add it to the taskbar, however seemed too fidley for me.    Will stick to Windows 7.
17/04/2012 21:04

  Do we really need this 8 ? its more like phone software just another money spinner for Mr Gates

22/04/2012 09:48
Windows 8, good for tablets but not for pc's.

installed it used it and deleted it.
I tried both the Developer version & Windows8 Consumer Preview version and found ONLY ONE thing in Windows8 that beats Windows7 - and that was IE10 - it was FAST, RELIABLE & VERY, VERY STABLE (they said that about IE9 but on my machine IE9 CRASHED every 10-15mins & no one could find a solution - not even Microsoft UK - so I use Google Chrome). My system has an AMD Dual Processor, 4GB RAM, ATI 1GB Graphics card, 500GB HD & is about 18mths old & is above the specs required for Windows8.

I would advise anyone to stick with Windows7 and hope we can get IE10, sometime in the future, as a stand alone browser - I say this as Microsoft have stated that IE10 will ONLY be available as part of the Windows8 OS.

I also see that other comments mention about staying with Vista & XP - just remember, there is NO MORE support for the Vista OS (windows updates etc.,) & support for the XP OS stops next month except for XP Pro, that support stops this time next year. With this in mind, I suggest anyone who has an older OS to Windows7 upgrade to it as soon as possible - it is fast, reliable & the most stable OS to come out of Microsoft - and I have used them all - even as far back as Windows 3.1
21/04/2012 16:26

I'm hoping Microsoft has something up thier sleeve. Windows 8 is not a business tool! No real multi-tasking (everything in full screen...?!) and a pain to move around in quickly with a mouse. I can only assume that Microsoft have decided to forget PC's, and that we all must use tablets, if we like it or not. Guess what, I already have a tablet and have no reason to buy a Windows one. You're too late MS. However, I want a DESKTOP OS, on my PC, so I guess Windows 7 will be around for a long time.

Even the server version of windows 8 says 'Tap here to add features' So IP KVM's, rack monitors and RDP will all be touchscreen soon will they Microsoft..?!

I'm normally an early adopter of new Microsoft OS's, this is the first time in 15 years I have thought that they have got it all wrong. If anyone from Microsoft reads this, please remember that it's workstation users with keyboards and mice, that actually create things for business! Try designing an engine with CATIA or AutoCAD on a touchscreen.. we don't really want to have our arms up in the air, poking a screen 8 hours a day.

21/04/2012 09:01

So Media Center is an economical  add on!!. Sorry but it looks like its for Pro only so I first have to upgrade to Pro then get Media Center. I'm afraid that unless there are major improvements to media center (built in BluRay support ) then I will stick with Windows7.


20/04/2012 08:01
everybody wants new and better but most of the time new is not better untill its been running some time and most of the bugs have been worked out by the experts i.e. the people who buy them they are the true experts the ones that dont get paid vast sums of money YOU THE GENERAL PUBLIC
22/04/2012 02:56
I hate the Beta with a passion its horrible I will not be buying it!
18/04/2012 13:14
tried 8 too complicated and crashed my pc (8core processor 16 gig ram ati graphics) I'm sticking with 7 pro my misses said eight's to big any how lol
01/05/2012 23:30
wish I could go back to Windows 98. XP was good but after all the updates became as slow as a lame donkey, Vista was just a mess that wasn't compatable with nearly everything. 7 was the bandaid for the Vista mess but has since had that many updates that its turning into a lame donkey also. I'm now so sick of windows products taking over my PC and telling me what I can and can't do with it that I won't be getting version 8. It's an OS, it's a platform/interface that other software, Business, Games, Educational, Entertainment or Whatever I choose to run on it, not something that dictates what it will allow me to run. I have two PC's and a laptop One PC is an old dual core with XP, the other PC is a quad core with Win7 and the laptop is a pentium with Win95, the difference in boot time for them all is within half a second, a far cry from the faster to load boast when each got released.
19/04/2012 17:19
Seems shortsighted that there is no direct upgrade path for people with regular Win7 who want to become "PC enthusiasts".
18/04/2012 13:17
Is it FREE or yet another thing to be paid for?????? Love Brian's comment lol
19/04/2012 19:33
i have not seen anything from microsoft to better xp so i will stick with that
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About Matt
  • Matt Farrington-Smith on Tech & Gadgets MSN UKMatt Farrington-Smith

    Matt is the editor on MSN Tech & Gadgets with a slant towards Microsoft products. Matt has been writing for the web since 2004.

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