One of five whimsical Windows 8 Pro upgrade package designs, available for pre-order on Friday.
Microsoft opened up pre-orders for several upcoming products on Friday, giving people the opportunity to be among the first to upgrade to Windows 8 Pro or get their hands on a Windows 8 device. Microsoft is making the $70 physical Windows 8 upgrade package available through several retailers. While most manufacturers have released pricing details for upcoming Windows 8 devices, Microsoft has yet to reveal how much its Surface RT tablet will cost.
As you probably know, Microsoft made big news last week showcasing the new Metro user interface to appear in the next major update to Windows. Finally, after specifying the name and location for the virtual machine, as well the size of the primary hard drive (I chose 40GB), I clicked on the Customize Hardware button on the last screen, and adjusted the memory size to 2GB (since that’s what listed as a requirement for the x64 version of Windows 8 Developer Preview on the Microsoft web site). This step was needed to ensure that the installation of Windows 8 would begin as soon as I started the virtual machine. Create a blog accountIf you would like to submit an article to the ASP blog, please log into the members-only area of the ASP website and then contact ASP Blog Technical manager. The real first question is this: Are you looking to upgrade your existing computer, or do you want a brand new machine? Installing Windows has gotten easier over the years, and Windows 8 might be the cheapest, most painless upgrade yet.
The SP stands for Service Pack, and both of them are updates you can easily download before you get started.
First and foremost, if you've got Windows 7 Professional or Ultimate right now, you'll need to upgrade to Windows 8 Pro. Note that neither version comes with Windows Media Center, and Windows 8 Pro is one step closer to getting that home entertainment software suite. 32-bit and 64-bit refer to your processor's underlying architecture, but you don't really need to know much about that.
Mind you, these are the minimum requirements, and you might want a bit more horsepower if you’re planning to run CPU- or GPU-intensive programs.
If you’ve ever installed a previous version of Windows, you’re about to find out that Windows 8 is a breeze by comparison. If you’re installing fresh, you’ll need to burn the ISO to a bootable USB flash drive or DVD drive, using the very same Microsoft tool, and tell your computer to boot from those instead, and you’ll need to backup any critical files ahead of time so they aren’t wiped out when you reformat. Some of these machines run Windows 8, with all the features in the full desktop operating system, while others run Windows RT. It’s getting harder and harder to distinguish what the word “laptop” means anymore, but the traditional clamshell certainly has a place with Windows 8. It looks like even lowly netbooks will be preloaded with Windows 8, so clamshells can be a cheap way to get in on the game.
You don’t always need a keyboard to use Windows 8, however, and so the PC industry’s built a whole host of tablets to welcome the new operating system into the fold. Some of them have detachable keyboards, like the $599.99 Asus Vivo Tab RT, which comes bundled with one. If you’re sure you’re going to use a keyboard with your tablet, though, you might decide to buy one where it’s permanently attached. For $999, the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 stands out with its crazy 360-degree hinge and a surprisingly reasonable price, but we’re also not going to underestimate the charm of Sony’s $1,099 Vaio Duo 11 and Toshiba’s $1,149.99 Satellite U920T sliders. Before Windows 8, all-in-one computers seemed like mostly a space-saving exercise, a way to store components in the same area as the screen. So far, we’re tracking prices as low as $749 for the basic Samsung Series 5 All-In-One PC, with a 21.5-inch screen, and $800 seems to be a good starting point for an entry-level AIO with a touchscreen. All-in-one PCs aside, there aren’t a lot of desktops specifically designed for Windows 8, but there are plenty of desktops that will run the OS, and you’ll be able to get a whole variety of peripherals to add the touch experience back in.
Which is the right Windows 8 PC for you?Click here to see our full Windows 8 hardware StoryStream, chock full of new laptops, desktops, tablets and convertibles. So there you have it: a list of your options if you absolutely, positively must get Windows 8 on the day of launch. While this could sound like a pretty serious bug, it’s actually caused by third-party anti-virus software that blocks the launch of Modern apps. Surprisingly, most anti-virus products have already been updated to work with Microsoft’s latest operating system, but according to a lengthy thread on the Microsoft Support forums, the problem appears regardless of the installed anti-virus tool.

Kaspersky anti-virus, Avast and AVG Internet Security 2012 are some of the security tools that could block Modern apps on specific Windows 8 machines, according to users’ reports. While compatibility issues are most likely at fault for the issue, many anti-virus products have already been updated to work on Windows 8. On the other hand, Windows 8 also comes with its very own security product called Windows Defender, a previous anti-spyware product now capable of providing real-time protection against a wide array of threats. Microsoft claims that Windows Defender is automatically disabled once the user deploys a third-party anti-virus product, but the built-in app cannot be completely removed from a Windows 8 machine. The company announced in a blog post that consumers can now reserve a copy of its Windows 8 Pro upgrade package, as well as pre-order Windows 8 devices from select manufacturing partners.
And there are even fewer details about Surface Pro, the version of the tablet running Windows 8 Pro, which does not yet have a set release date or price.
Since I’ve been using VMWare Player to test my products on many different version of Windows,  I thought I would use it to create a new virtual machine for Windows 8. Finally, I started the virtual machine, and sure enough, the installation of Windows 8 started. You can download an official Microsoft program that will install Windows 8 right over your existing copy of Windows 7, Windows Vista, or Windows XP, and depending on the version, you can maintain your files, settings, and possibly even your installed programs.
From vanilla Windows 8, it will cost you at least $70 to upgrade to Windows 8 Pro with Media Center, but if you’ve already got Windows 8 Pro, Media Center will be an inexpensive incremental download. With the exception of a few Intel Atom processors in netbooks and nettops, most machines where you'd want to install Windows 8 can use a 64-bit version of Windows. Point your eyes to the right to see pricing options, then continue on down to the install process. If you’re upgrading over your existing OS, it’s the same basic set of steps we described for the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. There are also fancier options, like setting up a dual-boot arrangement or installing on a separate partition.
If you just want a disk for backup purposes, you can burn your own DVD or bootable USB key with the $39.99 downloadable version.
Some manufacturers are updating their touchpad software to support Windows 8 gestures, while others are actually adding touchscreens. You can easily hold them in either landscape or portrait orientations, and most come with full-size USB ports and have SD card slots to augment their storage.
Come October 26th, you’ll be able to choose touchscreens that twist, slide, spin, or even fold backwards into tablet configurations. Peripheral manufacturers including Microsoft and Logitech will have touch mice and touchpads available, and several manufacturers will offer touchscreen monitors, which you can connect to a desktop or laptop.
This time, Microsoft users complain that Windows 8 Modern apps do not launch at all after upgrading from Windows 7.
Registered users have access to the quickest possible download speeds and can also access additional community features such as our "Download Alert", which automatically notifies you when a new version of this software is available. Most of these have an estimated delivery date between 14 and 21 days, putting arrivals between Oct. So, add us to your ad blocker’s whitelist or pay $1 per week for an ad-free version of WIRED.
So I downloaded an ISO image of Windows 8, (I chose the 64-bit version with the developer tools included), created a fresh virtual machine, and started booting it with the Windows 8 ISO. Because VMWare player does not understand the Windows 8 ISO disc contents yet, and providing it at this stage will only confuse it. It looked a lot like the installation of Windows 7, so I’m not including the screen shots here. I clicked it, of course, and saw the regular Windows desktop, that looked almost exactly like Windows 7. On October 26th, the day Microsoft launches its new operating system, you'll be able to choose from a tremendous array of laptops, desktops, tablets and even some computers that defy traditional form factors. If you're looking for a new laptop, tablet, all-in-one, or crazy transforming computer, click that little "new Windows 8 machine" button on the left to skip downwards. Both versions have the full Windows Desktop, the new Start Screen, all the new gestures, and the ability to install both traditional software and apps from the Windows Store.
In fact, for right now, it's free: Microsoft is giving the Media Center pack away free with Windows 8 Pro until January 2013.

That's also what you'll probably want to get, because without 64-bit you can't take advantage of more than four gigabytes of memory in your computer.
You use an automated setup tool to download the necessary files, it informs you if you have any incompatible programs, and then you let it install. A touchscreen on a clamshell won’t be for everyone, since that keyboard can get in the way, but it can be rather nice if you occasionally want to touch the screen. Many of those keyboards even have an extra battery inside that can double the tablet’s battery life. If you’re looking for a stationary computer with a touchscreen, they make more sense now than they ever did before.
My 2012 Internet Security still has 10 months to run, if AVG come up with a solution for 2012 then I will reinstall,” one of the users wrote. When I tried reinstalling it didn't even work, so I moved to the McAfee EPO agent and that seems to work fine. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Conde Nast. You'll be able to pick from no fewer than five different types of processors and three versions of the operating system in all.
What Windows 8 Pro adds is primarily a bunch of business-friendly features like BitLocker drive encryption, file encryption, client-side Hyper-V, the ability to join a Windows Server Domain, and to host a Remote Desktop. Then, you just set a number of setting sliders to determine how Microsoft handles your privacy and overall experience (or tap a button to skip past them) and you’re done.
Windows RT computers will likely have higher battery life, but they can’t run your old programs. We also have to mention the exceedingly thin, gorgeous $1,199.99 Acer Aspire S7, with a glass-covered lid that opens a full 180 degrees, so it can lie flat on a table for two people to collaborate.
The downsides are usually a fairly low screen resolution of 1366 x 768, and typically, less processing power than you’d fit into a laptop. Microsoft’s own $499.99 Surface RT has a keyboard built right into one of two optional magnetic covers that fold around the back of the machine and can protect its screen too. Many can also double as multimedia centers thanks to their large, high-resolution screens, integrated speakers and DVD or Blu-ray drives, and some even have the TV tuners and HDMI input required to double as a small TV set. It really is a gigantic 20-inch tablet, which weighs about 11 pounds and comes with a removable battery offering an estimated 3.5 hours of battery life. You’re looking at the first wave of hardware for a pair of unproven operating systems, and while it’s new and exciting stuff, we’ll be bringing you full reviews of these devices over the coming weeks to help you make balanced purchasing decisions.
I wish the compatibility check would of caught this when upgrading,” another one added.
Although this is only a preview, we have put together a list of free software that is compatible with this release. You’ll only be able to use apps from the Windows Store, and even then you can only use apps designed for the new user interface, not new desktop apps. Either way, check out our reviews of Windows 8, the Microsoft Surface, and the Asus Vivo Tab RT to see what Microsoft’s new platform is capable of. There are also desktops that act like tablets, and tablets that act like laptops, and laptops that fold into tablets too.
Next up, Atom chips will have the full Windows 8 experience, but with the performance of a netbook. An AMD Z-60 will have even less battery life than Atom, but possibly slightly better graphics.
AMD A4, A6, A8, and A10 ups the performance and lowers the battery life across the board, and finally Intel’s Core i3, Core i5 and Core i7 are generally the top of the heap as far as pure performance is concerned. If you want some of the power of Intel’s Core but slightly longer battery life, look for a U at the end of the name.
The Core i5-3317U, for instance, still drains batteries far faster than an Atom or Z-60, but should handle most non-intensive tasks with ease.

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