Windows 8 developer preview

I recently downloaded the developer preview version of Windows 8 and installed it into a Virtual machine. Obviously I was expecting some teething problems as I installed it, and I got them!.

First problem was that I downloaded the 64 bit version, with the intention of trying this in Oracle VirtualBox, however I could not get as far as the setup before it crashed with an unrecoverable error!.

Not to be deterred, I downloaded the 32 bit version instead. At this point I thought I’d try it in Virtual PC instead, the thought being that a Microsoft product is more likely to work with a Microsoft Virtualisation engine than an Oracle one!. When I tried this version in VPC, I entered the setup only to find an error “HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED”. Again, I was stopped dead!

I did get the 32 bit version installed and working under VirtualBox, and I did get the 64 bit version working on a Hyper-V instance.. This enabled me to get it installed and up and running…

During the install, I found some interesting things. One thing that could be nice is the ability to log in via a Windows Live ID. This should mean that things like bookmarks, favourites, personal settings etc should all be synchronised between devices. I guess that could be useful, although probably not if you have a Windows 8 computer and an iPhone/Android I guess! 🙂

Options for logging into the computer
Options for logging into the computer

Having gone through the setup options which are mostly very similar to other Windows installations, I was presented with the Welcome/login screen. This is much prettier than previous versions of Windows so I thought I’d share it!

Windows 8 Welcome Screen
Windows 8 Welcome Screen

So, from beginning starting to install the Virtual Machine to being ready to login took a little under 20 minutes – this is much quicker than previous versions of Windows, easily as quick as if not quicker than most Linux installations that I’ve done, and I’m told is quicker than a Mac install, although I’ve no personal experience of this. Next post will concentrate on some things that looked a bit different to previous Windows versions once I logged in.

New web host upgrade – new blog

I’ve just upgraded my web host, I was running out of space on the old website, and they offered me a free space, feature and bandwith upgrade on their new servers at no extra cost. Unfortunately during the move I’ve managed to lose my orignal blog contents through an inadvertant database deletion (ahem!). I could recover the posts from a backup, but this seems as good a time as any to start fresh and create some new content with a new version of wordpress and new themes.

It’s very frustrating to have lost some of my old blog content but there wasn’t huge amounts there and mostly wasn’t that useful. So here’s to a new set of blog posts that are better than ever!

Nicks general ramblings about anything and everything