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Thread: Installing Windows 8.1

  1. #16
    Arjay's Avatar
    Arjay is online now Moderator / MS MVP Power Poster
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    Re: Installing Windows 8.1

    John, 2kaud. With regard to upgrading... As I mentioned, it's a real hit and miss for apps to work post upgrade given all the factors (tightened security, accessed reg keys, file locations and so on).

    While Microsoft does extensive testing for upgrade scenarios (they have a complete App Experience team dedicated to it), they can't possibly cover all apps under all scenarios. For the tops apps they go out of their way to make sure the apps work after migration. When problems are encountered they shim the app when possible, and will contact the 3rd party App OEM to let them know their problem. Sometimes the oem is responsive and will create a patch for the app or fix the issue in a newer version of the app. Other times the oem completely ignores MS and does nothing to fix the app. Of course, MS gets the blame for the bad app, not the 3rd party.

    I mentioned that I worked in this team years ago and we extensively tested the top few hundred apps (and had thorough test automation that tested the top 100 apps).

    At that time, there was no way we could test some [unknown] oem vendor that had a user base of 2. While I bet that the top app base has increased since when I worked there (guessing maybe up to 250-300 top apps at present), there still is no way that MS can test the 10's of thousand of OEM apps out there for each upgrade scenario.

    For most of these OEM apps to work is pretty amazing considering the factors involved, but the best chance of this is when the OEM follows the App Compatibility Guidelines, understand the security model, how to classify and store app data, shared data, where to install the app, etc.

    I see many folks post questions here on trying to hack the install locations or to store data in HKLM without elevating UAC and it just makes me cringe because I know that is going to be another 3rd party app that will fail an upgrade scenario.

    App compat is something MS takes seriously, but it's definitely a dilemma: should MS not make security improvements and bug fixes that could potentially break existing apps; or should they make them and potentially break the apps that are not in their testing matrix?

    No matter which direction is taken, someone is going to not be happy. I'm guessing that Microsoft has taken the approach of making the OS more secure (which is the correct decision, imo).

    Because of all these factors, I believe the recommendation is to clean install the OS and the apps. When this isn't a possibility, a new option may be to turn the existing OS install into a vhd and run it on a host machine as a vm.

    Good luck to both of you in your upgrade scenarios.

    P.S. If you have problems upgrading, call 1.8MY.APP.SUC3

    Disclaimer: As before, even though I'm an MVP, my opinions are my own.
    Last edited by Arjay; November 6th, 2013 at 11:53 AM.

  2. #17
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    Re: Installing Windows 8.1

    I'm doing it as suggested by Arjay in post #10. Make a vhd image of my existing XP setup and run it under hyper-v. Make the best of a bad job.
    All advice is offered in good faith only. You are ultimately responsible for effects of your programs and the integrity of the machines they run on.

  3. #18
    John E is offline Elite Member Power Poster
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    Re: Installing Windows 8.1

    Thanks for all the advice guys. Perhaps I'm missing something but I don't quite see the relevance of hyper-v to this particular scenario. I can see how hyper-v technology would work if I wanted to try out a particular OS on some other hardware. If it allows you to move an OS around without losing your apps and data, it's probably well worth considering, if only for that reason! But I don't see how it helps if I want to keep my apps and data on the same hardware but simply upgrade to a newer OS. Am I misunderstanding something

    On a slightly different note, since I installed 8.1 I've been wracking my brains trying to think where I've seen it before - then this morning it suddenly occurred to me... Windows 2000!!! Once you finally get through to the Windows 8 desktop it looks remarkably similar to the Win2K of old. The icon text even has a curiously "embossed" appearance which I'm sure I remember from around that time. Perhaps that's also the real explanation for the absence of Aero Glass? I sense a conspiracy here

    Rather than being an evolution from Windows 7, I'm seriously wondering if Windows 8 isn't just an old, largely forgotten OS that's been dressed up in a slightly newer suit? Time will tell, I suppose but once you've noticed it, the similarity in their appearance is unmistakable!
    "A problem well stated is a problem half solved. - Charles F. Kettering

  4. #19
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    Re: Installing Windows 8.1

    Am I misunderstanding something
    You can't upgrade XP to anything except Vista and keep the existing programs. So create a vhd image of the existing xp setup, then do a clean install Windows 8.1. Then use hyper-v under Windows 8 to run the vhd image of xp as a virtual machine under 8. Without doing the xp->vista->7->8->8.1 cycle, this is the best that can be done.

    See
    http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/win...the-right-way/
    and various linked articles
    All advice is offered in good faith only. You are ultimately responsible for effects of your programs and the integrity of the machines they run on.

  5. #20
    Arjay's Avatar
    Arjay is online now Moderator / MS MVP Power Poster
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    Re: Installing Windows 8.1

    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    Rather than being an evolution from Windows 7, I'm seriously wondering if Windows 8 isn't just an old, largely forgotten OS that's been dressed up in a slightly newer suit? Time will tell
    All versions of window NT have been incremental changes since the original NT3.1 version. Win8 are just code changes of the Win7 code base. Sure sometimes various module get written as new code from time to time, but the vast majority of the code is brought forward with only tiny changes. If this sound surprising, consider this. It's extremely difficult to test a code base of the size and complexity of NT. The only reason MS is as successfull is that most of their testing is regression tests of and existing code base.
    If MS started from scratch each time, Windows would take forever to ship due to trying to work out all the issues in the new code.

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