Windows 8 install/upgrade – simpler, easier, faster!!


It seems Microsoft have indeed been listening – in response to a survey which indicated that the majority of users find the upgrade installation process complex and challenging, they have streamlined, enhanced and simplified the whole shebang for Windows 8.

Windows 7 went a long way toward alleviating the struggles when applying upgrade media, including Upgrade Adviser and Easy Transfer tools. Windows 8 will integrate both tools into a single, end-to-end installer which is capable of performing all preparatory tasks; compatibility checking, settings/files transfer, etc. and requiring as few as 11 clicks total – compared with the four different products and up to 60 screens when migrating to Windows 7.

This non-destructive installation has also been streamlined by applying changes to the way in which existing personal data/files are protected. For Windows 7, each file and document was moved one by one and then re-instated once the upgrade was completed. The Windows 8 installation will move entire folders instead, making the process considerably faster.

One major enhancement has come about per medium of Microsoft’s decision to provide official online delivery of a consumer-related Windows operating system for the very first time. Users will be able to download and install Windows 8 directly online from start to finish. The digital download will come ‘pre-keyed’, so it won’t be necessary to enter a serial number during installation, and the Windows 8 install image will be a slimmer 1.51GB – as opposed to the 2.32GB for Windows 7 x86.

Advanced users will still be able to choose from a range of options to give them full control, the clean install process is essentially unchanged, although an impressive 50% faster.


This from the Microsoft Setup and Deployment team:

With Windows 8 setup we have greatly improved both speed and ease of use, while still retaining all of the advanced setup functionality that many customers will demand. We have integrated what was once many separate steps for people to perform when preparing and starting their setup into a streamlined user experience, with a fast and reliable setup engine under the hood.

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About the Author

Jim Hillier

Jim is the resident freeware aficionado at DCT. A computer veteran with 30+ years experience who first started writing about computers and tech back in the days when freeware was actually free. His first computer was a TRS-80 in the 1980s, he progressed through the Commodore series of computers before moving to PCs in the 1990s. Now retired (aka an old geezer), Jim retains his passion for all things tech and still enjoys building and repairing computers for a select clientele... as well as writing for DCT, of course.

5 Comments

  1. Hi Jim,
    The MS story sounds very nice, but when I bought an upgrade to Win 8 for my computer I didn’t have anything to choose. I probably got a 64 bit copy (the computer I used for downloading uses Win 7 64 bit) but without asking me anything MS decided I should accept a gb-en copy instead of a us-en copy–and that certainly is not what I want. Arrogance of power I call this. I am tempted to run Linux Mint instead of Win 8.
    By the way, do you know of any possibility to download Win 8 the same way as it could be done with Win 7–and then use the license key I have already?

    • Hi Henk – The way MS is marketing Widows 8, plus the possibility of delivering annual upgrades, leads me to believe that we may never see downloadable ISOs available.

      However, when you went through the upgrade process you should have been offered the choice of creating bootable media, either by creating an ISO to burn to disc or via creating a bootable USB flash drive… I was.

      Cheers… Jim

  2. Hi Jim,
    Indeed, I had the choice of creating bootable media–but not the choice of the language I wanted. I am quite sure that if my computer should have a dutch Win 7 version on it they would have given me a dutch Win 8. Even if I didn’t want it. MS probably knows better what I need than I do myself.

    Best wishes, Henk

    • Hey Henk – If I recall correctly, I was not given any language choice when going through the upgrade install… only English-UK. But after creating the ISO and burning to disc, I was presented with all the choices during installation…. of course, I selected English-Australia.

      Windows 8 has actually expanded on the way in which different languages can be applied and added:

      *From within the Start screen; type in ‘languages’, click on Settings and then select “Add a language”… or

      * From within the desktop; open Control Panel and select ‘Language’.

      Hope that helps,
      Cheers… Jim

  3. Hi Jim,
    Thanks for your remark about the language choice during installation! You really help.

    Greetings, Henk