Ensuring that Windows installs properly across a variety of hardware
and software configurations has always been a major challenge, and one
that Microsoft has never solved to the satisfaction of all users.
Microsoft has already taken some big steps forward in this respect with
Windows 7. Its next version of Windows promises further improvements, as described in the latest edition of the Building Windows 8 blog by Christa St. Pierre from Microsoft's setup and deployment team.
The Web setup process also integrates the product key, sparing people
from having to manually enter it. Users who want more control over the
installation can also run an advanced setup from a DVD or USB key.
Microsoft has also combined several tools to simplify the Windows 8
upgrade. In Windows 7, the company offered both an upgrade advisor to
tell users which applications were compatible with the new OS and
Windows Easy Transfer to save and restore key files and settings. Now
both tools are fully integrated into the Windows 8 setup.
So a user who upgrades to Windows 8 will encounter one single
end-to-end process and as few as 11 clicks, compared with the four
different products and up to 60 screens required to jump to Windows 7.
Windows 8 users should also see the entire upgrade fly by faster. For
Windows 7, each needed file and document would be moved one by one and
then moved back once the installation was done. The Windows 8
installation will move entire folders instead, thereby speeding up the
process. Other tweaks also promise a quicker upgrade experience.