Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

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Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Dec 30, 2013 11:14 pm

Went back to Windows 7 because my uninstall and power options magically disappeared in 8.1, and plus AMD doesn't have an official Catalyst out for the 4000 series for it yet and I was using some hacked drivers that had some wonkiness.
I thought it would still feel like an upgrade, but surprisingly I'm already missing 8.1. I think the single biggest thing is lack of the Synaptics Windows 8 trackpad driver, really accurate and near-60fps smooth scrolling is really worth a lot which you realize when it's gone. If I could get that driver working in 7 that would be great, but I don't think it supports that level of scrolling smoothness at an OS level (am I wrong?).

I'm using an older multitouch driver that HP had out for Synaptics (on my Dell, heh), the official 7/8 driver won't install.

I also miss the much hated start screen actually. Being able to pin big tiles to it helped you remember what was installed. Plus lots of other tweaks throughout Explorer, and animations were smoother on it too, 7 is fairly smooth but on 8 most UI animations were near perfect.

Grumble grumble. I'll probably go back forward in a few months.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 6:12 am

Yeah, that was why I stayed with 8; the smoothnes part.

I just needed to install Classic Shell to allow my brain to function. :lol:
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:40 am

I did get the official Synaptics windows 7/8 multitouch driver installed now, but like I suspected only 8.X supports smooth scrolling at an OS level. Windows 7 scrolls in smooth chunks at best.

The Windows 8 version of the same driver is *really* damn good, best trackpad driver for Windows I've used, it's short from being Mac-good but it's like 80% there.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 10:37 am

As an Elan touchpad user on Win 8.1, I've approximately very jealous.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:10 am

Duct Tape Dude wrote:As an Elan touchpad user on Win 8.1, I've approximately very jealous.


How is that driver in 8? No smooth scroll I'm assuming you mean? Is there multitouch?

Yeah, right now Synaptics + Windows 8 seems like the best trackpad experience possible on Windows.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:14 am

We've done some recording testing now with 8.1 and honestly other than having to use Start8, things are going well. We do get some weird mouse issues when we hit get above about 150 channels of recording at once. I think we're going to have to use 2012 R2 with our new box since it's a 4 processor box. (Recording 256 channels audio is OK, but trying to process that .....)
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:47 am

tipoo wrote:How is that driver in 8? No smooth scroll I'm assuming you mean? Is there multitouch?

Yeah, right now Synaptics + Windows 8 seems like the best trackpad experience possible on Windows.


I have an Asus Zenbook and unfortunately the driver situation is really terrible for Elan touchpads. I tried several drivers, they each had one or more of the following problems for me:
  • No deadzone for the buttons (buttons are integrated into the touchpad itself, it's a clickpad thing so even if the driver was good, it was useless if this problem existed)
  • Very poor palm detection compared to synaptics
  • Multitouch was overly sensitive to the point of uselessness
  • Touchpad freakout (touchpad confused, wait a second or two to let it know you just want to two-finger-scroll)
  • Poor tracking response
  • No smooth scrolling

Unfortunately, this left me with the Asus touchpad drivers and their proprietary configuration app, which is bulky, sometimes buggy, and has an added problem of setting several power options to maximum power (ie: minimum CPU throttle, Intel Graphics Power Plan, etc) whenever certain multitouch gestures are used (scrolling, rotating, etc). Other than that it's pretty decent and improves the Elan drivers to maybe 80% of a Synaptics solution, but I had to find a way to kill off the power changes since it was murdering my battery life. I solved that by creating a scheduled task to run some powercfg commandline stuff every time it detected a power plan change event (hooray Windows Events and Task Scheduler!).

So, I solved it, sure. But nothing beats installing a default Synaptics driver and having everything just work.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:52 am

This is very interesting, tipoo. Thanks for your thoughts.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:03 pm

BIF wrote:I just needed to install Classic Shell to allow my brain to function. :lol:


Same here! I install it on everything, that and FileSearchEX for classic search too. I'm holding my breath Windows 9 will help me.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:43 pm

I rage-installed / bought Start8 after 2 months of daily Windows 8 usage.

A more level-headed person would have probably just downloaded Classic Shell :roll:
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Feb 10, 2014 9:27 pm

Does anyone use Startisback? That's what I've been using since the first day I got my new laptop with windows 8 and I've never had to complain on TR about the drawbacks of the windows 8 UI.
I like Windows 8.
Seriously.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Feb 10, 2014 10:43 pm

I've personally just used the Windows 8 UI and not had to complain about the Windows 8 UI
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Sun Jun 08, 2014 11:21 pm

I have tried classic shell, startisback, start8, and a couple of other pieces of software that added the start button back to the taskbar in windows 8. Of all of them, I liked Start8 the most so I decided to pay the $5 to Stardock for it. Im using Start8 now on 3 different machines and don't miss Windows 7 at all because I never even see the tiles screen on the desktops and its just like you are still using Windows 7. So for everyone out there thinking about downgrading from 8 to 7, there really is no point unless you want to use Windows Media Center since its not free with Windows 8 unless you were an early adopter like me and got it for free with Windows 8 Pro upgrade which I got for $40. Spend the $5 and you wont even know you are using Windows 8. I have the best of both worlds on my Yoga 2 Pro, touch screen capability and windows 7 like desktop functionality.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:05 am

One of the saddest things about mobile products is that nothing comes close to Apple's touchpads. Can't do anything about that, but you can completely bypass the Windows 8 UI by using one of the programs that gives you back the Start menu. I installed Classic Shell and set a few settings, and I haven't seen the Start Screen since. It looks like Windows 7 but with all the smoothness of 8.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 9:57 am

FireGryphon wrote:One of the saddest things about mobile products is that nothing comes close to Apple's touchpads.

TBH I'm not thrilled with the one on my work-issued iPhone. On a fairly frequent basis, it interprets a touch-and-hold or drag as a tap instead. Seems to get worse in low humidity, so I think the capacitive sensors are having trouble sensing my finger when my skin is dry. When it starts happening I can usually get it to behave by exhaling on my fingers a couple of times (this must look rather odd to anyone near me).
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:11 am

Prestige Worldwide wrote:I rage-installed / bought Start8 after 2 months of daily Windows 8 usage.

A more level-headed person would have probably just downloaded Classic Shell :roll:

Close, but no cigar. I've used both and Classic Shell, is, well... open-source. Works, but the UI doesn't look or act completely like you'd expect it to.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:12 am

FireGryphon wrote:One of the saddest things about mobile products is that nothing comes close to Apple's touchpads.

According to reviews, some do come close, but it's always the more expensive laptops that have them.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:19 am

just brew it! wrote:
FireGryphon wrote:One of the saddest things about mobile products is that nothing comes close to Apple's touchpads.

TBH I'm not thrilled with the one on my work-issued iPhone. On a fairly frequent basis, it interprets a touch-and-hold or drag as a tap instead. Seems to get worse in low humidity, so I think the capacitive sensors are having trouble sensing my finger when my skin is dry. When it starts happening I can usually get it to behave by exhaling on my fingers a couple of times (this must look rather odd to anyone near me).


Not to derail the thread even further, but I love my Windows Phone. Back in May the wife and I upgraded our phones - we were both using androids at the time. She went with the iPhone 5s and I went with a Samsung Ativ Windows Phone.

Between the two, I greatly prefer the Windows Phone... it's smoother, more responsive, and far more intuitive. It doesn't have nearly as many apps, but then again I never used that many in the first place. For the stuff I use it for - making calls, surfing the web, reading news, maintaining my schedule, and email - it works very well.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:48 am

Duct Tape Dude wrote:As an Elan touchpad user on Win 8.1, I've approximately very jealous.

As a fellow Elan touchpad user: Elan is the worst.

chµck wrote:Does anyone use Startisback? That's what I've been using since the first day I got my new laptop with windows 8 and I've never had to complain on TR about the drawbacks of the windows 8 UI.

I use StartIsBack on my Windows 8.1 laptop. I find it to be better than the alternatives, even though it isn't as free as Classic Shell.
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Re: Downgraded from 8.1 to 7, some thoughts

Postposted on Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:09 am

Ryhadar wrote:
Duct Tape Dude wrote:As an Elan touchpad user on Win 8.1, I've approximately very jealous.

As a fellow Elan touchpad user: Elan is the worst.

chµck wrote:Does anyone use Startisback? That's what I've been using since the first day I got my new laptop with windows 8 and I've never had to complain on TR about the drawbacks of the windows 8 UI.

I use StartIsBack on my Windows 8.1 laptop. I find it to be better than the alternatives, even though it isn't as free as Classic Shell.


I use startisback as well. It's not free, but with a license going for $3 for a single computer, it's about as close to free as I can imagine.
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