Alright, it's available and everyone now gets a lot of those things they've wanted. The Start Menu is expected to arrive soon.
So, what do people think?
- I've changed things mostly back to the way they were. I'm one of the odd-balls who actually liked launching to the Start Menu (I have a weakness for live tiles, which began with my WP7 phone, I guess).
- I'm a fan of the power button on the Start Screen, though I'm not sure how often I'll use it.
- The little "x" on the apps could be useful occasionally, though probably more on laptops with a touchpad than on a desktop with a good mouse and pad combination.
- The new IE11 options are probably things people will like. I turned them back to the way they were. But, I know some people really like having address bars and tabs always visible.
- The "search" button on the Start Screen just seems silly, though I guess it's useful for people who don't know that you can just hit "Windows" and start typing.
Anyway, that's my review after about 20 minutes with it. I'm sure I'll discover other things. But there are certainly some major positives, not the least of which is that most of these things can be changed. Ironically, I feel like I have to be happy that I can revert to the "new" and do away with the "old" that is so demanded. Not sure how I feel about that, personally. I'm not sure if this makes me resistant to change or what.
Edit: Here's an explanation for those who would like some guidance on what's new: http://blogs.technet.com/b/askpfeplat/archive/2014/04/07/exploring-windows-8-1-update-start-screen-desktop-and-other-enhancements.aspx