Since, like XP, it has quickly become the new Windows standard, Windows 10 is getting better and better with every major update. At its core, Windows 10 combines the best functions of Windows 7 and 8 and dispenses with controversial functions such as the full-screen start menu.
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Windows 10 was released in 2015 and aimed to create a fresh and low-key operating system experience. It is now standard on virtually every PC. Whether you're deciding to make the jump to Windows 10 or want to know exactly how they compare, let's examine some key differences between Windows 8 and Windows 10.
Note that Microsoft will no longer offer updates or support for Windows 8 starting in 2023. Therefore, users should plan accordingly.
The start menu is back and better than ever
One of the most common complaints about Windows 8 has been that Microsoft has given up on those who love the classic desktop and start menu that makes up the majority of Windows users. With Windows 10, they wanted users from XP to 8.1 to feel right at home.
Much of this campaign is based on the return of the start menu. The Windows 10 Start Menu works similarly to previous versions, but it also adds the tiles from Windows 8.
The tiles are moveable and resizable, and the start menu is highly customizable overall. The tiles in the new Start menu work similarly to the tiles in Windows 8. Windows 10 also broadcasts live tiles from Windows 8, which display personalized information.
The search bar in the Start menu is much more robust than in previous versions of Windows. Once you start typing, the operating system tries to find search results for your topic on the Internet and on your local computer.
Classic vs. universal apps
In Windows 8 and 8.1, apps from the Windows Store took up the entire screen, making multitasking difficult. While Microsoft tried to force the mobile home screen on users, many users felt that essential components had been removed from the classic desktop. Windows 8 offered two different experiences, neither of which appealed to the target audience.
In Windows 10, apps downloaded from the Windows Store can be used on Windows. Combined with the ability to run multiple virtual desktops at the same time, working on Windows is much easier this time around. The same Windows Store apps are already available in the Windows 10 Technical Preview. As the operating system evolves, there will inevitably be new additions and improvements that will make multitasking even easier.
Visit the Windows Store for more information
The Windows Store contains a number of useful applications that were made explicitly for the Windows 8 Start Screen, but which left Windows 7 users in the dark. Microsoft made the Windows 10 Store a tool that all users will appreciate. It combines the functionality of Windows 8 with the feel of Windows 7 that many users missed when upgrading to 8.
Do it yourself
In Windows 8, the focus was on large icons and simple choices. The home screen allowed you to quickly arrange and resize live tiles, increasing their functionality and usability.
In Windows 10, the classic desktop and the tiled user interface are no longer different interfaces. Instead, elements of both are present and highly configurable. Live tiles are now integrated into the Start menu instead of their user interface, where they can be moved, adjusted, set to show quick information and programs started. Applications can also be pinned or moved to the system tray for easy access.
An operating system to rule them all
There are many iterations of Windows between Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10, RT, and Windows Phone that can be confusing. Windows 8 was closer to RT and Windows Phone than previous versions, which made it easier to build cross-platform apps and use features like live tiles. However, they were still different operating systems and required separate apps and programming to function properly.
Instead of creating a completely separate operating system for touch and classic keyboard and mouse controls, Microsoft is focusing on creating a user experience that is satisfactory and useful on all platforms. While Windows 10 doesn't look like your desktop on your laptop, tablet, or Windows Phone, it has much of the same features and shared applications.
The large buttons with quick shortcuts are sure to please anyone who uses the touchscreen with their Windows device. The whole idea was to make Windows 10 like a single operating system that only responds to the device and the environment in which you use it.
Multiple virtual desktop configurations
While Linux and Mac OS X have already explored the world of multiple desktops, Microsoft had declined to support the feature in its desktop operating system up to Windows 10. The introduction of the Start Screen in Windows 8 seemed to confirm that the focus was on the Windows organization strategy of better managing individual desktops.
In Windows 10, you can easily add or remove new desktop environments and open programs in them when you do. The functionality is easily accessible from any screen, including in Windows Store applications.
Get the full picture with Task View
The task view distributes all your processes and running applications, even across multiple desktops, so that you can quickly switch between active programs. In Windows 8, the reliance on Windows Store full-screen apps limited the number of ways you can organize your applications, and tools that let you do it quickly fell by the wayside.
The Task View apparently combines OS X's Expose feature with a more complex version of the current Windows tab. In addition to Task View, Windows 10 has a Snap Assist feature that lets you preview all the other windows when you snap an app onto either side of the screen. You can easily select the paired application to help organize your workspace, close unresponsive programs, and view information about data usage.
Improved command prompt
It's not just about improving functionality for every PC owner – Microsoft still has a place in its heart for the power user. One of the developers and power user tools updated in Windows 10 was the Command Prompt. If you haven't used it before, you probably won't be impressed that features like copy and paste have been added.
However, if you're a seasoned veteran of the command prompt, you'll be glad to see that she received some love, too. There are a number of new options and hotkeys that make executing commands and starting programs even easier.
A key difference between Windows 8 and 10 is the inclusion of Cortana, the Windows version of voice assistant programs like Siri and Alexa. However, Cortana is designed to use machine learning data and techniques to learn your preferences and to respond more accurately and efficiently to your needs the more you use them.
With Cortana, users can find files and start programs locally and search for data on the Internet using voice commands. Setting up or disabling Cortana is quick and easy, has great options for improving your machine's accessibility, and can make everyday tasks much easier.
File Explorer improvements
Another boon for Windows 10 users is the streamlined and improved File Explorer. In addition to browsing and accessing all of your PC's folders, the Quick Access section also makes it easy to find recently updated files to keep you productive.
Change programs with a snap
Windows 8 users will likely be familiar with the frustration of only being able to run apps side by side or in full screen mode. In Windows 10, each app and program window can be automatically resized by dragging up, down, left, or right with the Snap Assist feature. This allows Windows 10 users to create four apps per screen. Combined with Windows 10's ability to create virtual desktops, users can create productivity configurations for four apps to improve efficiency without wasting valuable screen space.
It's no secret that the interest in cloud-based games has risen sharply lately. So it's no surprise Microsoft jumped on the bandwagon. The next logical step for Microsoft was to find a way to link the popular Xbox games and apps to the new iteration of Windows. With the free integration of Xbox apps and Minecraft with Windows 10, Xbox players can stream gameplay to a Windows 10 PC or other device that supports the Xbox app. Unfortunately, Windows 8 users looking to improve their gaming experience stay up and dry.
Users around the world know Windows OS and Microsoft well and rely on these systems for their computers. Therefore, it is the job of this company to receive customer reviews. Microsoft took user criticism into account when developing Windows 10 to prioritize the user experience. You've got rid of the controversial Start Screen that has shut down so many power users of Windows 8. If you're familiar with Windows 7 or Windows XP, you'll recognize the older, easy-to-use Start menu. Microsoft has also restored the classic layout and other familiar features to Windows 10.
In many ways, Windows 10 is a return to what people loved about previous iterations of the platform. Users advertise its accessibility and high quality performance. While everything is better than the infamous Windows 8 operating system, Windows 10 is excellent across the board whether you're a beginner or a professional.