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Windows 8 Testing

ITD has been doing preliminary testing for Windows 8, a version of Microsoft Windows operating systems developed for use on desktops, laptops, and tablets. A few individuals from each division were selected to participate in this test. The object was to verify that all of ITD's applications will work with the new operating system and to make sure all desktops, laptops, and tablets have the hardware necessary for running Windows 8 efficiently.

Windows 8 Test Results

  • Tablet Findings:  ITD chose HP ElitePad because of the additional options that will allow it to be used enterprise-wide. It faired well, but was slightly underpowered for what power-users require. ITD purchased a docking station (only one at the time that had this option), and external keyboards to test usability. The tablet consisted of a 1.8GHz Intel Atom Processor with 2 GB of Ram for memory. Windows 8 Professional was also tested, and both works well as long multiple apps were not being utilized at once or if using real intensive applications.
  • Microsoft Surface: ITD was considering looking into using the Surface from Microsoft because it had i5 Intel processor and 4GB of Ram. They decided the the battery life was too short, accessories were limited, and didn't have a docking station. Those results concluded to still needing a laptop or desktop and a tablet. This would be counterproductive and more expensive in licensing as you would still be managing two machines, which would cost more to replace over time.
  • ITD strongly recommends when using Windows 8 on a tablet, to have i5 or newer with at least 4GB of Ram, which will have a longer battery life. The next generation with new Haswell chips from Intel seems to fit all required specs. Haswell has strongly increased power efficiency along with the major strides in development with Windows 8 and even more do in 8.1, which will be release in October, 2013.

Windows 8 Information

  • Windows 8 can be used with traditional desktops without having a touchscreen. It also includes a new-style interface for use with touchscreens on laptops, desktop and tablets. Some of the Windows 8 fundamental enhancements include:
    • Better multiple-monitor setups
    • Revamped Windows Explorer
    • Cloud-based account syncing
    • New ways to personalize your desktop
  • Windows 8 can be confusing at first, since the interface has changed so much. One major change is that the Start Menu has been removed (located on the bottom left of prior versions). Windows 8 Charm bar is the best way to access some of the functions previously available in the start menu.
  • Windows 8 Keyboard Shortcuts

Reminder - Windows XP Support is Ending April 8, 2014

  • After April 8, 2014, support ends for Windows XP users. There will be no software updates which includes security updates. This means unsupported and unpatched environments are vulnerable to security risks. These security risks consist of harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software, which can steal your personal information.
  • Agencies that are currently running Windows XP need to be upgraded before April 8, 2014.

Contact

  • If you have any questions, please contact the Service Desk.

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Thank you very much for your speedy response!

City of Bismarck
June 11, 2014
 
 

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