Category Archives: Windows 8

Confirmed: Windows 8.1 RTM coming August 2013

Microsoft today confirmed at the Worldwide Partner Conference, Windows 8.1 the major update to the initial release will be available OEMs this August.

Tami also made a few announcements.

She announced that Windows 8.1 RTM will be available for OEM partners in late August. This means OEMs will be able to get the RTM bits and begin preparing devices with Windows 8.1 just in time for the holidays! We’ll have more details to share in the coming months for consumers and other customers on how to get Windows 8.1. As you have heard, Windows 8.1 is an update that refines the vision of Windows 8. Two weeks ago, we announced the Windows 8.1 Preview for people to try out– if you have not already, check it out and experience the new features and improvements

Source HERE


Filed under IT Professional, Windows 8

Using Compatibility Mode in Windows 8.1

If you are using an older app not designed for Windows 8, one of the solutions designed for handling such problems in Windows 8 is Compatibility Mode. I have looked at this feature in the past, but Windows 8s new user experience makes accessing it a bit different from previous versions of Windows. Lets get started. For the purposes of this article, I will be installing my 3G Modem Dashboard software Mobile Partner software.

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The first thing you need to do is point where the setup files are located. If you are installing from a thumb drive or CD/DVD. Launch File Explorer (Windows key + E) and open the location where the setup files are stored.

Right click the setup file for the program, this can be designated as setup.exe or something similar. Click Troubleshoot Compatibility

Compat opt 2

This will launch the Program Compatibility Troubleshooter wizard which will check for issues.

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Select the option “Troubleshoot program”

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Depending on the problems you are experiencing when attempting to install or use the software, check off the problems. In my case:

  • ‘The program worked in earlier versions of Windows but won’t install or run now’
  • The program requires additional permissions.

Click Next

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Select a version of Windows the program is known to work in. I notice the program works great in Windows Vista (with Service Pack 2), so I will select that option. Click Next

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Proceed to run the through the programs setup routine by clicking Test the program….

Compat opt 7

Follow the on screen instructions to install the program as you normally would.

Compat opt 8

If all is successful, click the option at the end of the wizard ‘Yes, save these settings for this program’

Compat opt 9

Wait while your settings for the program are saved.

Compat opt 10

Click Close.



Filed under 8 Journal, Windows 8

Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: HP

We continue our series look at using the recovery tools that come with your Windows 8 PC. Each PC manufacturer includes a unique experience for each utility for recovering your Windows 8 PC if the need arises. Today, we take a look at HP’s Recovery tool:

1. Go to the Start Screen and type: recovery

hp reocvry 1

This will bring up the recovery link for HP. Click on it to launch HP’s Recovery program:

hp reocvry 1

HP’s Recovery app

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The HP recovery manager provides a simple interface categorized for your convenience. The most important one in this case is located under the I’d like to take safety measures

hp reocvry 4

Here you will find the option to create a set of recovery media for your system.

Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Dell

Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Samsung
Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Acer



Filed under 8 Journal, Windows 8

How to prepare your PC to test Windows 8.1 Preview

With the release of the Windows 8.1 Preview a lot of early adopters and cutting edge enthusiast (such as yours truly) are itching to test drive and see what’s new. I personally am looking forward to the new Start Tip landmark and better integration between the Desktop App and the Start Screen. Regardless of all of this, you want to approach testing Windows 8.1 safely, remember, it is still pre-release software. You do not want to install on a production system. Personally, I will be doing all my 8.1 evaluations in a virtual machines, but you can also use a partition and dual boot with an existing version of Windows such as Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8 to experience the full performance of running on physical hardware.

It has come light that testing the Windows 8.1 preview will not be as straightforward and will involve some prerequisites.

Do not install it on a production machine or boot drive.

Microsoft Senior Product Marketing Manager Michael Niehaus reiterated that message in the RT in the Enterprise session on Tuesday. When the 8.1 preview is available, Windows 8 and Windows RT users will receive a Windows Update notification. That update will trigger the new bits to show up in the Windows Store, where potential testers will be able to read the description and choose whether or not to install.

Once the final versions of Windows 8.1 are available, after their release to manufacturing, those who have downloaded the preview will get the same Windows Update plus Windows Store notification. While their data and accounts will be preserved if and when they choose to install the free, final 8.1 release, all their apps must be reinstalled, Niehaus said.

Even if testers opt instead to roll their devices back to Windows 8 after installing the preview bits, they still will have to reinstall their apps once they move to the RTM version of Windows 8.1.

Windows 8 users who do not install the preview build and opt instead to go straight from Windows 8/Windows RT to Windows 8.1 will not have to reinstall their apps. All settings, data and apps will carry over, a spokesperson said when I asked. Users will be able to decide when and if they want to move from Windows 8 and Windows RT to the 8.1 versions, officials stressed.


How to prepare:

Backup your system before!

Check out the following article by Microsoft MVP JW Stuart about how to backup a Windows XP installation here using Acronis True Image here

Another solution you can use for backing up Windows XP is Easeus To Do Backup, JW Stuart also has an article about it here

These same principles should work for persons running Windows Vista.

If you are running editions such as Windows Vista Business, Enterprise or Ultimate editions, you can use the built in Complete PC Backup of your Vista installation. This can be very handy in case your Windows 8 installation fails. For instructions about how to use Complete PC Backup, see the following article here. Of course, you will need an external hard disk for this task.

Create a partition:

Dual boot:

See instructions for dual booting based on installing the Windows 8 Previews, same principles will work for the Windows 8.1 preview:

How to dual boot Windows XP and Windows 8

How to dual boot Windows Vista/7 and Windows 8

Use Virtual Machine software:

This is recommended if you have a powerful enough processor and lots of memory.

You can use alternatives such as Oracle VirtualBox or VMWare Player.

VMware Player;

If you are running Windows 8 Pro on a computer with SLAT support Second Layer Address Translation, you can use the built in Hyper-V that comes with Windows 8 Pro edition.

Will update this article with relevant content.


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Filed under IT Professional, Windows 8

Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Dell

We continue our series look at using the recovery tools that come with your Windows 8 PC. Each PC manufacturer includes a unique experience for each utility for recovering your Windows 8 PC if the need arises. Today, we take a look at Dell’s Recovery tool:

1. Go to the Start Screen and type: recovery

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This will bring up the recovery link for Samsung. Click on it to launch Dell’s Recovery program:

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Dells Recovery app

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Wait while the recovery application is initialized.

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Dells Backup and Recovery utility provides a touch optimized experience, integrating with the touch first philosophy of Windows 8. To get started, click the Recovery tile.

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Recovery tile for Dell Backup and Recovery utility

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The recovery menu provides a list of options from which you can:

  • Recover your system using the System Recovery menu.
  • Recover data from a backup.
  • Create a backup of your apps and drivers
  • Quick access to downloads for your Dell system

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If you have an external USB hard disk, you can connect it to your Dell PC and create a recovery drive along with applications and data. Please note, this does not seem to work with USB thumb drives and requires an external mechanical USB hard disk.

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If you don’t have an external hard disk, you can use a thumb drive with enough hard disk space, minimum 8 GBs and create a recovery drive or set of recovery discs.

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You can also do the same for your apps and drivers.


Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Samsung 
Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Acer 



Filed under 8 Journal, Windows 8

Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Samsung

We continue our series look at using the recovery tools that come with your Windows 8 PC. Each PC manufacturer includes a unique experience for each utility for recovering your Windows 8 PC if the need arises. Today, we take a look at Samsungs Recovery tool:

1. Go to the Start Screen and type: recovery

Sam 1

This will bring up the recovery link for Samsung. Click on it to launch Samsung’s Recovery program:

Sam 1

Samsungs Recovery Management app

Sam 2

Agree to the license agreement if you are launching for the first time.

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If you have a recovery drive with enough space, 15 GBs. You can utilize the Samsung recovery tool store the factory recovery image on it. Just plug in your thumb drive and click Run. If you don’t want to do this right away, click Close, you can always start the process again by clicking the Factory image tab in the left pane.

Sam 4

To start the recovery process, click the Recover tab then click Recover. Thats it. Remember to create a recovery drive when you get your new Windows PC. Get a USB thumb drive with enough storage, 20 to 32 GBs recommended.


Using Recovery Tools on your Windows 8 PC: Acer


Filed under 8 Journal, Windows 8

How to migrate from 32 bit versions of Windows to Windows 8 64 bit

Windows 8 64 bit continues Microsoft’s journey to 64 bit computing ubiquity. So far the majority of new laptops and desktop computers I have encountered are running 64 bit Windows 8 out of the box. In fact, all new x86-x64 devices come preloaded with 64 bit Windows 8. The only 32 bit devices you might see are the Windows RT based solutions. This was not the case with Windows 7 since some systems still came with less than 4 GBs of RAM which made 32 bit Windows a logical choice because of the limitations with the amount of RAM it can address. Over time though, persons have either upgraded their default configurations with additional RAM and would like to take advantage of 64 bit computing which includes the ability to do more multi-tasking, take advantage of multimedia applications and photo editing software or just the key security benefits the platform has to offer. Lets not forget, RAM is very cheap these days, so why not?

Resources: How to obtain 64 bit Windows 8 installation files.

Is my computer 64 bit capable?

Before you can start the process to migrate to 64 bit Windows, you need to find out if your system is 64 bit capable. If you are already running a 32 bit version of Windows 8 on you system, you can find out by doing the following:

Press Windows key + X on your keyboard


Click System


Look under System > System type:

There it will list whether the processor is x64 based processor or not. In my case I have 64 bit capable processor. Once you have confirmed this, you can move on to the next step.

For Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7 users


You can determine if your processor is 64 bit capable by using a free tool called CPU-Z. You can download it here. Once you have it installed, double click it and it will scan your system. Click the CPU tab and look in the Instructions field, look for the instruction set called AMD64 or EM64T. If you see them, then your processor is 64 bit capable.

If you are running a 32 bit version of Windows, whether Windows 8 or Windows 7, you need to consider carefully the steps to migrate from it to 64 bit Windows 8. Regardless of the ubiquity of 64 bit computing, key factors such as hardware and application compatibility remain a issue, especially for legacy systems.

Does your system meet all the requirements? Having just a 64 bit capable processor is not the main go ahead for 64 bit Windows. What about other hardware such as your video card, audio device, printer and any other critical device or application you are using? Also, if you have less than 4 GBs of RAM, I strongly suggest you stick with 32 bit Windows 8 or consider maxing out the installed RAM before you consider upgrading and when I say maxing out, I mean 4 GBs or more.

The first thing to do is to create an inventory of both your hardware and software programs. After doing that, go to the manufacturers website and check if there are any 64 bit drivers available. The manufacturer might not have native 64 bit Windows 8 drivers, but they just might have 64 bit Windows 7 and Vista drivers which should work. The reason why is Windows 8, Windows 7 and Vista all share the same driver model. Application compatibility remains critical, for instance, if you are running applications designed for Windows XP or apps that are not fully 32 bit, you might want to reconsider your decision. Applications that are 32 bit but might contain 16 bit code will not work with 64 bit Windows. So, you need to carefully think this true. If it ain’t broke, don’t try fixing it might just apply in this case.

Backup, Backup, Backup

Once you have gathered all the necessary prerequisites such as driver updates and have certified all your applications are compatible, you need to backup your personal data. There is no upgrade path from 32 bit versions of Windows to Windows 8 64 bit. Yes, that means you will have to reinstall all your drivers (64 bit native drivers) and applications. Some additional configuration might be required on your part.

The best way to handle some of the migration chores is by using the built in Windows Easy Transfer utility (specifically) for Windows 7 users. If you are running Windows Vista or Windows XP, make sure you download the free Windows Easy Transfer utility, install it and create a backup of your personal files and settings. Lets take a look at doing that.


Click Next


You have a few options to choose from, the best one would be an external hard disk which is excellent for storing large amounts of information. If you don’t have an external hard disk, you can save your backup to a network share if one is available.


Select this is my old PC.


Wait while your personal files are scanned.


Check off the accounts you would like to have backed up.


You can create a password if you want to protect your Windows Easy Transfer backup. If don’t want to, no problem skipping this step. Click Save.


Open the external hard disk and save the file there, you can give a unique file name if you wish.


Wait while your items are backed up and saved. This can take some time depending on the amount of information you have stored.

Once your files are backed up, its time to start the migration.

If you attempt to start the installation of a 64 bit version of Windows from within a 32 bit version of Windows, you will receive the following error message.


Which is understandable, since you are running a 32 bit version of Windows. To begin the installation, we will need to restart the computer and boot from the disc or USB thumbdrive which contains the installation files. So, click the close button.

Restart your computer then load your BIOS and set it to boot from your DVD drive or USB thumb drive. You might need to consult your computer manual for instructions how to do this. See the following article for additional instructions.

To learn how to change your BIOS options to boot from the DVD drive, the following tutorial: 


The Windows 8 logo will appear on screen, this might be here for a while, as long as your see the indicator, everything should be ok.


You should now arrive at this screen, select your time and currency format then click Next.


Click Install Now


Wait while setup starts up


Enter your product key when prompted

Accept the End User License agreement and click Next


Click Custom install Windows only (advanced)


Select the system drive where Windows 8 is installed.


You will receive the following warning:
The partition you selected might contain files from a previous Windows Installation. If it does, these files and folders will be moved to a folder named Windows.old. You will be able to access the information in Windows.old, but you will be able to use your previous version of Windows.

(At all cost, do NOT click anything named Format or Delete or Partition. So even doing a custom install, your personal files are still preserved. Click OK
Setup will now start the installation. During the installation, your machine will be restarted several times.


When the installation is complete, you can complete the Out of Box experience such as selecting your computer, create a username, password, your time zone. You can then proceed to download the latest updates for Windows and reinstall your applications and drivers.


Windows 8 Out of Box Experience page

You can then recover your personal files from the Windows.old folder and reinstall all your applications and drivers. Or you can use Windows Easy Transfer to restore your backup.
How to retrieve your files from the Windows.old folder – Microsoft


You are now running 64 bit Windows 8.


Filed under 7 Journal, 8 Journal, Windows 8