Finally purchasing a laptop, I ended up passing the deadline to get one loaded with Windows 7. So I have been working on Windows 8 now for about 3 or 4 months probably.
I have an HP Pavilion g6-2238dx, the prime reason I picked this particular model was price at Best Buy and it had a quad-core processor. It came with 4GB of RAM and have since moved this up to 8GB.
Overall Windows 8 is not that bad. It is a bit more drastic of a change than people may have experienced between Windows XP and Vista. With a laptop, at least with HP, there are gestures you can use on the mouse pad. Which at times this gets annoying depending on how you are used to use a mouse pad. It does take getting used to.
The biggest thing I hear about is that Microsoft took away the famed “start” button that showed up on the bottom left of the screen. Which it does not just show up on the task bar anymore but it did not go away. You just have to put your mouse at the bottom left corner to make it appear, then click.
The start menu itself though, is a bit annoying. As well are the “apps” that Microsoft put that initially tries to take over playing music, video, or viewing of pictures. On my laptop they just sit there and I end up changing the default program to open the particular file types. I wish they would work on that though, it could be improved with some minor changes I am sure.
Most applications I run have not had any problems running on Windows 8. I have a few that I use for clients (VPN software and such) that I chose to build a Windows 7 virtual machine (using VMPlayer), instead of cluttering up my laptop with it.
Summary, just give it time.
Ok, after giving it about 3 months…
Windows 8 has two “modes” of applications: Desktop and Tile (I think it is called Tile). The desktop mode applications you interact just like Windows 7. With the tile apps you are going through the new Start Menu. These application modes are take a bit to get used to. I chose to pretty much remove them. You will have some things like opening PDF files that the default program is set to the PDF Reader Tile app. With my laptop they are slow to load and you cannot interact with other applications very easily, at least I can’t figure out how to. One good example is the Kindle app for Windows 8. I have SQL Server books and tend to go between reading and then doing the example on my VM. With the Tile Application mode there is no way of easily doing this. SO I had to remove it and go find the Windows 7 desktop version of the Kindle Reader. You will find, at least so far I have, that most of the applications have a “desktop” version. There are a few that I had to dig around the Internet to find it.