I recently installed the Windows 8 Release Preview as a dual-boot OS option on my Windows 7 desktop.  Here are my initial impressions!

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I was very intrigued by Windows 8, and so a few weeks back, I downloaded and installed Windows 8 Release Preview as a dual boot option on my Windows 7 desktop.  When I purchased that desktop, I installed an extra hard drive to use for virtualization.  I simply downloaded the Windows 8 Release Preview image, burned it to a DVD, and installed the OS manually to the extra hard drive as a dual boot option.  Here is a link to a great article that lays out exactly how to do it…it is a very simple process.  So now that I have been playing with it a bit, what is the verdict?  Let’s look at some of my experiences, understanding that none of the touch features so central to Windows 8 will work as this is a traditional mouse and keyboard equipped desktop.  By the way, this post was completely written in Windows Live Writer in Windows 8, and was published to the site in IE10.

Boot Time.  Windows 8 boots up extremely quickly.  I have not bothered to time it, but it boots faster than either my wife’s iPad2 or my HP TouchPad.  What can I say?  Fast boot times make using Windows 8 as convenient as using a mobile OS like iOS.

Internet Explorer 10.  IE10 is really fast and responsive, and looks great.  Here is a screenshot from IE10 showing my Twitter feed.  It looks great!

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Here is another screen shot showing the open sites that are available in my current session.

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I usually have four or five sites open at any given time, and IE10 lets me do that with no issue.  Refreshing site content is also very fast and is accomplished by right clicking at the top and then hitting Refresh.  This is not as easy as in IE9, but is easy enough and the speed of the refresh really makes up for the minor inconvenience.

Pinned sites are easy to find, just click on the address bar and they pop right up, along with sites that you go to frequently.  This is a different approach from IE9 but it does work.  Here is a screen shot that shows you the pinned and frequently visited sites at the bottom of the IE10 screen.

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