What do you want to see in my new Windows 8 books?

Mike Halsey MVP
Feb 15, 2012
Updated • Nov 29, 2012

Next week, when I finally download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview I'll start writing not just one, but two new Windows 8 books, with a third being written later this year, so I'm going to be stupidly busy until the summer  :}  and I want to make sure that the books I write are what you both need and want to read.  I thought then that I'd introduce these books to you and ask what it is that you would like to see in them.

The Windows 8 Power Users Guide is the first commercial version of my self-published Power Users Guide series.  The book is getting a content makeover this time around and will be for enthusiasts and IT Pros who either want to find out how to use Windows 8 like the pros do, or who already are a pro and want to really unlock the power of the OS.

Windows 8 Out of the Box is a very different book for a very different market.  This book will be for complete computer newbies or non-technical people.  It will focus on the things we all actually do with our computers and work through simple and, crucially, short instructions on how to achieve the most common computing tasks.  This will include things that Windows 8 might not be able to do natively but that we use our computers for day to day.

I thought I'd take this opportunity to ask you all, as you're all brilliant here at gHacks, what you would like me to include in these books?  Are there any areas you'd particularly like me to focus on, perhaps virtualization or deployment in the Power Users Guide or advanced photo editing or home networking in Out of the Box.  Why not let me know in the comments below and you can help shape these books to become the very best that they can be.  Thank you all  :)


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  1. Huisie said on February 16, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    I’d like to see some pointers on accessing folders and files.
    My meaning is that Windows 8 seems very app-centric with a focus on accessing files through apps rather than directly.
    The Start Screen seems less modifiable and more labour-intensive when it comes to accessing both files and apps – does it help or hinder us?

  2. Robert Palmar said on February 16, 2012 at 7:04 am

    Optimal configuration of the desktop versus
    optimal configuration of tablet devices
    would be something to consider.

  3. Robert Palmar said on February 15, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    For The Windows 8 Power Users Guide
    stick with your winning formula you used
    for the The Windows 7 Power Users Guide
    The visual presentation was uniquely effective.

    For Windows 8 Out of the Box maybe a
    simpler variation of that same approach.

  4. pd said on February 15, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    How to make it look and behave exactly like XP, in case Microsoft really do stop supporting the OS that still holds over 1/3 of the market.

  5. Richard said on February 15, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    Hello Mike,
    I would like to learn about all the new Features in Windows 8. For sure, I would like to see a section regarding the new feature…touch screen. This is a big change for a PC and I am not sure I will be rushing out to purchase a new monitor just to have the touch screen capability. Excluding the touch screen capability do you think there will be enough changes in Windows 8 compared to Windows 7 in order to make the upgrade? Also, I would like to see some material written about the improvements in things like boot time and also I would like to learn about the Metro desktop. Also, what are the implications of Windows 8 for people who own tablets. I have an IPad 2 and I wonder if I have to purchase a new tablet to use Windows 8 and if so which companies will be making tablets that will run Windows 8.
    I hope this gives you a good start.
    Thanks for considering the items I have mentioned.

  6. Roman ShaRP said on February 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    1) How to get rid of Metro
    2) How to get rid of IE Metro mode
    3) How to force links to open in browser you want to set default, not IE/Metro
    4) How to get rid of UAC
    5) How to access old-style Control Panel
    6) How to get rid of SmartScreen

    In general – how to get rid of new interface and features, and use only speed improvements

    1. steve said on February 15, 2012 at 11:36 pm

      Well said!

    2. Mike Halsey MVP said on February 15, 2012 at 2:37 pm

      @Roman, I can feel a whole chapter coming on for this one :/

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