Thursday, October 24, 2013

My Windows 8.1 Post Install Tips

After updating my Surface RT device and laptop to Windows 8.1 I thought I would share my experience. I will note that with both I chose to do a clean install.

Overall Experience
Firstly my overall experience has been exceptional. For the Surface RT install I simply accessed the update from the store using the direct link, took a bit for the update to start to download but I believe that was the Store app in 8.1 Preview causing that, between 1 to 2 hours later I was running Windows 8.1. Signed in with my Microsoft Account and all my settings were sync'd, then installed my apps from the store which was easy because of the new view which can filter to show only "your apps not installed on this pc".

For my laptop it was another painless install. Probably enhanced because of the deployment method adopted by Microsoft IT but still it was exceptional to see what can be achieved when deployment is managed in an efficient method. Anyway 1 hour later I was running Windows 8.1 and restoring my documents from my backup (for all the fun that went with that see my other post).

My Post Install Recommendations
These are my tips to complete once you have upgraded/installed Windows 8.1
  1. Link your Microsoft Account with your domain/local account if you didn't sign in with that account. This will give you the full experience with synchronization across your devices.
  2. Set PowerShell as the default for the Win+X menu over Command Prompt. If you are like me a frequent user of PowerShell then this will save plenty of time. And if you aren't using PowerShell yet, well get with the times you can still use native windows commands the same as you would in the command prompt.
    The following is where this setting is controlled in the TaskBar Properties

    Then this is the result, on the left is the default view, on the right is the view with PowerShell. This mention is accessed either by right clicking the Windows Logo in the bottom left corner or pressing Windows Key (Win) + X.
  3. Adjust the Power Settings for what the power buttons do. I like to take advantage of the fast hibernate feature in Windows 8 as I am often on the road, so I pick that over Sleep for what the power button does.

I will continue to add to this blog as I find more recommendations and tips.

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