Page 2 of 2
In the lengthy blog post, St. Pierre details the numerous steps Microsoft has taken to simplify Windows 8 installation. In Windows 8, for example, customers "do not have to install a separate download manager, mount the ISO to begin the installation, check the hash of the file for verification post-download, manually clean up unneeded files, or restart a download from the beginning should connectivity be interrupted. Setup takes care of all of these steps automatically, providing a fast, resilient, and easy setup experience," according to St. Pierre.
In addition to the Windows Automated Installation Kit Microsoft provided for installing Windows 7, for Windows 8 the vendor is offering additional tools with the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit that can be downloaded by subscribers to the Microsoft Developer's Network (MSDN).
Installing Windows 7 required using four different Web and client wizards and clicking through as many as 60 different screens to complete, according to St. Pierre's blog. With Windows 8 that "can now be accomplished in one end-to-end experience and as few as 11 clicks, an improvement of 82% fewer clicks in Windows 8."
The blog included a chart comparing installation times for Windows 7 and 8. A simple "clean install" of Windows 8 takes only 21minutes compared to 32 for Windows 7, according to the graphic. A "medium upgrade" with 213,000 files and 77 apps take 42 minutes for Windows 8 versus 131 minutes for Windows 7. And a "heavy upgrade" (430,000 files and 90 apps) requires 46 minutes for Windows 8 versus 188 minutes for Windows 7, the blog said.
While Microsoft will continue to offer boxed sets of DVDs when Windows 8 is shipped, "buying boxed software is quickly becoming the exception rather than the rule, with more and more software being purchased online as broadband penetration increases and large-size media downloads become more common," St. Pierre wrote. So with Windows 8 there will be a greater emphasis on purchasing and installing the software online.
"Customers who choose to install Windows from an online source will have a greatly improved experience over what we’ve delivered in the past, with smaller and faster downloads, as well as increased resiliency and control," St. Pierre wrote.