Microsoft's Windows 9 Desktop Takes Shape
Leaked screenshots of the upcoming Windows 9 operating system show a return to Microsoft's desktop roots.What Windows 8? Screenshots of a technical preview of Microsoft's Windows 9 operating system have surfaced online, courtesy of two German Websites, Computer Base and WinFuture. Notably, one of the screenshots seems to confirm that the OS update, code-named "Threshold," will ship with more desktop-friendly features than its predecessor and mark a break from the numbering scheme that debuted with Windows 7. A shot of the System view, familiar to PC enthusiasts and anyone who has explored the Windows control panel, lists just "Windows Technical Preview" under the Windows edition section, lending weight to rumors that Microsoft is dropping version numbers for future releases of the OS. (Prior Windows previews explicitly displayed the intended OS version.) Microsoft is also rumored to be considering a similar change for Windows Phone by not only dropping version numbers but also the "Phone" part. However Microsoft decides to brand the OS, it will include a new Start menu that blends elements from Windows 8.x's tiled interface and the traditional Start experience. The left side of the menu generates a familiar list of apps, folder destinations and a search bar, while the right side is filled with tiles to apps such as Skype, OneDrive and the Windows Store. Microsoft teased the revamped Start menu during the Build 2014 developer's conference in April.
Modern Windows apps (formerly Metro) can run as windowed apps in the desktop mode, a concession to non-touch PCs and users who don't want to devote all of their on-screen real estate to apps. A smattering of "App Commands" allows mouse users to access common options such as search and print.