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Microsoft Windows 8

Like an old, reliable friend, Windows has been with us through thick and thin for decades now and, barring a few tweaks here and there, has remained constant throughout. This year's update, however, is quite the departure for Microsoft and turns Windows inside out and upside down. In a good way. Borrowing heavily from touchscreen interfaces, Windows 8 replaces the traditional desktop with a button-based 'start screen' on boot, laying out the various options in a colourful, intuitive grid. Completely customizeable, the start screen can display whatever function you desire, allowing you to pin applications or games to it at will.

Traditionalists need not fear, however, as you can still burrow down to a desktop, should you want one, which takes the form of a faster, more streamlined Windows 7, only with a zippy search interface instead of the outdated start menu of old. Faster, more intuitive and infinitely more secure, this is also the most attractive version of Windows yet, possibly enough to tempt Mac users back to Microsoft's loving embrace. More information

Microsoft Windows 8

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