Leaked Screenshots Reveal More About Windows 9

Brandon Dimmel's picture

Screenshots of Windows 9 have leaked to the press and they show an operating system (OS) that's a substantial step away from the controversial Windows 8. Windows 9, which is currently code-named Threshold, is expected to launch later this year, with a technical preview expected sometime in October.

Screenshots Confirm Start Button Returning

Experts speculate that Microsoft will blend the best elements of Windows 7 and 8 together, and graft them onto the classic desktop found in Windows 7. Leaked screenshots show that Windows 9 will likely have a Start Menu of sorts - something which was missing from Windows 8 when it was released to manufacturing August 1st, 2012. (Source: pcworld.com)

Most notably, users will also be able to run "Modern" (or "Metro") apps in windowed mode via the desktop. When in that mode, users will be able to click a button in the top-left corner that brings up a list of functions, including Search, Share, Play, Project, and Settings. Users can also switch the app to full-screen mode, if they like.

Taskbar Facelift and Virtual Desktops

The screenshots also reveal a new desktop taskbar that lets users add a search button right next to the revived Start button. To the far right of the taskbar is a new button which displays notifications, with a pop-up menu for (presumably) messages via Windows Store apps.

Users can also add buttons that let them switch between multiple virtual desktops, a feature that will be familiar to users of Ubuntu Linux's "Workspaces". (Source: theverge.com)

Charms Bar Can be Disabled

Despite recent rumors, the leaked screenshots suggest that the Charms bar has not been removed. There is however an option to disable Charms via the taskbar properties. In Windows 8, the charms bar is activated by moving the mouse to the upper-right corner of the screen, or by bringing up a recent apps list by pointing to the upper-left corner. (Source: pcworld.com)

Visually, Windows 9 may appear more 'flat' than Windows 8, with desktop windows having only a one-pixel border. Some icons have also been reworked to look two-dimensional. (Source: extremetech.com)

Of course, it's worth keeping in mind that Microsoft has yet to unveil anything official about Windows 9, so all of this is still speculative. That said, a public technical preview of Windows 9 is expected to launch by early October.

What's Your Opinion?

What are you looking for in Windows 9? What Windows 8 features do you want Microsoft to keep? Are you looking forward to a new version of Windows, or do you think this is coming too soon following the release of Windows 8?

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adh773's picture

Why everyone made such a fuss about the start menu I don't understand. All you had to do was install Classic Shell and Presto. Fuss over nothing. A.D.H

darylhutchins's picture


(I think it gave some "experts" something to write about.)

ryanneighbors's picture

"Ubuntu Linux's 'Workspaces'"? Try Linux virtual desktops in general. This is a feature of the X Window system, not solely of Ubuntu. Though, that is not even it's origin. It would have been better to say "those familiar with Linux virtual desktops", rather than single out what is (unfortunately) often haled as the king of Linux distros.