Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Search. Please, please explain it to me!

  1. #11


    Posts : 11
    win 8


    Quote Originally Posted by dirtyvu View Post
    when I click on my firefox tile on the start screen (and firefox is already running on the desktop), it does not launch another instance of firefox. it just brings me back to my firefox window.
    Hmmmm... Not for me. No how, no way. Any particular plugin, or About setting, or other magic you used to achieve this? Seems to always launch a new browser instance. I'm on v16.0.2 (latest).

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  2. #12


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Like dirtyvu, clicking on firefox in the start page does not open another instance for me.

    How did you install FF? Did you run the setup in Windows 8? Or are you using a version that was installed and ported over during an upgrade?

    If the latter, try uninstalling then re-installing FF. And, I would seriously consider doing a clean upgrade, because there are likely a ton of things like this that would behave differently with a clean install. Upgrades are always problematic.
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  3. #13


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    That said, the reason it becomes frustrating is that there is a gulf between the two methods--working in Metro, you don't get a hint of the other search option. So, I just expect it to show my files. At the very least there needs to be, right in the Metro search, a "Search again" type feature (just like in Win 7) that leads you to the more advanced search. Instead, you're given nothing to alter, add to, customize, the search. It's horrible UI.

    This is one of the key issues with 8--the simplified Metro tools either are dead ends that don't link to more advanced desktop tools (so you end up having to manually switch to desktop mode and start over--if you know how) or it "throws" you into the desktop, making efficient multi-tasking rather horrible. And vice-versa--being thrown to a single-instance interface from the windowed interface because you say, double-clicked an image and it opened it in a Metro app, is jarring and unproductive to say the least. The single-window approach of Metro feels like Win 3.1.
    No, it's not. As I already said, this is the *IDENTICAL* behavior to the search on the start menu under Windows 7 and Vista. You had to open a file explorer to get the more advanced search. THIS IS NOTHING NEW TO WINDOWS 8. As such, it can't possibly be "one of the key issues" with Windows 8, since it's behaving as it always has.

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    Now, in my attempt to give this kluge a chance, I'm stumped about another thing: I opened Firefox. Then went to a Metro app for a while for some reason. 20 minutes later, I needed something off the web--went to the start menu, and I wasn't sure if I already opened firefox, so I clicked its tile again--viola, two firefox instances. Any quick way from Metro to see what's running, other than going to the Task Manager? The desktop icon doesn't really show it. Mouse to the left (which shows Metro apps running) doesn't seem to do it either. It's pretty not nice if there's not a way, from within Metro, to see if a desktop app is already running so you can avoid launching it again (and again). You have to take the step of jumping to the desktop to check. Why not a dynamic indication on the tile itself if the application is active--or am I missing something?
    Alt-tab, which is the primary way to switch tasks since.. forever, still functions exactly as it always has.

    I really don't understand this "from metro" business. Why do you feel the need to always stay in Metro? Metro apps are just one kind of app in the system, and there is nothing wrong with switching between desktop and metro... why do people act like it's such a burden to do so?
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  4. #14


    Posts : 11
    win 8


    Quote Originally Posted by Mystere View Post
    As such, it can't possibly be "one of the key issues" with Windows 8, since it's behaving as it always has.
    No. No. No. You search in Windows 7, and immediately, right there, in the search results, you have a link to more advanced search options. You search in Metro and you don't get any such link or any hint of what to do to find the files that didn't show up. You have to know to go to the desktop. Find the search menu. Type in your search parameters again. Then follow the links. It's laborious, confusing, and horrible UI. I can't believe anyone would defend it.

    And... I wasn't trying to imply that this specific search problem was the "key" issue. Rather that it represents one of the key issues, which is the disconnect between the two interfaces. And--it seems that lots, and lots, and lots of users seem to agree with me based on the overwhelming number of negative comments, often from very pro-MS sources, about this specific aspect of this hobbled together OS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mystere View Post
    Alt-tab, which is the primary way to switch tasks since.. forever, still functions exactly as it always has.
    Citation, please? I use Alt-Tab in Windows a lot, but more often I switch by either clicking their icon in the task bar, or clicking the window of an open application that's "side by side" or I click the App sitting there open on my other screen. I doubt seriously it's the primary way for most users.

    And in any case-- Alt-Tab doesn't behave the "exact same way". (You keep using that word. I'm not sure it means what you think it means.) If I Alt-Tab with, say, Outlook having focus in Win 7, I don't immediately see Outlook minimize, requiring action on my part to get it back. This is what happens if you are in the Metro side of things--just touch Alt-Tab, and poof, you've just lost your application focus. Horrible UI, especially since it's the only option to check running Desktop apps from Metro. In Win 7, you just have to look down at your task bar to see what's running in most cases--I seldom use it to "see" what's running--just to switch. But in Metro, it's the only option to see what's active in the desktop side of things other than dropping what you're doing and switching to the desktop. But then... Win 7 actually showed the time in its home screen, and didn't hide the restart menu behind 3 mouse clicks. What do I expect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mystere View Post
    I really don't understand this "from metro" business. Why do you feel the need to always stay in Metro? Metro apps are just one kind of app in the system, and there is nothing wrong with switching between desktop and metro... why do people act like it's such a burden to do so
    Because it IS a burden to switch. If you are using Metro apps, or even using the Start menu to launch Apps, it's a confusing mess to have to jump back and forth between two interfaces that don't talk to one another. It doesn't imply that anyone is ALWAYS in Metro. Just that when you ARE in Metro, multi-tasking and interfacing with the rest of your computer programs is a total mess. And Metro apps are what's available in the store, and what MS is pushing down our throats as the big thing about Win 8. Evidently, they would love to see us stay in Metro all the time eventually.

    Oh, and now, just found out, putting the Start menu to open on my second monitor works just fine--until I reboot. Then it ALWAYS goes back to the primary monitor. Sheesh!
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  5. #15


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    No. No. No. You search in Windows 7, and immediately, right there, in the search results, you have a link to more advanced search options. You search in Metro and you don't get any such link or any hint of what to do to find the files that didn't show up. You have to know to go to the desktop. Find the search menu. Type in your search parameters again. Then follow the links. It's laborious, confusing, and horrible UI. I can't believe anyone would defend it.
    No, you don't. In Windows 7, if you click on the start "orb", and type a search string into the search in the start menu, it behaves just like Search does in the Start Page, although obviously the Start Page gives you more options.

    Don't believe me? Watch this video:

    Windows Search - Microsoft Windows

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Mystere View Post
    Alt-tab, which is the primary way to switch tasks since.. forever, still functions exactly as it always has.
    Citation, please? I use Alt-Tab in Windows a lot, but more often I switch by either clicking their icon in the task bar, or clicking the window of an open application that's "side by side" or I click the App sitting there open on my other screen. I doubt seriously it's the primary way for most users.
    It's not like this is obscure knowledge. Before there was a task bar, you had to use alt-tab, or bring up task manager and switch that way. Those were the only two ways. In Windows Vista and 7 they added Windows-Tab to give you "Aero Flip". This was well popularized. Windows-Tab, unfortunately is now a metro-only switcher (doesn't work on the desktop). I've never known anyone that didn't use Alt-tab almost religiously.

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    And in any case-- Alt-Tab doesn't behave the "exact same way". If I Alt-Tab with, say, Outlook having focus in Win 7, I don't immediately see Outlook minimize, requiring action on my part to get it back. This is what happens if you are in the Metro side of things--just touch Alt-Tab, and poof, you've just lost your application focus. Horrible UI, especially since it's the only option to check running Desktop apps from Metro. In Win 7, you just have to look down at your task bar to see what's running in most cases--I seldom use it to "see" what's running--just to switch. But in Metro, it's the only option to see what's active in the desktop side of things other than dropping what you're doing and switching to the desktop. But then... Win 7 actually showed the time in its home screen, and didn't hide the restart menu behind 3 mouse clicks. What do I expect?
    You don't have to do anything special. If you alt tab back to your Metro app, it is right there. You don't have to maximize it. Nothing special is required. Does it go away when it's not the focus? Only if you have one monitor. If you have more than one, then any app you alt-tab to does not make it go away, unless that app is running on a desktop on the same monitor as Metro.

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    Because it IS a burden to switch. If you are using Metro apps, or even using the Start menu to launch Apps, it's a confusing mess to have to jump back and forth between two interfaces that don't talk to one another. It doesn't imply that anyone is ALWAYS in Metro. Just that when you ARE in Metro, multi-tasking and interfacing with the rest of your computer programs is a total mess. And Metro apps are what's available in the store, and what MS is pushing down our throats as the big thing about Win 8. Evidently, they would love to see us stay in Metro all the time eventually.
    I think you need to look up the definition of "Burden" because you and I don't seem to be speaking the same language. It is nowhere near a burden, and I personally don't see any issue with switching between them. How do you use a tablet or phone? They all do the exact same thing. How is that not a "burden"?

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    Oh, and now, just found out, putting the Start menu to open on my second monitor works just fine--until I reboot. Then it ALWAYS goes back to the primary monitor. Sheesh!
    Yes, this would be nice if it stuck, but it literally takes half a second to move it once you boot up. You can even use a key command, Win-PageUp/PageDN. If it bothers you that much, get one of those keystroke scripting programs and execute a script to hit Win-PageUP on bootup.

    Come on, if this is the worst you have, I'd say Windows 8 has done a damn good job, since all your arguments are so ridiculously inconsequential (with plenty of workarounds).

    Are you using it as your primary desktop? Or are you running it dual boot, or in a VM? Virtually *EVERYONE* I've talked to that complained about it did so when they were using it in a VM or dual booting. Once they started using it full-time, they all said it wasn't so bad or that they liked it... This forum has a number of those.
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  6. #16


    Posts : 11
    win 8


    No, you don't. In Windows 7, if you click on the start "orb", and type a search string into the search in the start menu, it behaves just like Search does in the Start Page, although obviously the Start Page gives you more options.

    Uh. Right there in your video. "See more search results". Right there. Above the Search field. In English. Using letters. You can't see that link? That's exactly what I said--a link to get to more advanced options. Click it and see what happens.

    In Metro, as I've said--what you get when your search doesn't find anything is this: zip. Nada. Basically it's saying "this is what we found--deal with it." No indication there's anything else. No indication there could be "more search results." Yet searching from the Start menu is touted all the time as the way to access apps and files.

    So, to search, your average, non-techy user is not going to know why something on say, his non-indexed ssd drive didn't show up--"guess it wasn't really there" he'll say. Or he's going to have to understand two completely different interfaces, and when to use which.

    It's not like this is obscure knowledge. Before there was a task bar, you had to use alt-tab, or bring up task manager and switch that way.

    No one says Alt-Tab was obscure. Just your contention that it's the "primary" way users switch as dubious--when there's a task bar and a myriad of other ways to switch.

    I've never known anyone that didn't use Alt-tab almost religiously.


    Yes you have.

    You don't have to do anything special. If you alt tab back to your Metro app, it is right there.

    You really don't get it, do you. "Don't have to do anything special?" All I want to do see what's running. But...if I'm in the advanced UI formally known as Metro, to do that simple thing I have to hit Alt-Tab. Then, after checking, I have to alt-tab to get back to what I was doing. You've had to A.) hit keys to see what is obvious by looking at the bottom of the screen in Win 7. Then B.) hit keys again, and C.) pick Metro app.

    If you don't see that as a "burden", then you must not do a lot of multi-tasking. OK, I know you'll say you do--more than anyone ever. So let me rephrase that: You must not do a lot of multi-tasking well. If you can't see how ANY extra required step takes a toll in efficiency. Little "burdens" add up to a huge hit in "serious" usability for an OS.

    Yeah, it's a little thing. A lot of little things add up to a huge problem. Expecting average users to keep track of two interfaces--most of whom barely master the basics of one--is a problem in and of itself. Simultaneously hamstringing more sophisticated users with burdens, annoyances and frustrations is another. I lived through ME. I lived through Vista. The only thing saving this OS from complete failure is the improvements under the hood. But this by far the most ill-conceived franken-OS I've ever come across. No way IT depts. will come near deploying this.

    How do you use a tablet or phone? They all do the exact same thing. How is that not a "burden"?

    And that, ladies and gentlemen, about sums it up.

    Please...read the following sentence very closely:

    My. Desktop. Computer. Is. Not. A. Phone.
    Last edited by daneyuleb; 04 Nov 2012 at 19:06.
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  7. #17


    Posts : 1,127
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by dirtyvu View Post
    when I click on my firefox tile on the start screen (and firefox is already running on the desktop), it does not launch another instance of firefox. it just brings me back to my firefox window.
    Hmmmm... Not for me. No how, no way. Any particular plugin, or About setting, or other magic you used to achieve this? Seems to always launch a new browser instance. I'm on v16.0.2 (latest).
    I'm also on the latest FF. I didn't upgrade my Windows 7. I installed Windows 8 fresh from the upgrade media. I installed FF fresh as well. I've never been a fan of upgrading an OS and letting the automated process handle moving everything from one setup to another. Too many things can go wrong, and too many messy remnants and conflicts can occur.

    Yes, it's a lot more work to build from the ground up but if you have a plan in place on what you're going to install and what you're going to leave behind as legacy software, then it's just time consuming.
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  8. #18


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    Uh. Right there in your video. "See more search results". Right there. Above the Search field. In English. Using letters. You can't see that link? That's exactly what I said--a link to get to more advanced options. Click it and see what happens.
    What happens is that it opens up Windows Explorer. Which I already said you could do, but you seemed to think wasn't good enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    In Metro, as I've said--what you get when your search doesn't find anything is this: zip. Nada. Basically it's saying "this is what we found--deal with it." No indication there's anything else. No indication there could be "more search results." Yet searching from the Start menu is touted all the time as the way to access apps and files.
    If you use Windows the way it's intended, then yes. That is the way to access apps and files. If you're using it as its intended, then all your files will be in your Libraries, and thus will be indexed. But, people like you like to do things your own way, then complain when it doesn't work the way it was promised.

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    So, to search, your average, non-techy user is not going to know why something on say, his non-indexed ssd drive didn't show up--"guess it wasn't really there" he'll say. Or he's going to have to understand two completely different interfaces, and when to use which.
    A non-techie guy is going to put his files in his libraries.

    Quote Originally Posted by daneyuleb View Post
    My. Desktop. Computer. Is. Not. A. Phone.
    You're avoiding the question. If doing such a thing is such a burden, why is it not a burden on a phone? Claiming your desktop isn't a phone doesn't answer the question, because my question is not about your desktop. It's about your phone.
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