Feb 04 2013

People want Aero in Windows 8?

So, something came across my Twitter feed today that kind of shocked me!

Namely, this article that says, apparently, that some users demand that Microsoft bring back the Aero design interface in Windows 8:



For the sake of completeness, before I continue this article, let me share the the Wikipedia article on Aero.

Okay, this really has me scratching my head. While Aero was beautiful, it really did nothing. It provided nothing useful that hasn’t been retained in Windows 8 already. Desktop peek? It’s there. Taskbar previews? They are there too. I can’t think of anything other than those two features ,introduced as a side effect of the Aero design in Windows Vista and Windows 7, that provides any actual functionality. The glass effects that Aero had were very pretty, but they provided no actual functionality.

With Windows 8, the idea behind the computer has changed. In this day and age, people are using relatively low powered devices like tablets and smart phones to get many common tasks done. Why should these devices be taxed with the burden of rendering the Aero effects instead of getting your tasks done as quickly as possible? Microsoft has designed Windows 8 for use on all types of machines, and Aero was one of those elements that just had to go when time came to maximize power usage. Rendering those effects takes a noticeable chunk of computing power, which means the device will drain its battery that much quicker. It made much more sense to the developers to change the desktop apperance to something that at least didn’t needlessly hog battery life. I can understand disliking the rather flat look that the Windows 8 desktop now has in comparison to Windows 7 or Vista, but it took me only a week or so to get used to the changes, and I quickly realized that I didn’t miss the shiny edges and glassy look.

While eye candy is nice,  could cause some issues. Certain older programs that I required for some projects would have odd behaviours unless Aero was turned off for those programs. A minor annoyance, but still an odd trait related simply to the pretty effects that Aero provided.  Of course, ne would ask why I didn’t just disable Aero fully, and ignore it. Well, at the time, would you really want to go back to a flat look? If you had the option available, and the system power to use it, why wouldn’t I, right? Now, with Aero gone, I don’t miss it, or the problems it caused for me on occasion.

While this seems like something minor to write about, if enough people seem irate over the issue to file a petition to try to get Microsoft to bring the feature back, then maybe it is worth throwing my thoughts out there.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.xadara.com/people-want-aero-in-windows-8/


  1. I’m one of those people who wants Aero back. I really like the look of it, especially how the entire UI of Windows 7 fits together… unlike W8. It would make sense if the taskbar was also the same flat color in Windows 8, but it’s still transparent isn’t it? Also the ability to use many custom themes that all rely on Aero would be nice, but it /is/ a new version of Windows and with that generally comes a different looking UI and incompatible themes. I guess we should all be used to it by now.

    1. @Alex Ward
      The flatness of Windows 8 is designed to match with the overall feel of the “Modern” UI design of the start screen and the new application design themes, but I guess having the option for the more fancy effects wouldn’t be all that bad.

      The taskbar in Windows 8 is transparent, which I guess can seem a bit odd, but it really doesn’t look as garish as one would think. I believe the transparency adds a layer of separation between the taskbar itself, which has a very faint border, and maximized windows, which omit any kind of defined border.

      Don’t get me wrong, I understand why some people would want Aero back, since it was pretty, but I don’t miss it, and I think the general reasons for it going away are worth the loss of it. That little bit of energy and system stress savings is well worth it to me, and for how I use my machines.

      Oh, and thanks for the comment Alex!

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