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Is Longhorn for Home Users too?

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  • User profile image
    dpen2000

    Question As in my title. If it is, will it come with different versions ie home and professional versions? If not, what windows product in development is for home users?

    Also if Longhorn is for home users, what will be the benefits for them?

    DP

  • User profile image
    DMassy

    Yes Longhorn is for use in the home as well as the enterprise.
    This question sometimes comes up both internally on the product teams and externally when we talk to partners about Longhorn. Who is Longhorn for? Consumers in the home or workers in the enterprise. More frequently after people see some of the investment we are making in graphics and presentation we get asked if Longhorn is only aimed at the consumer.

    We believe Longhorn will appeal to both home and work users. One of the big challenges we face with Windows is that it is a platform for a very wide variety of solutions. We certainly want to make it a great platform for both work and entertainment. I think it's a little too early to discuss the different versions of Windows that will be offered with Longhorn. 

    In Longhorn we see benefits through the investment we are making in the key areas of Fundamentals, Storage, Communication and Presentation that you can learn more about at the Longhorn Developer Center on MSDN. These benefits will be applicable to applications for both the home and work improving the overall user experience.

    Is there anything particular that you are looking for in a home user experience?

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    I think we can expect there to be Home, Professional, Media Center, and Tablet versions of Longhorn. I'm right now reading through this article:
     
    http://www.winsupersite.com/showcase/longhorn_setup.asp

    If I recall what I read when I was reading up on this months ago, that image is from a presentation on Microsoft's website.

  • User profile image
    miseldine

    DMassy wrote:

    Is there anything particular that you are looking for in a home user experience?


    I use XP Professional at work and at home, but really what I'm after are 2 different experiences.

    At work, I want to be able to get under the hood, tweak around with settings I need, configure services etc. In this way, I don't appreciate the softly-softly approach of Windows trying to protect me from myself! i.e. "Ooh, please don't go in this folder as it has important stuff in it!" or the redesigned control panels...

    Whereas in a home setting, these simplifications and abstractions make sense. Presenting a web like interface with all the settings and configuration therefore makes sense, and it does in XP Smiley

    So, what I'd look for in Longhorn is a distinct separation between editions...if you're using the "Pro" or "Advanced" edition, expect little help from the OS. If you're using the Home edition, expect a more friendly and forgiving experience. 

  • User profile image
    KW802

    miseldine wrote:
    At work, I want to be able to get under the hood, tweak around with settings I need, configure services etc. In this way, I don't appreciate the softly-softly approach of Windows trying to protect me from myself! i.e. "Ooh, please don't go in this folder as it has important stuff in it!" or the redesigned control panels...

    ...

    So, what I'd look for in Longhorn is a distinct separation between editions...if you're using the "Pro" or "Advanced" edition, expect little help from the OS. If you're using the Home edition, expect a more friendly and forgiving experience. 


    I agree but with one slight difference.  Rather than it being a "Home" versus "Pro" thing I'd prefer seeing an option setting associated to the user account that indicates the users (for example) "User Type" or "User Expertise" that can then be set for (again, for example) "Novice" or "Intermediate" or "Expert" with the UI & control panels, etc. presented accordingly.  Within just the office environment even though Win2K & WinXP are our standards we have users that range from somebody who literally never used a computer before starting here to people who have various IT degrees & certs.  With the home users there are people who don't necessarily need the benefits of XP Pro but at the same don't want to be coddled by the simpleton Home environment either. 

    Just my random though of the day.   Smiley

  • User profile image
    Jeremy W

    It's a great idea, but tests have shown that anyone with half an ounce of IT knowledge will always hit the "Experienced User" button. Same as hitting Custom when installing programs.

    I'm quite happy with how XP does it, to be honest. 5 minutes of customization and it's ready for work (Classic look & feel, old Windows 2000 menu, and Classic Control Panel).

    Sure it'd be a nice 'feature' to have it set these automatically if you said "I don't want the fancy schmancy stuff", but the implementation of that would be awful. Some work users will want some things (many people find the XP menu system more productive, but it annoys me at work) while others will want others. Either way nothing will be ideal for everyone (unless there was a wizard...) so customization will always be necessary.

    In fact, a wizard might work wonders: step a user through the "home oriented" features so that we can really quickly configure it how we need to (for home or work). This would have been especially useful in XP, since people today STILL don't know about the Classic theme (of course, nobody went through the Intro either, which didn't help).

    Agh, Friday. I'm rambling, sorry.

  • User profile image
    ghos

    I think a wizard is a great idea.  I think its important for people to try out new things with a new OS and a wizard could accomplish that.  The user would be presented with options, perhaps examples to show what each options does, either through images or short video or even changing the item before their eyes and then a default setting.  So if they just want to skip all this they can hit default and go on using the OS how MS decided would be best.
    However another option would be to have three choices, Default, Customize, Classic.  So when installing, the user could pick from those three and save a lot of trouble perhaps.
    In the end probably won't satisfy everyone, but would give users more of a choice.  Also there are certainly many out there who not only don't realize the Classic version is there (not that I like using it myself) but they don't even realize they can make changes in how the OS behaves.
    For instance I prefer the taskbar up top as then its less mouse travel between taskbar and menu's, since by my guess 75% of mouse/click functions occur in the top half of the window.  Having the taskbar at the bottom requires too much mouse travle.  Many home users have no idea about that it can be moved.
    So I think Longhorn should be in a home and a work version at least.  Where the default setting in the home one is the cutsy type more so, and the work one is the classic type.

  • User profile image
    KW802

    Jeremy W. wrote:
    ... I'm quite happy with how XP does it, to be honest. 5 minutes of customization and it's ready for work (Classic look & feel, old Windows 2000 menu, and Classic Control Panel).

    ...

    In fact, a wizard might work wonders...

    My only problem with a wizard type approach is that unless those wizard settings are centralized (eg: AD) then everytime I work on a new machine I would have to go through the wizard to get the machine to mostly 'look & feel' the way I'm used to but even then it would only be changing those options that the wizard knows about.  Sure, everybody has a slight difference in what they prefer but if I could get (using the infamous 80/20 rule) 80% of the most common changes to the interface by turning on an "Expert Mode" flag somewhere it'd still be better than nothing at all. Guess it's the lesser of two pains, getting 80% of what you want through a wizard or getting 80% of what you want through a bit/flag switch. 

    One benefit of the flag method is that I'd be able to go through with end-users on the phone to have them turn the option on temporarily, walk them through a common set of tasks, and then have them turn the flag back to what it was before -- Being able to do that would help our Help Desk folks when they have to deal with some people being able to see file extensions, some not, some seeing hidden files, some not, etcetra.   Smiley

    The downside to either a wizard or flag, of course, is who would be deciding what options are included.  Sad




  • User profile image
    Quatermain

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