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Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Windows 8 Editions: Windws 8, Windows 8 Pro And Windows RT


Microsoft today confirmed that it will release three different editions for "Windows 8" when it is released to market sometime in Autumn.

The Windows 8 OS will be available for x86/64 or Windows On Arm (WOA) PCs.

First, Windows 8 is the official product name for the next x86/64 editions of Windows.

For PCs and tablets powered by x86 processors (both 32 and 64 bit), Microsoft will offer two editions: Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro. Windows 8 will include all the features above plus an updated Windows Explorer, Task Manager, better multi-monitor support and the ability to switch languages on the fly, which was previously only available in Enterprise/Ultimate editions of Windows. For China and a small set of select emerging markets, Microsoft will offer a local language-only edition of Windows 8.

Windows 8 Pro is designed to help tech enthusiasts and business/technical professionals obtain a broader set of Windows 8 technologies. It includes all the features in Windows 8 plus features for encryption, virtualization, PC management and domain connectivity. Windows Media Center will be available as an economical "media pack" add-on to Windows 8 Pro.

Windows RT is the newest member of the Windows family ? also known as Windows on ARM or WOA. This single edition will only be available pre-installed on PCs and tablets powered by ARM processors. Windows RT will include touch-optimized desktop versions of the new Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. For new apps, the focus for Windows RT is development on the new Windows runtime, or WinRT, which Microsoft unveiled in September and forms the foundation of a new generation of cloud-enabled, touch-enabled, web-connected apps of all kinds.

The below chart breaks down key features by edition:

Feature name

Windows 8

Windows 8 Pro

Windows RT

Upgrades from Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium

x

x

 

Upgrades from Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate

 

x

 

Start screen, Semantic Zoom, Live Tiles

x

x

x

Windows Store

x

x

x

Apps (Mail, Calendar, People, Messaging, Photos, SkyDrive, Reader, Music, Video)

x

x

x

Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote)

   

x

Internet Explorer 10

x

x

x

Device encryption

   

x

Connected standby

x

x

x

Microsoft account

x

x

x

Desktop

x

x

x

Installation of x86/64 and desktop software

x

x

 

Updated Windows Explorer

x

x

x

Windows Defender

x

x

x

SmartScreen

x

x

x

Windows Update

x

x

x

Enhanced Task Manager

x

x

x

Switch languages on the fly (Language Packs)

x

x

x

Better multiple monitor support

x

x

x

Storage Spaces

x

x

 

Windows Media Player

x

x

 

Exchange ActiveSync

x

x

x

File history

x

x

x

ISO / VHD mount

x

x

x

Mobile broadband features

x

x

x

Picture password

x

x

x

Play To

x

x

x

Remote Desktop (client)

x

x

x

Reset and refresh your PC

x

x

x

Snap

x

x

x

Touch and Thumb keyboard

x

x

x

Trusted boot

x

x

x

VPN client

x

x

x

BitLocker and BitLocker To Go

 

x

 

Boot from VHD

 

x

 

Client Hyper-V

 

x

 

Domain Join

 

x

 

Encrypting File System

 

x

 

Group Policy

 

x

 

Remote Desktop (host)

 

x

 


With Windows 8, users will be able to use a touch screen or a keyboard and mouse - and switch anytime. They will also have access to Microsoft's Windows Store and download apps.


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