Change the order of icons in the system tray in Windows 8 Developer Preview

In Windows 8, we can now re-order icons in our system-tray by simply clicking and dragging them where we want to :)

Pretty neat!

Windows 8 System Tray icon re-ordering
Windows 8 System Tray icon re-ordering

Restore Start Menu in Windows 8 Developer Preview (or how to disable Metro)

If, like me, you do not really like the Metro-styled Windows 8 start menu, you can restore the Window 7 classic style menu with a simple registry tweak, as follows

  • Runregedit‘ from your WIN+R dialog
  • Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer
  • Set RPEnabled to 0
  • Reboot :)
The inverse (setting to 1) will restore your metro-styled ui.
Do note that this will disable Metro!

Windows 8 Developer Preview Safe Mode

It turns out that the normal way to access safe mode is disabled in Windows 8 Developer Preview.

Instead, launch Windows, and do the following:

  1. Call up the ‘Run Dialog‘ by hitting WinKey+R
  2. Enter ‘msconfig‘ and hit enter
  3. Go to the ‘Boot’ tab
  4. Enable ‘Safe Boot‘ under ‘Boot Options’
  5. Restart your machine
To return to normal mode, just run the same process, and un-check ‘Safe Boot’

windows 8 hyper-v

So I tried installing Hyper-V on my Intel Xeon Quad-Core laptop… one would think that this would be possible.

Turns out that Microsoft’s promise of Windows 8 running fully on hardware that can run Windows 7 does have its limitations.

I headed to the familiar ‘Turn Windows Features on or off’ dialog, and tried installing Hyper-V Core, but this was disabled… further digging around unearthed some unpleasant details.

Hyper-V Core, the integral part of Hyper-V, requires a new virtualisation processor feature known as SLAT.  Microsoft has documented a list of SLAT-Capable cpus here ->

Unfortunately mine is not listed there.

So if anyone was planning (as was I) to install the Dev Preview and have a VM of Windows 7 running on it, think again, and try an alternative solution, such as Oracle’s VirtualBox.

microsoft build conference – windows 8

I was unable to attend the Microsoft BUILD conference, though luckily practically all the material is available on-line (except the schwag and breakfasts and …)