Happy Windows 8 Launch Morning Everyone!

By Gary Cutlack on at

Were you one of these clearly insane people who queued up outside PC World to buy Windows 8 last night? And if so, how's that installation process going for you?

Microsoft's latest OS is on general release in the UK today, and the full desktop version has received some pretty good reviews thus far. Not that reviews really matter in terms of Windows, because you'll almost inevitably end up using it at some point in the future anyway. But still. It's not a disaster as far as most early users are concerned.

And today, you're able to decide whether to actually plonk down some money for Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro for a PC or laptop, or to really take a gamble on Microsoft's dream by buying some hardware running the RT version of the code designed specifically to run on ARM-powered mobile devices.

The key advantage to be had in opting for the Pro desktop bundle is the inclusion of Microsoft's Media Centre code, which, for those who are in the habit of using it as their main video manager, makes spending the extra money essential.

In terms of cost, the cheapest and easiest way to update is to upgrade an existing version of Windows 7 to Win 8 Pro. Doing this online costs you £24.99 through Microsoft, or £49.99 if you're mad and would rather have a boxed disc sent to your house. Plus, if you've recently bought a Windows 7 machine, you may even qualify for the super-cheap £14.99 upgrade.

Or there's the hardware with Windows 8 and RT pre-loaded. Makers like Dell, HP, Samsung and Lenovo have a variety of models available, offering traditional laptop-style machines, ultrabooks, all-in-ones, tablets and some bonkers hybrids like the Lenovo Yoga, or there's even Microsoft's own Surface for the lifelong Ballmer fan. [Microsoft]

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