Microsoft revealed on Tuesday its new copy and paste user interface for Windows 8.
Microsoft’s Windows 8 product manager, Alex Simons, revealed the changes in the fourth instalment of the building Windows 8 blog on Tuesday. Copy, moving, renaming and deleting make up around 50% of total command usage according to Microsoft’s Windows 7 telemetry data. “For Windows 8, we want to make sure that using these core file management commands, which we collectively refer to as “copy jobs,” is a great experience,” said Simons.
“There are some pretty cluttered and confusing parts of the Windows 7 copy experience,” he adds. “We clearly have an opportunity to make some improvements in the experience of high-volume copying, in dealing with file name collisions, and in assuring the successful completion of copy jobs.” Microsoft plans to make the following changes:
- One place to manage all copy jobs: Create one unified experience for managing and monitoring ongoing copy operations.
- Clear and concise: Remove distractions and give people the key information they need.
- User in control: Put people in control of their copy operations.
Microsoft has consolidated the copy user experience. “You can now review and control all the Explorer copy jobs currently executing in one combined UI,” says Simons. Windows 8 will display all copy jobs in a single dialog instead of multiple ones. Microsoft has also added the ability to pause and resume copy jobs and cancel them. The third improvement sees Microosft add a detailed view with a real-time throughout graph. “Now each copy job shows the speed of data transfer, the transfer rate trend, and how much data in left to transfer,” says Simons.
Simons admits that the time for copy jobs has been “the source of some pretty funny jokes over the years” but reveals the company has made efforts to improve the accuracy of the estimated time remaining. “We focused on presenting the information we were confident about in a useful and compelling way. This makes the most reliable information we have available to you so you can make more informed decisions.”
Microsoft’s final set of improvements is in the cleaning up of the experience for resolving file name collisions. “We can admit that the current experience can be rather confusing,” said Simons. “Our new design is much more clear, concise, and efficient, providing a much more visible and actionable approach to conflict resolution,” Microsoft has altered the user interface to show all the source files on the left hand side of the conflict dialog and the target location on the right. “If you need to know even more about the conflicting files, you can hover over the thumbnail image to see the file path or double-click it to open it from here,” reveals Simons.
Microsoft has also removed a number of confirmation dialogs throughout Windows 8. “We’ve also done a thorough scrub and removed many of the confirmation dialogs that you’ve told us are annoying or feel redundant,” said Simons. Dialogs such as “are you sure you want to move this file to the recycle bin?” have been removed. “All of this adds up to building a significantly improved copy experience, one that is unified, concise, and clear, and which puts you in control of your experience.”