the Microsoft desktop Operating System family.

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2
votes
1answer
160 views

Buttons in the “tab area” of a page control

Is it OK to put buttons (or a toolbar) in the "tab area" of a page control? In the example above, the number of tabs is fixed. The rationale behind this is to "save space". However. It "feels" ...
2
votes
2answers
157 views

“Revert to Default” UI element

In the settings dialog of our Windows desktop application, the user can type or select a certain (template) file. If nothing is specified, the application falls back to the default. This is indicated ...
0
votes
0answers
71 views

Smoothly transitioning from mouse drag to text entry

I have an application I'm working on where a portion of the interface is very mouse-centric. You drag the mouse to create/manipulate regions, then assign properties to those regions. Below is an ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

Highlighting a property in combobox

I am currently doing an application with a combobox, like this: Obviously the visuals can be better, but leaving that aside: How can I highlight a boolean property of a particular element? A ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How does Windows 7 Aero taskbar determine button hover-state background colour [closed]

This has intrigued me for quite some time. Does anyone know the algorithm Windows 7 Aero uses to determine the colour to use as the mouse-tracking hover highlight on taskbar buttons for ...
1
vote
2answers
72 views

Modification by value or percentage

Each train type on each section of track has a specific running time, set by Those Who Know. My users need the option of modifying the value of that setting (train journey time in minutes) by either ...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

What is the list view in Windows Explorer called?

In Windows Explorer, the Details view looks like this: As you can see, there is a list view in which the items can be sorted by one of many attributes. I would like to know what this sort of list ...
0
votes
5answers
323 views

Correct use of Ribbons in Windows program

I need some advice on the correct use of Ribbons in desktop applications. The program I'm working on is for a clinic, I have done a simple mockup below to make it easier to visualize. My client wants ...
74
votes
4answers
15k views

Why did Microsoft make Windows 8 hard to Power Off?

I’ve been using Windows 8 for a couple of weeks and am certain the new operating system will work great on tablet (i.e. Microsoft Surface). On PC some say the best tile is the desktop tile, where you ...
3
votes
4answers
785 views

Why is the Windows taskbar default at the bottom?

In Windows operating systems the taskbars default position is at the bottom. Why is that so? Especially it is strange to me because all windows application have their main menu bar at the top. To me ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I indicate that fields are mandatory in Windows Desktop UI?

I need a method of indicating that certain fields are required within my forms on a Windows Desktop UI. I have read and searched the Windows Design Guidelines, but can not find a standard that ...
2
votes
1answer
230 views

How might Windows show a loading status instead of just freezing?

Every now and then, you'll have a bunch of desktop applications open in Windows. Let's say you have a word processor, a web browser, a music player, and video game open simultaneously. All of these ...
4
votes
6answers
118 views

User Interface Changes for Mac when Porting Windows Application

I have an existing windows application, for which I have decided to create a Mac version. The problem is that the current UI involves a lot of buttons, tabbed panels, multiple windows etc. This UI ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Prevent Active Directory password expiration when user never logs in

Let's assume the following in a hospital: Each nurse has her own Active Directory user, with a password. The password expires automatically 90 days after the password was set. A nurse uses her own ...
3
votes
0answers
173 views

User Interface Changes for Mac when Porting Windows Application [duplicate]

I have an existing windows application, for which I have decided to create a Mac version. The problem is that the current UI involves a lot of buttons, tabbed panels, multiple windows etc. This UI ...
3
votes
2answers
174 views

Intutitive way for user to navigate to a second window in application?

I have a 3D model of an aircraft in which the user uses to navigate to get to a specific parts. When the user hovers over a part the part is highlighted with a rectangle. When the part is ...
6
votes
4answers
705 views

Better way to provide software downloads for an exe application

We plan to release an .exe file to public. The options would be to download the .exe file from the websites direct server link, so that we can provide direct download support with respective to ...
4
votes
3answers
221 views

Checkboxes vs Selection in dialog

In my application a user can search for messages in a database. Users may select mailboxes and folders where the search will be performed. These folders are represented as a tree with checkboxes. But ...
0
votes
3answers
171 views

Why does MS Outlook Express store data in a hidden folder? [closed]

Microsoft Outlook Express stores your email files in a hidden data folder buried deep in the user's home folder. I can't understand why they chose to do this. It makes it nearly impossible to ...
2
votes
2answers
602 views

Is the indeterminate checkbox state a Microsoft UI pattern only?

A quick look through online search results show that the indeterminate checkbox state does not seem to be a very common UI interaction, yet Microsoft has persistently stuck with it and are probably ...
1
vote
2answers
228 views

Studies on the impact of switching operating systems in corporate organizations

Browsing through a previous question on the usability between Windows and Mac OS, I thought an interesting question would be to see if there were any studies done on the impact of changing operation ...
6
votes
3answers
291 views

When is the best time to deploy operating system updates?

Related to this question, it was proposed in the comments that it frustrates the user even more when when they go to shutdown their workstation and it takes forever to install updates. However, it's a ...
-5
votes
2answers
94 views

What's the best program (that you have used) to compile a professional windows help file (CHM)? [closed]

I have to make a help documentation in windows help file format. The amount of time I have got for this is ~ 5 hours and I have got about 50 pages (slides) that need to be added to this document. So ...
2
votes
1answer
148 views

How to display NumPad keys to user

We are trying to map how a user will see key presses for custom hotkeys. However, there is some debate which I cannot find a standard for: How to display the number pad keys: num1, num2, numPLUS, ...
2
votes
1answer
302 views

What is an effective way to present System Update Progress to a user that also lowers frustration?

I am working on an app that starts installing any pending updates when a user logs off the (Windows) workstation. The finished app will look like this (minus 'button1'): Our branding is in the ...
0
votes
1answer
441 views

Keyboard navigation of editable fields skipping other controls

I've been browsing StackExchange, the MS UX guidelines, etc and have yet to find an answer, or even a suggestion about this. In a Windows environment, Tab usually moves focus from control to ...
2
votes
0answers
653 views

Why does scrolling when dragging an element scroll faster on mouse wiggle? [closed]

I don't know about other operating systems, but this is very prolific in Windows. Let's say you have a scrollable container that items can be dragged onto. You want to drag an item onto the part of ...
7
votes
3answers
225 views

Should we use Microsoft's feature names, or our own? “Autofilter” vs “Column filter”

Many Microsoft softwares, like the Office suite and the Windows Explorer, feature a type of column filter that they have dubbed the Autofilter. It filters rows based on column content. It adapts the ...
9
votes
4answers
317 views

Why did older Windows installs delay before automatic restart?

Every time I need to install an older copy of Windows (today it's Server 2003 Enterprise), I run into the screen where the initial install phase completes and my machine needs to reboot. The ...
8
votes
2answers
952 views

What is the purpose behind mouse acceleration?

Windows XP enables it by default, I don't know about vista or 7, in Mac OS X you have to buy a shareware to remove both mouse acceleration AND accelerated scrolling. Why are those things always ...
23
votes
5answers
20k views

Is there a Windows 8 desktop UI Guideline or HIG anywhere in the world? [duplicate]

And I don't mean Win 7 / Metro UI guidelines, I have them up the wazoo, but I've changed jobs and need to start looking at the new Windows 8 DESKTOP design. I know it takes a lot of cues from Metro on ...
4
votes
2answers
198 views

position-based application switching in traditional window managers

I have a related question on SU that is asking for any tools which apply this concept: Suppose that I've got a perfectly reasonable set of two terminal windows, two web browsers, and one email ...
18
votes
2answers
1k views

What happened to “What's this?” help?

"What's this?" help or context-sensitive help* used to be commonplace in Windows applications a few years ago. Dialog windows had an additional "?" button in the top right, that when clicked, gave you ...
5
votes
3answers
782 views

Which button should get the focus at delete dialogs?

I thought that most destructive actions should be avoided from default actions. But when a delete dialog comes, I see that most Windows applications (even the OS), by default, set the focus at ...
1
vote
0answers
141 views

User interface design [closed]

I am writing an application in C# using Visual Studio and need my UI like this: +-------------------------------------------------------------+ |Action1 Action2 ... ActionN | Toolbox | ...
155
votes
14answers
24k views

Do people really want to look at multiple windows at once?

I'm referring to Jakob Nielsen's alertbox from November 19, 2012. He complains about the lack of windows in Windows 8: Lack of Multiple Windows = Memory Overload for Complex Tasks One of the ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

What's a good shortcut key for a global shortcut

I'm writing an app that allows the user to open up a window when they put in a shortcut key. I have this feature working but I would like to know what shortcut key combination would be best. I ...
6
votes
4answers
318 views

Control to select (not open) a file on windows

I am designing a Windows application that has a dialog that requires the user to select a file, similar to the way you would with an <input type="file"> on the web. However, I cannot think of a ...
6
votes
1answer
285 views

Alert window, navigating to the right button

Working on both Windows and OSX, I have some habits on both. In alert dialogs, there is a huge usability variance between both operating systems. In the latter, you can either tap enter and have the ...
3
votes
2answers
106 views

Open the folder vs show in explorer?

In Windows, when a program offers to locate a file for you, it typically does so by opening an Explorer window pointing at the containing folder with the specific file highlighted. This gives you ...
18
votes
6answers
2k views

Should yes/no dialogs also have a cancel?

I remember once reading an article that said whenever you present a messagebox with a Yes/No choice, you should always also provide a Cancel button, even if it does the same as No. The rationale was ...
2
votes
2answers
327 views

List Selection mechanisms - OK to mix?

I have a window with multiple tabpages. On one tab, I have a set of controls designed to allow the user to "include" or "exclude" any of a set of pre-defined items from some consideration. You've seen ...
3
votes
3answers
414 views

When to show a Selection Column in a data grid

I have a windows based desktop LOB application. In a multi step process a user is requested to select a SINGLE row on a datagrid. My question is? should or shouldnt I use a selection column to ...
1
vote
1answer
491 views

Web-safe fonts: do Apple devices ship with Arial?

Currently my font stack is "HelveticaNeue-Light","Helvetica Neue Light","Helvetica Neue",Helvetica,Arial,"Lucida Grande",sans-serif. The issue I'm having is that some of my images/buttons with text ...
2
votes
1answer
138 views

How do I guide users to use the Windows program necessary for my Android app?

I have published a small Android App. It is a Remote Control for PowerPoint. The Software itself would work just fine, however I have a few small issues with my users. As you can imagine, a user has ...
4
votes
1answer
431 views

Does Metro scale?

This question has bugged me for a while, I thought I might ask it. In software, we say something "scales" if it's able to stay coherent and consistent over a long period of time, but more ...
11
votes
2answers
16k views

Windows 8 Metro Design Examples / Guidelines [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where can I find style guide for metro UI for web applications? Not a technical question about how to build an app (I'm just going to use DevExpress Tiles, mostly ...
4
votes
6answers
512 views

How can I improve the perceived performance of a desktop application?

We've build quite a 'large' and regrettably slow windows application for various financial planning business steps. I'm currently trying to improve the performance of the application by slowly ...
4
votes
6answers
735 views

Good example of a Keyboard Shortcut Manager implementation [closed]

I am implementing a keyboard shortcut manager in which the user can assign shortcut keys to global (or contextual) commands in a Windows desktop application. Note that the application has load of ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Studies showing significant usability differences between Windows and Mac OS X?

Everybody has their pet gripes about one or the other, but I'm curious if there is any actual science showing that "The Windows Way" or "The Mac Way" is significantly better for some task. Just to be ...