the Microsoft desktop Operating System family.

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3
votes
4answers
851 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
232 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 ...
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 ...
4
votes
6answers
119 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 ...
6
votes
4answers
722 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 ...
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 ...
4
votes
3answers
222 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
620 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
232 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 ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Looking for independent usability study of the Microsoft Fluent UI

I have been trying to gather objective feedback/response on the design of the Fluent UI ('Ribbon') interface. Apart from one study by Forrester which was commissioned by Microsoft anyway, and various ...
-5
votes
2answers
95 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, ...
6
votes
3answers
302 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
306 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
453 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 control....
2
votes
0answers
668 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 ...
9
votes
4answers
320 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 ...
7
votes
3answers
226 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
201 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 ...
0
votes
3answers
173 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 ...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

Delay on keystroke when search as you type

I'm deploying an instant search on my windows app. At the first implementation, when the user type a key, the search engine make a query and return the results. I thought that that wasn't too much ...
5
votes
3answers
820 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 "Yes"/"...
1
vote
0answers
142 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 | ...
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 ...
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 ...
3
votes
2answers
107 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
290 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 ...
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 ...
3
votes
3answers
418 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
516 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
139 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
432 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 importantly,...
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 ...
6
votes
1answer
721 views

Why is HideSelection the default on Windows?

I've always wondered why Windows controls have their HideSelection property set to true by default? Example (TreeView): http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us//library/system.windows.forms.treeview....
1
vote
0answers
550 views

Windows Forms Best Practices [closed]

What are the best practices for enhancing the user-experience on forms on Windows, including usability, efficiency, design and effectiveness, and would you suggest that the operating environment of a ...
2
votes
2answers
330 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 ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Inactive State of buttons, to hide or not to hide…that is the question

On a windows based LOB application for data capturing. Is it better to hide a button completely when it is inactive, or simply show a disabled state for the button.
8
votes
2answers
958 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
681 views

How can the Copy and Replace message box be improved?

I have a program (running on Windows) that I am developing that has a file and folder page as part of it that is effectively copying the Windows format. I allow users to copy, cut, paste, delete and ...
1
vote
1answer
164 views

Why does in-line Label Edit in Windows Explorer have a delay?

When you open Windows Explorer, then select some file or folder, then click its file name, an inline label-edit will be invoked. But there is an intentional delay before the textbox is displayed. Why? ...
3
votes
3answers
247 views

Why could “installing updates” not be listed as a distinct system restart reason in Windows Server?

When I install updates on Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2003 it often requires a system restart upon completion. When I use "Start"->"Restart" the dialog prompts me for a reason for the system ...
11
votes
1answer
302 views

Applicability of Fitts law in expert user scenarios

Fitts law states that "the time required to rapidly move to a target area is a function of the distance to the target and the size of the target.". Simply put, if user is about to click/tap/press a ...
5
votes
3answers
509 views

Is it good UX that in Windows 7 & 8 the “windows” of the same application are automatically grouped into one button?

In Windows 7 and 8, all the windows of every application are by default automatically grouped into one icon on the taskbar. This happens even when there are two instances of the application running i....
2
votes
2answers
213 views

Generate a list of resolutions for a new window

My program is a wrapper for Remote Desktop Connection which generates a ".rdp" file and launches the file through the normal program. I am trying to mimic Remote Desktop Connection's resolution slider ...
5
votes
1answer
577 views

Why would number lock be disabled by default?

There was a time that number lock was enabled by default (at least in a Windows environment). Then, after an update one day, all the sudden the Number Lock is disabled. Why the change? What is it ...
8
votes
5answers
802 views

Are double tabs on the same level acceptable?

In my Windows application, I want to show the user some kind of map. The information displayed on this map can vary a lot, depending on filters set by the user. With these filters set, the user will ...
7
votes
2answers
420 views

UI suggestion: Where to place MoveUp/Down buttons

It is ugly but I can't find a better place to put Move-up and Down buttons. What is your suggestion? Note: the ORDER of the items inside the spreadsheet is important to user and we save it. These ...
2
votes
1answer
591 views

Should a FolderBrowserDialog be used over an OpenFolderDialog?

In developing applications where I need the user to select a folder, I've always favored the OpenFolderDialog because: It looks like an OpenFileDialog Allows the user to jump directly to the path (...
2
votes
1answer
85 views

Display “Day entities” that contain Stuff, by day and by period

I have something like Things that happened this day that can be either of TypeA or TypeB. I want to display Day items per period and also display inside each Day item some info about its TypeA's and ...