Well I have downloaded the Developer's Preview.
Here's what I did:
1) Tried to install 64 bit eiditon in VMWare Workstation 7 - no dice - doesn't even start the installer, just a new blue screen that says HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAIL
2) Upgraded to VMWare Workstation 8 (I was going to do it at some point so bit the bullet).
3) Installed 64 bit edition of W8 Preview - which completed but would not install VMWare tools
4) Downloaded 32 bit version which installed and allowed VM Tools to install so I can use it in full screen mode.
I am running on an AMD Phenom II x6 core host with 16Gb of memory under Windows 7 64-bit.
The VM is allocated 4 cores and 4Gb of RAM plus a 60Gb virtual drive. After repeated boots I can't get a clean install of W8 to boot in under 26 seconds - and that is with no added software (other than in the 32 bit ISO supplied).
Granted I have only been playing with it for half an hour but I hate it (with a passion)!
1) Boot time in the video that started this thread is ridiculous. I cannot get a clean install down below 26 seconds from cold start. A VM of Windows XP I use (which has a bit of extra stuff installed and has been running fro years - it was transferred from my old computer and runs with 2Gb of RAM and 2 cores) starts in 30 seconds. So much for much improved boot time.
2) The Tile Start page seems to have absolutely no options on it except to click on the tiles (no right click or any other buttons that I can find). You don't even seem to be able to switch off directly - you have to logoff (which is very slow - I thought it had crashed) and then shutdown.
3) Clicking on a tile opens the app in full screen mode and you then have to use Alt Tab to cycle to other open apps, press the windows key to return to the Start page or move the mouse to the middle of the left hand edge of the screen and click on an app to cycle through (one app at a time). If you choose to go to the Desktop it looks very like Windows 7 BUT there is no start menu only a button that takes you back to the start page. Pressing F1 doesn't invoke a help system (but I suppose that may not be available yet). Right clicking on the Taskbar allows you to go into properties but there are no Start Menu.
4) Apps are a bit odd - there isn't much that you can do to create a document in the standard ISO so I tried using Paint Play which is a very simple painting app. Your efforts survive shutdown and restart but there doesn't seem to be any mechanism to save what you are doing. There are no menus and right click seems to only do things like hide toolbars to give more screen space.
5) The old utilities (Notepad etc.) are still there but I can't see any way to run them except by using Win R to open a run command box and typing the exe file name.
All in all the interface is entirely optimised for touch screens with little if any real support for more than one button on the mouse. It feels INCREDIBLY childish and very limiting on a desktop computer. It is EXTREMELY frustrating to be constantly sent back to an infant school desktop (it really is designed for 3-5 year olds) and with no option to restore a normal desktop environment I cannot honestly see a single business user wanting to go near this.
The other thing that strikes me is that the stupid start page will become extremely cluttered if you install lots of apps (not that there seems to be an obvious mechanism for installing anything except going via the desktop - which I had to do to install VM tools) - plus the constant flashing of all the tiles as they rotate and update content is incredibly irritating.
I showed the start page to a friend and her first comment was "it looks like a shop" - all hail the future. Personally I think it looks like a webpage in the worst excess of Flash based advertising. Maybe someone will come out with a tool to disable the animation otherwise I think it is in danger of inducing mass epilepsy!
Oh by the way - you are asked to link you user profile to a "live" account as your login. There is an option for a local user account but using an email address is already pushed for the 'benefits' of cloud based computing.
If this actually gets released and becomes dominant on home computers we can kiss goodbye to the days of anything sensible happening on desktop machines and laptops unless you move to Linux or Apple (heaven forbid).
Finally this is a an alpha preview release and it shows - it crashes and freezes constantly - even taking down VMWare itself in the process!