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Windows 8 Windows 8 Booting and Starting Faster than Windows 7


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
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Jul 22, 2005
Hello everyone. This is Mike from Windows8Forums.com. We some very good news for Windows 8 enthusiasts, as new benchmarks have been released from Microsoft Corporation. These benchmarks indicate that Windows 8 boots significantly faster than Windows 7 in every possible realm. We have thirty (30) computers that have been tested, and while we don't know the make-up or consistency of these systems, we know that both solid state hard drives and both 7200RPM conventional hard drives were likely used. The graph shows that the longest boot time for Windows 7 can be up to seventy (70) seconds on these experimental systems. Meanwhile, the longest boot time for Windows 8 seems to be around fifteen (15) seconds. To make that matter more articulate, Microsoft released a promotional video to showing the power of this boot-time capacity.

"Hi, my name is Emily Wilson and I am a Program Manager in the Kernel Platform Group, and today I am going to show you how fast Windows 8 starts up. So here we have a laptop and the battery is removed so we know we are at zero power. We're going to put the battery back in, and now we're going to see how fast Windows 8 starts up. So here we go, and we're posting, and there we go, that's all there is to it. We look forward to you getting to try this out yourself."

Are you kidding me? That was friggin' unbelievable. Let's not take a look at that again, and let's just be amazed by it. I believe that computer booted in ten seconds, and I'm amazed by it. That was Hewlett Packard laptop: still trying to find the model and make of that system, to boot Windows 8 within a matter of seconds. I am here at shopping.hp.com and I've gone to the high-end area of their computer sales: they do have a Labor Day sale on their computer systems. I am checking to see if it's the Pavilion DV6Z. It is very possible, since this system uses a AMD Quad-Core A6-3400M Accelerated Processor (2.3GHz/1.4GHz, 4MB L2 Cache) with a good AMD Radeon(TM) Discrete-Class Graphics [HDMI, VGA]... it could be the DV6T, but she was definitely using a higher-end laptop. Either way, you're definitely not going to get this boot time on any HP laptop that I've ever seen. I just can't believe it to be honest with you. And when I look at the type of laptop she was using, the only one that I can see she was using was from their high performance laptop area. And it's got to be one of these systems. It could have been the DV7T. But I can only imagine they've had to use the best possible high end system. This could have even been a dual core i5 with a high cache. It looks to be that they could even have been using a traditional 7200 RPM hard drive since most of these systems seem to come with one. However, a second generation i7 machine, the DV7T with the i7, a 6MB L3 cache, 2.0Ghz clock speed, and a 1GB GDDR Radeon HD 6490 would not be out of the question with a system like that to see a system like that boot so quickly. But it definitely looked like a HP Pavilion laptop. And that is something that is truly amazing, folks. So look forward to more information at Windows8Forums.com. We will continue to report on this stuff whenever we get the chance. This is awesome and unprecedented to see Microsoft releasing benchmarks for their flagship Windows 8 operating system, which will be out by the end of the year, 2012.

Microsoft has released benchmarks and video testimony that shows the power of their new Windows 8 operating system. In boot and start-up benchmark scores, Windows 8 appears to obliterate Microsoft Windows 7. If that wasn't enough, Emily Wilson, Program Manager at the Windows 8 Kernel Platform Group demonstrates this superior boot time using an unknown HP laptop. This video reviews and documents an extraordinary newsworthy event after Microsoft published their "Building Windows 8: 'Delivering fast boot times in Windows 8'" press release and promotion.

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Yesterday in the Building Windows 8 Blog, Steven Sinofsky expressed concerns that Windows 8 may boot too fast.
In the article he discusses why that could potentially be a bad thing (no time to evoke BIOS utility, no time to evoke safe mode, etc.,).
And some of the things they are building into the operating system to work around that pesky problem.
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Worth a look.
I'd like to get that laptop too, I timed it from when she hit the power button to Start Screen, 7 seconds.
There are articles appearing all over the place regarding issues due boot spd. Just the brain, eyes & fingers don't have enough time to do anything... might want to hit something (else) rather than going through to regular boot.

I will say, I've seen, 1st-hand, how this can be 'challenging' / how challenging this may/does make opting for things... @ the OS boot choice screen it's set to default to Win8 BUT, this time, I want 7... damn, I better have my finger over the key & be blazing fast while, the wee moment is there! Grrr, when I miss it.

Having read all that, I figured it's a good time to try it out myself. I've got an older PC, with 1GB of RAM, and it has Win-7 and Win-8 installed.

I will time how long it takes to turn the computer on, and get to my desktop. ....

Win 8
  • From turning on the power to getting to the screen asking me which version of Windows I want to load, 34 seconds.
  • To get from there to the "pretty background photo with a large clock at bottom-left", 6 seconds
  • To get from there to the login screen, 1/4 second, or less...
  • To log on after typing in my password.... 6 seconds
  • To get to the desktop.... 1/4 second, or less

Total time from power on to desktop: 46 seconds.

Win 7
I started to try the same thing for Win7, but it's not possible. When I boot the computer to the point where I select which operating system to use, it's already showing some of the Win8 screens, and after selecting Win7 it re-boots, this time eventually getting into Win7. This takes much longer than what it used to take before installing Win8 one one of the partitions.

I know the boot-up time was more with Win-7, but I had a lot of things loading. With Win-8 it's a pretty empty system, and starts up quite nicely. For an older computer, even with only 1 GB, Win-8 makes it a lot more enjoyable to use. The only time it bogged down was when I tried to use the Media Center to watch a video from Hulu TV.
.........The graph shows that the longest boot time for Windows 7 can be up to seventy (70) seconds on these experimental systems. Meanwhile, the longest boot time for Windows 8 seems to be around fifteen (15) seconds.......

Do I need new glasses again - it's true that it shows the longest boot time for Windows 7 at 70 seconds, but when I look at the data for Windows 8, the SHORTEST boot time (not longest) is 15 seconds.

When an OS is touted for its boot speed then I know it is not worth buying. How many times a day does one need to boot his PC? What difference will a minute or two make? Will you miss the train? Do you proponents of Win 8 seriously think that the strong selling point of any OS is its boot speed?
I wager that most people who own PCs will shy away from this OS simply because of its unfriendly UI. I do however think that it is very well suited for Tablets and smart phones!
I have stated elsewhere (other Forums) that when I return to Win 7 (did it just yesterday to apply Patch Tuesday patches) it just feels clunky. I find myself saying "come on, do something" more often than when I'm working on Win 8 RP. I'm not talking high powered apps or severe multi-tasking scenarios, I'm talking simple stuff, surfing, writing in Forums, email, simple excel documents, etc.

I spend nearly 100% of my time on Win 8 RP Desktop UI (I believe this is where the real work will take place on Win 8 Pro when I clean install it in October. My belief is (go ahead I can stand the pounding) that the Metro UI and most tablets are more for play, just like the iPad. The possible exception may be the Surface Pro tablet. At least it looks promising.
It would be interesting to asee what figures other users get. There is a lot of emphasis on the start up and shutdown times, which I do not consider, in my environment, as very important.- For home use, I switch on my computer early morning and make a cup of coffee. At the end of the day, I switch off and go to bed!
But, for what it is worth, Somewhere on these pages I posted my own figures, I trhink during the consumer release. The results have not changed much. But, in spite of my first comments, I am always surprised when I see other users start up and shut down figures. I worked hard with Windows 7, customising and tweaking to its limits. The article states that the author has the two OSs installed as totally separate entities. Now, let me say this is a comparison, not a speed test for either OS. As a comparison, on my test computer, kinf of Ford model T vintage, I cannot get even close to those figures. The Bios load varies from machine to machine, so my timing is from after the bios load, to a working desktop - without HD activity. Iknow we can plunge in whilst the HD lights are still active, but I wanted the same comparison. It was important, from this point of view, that no antivirus programs were running.
Windows 7 started in 40 secs. Windows 8 in 47 secs.
The remainder of the authors tests were dedicated to certain specialised operations, my own were quite simply opening the same web page (This one, as it happens, as it has always been the slowest for me): Opening Windows Explorer and performing an function, and opening a (64Bit) App. Plus other insignificant uses.
In these backyard tests, as did the author, I did find some of window 8 ops a little better, some a little slower. Unfortunately, I did not see any mind shattering differences which we make me recommend its purchase to those who are happy with Windows 7 - least of all to company multi purchasers.
I am assured, from my own tests, that there is a small performance move forward. This has mainly been achieved by using all those services more economically. Because of this, I will be using Windows 8, rather than Windows 7, in the very near future. In fact, reading posts here and on other forums, I feel I am getting more satisfaction from it than many others!
Only a personal observation, but I do not sense (visually), any performance improvements whilst using Windows 7.
Boot-up time might not be important on a desktop (except when people are standing around you waiting to see something, and by the time the computer is up and useable, they're getting annoyed.....). It's even more annoying when the computer is "up", but it's doing so many things on its own that it doesn't respond to your for what seems to take forever. On a laptop, it's a different story. I would much rather have an on/off switch, with instant reaction, perhaps as long as my phone takes to boot up, but not much more.

I was wrong on my Toshiba. I pressed the power button, and in less than half a minute, the computer shut down - or so I thought. I'd press the button again a while later, and again, less than half a minute to logging on. When shut down, all the lights were off, and I assumed so was the computer.

Now something has changed - it still works just as it used to, but when "off" one of the status lights blinks slowly, making me think the computer isn't really "off".

When I shut the computer down the old fashioned way, with the menu system, it's really "off", and this process is also faster than I remember from before, especially on this laptop.

Is this a reason to buy Windows 8? Maybe not. It's a nice bonus though.

Personally, I would love to get rid of all the baggage that comes along with Windows 8 (Metro, apps, and all the other stuff I don't care about) and simply have the better and faster OS that the whole thing is built on. That's enough of a reason for me to say that I'll be upgrading most of my PC's once it becomes available - when possible. Apparently I won't be able to on my Sony VAIO TT laptop, as the only drivers available for it are for Vista.
I should have said "......for me."

I hardly ever turn my desktop off, so I'm rarely waiting for it to boot. I just let it sleep at night.
Win Win 8 on my laptop, I just hit the power button, and it also goes to sleep.
Understandable. The way the faster boot up in Windows 8 works is actually similar to hibernation in Windows 7, except it doesn't save your current session to the hiberfile.
This is my real time boot experience of Windows 8 in Virtual Box.

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When win 7 was going to be released, they touted win 7s boot speed over XP; Well my XP laptop still boots much faster than my Win 7 PC.

Windows 8: Designed by Playskool engineers for smartphones!
I have seen quite a few such benchmarks. I wonder if they are based on power off to power on and boot? My bios itself, takes about 10 seconds to load and clear, so a 15 second boot could never be achieved by me. I get the same figure for boot up as Mike Myers in his post ("5), only difference is I have an auto logon but the time penalty still exists.. Somewhere buried in this forum, I produced my own amateur timing efforts. I timed it from selecting the OS from the boot manager - much more practical and realistic. Windows 8 arrives at the "metro" start screen, quicker than Windows 7 to the desktop, but it then thrashes the HD for a short while. Allowing for this inconsistency, I did not have any significant difference in my boot up times. I got, plus/minus, pretty much the same figures through the public releases and now with the RTM. The other mentioned factors were consistently a little faster in Windows 8, but, at least on my computer, nothing to rave about Shutdown time for Windows 8 did, however, impress. But with this, I do agree with tanzanos first para.. My computer, at most, goes on and off once a day. Often it stays on for days at a time. Boot up and shutdown times are, therefore, not a serious consideration for me.