Windows 8.1 'boot to desktop' rumor: Wishful thinking?

A weekend rumor would lead us to believe that Microsoft is working on an option in Windows 8.1 that allows a direct boot to desktop.

Brooke Crothers
Brooke Crothers Former CNET contributor
Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.
A Windows 8.1 feature to bypass that pesky Metro screen?
A Windows 8.1 feature to bypass that pesky Metro screen? CNET

A Windows 8.1 option to boot to desktop? That seductive rumor has been making the rounds over the weekend.

What could be a reflection of wishful thinking, a post at WinBeta (via Neowin), cites a Russian-language Web site as the source.

Apparently, there is Windows 8.1 code that disables the Metro Start Screen and sends you "to the desktop automatically."

That is a feature that more than a few Windows 8 users would undoubtedly take advantage of since the tiled Metro screen is of questionable utility for some.

Market researcher IDC, among others, has been making the case over the past month or so that this can be confusing to the average consumer, who is not used to a touch-centric Windows interface, and frustrating for more seasoned users who spend all their time in the Windows 7-like desktop mode.

And IDC has gone so far to say that is one of the principal reasons that Windows 8 PCs aren't selling in the numbers expected.

There are workarounds that can send you to the desktop but that just isn't the same as Microsoft sanctioning that feature.

Dream on? We should know more by June when Microsoft holds its Build conference.

Microsoft declined to comment.