Windows 8 Bugs in RTM, One Month From Launch

So I've been running the RTM version of Windows 8 Enterprise at work and the Professional version at home as soon as they were released. The past month or so gives me great hope for where Microsoft is going with Windows 8, but also I'm very concerned as bugs, glitches and issues I relate to Windows and not faulty drivers have me concerned for the initial impression Microsoft's Windows 8 will make on the general public.

I'll lay out a few specific examples I've been seeing and maybe someone can tell me what to tweak or if they've had the same issue themselves.

Screen Saver (2/2 of my Win 8 machines show this)

This may seem like a dumb thing to worry about, but I've noticed a very consistent way in which the screen saver functionality doesn't seem to work properly. If I get up and walk away from my computer, leaving it at either the desktop or on a Metro app without locking the screen, the screensaver functions as I would expect, I have a 5 minute delay set and after 5 minutes, screen saver kicks on, I come back, move the mouse, lock screen appears, I log in, works as expected.

Now, if I actually lock the screen before I get up from my desk (my personal habit, security!) the lock screen appears, but then after a moment or two (I'm not sure on exact timing) the screen will just go dark and the lcd will go into power saving mode, no screen saver is ever seen. Yes I have played with my power setting to ensure that Windows isn't just turning off the display. From what I can tell, the only difference is that I've actually locked the screen myself as opposed to waiting for the screen saver to take care of that.

It's not really hurting the usability of the system at all, it's just strange inconsistent behavior coming from previous versions of Windows.

Remote Desktop (1/2 of my Win 8 machines show this)

At work I tend to remote from older Windows XP machines into my Windows 8 machine every now and then. For the most part, this works well. Now I'm not sure if this issue is related to the Screen Saver bug, but while on extensive Remote Desktop sessions from XP to 8, there will be times when I won't have interacted with the Windows 8 session for a few minutes and the screensaver will kick in, sending me a lovely view of a black screen. Normally this is no problem, I move the mouse, the log-in window appears and I go back to work. However, sometimes after having been in a session for an hour or two, this will happen and I'll be stuck at a black screen. I will then have to physically walk back to my desktop, log in locally, and then I can go back and re-start the remote desktop session. (Seen in one of my two windows 8 machines.)

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(My Metro interface with Windows Store error)

Windows Store Updates (1/2 of my Win 8 machines show this)

I know this issue was widely reported with the Consumer preview and Release preview. The Windows Store icon in the Metro interface shows I have updates available, yet when launching the app, no updates show themselves. To be fair, this issue just showed itself to me yesterday after I rebuilt the machine from the ground up using Win8 as opposed to before where I had upgraded from Win7 to 8. Maybe the system is still settling after I re-signed in with my Microsoft Account, but even if that's the case, I shouldn't get false notifications.

Explorer vs Metro (1/2 of my Win 8 machines show this)

There are times while doing extensive work in the desktop (ie: explorer.exe) where the system will slowly start to lock up and I will be unable to get out to the Metro interface. The desktop interface will continue to operate as expected for a bit, but will ultimately lock up and force me to do a hard reset of the computer. I have yet to run into this issue with Metro. (Seen on one of my two Windows 8 machines.)

Those are the main bugs I've run into. The last one being the most serious, but also the most rare. Happening maybe once a week. While the other two will happen every day.

Wrap Up

As I said in the beginning, I like Windows 8, I think it's the right direction for computing and I'm excited to see where this all goes. But I am worried that if Microsoft doesn't squash these bugs before October 26th, the world at large will be quick to condemn Microsoft's latest effort. Wait for SP1 isn't a viable solution with Microsoft's all in approach to their new ecosystem. I should be able to go get a Surface tablet, update my Windows 7 computer to Windows 8 and buy a Windows 8 Phone all within a week or two of the launch of all of these products and not worry about bugs that cause usability problems in a very regular, repeatable way every day.

So how about you? Are these problems unique to me? Or are these widespread and Microsoft needs to find a way to fix this before next month's launch?