Monday, July 8, 2013

What is new in Windows 8.1

As I mentioned in previous article that windows 8.1 is released now i will 

discuss the new features in it, Windows 8 built to bring a modern computing 

experience to businesses and to help professionals stay connected to their 

colleagues and clients from anywhere, anytime. Windows 8.1 advances this 

vision and introduces new manageability, mobility, security, user experience 

What's New in Windows 8.1

and networking capabilities that will be available later this year – with the 

goal of offering customers the best business tablets and versatile modern 

business PCs driven by the most powerful operating system designed for 

today’s modern businesses.

Below is a list of some of the new and updated features that we invite to you 

test out when the Windows 8.1 experience becomes available later this 


Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Enhancements

Workplace Join

A Windows 8 PC was either domain joined or not.  If it was a member of the 

domain, the user could access corporate resources (if permissioned) and IT 

could control the PC through group policy and other mechanisms.  This 

feature allows a middle ground between all or nothing access, allowing a user 

to work on the device of their choice and still have access to corporate 

resources With Workplace Join, IT administrators now have the ability to offer 

finer-grained control to corporate resources.  If a user registers their device, 

IT can grant some access while still enforcing some governance parameters 

on the device.
Work Folders

Work Folders allows a user to sync data to their device from their user folder 

located in the corporation’s data center. Files created locally will sync back to 

the file server in the corporate environment. This syncing is natively 

integrated into the file system.  Note, this all happens outside the firewall 

client sync support. Previously, Windows 8 devices needed to be domain 

joined (or required domain credentials) for access to file shares.  Syncing 

could be done with third-party folder replication apps. With Work Folders, 

Users can keep local copies of their work files on their devices, with 

automatic synchronization to your data center, and for access from other 

devices. IT can enforce Dynamic Access Control policies on the Work Folder 

Sync Share (including automated Rights Management) and require Workplace 

Join to be in place.
Open MDM

While many organizations have investments with System Center and will 

continue to leverage these investments we also know that many 

organizations want to manage certain classes of devices, like tablets and 

BYOD devices, as mobile devices. With Windows 8.1, you can use an OMA-DM 

API agent to allow management of Windows 8.1 devices with mobile device 

management products, like Mobile Iron or Air Watch.
Mobile Device Management

When a user enrolls their device, they are joining the device to the Windows 

Intune management service.  They get access to the Company Portal which 

provides a consistent experience for access to their applications, data and to 

manage their own devices.  This allows a deeper management experience 

with existing tools like Windows Intune. IT administrators now have deeper 

policy management for Windows RT devices, and can manage Windows 8.1 

PCs as mobile devices without having deploy a full management client.
Web Application Proxy

The Web Application Proxy is a new role service in the Windows Server 

Remote Access role. It provides the ability to publish access to corporate 

resources, and enforce multi-factor authentication as well as apply 

conditional access policies to verify both the user’s identity and the device 

they are using resources, and enforce multi-factor authentication as well as 

verify the device being used before access is granted.
RDS Enhancements

Enhanced Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) in Windows Server 2012 R2 

with improvements in management, value, and user experience. Session 

Shadowing allows administrators to view and remotely control active user 

sessions in an RDSH server. Disk dedupe and storage tiering allow for lower 

cost storage options. User experience for RemoteApps, network connectivity 

and multiple displays has been improved. Administrators can now easily 

support users with session desktops to provide helpdesk style support. 

Administrators now have even more flexible storage options to support a VDI 

environment without expensive SAN investments. End users will find 

RemoteApp behavior is more like local apps, and the experience in low-

bandwidth is better, with faster reconnects and improved compression, and 

support for multiple monitors.
NFC Tap-to-pair Printing

Tap your Windows 8.1 device against an enterprise NFC-enabled printer and 

you’re all set to print. No more hunting on your network for the correct printer 

and no need to buy a special printer to take advantage of this functionality. 

Simply attach an NFC tag to your existing printers to enable this functionality.
Wi-Fi Direct Printing

Connect to Wi-Fi Direct printers without adding additional drivers or software 

on your Windows 8.1 device, forming a peer-to-peer network between your 

device and the printer.
Native Miracast Wireless Display

Present your work wirelessly with no connection cords needed; just pair with 

Miracast-enabled projector via NFC and Miracast will use Wi-Fi to let you 

project wire-free.

Mobility Enhancements


We have added support for a wider range of VPN clients in both Windows and 

Windows RT devices. We have also added the ability to have an app 

automatically trigger VPN connections. 
Mobile Broadband

At Windows 8 launch, the devices had embedded radios that were separate 

components within the devices.  Windows 8.1 supports embedded wireless 

radio, which gives you increased power savings, longer battery life, also 

enables thinner form factors and lower cost devices. 
Windows To Go

With Windows To Go in Windows 8.1, the Windows Store is enabled by 

default. Windows To Go users may roam to any number of machines and 

access the Windows Store and use Windows Store apps. 
Broadband Tethering

Turn your Windows 8.1 mobile broadband-enabled PC or tablet into a 

personal Wi-Fi hotspot, allowing other devices to connect and access the 

Auto-triggered VPN

When you select an app or resource that needs access through the inbox VPN 

– like a company’s intranet site – Windows 8.1 will automatically prompt you 

to sign in with one click. This feature will be available with Microsoft and 

third-party inbox VPN clients.

Security Enhancements

Remote Business Data Removal

Corporations now have more control over corporate content which can be 

marked as corporate, encrypted, and then be wiped when the relationship 

between the corporation and user has ended. Corporate data can now be 

identified as corporate vs. user, encrypted, and wiped on command using EAS 

or EAS + OMA-DM protocol. This capability is requires implementation in the 

client application and in the server application (Mail + Exchange Server). The 

client application determines if the wipe simply makes the data inaccessible 

or actually deletes it. 
Improved Biometrics

All SKUs will include end to end biometric capabilities that enable 

authenticating with your biometric identity anywhere in Windows (Windows 

sign-in, remote access, User Account Control, etc.). Windows 8.1 will also be 

optimized for fingerprint based biometrics and will include a common 

fingerprint enrollment experience that will work with a variety of readers 

(touch, swipe). Modern readers are touch based rather than swipe and include 

liveliness detection that prevents spoofing (e.g.: silicon emulated 

fingerprints). Access to Windows Store Apps, functions within them, and 

certificate release can be gated based on verification of a user’s biometric 

Pervasive Device Encryption

Device encryption previously found on Windows RT and Windows Phone 8 is 

now available in all editions of Windows. It is enabled out of the box and can 

be configured with additional BitLocker protection and management capability 

on the Pro and Enterprise SKUs. Consumer devices are automatically 

encrypted and protected when using a Microsoft account. Data on any 

Windows connected standby device is automatically protected (encrypted) 

with device encryption. Organizations that need to manage encryption can 

easily take add additional BitLocker protection options and manageability to 

these devices.  
Improved Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer 11 improvements include faster page load times, side-by-

side browsing of your sites, enhanced pinned site notifications, and app 

settings like favorites, tabs and settings sync across all your Windows 8.1 

PCs. Internet Explorer 11 now includes capability that enables an antimalware 

solution to scan the input for a binary extension before it’s passed onto the 

extension for execution
Malware Resistance

Windows Defender, Microsoft’s free antivirus solution in Windows 8, will 

include network behavior monitoring to help detect and stop the execution of 

known and unknown malware. Internet Explorer will scan binary extensions 

(e.g. ActiveX) using the antimalware solution before potentially harmful code 

is executed.
Device Lockdown

With Assigned Access, a new feature offered in Windows 8.1 RT, Windows 

8.1 Pro, and Windows 8.1 Enterprise, you can enable a single Windows Store 

application experience on the device. This can be things like a learning 

application for kids in an educational setting or a customer service application 

at a boutique, Assigned Access can ensure the device is delivering the 

intended experience. In our Windows Embedded 8.1 industry product, we 

deliver additional lockdown capabilities to meet the needs of industry devices 

like point of sale systems, ATMs, and digital signs.

Modern UI Experience

Variable, Continuous Size of Snap Views

You have more ways to see multiple apps on the screen at once. You can 

resize apps to nearly infinite sized windows, share the screen between two 

apps, or have up to three apps on each monitor.
Boot to Desktop

We have made configuration options available which will allow you to boot 

directly to the desktop in Windows 8.1.
Desktop and Start Screen

Improvements have been made to better support users who prefer a mouse 

and keyboard experience to access applications.

These are just some of the key features available in Windows 8.1 We 

encourage you to test out and try these features when you evaluate Windows 

8.1 for use both in your work environment as well as at home in your personal 

life. Please note that Windows Server 2012 R2 may be required in order for 

some of these features to be available.



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