As I am sure is the case with you, if I charged my family by the hour for the tech support that I provide, I would be a very wealthy person. Happily for all of us who are stuck providing free assistance to the unlistening over the phone, Windows 8 has a little tool called ‘refresh’ that should make our jobs easier.

This refresh functionality will take a computer, keep all the user’s data, and reinstall Windows while holding that information to the side. Then, with a fresh Windows install in place, the data goes back in, and no one is the wiser. It’s actually that cool:

 Refresh functionality is fundamentally still a reinstall of Windows, just like resetting your PC as described above, but your data, settings, and Metro style apps are preserved. We have a solution to help you with your desktop apps, too, which I’ll talk about a little later.

The coolest part about Refresh is there’s no need to first back up your data to an external hard drive and restore them afterwards.

If that didn’t make you pretty darn happy, you don’t have enough inept relatives and friends. There are few things wrong with a computer that a fresh Windows install can’t fix, and this tool should make the process comically simple. So much so, that you can dictate it over the phone. I just want to know why Windows 7 didn’t get the same treatment. You can read more on the nuts and bolts here.

To conclude, we have a side note. Windows Phone used to be called Windows Phone 7 Series. The same cutting down will occur with the term ‘Metro style apps.’ It will become ‘Metro apps.’ Can we just jump to the end of that chase now?