Two German technology blogs have leaked screenshots of the upcoming Windows 9 Technical Preview, which is billed as build 9834. The shots depict the new Start menu, floating Modern app windows, a notification center, multiple desktop workspaces, a flat new design for the desktop, and many other changes that we've long expected.
While it's unclear which was first, or whether the two sites cross-posted simultaneously, the shots are the same on both sites, Winfuture.de and Computerbase.de. Here they are, with commentary. Here are the first 10 of 20 shots, with commentary.
Setup. Nothing super-notable here, except for one thing: There is no Windows codename or version number listed. Which suggests that rumors about this next version of WIndows possibly just being called Windows (i.e. not "Windows 9" or "Windows Yoghurt" or whatever) are true.
New Start menu. As expected, the new Start menu includes Windows 7-like elements on the left, with a most-recently used list, search, and All Apps access, and Metro-like tiles on the right. There is also a way to access power options at the top, whic his a new location for that kind of thing.
Notifications. The new Windows was recently expected to gain a notification center similar to Action Center in Windows Phone. You can see that here, plus the tray icon which, shocker, looks exactly like the Action Center icon in Windows Phone.
Flat new desktop design. While the Windows 8 desktop environment is flat, the new Windows goes further with a short of borderless new window style and tweaked visual elements like icons. The notion of a Home location in File Explorer is new as well.
Modern windows on the desktop. Here you can see a maximized Modern app window--the Windows Store app--on the desktop. As shown here, it looks a lot like this would in Windows 8 with Stardock ModernMix. But hold on a sec, as there's more going on here.
Modern windows on the desktop ... and the Charms replacement. This shot shows a number of interesting things. Not just a floating Modern app window, with the new title bar style, but also how Microsoft intends to replace the Charms by placing those controls directly on each Modern window, via a menu that appears when you click the window control box. We can't see it here because this is a traditioanl PC/VM, but I bet the touch interface for accessing these controls works as it does now in Windows 8.x.
Start menu, floating window. Nothing really new in this one, but another look at the Start menu and a floating Modern app window.
System window. Same as today. But as you can see, this is branded as "Windows Technical Preview" and not as "Windows 9 Technical Preview" or "Windows Threshold" Technical Preview.
Virtual desktops. Here, we see the interface for virtual desktops--or desktop workspaces, or whatever--exactly as rumored.