Microsoft download search

I got invited the beta for download search. Nah, this is not NDA material, just the "luck" of the draw. During early beta, it happened a few times, as well.

My Impression: Is "sucks" a good enough word. Probably not very productive, so let me explain how I use the download search and why it sucks to me.

My norm is to go in and search the latest entries in downloads. To do this, on old (not so pretty) search, I click advanced then sort by date and choose 50. I then scan. On the new (pretty – Silverlight) search, I have to search for nothing first and then resort by date. So far, pretty much the same (number of clicks wise).

Then, when I find a download, I either click and download or open in a new tab. With the pretty version (new), I cannot open in a new tab, so I go forth, so let’s compare the actions of clicking rather than opening in a new tab (preferred method, so already a few "sucks" points for my user experience).

In the old site, I can click back a few times and get back to my sorted list. In the new version, I click back and then resort by date and reset to 50. Lots of clicks to get back to the list sorted via my preferences. This IS something they can improve in Silverlight, however, so I am hopeful.


  • Advanced search is gone. While you can click and open a resort menu, this is NOT available until you search first, wasting time.
  • Load time is PITIFUL when you first load the search UGH
  • What is it with the ultra fuzzy fonts?

On the positive

  • Details pane is pretty – assume eventually, I can actually download from here rather than going to an old style download page? If so, that would remove some of my pain.


Much of the look is eye candy. It loads a bit slow, but that would be offset if you could download from the WPF "popup". Would also be nice if it could remember how I like to search, but that is just me being "selfish".

Peace and Grace,


P.S. Want to escape the beta, if you have been invited? Delete your cookies.


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