A lot of tech media and bloggers said Metro may not be suitable for enterprise market when Microsoft released developer preview of Windows 8 few days back, but in fact the opposite is true. Metro with its capability of Live Tiles and Push notifications can take the Enterprise Architecture to next level. Think about an enterprise that has lot of investment in services and a roadmap to migrate towards SOA Adoption enterprise wide, it is very easy for them to just adopt to Metro UI. Metro is very good candidate to take advantage of SOA. Enterprises can fully leverage Push Notifications, Asynchronous Web Service calls, which are default in Metro style interfaces, Business Intelligence (BI) applications, Field Applications that involve heavy and live forms for data processing, data presentation can take advantage of Metro totally.

I briefly give few examples how Metro can be used in these scenarios successfully. Think about a BI Dashboard, which is used by corporate executives, sales and marketing teams for their presentations with board and clients respectively, or to check various market situations at a given time, In those scenarios, a dashboard can be easily built with Metro Language and take advantages of Push Notifications for any updates to the underlying datasets, services easily. The integration between the dashboard and the underlying services becomes so easy and the Asynchronous way of handling the services, which is default in Metro style devices (Windows Phone, and Windows 8), will eliminate a lot of hassles in the integration scenarios.

Now think about field staff such as Police Officers, Park Rangers, Rural Hospitals etc., They need to fill good number of forms – offline and online, and validate a lot of information while handling the requests such as giving tickets, validating the permits, working on patients information etc. Sometimes they need to handle large volume of dataset. In those scenarios, we could leverage the power of private clouds and local storage. The local storage can be updated with various methods. Also we could alert the user whenever there is an update to the underlying services and datasets by sending push notifications. This way we could use hybrid application architecture satisfying the patterns for Smart Client.

Metro is very useful in a lot of scenarios apart from the above. The enterprises that are moving towards SOA adoption and private/public clouds can fully utilize the power of Metro. Of course this can be achieved with other platforms such as iOS and Android, but Metro has in-built integration facilities and default Asynchronous way of handling web services and management environment make it powerful use case for developing loosely coupled applications and enterprise application integration situations.

9 COMMENTS

  1. No. Everything you talk about here is only applicable to tablets with a docking option. Desktops can’t work with it. I’m not saying W8 isn’t full of win, I’m just saying it’s not full of win the way you describe.

  2. @frank:
    Well,thats why I mentioned the executives and field staff. If your needs are more towards desktop, then Windows 8 Desktop UI covers you and the powerful WinRT API will let you enjoy developing rich applications and leverage best integration approach. But for the people who are road warriors and executives who wants to use the existing enterprise apps, and also the apps that meet the architecture guidance of hybrid and Smart Client paradigms, this approach definitely makes sense, IMO. Metro is not useless in enterprises like most of “ABM” media pundits ranting, it has its own use cases to meet the goals 100% that enterprises could best utilize.

  3. This trick that worked in Windows Vista and Windows 7 also works in Windows 8.

    Directions:

    Create an empty folder on your desktop.

    Rename the folder with the following CLSID string in bold: GodMode.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}

    The folder will turn into a system icon called GodMode.

    Double click that icon and you will have access to all the available options in one folder.

  4. As a sys admin, I’d say nay. Metro will be the first thing to disappear from win 8 in the enterprise.

    As a security reviewer, I’d say nay. Metro introduces many potential vulnerabilities that van be easily avoided by disabling it.

    And as a user, I’d beg to have it disabled on my desktop. It looks cool, but just gets in my way for my daily usage of windows. On a tablet? Sure. Not with a mouse.

    I’m all three of these roles. One and two are true. Three is opinion.

  5. Agree 100%. Most people only use a handful of apps or web pages and having them at the top left of their screens will actually make their lives easier.

    Metro with a mouse is very good. Move the mouse to the lower left of the screen to get a menu, hit the windows key to get the home screen, type the program name to go right to it.
    I feel more efficient with Metro than with standard with or without a keyboard / mouse.

  6. @Chris:
    Well, I never said it will replace the desktop UI or traditional N-Tier Applications. All I said was Metro gives another chance for enterprises to reach their audience effectively, if their audience are road warriors and need access to information, “Glance And Go”, and since the underlying architecture of Metro supports well proven patterns such as observer, notifications, and asynchronous, it is more suitable for rich apps devices not limited to phones and tablets and also hybrid apps for the similar devices.

    >>As a sys admin, I’d say nay. Metro will be the first thing to disappear from win 8 in the enterprise.

    Good thing, you are not a CIO, CTO or Enterprise Architect. I wouldn’t rule out the possibilities and I would check all the factors before say nay.

    >>As a security reviewer, I’d say nay. Metro introduces many potential vulnerabilities that van be easily avoided by disabling it.

    Security is not tied to UI. It has to be grown from the roots. If you think UI brings potential security issues then none of the current UI are solid. Security is highly debatable and I think limiting it to a particular UI is a moot point. Could you please enlighten me how Metro defeats an enterprise wide security. Also Windows 8 security starts with UEFI and goes on with the rules and policies an enterprise enforces and governs.

    If you think Metro is tied to Tablets or Phones, you are totally wrong. I see good potential to other devices like medical equipment, presentation devices, dashboards, industrial devices and so on.

    >>And as a user, I’d beg to have it disabled on my desktop. It looks cool, but just gets in my way for my daily usage of windows. On a tablet? Sure. Not with a mouse.

    Thats a personal choice.

  7. @Chris Leiter:
    I couldn’t understand one thing, how did you come to a conclusion that Metro UI on Win 8 defeats security. Care to share! As per my knowledge Security is a vertical that is common to all layers across including UI. If something is faility the security at Metro UI, the same should fail the system for a web page interface or desktop ui based interface. How did you find out Metro is a security risk, and that too the current Metro is still developer preview? I am just perplexed.

  8. 90% of office workers are just casual computer users anyway. I think the Metro UI is perfectly suited to the vast majority of the office population. I predict a large uptake of Metro use over the next 5 years.

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