Windows 8/Win 8.1 setup

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Question
Hello,

I just purchased a new notebook with Win 8.1.  I have been using XP.  I am wondering about the best way to install the settings, especially the windows ID vs. local login issue.  
I will be using this as my main home PC.  
I would prefer to not set up another account or email.  
I do not need this computer to be accessed or synced with others.  I will primarily be using this for web, email, photo editing, and libreoffice applications.
I use dropbox for storage and any file syncing with other computers.

I am wondering if I can set it up under a local account, and use the PC in a desktop setting.  I am thinking of using the start8 software to keep it more familiar.  (Or did I see I see that there was an update to have a start menu within 8.1 somehow?)
Would you think this would be an okay way for me to use the PC?  
Are there disadvantages in the long run if I did want to use some apps?  I'd prefer to stay webpage based in what I access vs. being forced to use the apps at least for now.
Is there any other way to keep from having to use a windowsID?
If there are any other tips or concise webpages to help me in the transition I would appreciate it.

Thanks

Answer
Hi Brian!

Yes, you can use a local account and use the computer as you would any other version of Windows.  You are not restricted to Store apps and are free to use any software you choose in the Desktop environment.

Yes, Windows returned the Start Button in 8.1.  It has the same functionality as the [hidden] Start Button in Windows 8 - not the same functionality as the Start Buttons of previous versions of Windows though.

Other than settings and file synching and logging into Windows using your Microsoft ID, the only other thing using a local account will affect is the Store ... you will not be able to download any apps from the Store without a Microsoft account.

Feel free to follow up with any additional questions you have or clarifications you need.

Good luck!

Windows 8

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Expertise

I can answer nearly all questions about Windows 8 - installation, upgrade, virtualization (Hyper-V, etc.), configuration, how to get the most out of it, how to buy it, etc. I won't pretend to know it all - nobody can - if I don't know, I will try and find the answer. If I can't find it, I'll tell you.

Experience

I worked as an analyst in Dell server support for 2 years, and have since worked with many Dell PowerEdge servers. I am currently employed as IT Manager. I have been using Windows 8 since the early Developer Preview days and use it on all of my primary PC's for a number of activities.

Education/Credentials
I have a BS in Computer Science and have earned the following certifications: CompTIA Security+, A+, Project+; CIW Web Design, Database Specialist; Microsoft Windows 7; Dell DCSE Server. I am also an expert in Windows 7, Servers, and Hard Drives (I don't normally do XP - not because I don't know it inside and out, but because I have "retired" personal support for XP, and I want to see it die :)).

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