While from today on Microsoft no longer releases security patches for Windows XP, the company has released the Spring Update for Windows 8.1. The update will not bring the new Start Menu which combines Metro tiles with the classic menu from previous Windows versions yet.
However, it contains all important security fixes and patches and the system will now also boot to the desktop by default on non-touch devices.
The update brings resizing of tiles, a power and search icon on the Metro screen and newly installed applications are highlighted. More features include running and pinning Metro applications on the taskbar in the desktop. This means running Metro applications is now similar to running traditional applications. You can also opt to disable the ability of Metro appearing on the taskbar.
Metro applications also get close and minimize buttons and an option to split apps, so you can have a Metro application running on one side and the desktop on the other side.
This update also renames all Skydrive references to OneDrive and more configuration options are available in Metro and should fix some bugs.