Did you ever USE Vista??? Windows 7 does have significantly faster response times and uses multi-core processors better. Windows 8 is very much the same, using SSE2 as well as a few other technologies, and can even use more than 4gb RAM on the 32 bit version using PAE (Physical Address Extensions). If you hate metro so much, you can disable it with third party software and get your start menu back. I've only tried the full version of Windows 8 on one pc (tried the beta on more) and that's my Sony Vaio F series laptop, with an i7 and 8gb DDR3. It runs as much as 20% faster than Windows 7 for most tasks, and if you know shortcut keys such as (WINDOWS) + c (to open the "charms menu" ) you can navigate very efficiently too. I consider Windows 8 worth it, and the Netflix application that works very well with my 1080p screen speaks well for it too.
The big question is: will it be faster on my PC? Highly unlikely. Microsoft claimed Windows 7 was a major streamlined improvement over Vista. It might have fixed a few bugs but it wasn't any faster. Every new resource-hungry ms operating system all but demands a new computer to run it. It seems to me, Windows 8 would saddle me with lots of cross-platform bloat I don't want or need. I like my android phone, and my ipad. I don't want Window 8 running on them, and I don't want my computer weighed down by an operating system trying to capture those markets. Don't get me wrong. I like Windows - on my computer. Windows 8 is a big move by Microsoft to capture mobile and tablet markets. It remains to be seen it they can pull that off. If they do, and there are real advantages to having the same software on all my devices, maybe I'll switch. I won't hold my breath.