Huh? Umm didn't this thread outline all the problems users encountered with 8? Let's start with device drivers and to this day some Win 7 program compatibility with continues to be an issue in commercial environments.There is no reason to hate it and it is drastically superior to Windows 10.
The important thing to remember is that the kernel hasn't really changed much since XP replaced 98. As you already stated it was the GUI and driver enforcement as well as security changes. Since things haven't realty changed since XP we all still patiently await the new file system that Microsoft promised over 2 decades ago.Windows 8 was Microsoft"s attempt at quasi emulating the Mac desktop. The hope was that they could entice some of those Mac users over to Desktops and new tablets that were going to be coming out, oh and convert to Windows because it would lessen the learning curve. Unlike the Vista debacle, Windows 8 worked but was basically like walking into Sams Club after they rearrange everything. Even when we tested it in 2011 as a deployable platform for corporate upgrades we knew the learning curve would be counterproductive. Even with the "Old Windows" mode. Imagine just 100 50+ year old secretaries at a national corporation that had been working on windows since lets just say 93-NT. Now if you have ever managed support teams in fortune 500 corps., imagine that x 100. The cost factor was prohibitive. It's along the same lines and one of the many key factors we never deployed OS/2, Linux, etc. in large environments that were windows based.