I'm a first time user, reading a book and ready to try some experimentation. I downloaded the wallet (Ethereum-Wallet-installer-0-8-10.exe), and it froze on the following screen for at 8 or more hours (I thought maybe it was downloading, but I don't think it ever got that far).
The circle image was animated, which implied to me it was doing something and I should wait. I think the above was the screen after I entered my password.
Also expected the "Checking Network..." in upper right corner to go away, or the "connecting to 2 peers" to change to some other text.