Got Win10? Grin and bear it



Computer guy Matt Bentley shares his thoughts about Windows 10.

So, by now you’ve probably had some experience with or know someone who has had some experience with, Windows 10. They skipped 9, heading straight from Windows 8 to 10, which makes me think, how does Bill Gates tell time? Does he ever get up at 9am or is that just not an option? It’s probably good that they skipped the 9, mind you, because that might’ve meant they would’ve had to put more time into developing their ideas, instead of giving me something that I have to fix.

Literally every second call I get nowadays is about a problem relating to Windows 10. It used to be viruses. It used to be people deliberately trying to cause harm, instead of a silly company managing to incapacitate vast swathes of computers by doing things without checking first. Arguably, Windows 7 was the same in it’s infancy. But Win10, bless its ephemeral heart, keeps putting out a new version of itself every six months, forcing customers to upgrade and experience the same growing pains over and over again, whilst supplying new features that only an infinitesimal fraction of the population use.

How sad. It’s telling, perhaps, that in the years since the release of Windows 8 the desktop market share of Windows has shrunk by 10%, while Apple’s share has gone up 10%. Do I recommend Apple? Not particularly. They’re great when they’re working, but once they break they’re designed to be chucked away, as they’re generally very difficult to take apart. And having recently spent 2 hours on their customer support line, being passed between 7 people, to get a refund for a customer due to an ordering bungle on their part, let me tell you, their staff are not exactly ‘geniuses’.

Something else you can’t rely on is Windows 7 being around forever; security patches for that operating system cease in January 2020*. And believe me, with the huge amount of vulnerabilities that are being uncovered in computer chips at the moment (google “Foreshadow intel” for a more recent one), you can’t really afford to be online and unpatched. Which is another reason to upgrade from Windows Vista and XP, if you’re still using either of those*. Installing Linux instead is an option, but only if you’re doing basic web browsing and email checking, and know a friendly IT person who can sort out your issues for you.

So what do I recommend if you already have Windows 10? Grin and bear it. If you have problems, write feedback to Microsoft through the Feedback Hub app in Windows 10, or call them out on twitter publicly. If you have the ‘pro’ edition of Win10 you can also delay the OS ‘upgrades’ by up to a year through the settings, avoiding many teething problems. Hopefully at some point a bright spark within that company will wake up and say: “I know what’s wrong – we should’ve been making a solid product, rather than a broken yearly service!”. Then perhaps we’ll get an operating system which doesn’t make me money. I mean, I guess I hope that happens?

* Windows Vista and XP have not been supported by Microsoft for many years now and are not patched against any of the newer security vulnerabilities. Do not use them on the internet, though offline is fine. BTW, though the ‘free upgrade’ period for Windows 7 to Windows 10 has technically passed, any computer with a valid Windows 7 license can still be upgraded to Windows 10 for free by doing what is known as a ‘clean install’ using the Windows 7 key; a beyond-novice-level procedure, but certainly doable with the right IT person. Hint hint.

  • Matt Bentley is the computer repair guy with Waikato Home PC Support.Matt Bentley
    Email him or phone 021 1348 576. Or visit the website, by clicking here.
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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

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