On April 13, 2017, I went to shut down my laptop which had been updated to Windows 10 awhile back. The system sent out a notice not to shut down the computer as updates were in progress. And that was the catalyst which ended the usage of my computer laptop, as I had known it.
When I returned to use my computer, I found that I couldn’t key in a letter without two letters appearing on my screen. I did figure out that there is an internet keyboard which I could access to enter my password and to be able to work with a Microsoft agent, but it was slow and cumbersome to use.
When I first called Microsoft at 1-877-696-7786 to speak to a technician, I was told that the updates with the Windows 10 were automatic which is a different feature than with Windows 7. It was suggested that I could have this function separated out from the shutdown/ restart keys, if I purchased the Windows 10 PRO for $199.00. After some vehement protesting on my part, Microsoft did disable this feature.
It turned out that I could not backdate my system to a time prior to when the updates occurred because whatever I needed to click on to do this was grayed out, so this was not an option.
I asked to to have all updates done on 4/13/17 uninstalled which was done except for Adobe. For some reason, Microsoft could not uninstall whatever was done on 4/13/17 because of Google Chrome.
I worked for hours with Microsoft but nothing worked to where I finally gave up trying.
Eventually, I went to a Best Buy computer store, where I purchased a Google Chrome laptop which means I will not ever have to deal with Microsoft again. But I still have to figure out how to transfer all the files myself.
So, for a quick interim solution and work around, I picked up an inexpensive keyboard to plug into my laptop which seems to work okay.
As you might suspect, I am not alone in voicing my frustration over the usage of my computer laptop with the Microsoft Windows 10 product.
Here is the rest of the story…
As per a 4/11/16 CNET article by Sarah Jacobsson Purewal, she writes why a consumer should not update, one of which is if “you don’t want to be forced to update.”
“Windows updates are usually a good thing! Most of them bring important security patches and bug fixes to your device. But that doesn’t mean you should update your computer the second a new fix is out, because the updates themselves can come with bugs that can mess up your machine. With older versions of Windows, you can choose when to update.”
On 3/7/17, Sean Hollister of Cnet, penned the following report, “Microsoft won’t fix the most frustrating thing about Windows; Commentary: The worst feature of Windows 10 is automatic updates — even when you’re in the middle of something.”
“Maybe you’re delivering a presentation to a huge audience. Maybe you’re taking an online test. Maybe you just need to get some work done on a tight deadline.”
“Windows doesn’t care.”
“Windows will take control of your computer, force-feed it updates and flip the reset switch automatically — and there’s not a damn thing you can do about it, once it gets started.”
“If you haven’t saved your work, it’s gone. Your browser tabs are toast. And don’t expect to use your computer again soon; depending on the speed of your drive and the size of the update, it could be anywhere from 10 minutes to well over an hour before your PC is ready for work.”
How Windows Update sabotaged me at work — more than once
“It felt like karma.”
“On September 1, 2010, I sat within speaking distance of Apple CEO Steve Jobs, ready to help live-blog his every word. But my Windows laptop — a Windows laptop in a sea of MacBooks! — wasn’t quite working properly. I figured it just needed a quick reboot, so that’s what I did.”
“But because Windows had recently downloaded some updates, my computer decided it would be a good time to install all of them. So I spent the next 15 to 20 minutes internally screaming at my PC while Steve Jobs presented the new iPod Touch.
(Yes, it would have been slightly funnier if Jobs had announced new MacBooks.)
“It was the first of three occasions that a forced Windows update would totally destroy my workflow at a critical moment — once crippling my computer when I had a hot scoop to share with the world.
‘”Then, Windows 10 came along to add insult to injury.”
“Imagine this: With no warning, a prompt pops up on your screen telling you that your Windows 10 laptop is about to restart. Even though you know you’re about to lose access to your computer, there’s not a damn thing you can do about it — the buttons are all grayed out. If you’re really unlucky and Windows is installing a major update, the progress meter may be a tease: Once it reaches 100 percent, your computer might reboot a second or third time before you finally get control again.”
“I’ve personally seen this — or something similar –happen five times over the past year.”
And it turns out lots of people have stories just like mine.
Worldwide Windows tales of woe
There’s software developer Dylan Beattie, whose laptop decided to shut down while he was giving a talk in front of 200-odd developers in Malmo, Sweden, and found he had to wing the rest of the presentation without his slides. “I wasn’t terribly happy,” recalls Beattie, adding that he now has a habit of explicitly running Windows Update a few hours before his presentations “just to make sure it’s not going to spring any surprises.”
“Alex Gibson, a 3D printing consultant, says he no longer trusts Windows to manage his 3D printer after his computer forced a restart near the end of a 6-hour-long print job for a customer in November. He tells me he’s switching to a Raspberry Pi.”
“Lydricsama, a digital artist from Finland, says she lost hours of work on a commissioned piece she was working on late into the night, leaving her with a bare sketch (instead of a mostly lined and colored illustration) after her machine forced an update back in October. She tells me that while it was her fault for not saving the document more often, Windows also didn’t help: “I had no prior warning before it restarted itself.” Luckily, her client didn’t mind the delay.”
“Mark Switzer, who goes by the handle Preheat when he plays World of Warcraft, also had his machine restart at a particularly inconvenient time last month. He was in the middle of beating the game’s final boss in front of a live Twitch audience. He says he lost most of his viewers that day, a little bit of money (he’s an official Twitch partner), and his in-game reward for beating the boss. “Overall it wasn’t a huge deal, just very frustrating to have your computer decide these things on its own,” he tells me.”
“Alexsander Stukov, an software engineer who spends days running stress tests and cloning virtual machines, says he’s lost hours of work to forced Windows Updates on five separate occasions now. “Windows Update is a terrible piece of software,” he tells me, but says he has no other choice: “Our customers use it, and we have to test our software on the same environment.”
“Then there’s Alexandria Seabrook, who says she couldn’t complete the online test for a college course this October because of Windows 10 updates — and whose professor wasn’t quite as forgiving as Gibson’s and Lyricsama’s customers. Busy with midterms, she waited until nearly the last minute before flipping open her Windows 10 computer — only to watch Windows Update take control of her machine until well after the deadline had passed.”
“It was only 20 questions. I could have finished the test on time if it wasn’t for the Windows Update,” she tells me. She got a 58 on the midterm, and was barely able to bring it up to a C by the end of the semester. “I don’t like (Windows), but I’m a college student,” she says. “I’m stuck with this laptop literally until it breaks down because I have no money.”
“I know what you’re thinking: “How many times do you have to get burned before you get a Mac?” Or maybe a Chromebook. Or even an iPad with a keyboard cover — anything but a Windows machine that can just spontaneously restart while you’re in the middle of mission-critical work.”
“That’s pretty much the direction I’ve been leaning in recent months. And after hinting there might be a MacBook purchase in my immediate future, I asked a Microsoft spokesperson if the company was doing anything about forced updates.”
“Here’s the statement I got:”
“Once a machine is upgraded to Windows 10, it will remain current through Windows Update for the supported lifetime of the device, with safety and security, productivity, and entertainment value over time. This is what we mean when we talk about delivering Windows as a service, and it is one of our core inspirations for Windows 10. We’ll keep listening to our customers, improving the experience month after month. Windows 10 is an operating system that will run on a range of devices — from Xbox to PCs, phones to tablets and tiny gadgets — all of which are connected and kept up-to-date by Windows Update. Both enterprises and consumers benefit. The optimum way to ensure our customers are running the best Windows is to get them the latest updates for Windows 10. Delivering Windows 10 as a service means we can offer ongoing security updates, new features and capabilities – we’d like to make sure people can get access to the latest Windows 10 updates as soon as they are available.”
“In other words, Microsoft thinks it’s super important that you get the updates. “Auto-restarts” are a feature, not a bug.”
“In fact, Microsoft has been actively getting rid of ways to keep users from disabling automatic updates: in Windows 10 Pro and above, you used to be able to do that from the Group Policy tool. As of the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, though, that option is gone. (You can stilL schedule a restart, but it involves doing a lot of work to change the annoying “ready or not, here it comes” default.)”
“And while the next version of Windows will let you stave off updatesfor a 35-day period (if you paid extra for a Pro, Enterprise or Education-grade copy of Windows, which sounds like a moderate form of blackmail), my understanding is that even those versions won’t let you cancel an update that’s already been delayed and is now about to occur.”
In other words: you’ll be helplessly watching your computer turn itself off, just the same as usual.
“Don’t get me wrong: I appreciate that these updates can help keep my PC secure. It’s a heck of a lot better to have Microsoft patching holes in my computer’s software instead of having to deal with damage after the fact with third-party antivirus software. (Particularly because the likes of Symantec and McAfee tend to bog down computers.)”
“And I’m not an anti-vaxxer: I understand that by patching my PC, I’m helping to keep it from spreading malware to other computers, too.”
“But I think the company has over-corrected with these forced updates. We should be able to decide when to get our vaccines — not have the doctor walk into our house, grab us by the hair and shove the medicine down our throats.”
“I think it’s time we send Microsoft a message that this isn’t okay — that the computers we bought and paid for with our hard-earned dollars are ours to use whenever we want, not just when Microsoft says so. I need a reliable PC, a computer that’s ready for action whenever I need to report on a story, jot down notes from an interview, or liveblog a keynote.”