back to article Which? calls for compensation for users hit by Windows 10 woes

Champion of consumer rights and closer of customer email services Which? has taken a hobnailed boot to Microsoft's beleaguered Windows 10 operating system with research that will make for unpleasant reading at Redmond. A latest survey of more than 1,100 UK users comes after Which? gave Microsoft a kicking back in 2016. One …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft gave you a comment at least, better than Apple *.

    * on that note I’m typing this on a iPhone

  2. Richard 12 Silver badge

    If it was only security patches

    I wouldn't mind much.

    But it's not. It's regular wholesale replacement of the entire OS.

    April even managed to screw up my user folders. They added a new UI to move them, which screwed up the existing UI that I'd already used to relocate them onto another drive.

    So now I have two "My Documents", and applications are very confused about which one to use...

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Stop

      Re: If it was only security patches

      well, 'Which?' has apparently documented a number of 'bad update' cases, particularly those in which money changed hands to get the computer back up and running again.

      This sounds like "a good start" at forcing Micro-shaft to "JUST STOP IT" with the forced updates.

      I still don't know why they're doing 'forced updates' like that. Why so much smugness/arrogance/hubris to FORCE us to COMPLY with their WHIMS ???

      Hey Micro-shaft - whatever happened to "The CUSTOMER is ALWAYS RIGHT" ???

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        1. Milton Silver badge

          Re: If it was only security patches

          "But why do you talk like a 6 year old? What's with all the school-yard style, silly little insults, random capitalisation and total lack of coherence?"

          This is the bane of all grown-ups using the internet, and it's a similar feeling to the one you get after driving on the motorway for a while. "How can there possibly be so many adults who behave like abject morons?" you ask, with tears in your eyes.

          Not that I'm alleging bombastic bob is a moron, mind you. He could easily be one of those Artificial Idiot chatbot thingies that "learns" from other users and can't help itself.

          Someone ask him to open the pod bay doors and see what happens ...

          1. Arthur the cat Silver badge
            Trollface

            Re: If it was only security patches

            Someone ask him to open the pod bay doors and see what happens ...

            I'm sorry Milton, I CAN'T DO THAT!!!

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: If it was only security patches

          He's a Repuglican and they don't know any better.

        3. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Re: If it was only security patches

          "But why do you talk like a 6 year old"

          *sigh*... such a typical, ad hominem attacks disguised as "advice", made complete with a LEADING QUESTION.

          I have so many words to choose from to respond with, all of them profanity.

          So JUST *STOP* *IT* with the ad hominem attack "advice". It makes you appear as if you were a smug, arrogant, leftist, millenial 'political correctness' fascist. That's MY advice to YOU. You're WELCOME.

          Besides, you're OBVIOUSLY using a LEADING QUESTION, a MANIPULATIVE tactic that's typical of THE LEFT.

          How about if _I_ ask "How long have you been beating your wife"?

          It's the SAME kind of thing, yeah.

          Icon, because, YOUR argument has been "nuked"

          1. Shades
            WTF?

            Re: If it was only security patches

            "smug, arrogant, leftist, millenial 'political correctness' fascist. [...] typical of THE LEFT."

            Jesus H f**king Christ on a bicycle at Christmas. When did El Reg start letting MAGA type dickheads sign up? Bring back Matt, all is forgiven!

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: If it was only security patches

          > What's with all the school-yard style, silly little insults, random capitalisation and total lack of coherence?

          Completely guessing, but it may be medical related. A relative has early stage Alzheimers and now writes similarly.

          1. TonyJ Silver badge

            Re: If it was only security patches

            "...> What's with all the school-yard style, silly little insults, random capitalisation and total lack of coherence?

            Completely guessing, but it may be medical related. A relative has early stage Alzheimers and now writes similarly..."

            Nah. Just likes the attention - even negative.

          2. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

            Re: If it was only security patches

            Steal the Caps Lock key, they may not notice.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: If it was only security patches

              > Steal the Caps Lock key, they may not notice.

              Oh, they'd notice. Rediscovering it over... and over... and over... and over...

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: If it was only security patches

            Fellow commentards: please observe the many posted "Do not feed the trolls" signs...

      2. phuzz Silver badge
        Gimp

        Re: If it was only security patches

        "I still don't know why they're doing 'forced updates' like that."

        Because otherwise they get slated for everyone never installing patches and getting pwnd by every bit of malware that comes along.

        Think back to the days when everyone ran Windows XP and most people/companies didn't patch, and Microsoft got their (deserved) reputation for having terrible security. That's what they're trying to avoid, by making sure everyone is running the latest security patches.

        They've probably over-reacted, but at least now you know why.

        1. sabroni Silver badge

          Re: If it was only security patches

          I agree. They had a terrible rep and had to do something about it. The problem is that the marketing droids have turned it into "security updates and new features" which actually means "security updates and fucking with existing features you like to make them worse".

          I'm no fan of the knee-jerk anti MS brigade, but in this case they have a point. (CURSES!!)

          1. Terry 6 Silver badge
            Pint

            Re: If it was only security patches

            sabroni Just replied so that I can offer (see icon).....

    2. ForthIsNotDead Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: If it was only security patches

      My April update went perfectly. Not one single issue.

      Not a thing.

      That's Linux for you.

      (runs for door)

      1. Pete4000uk

        Re: If it was only security patches

        I've never had such problems with Debian on my 10 year old laptop

      2. collinsl

        Re: If it was only security patches

        I'm currently having a BlueTooth issue with the latest 2 kernels of CentOS 7.

        But there's a bugfix open for it...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If it was only security patches

      Windows 10 is the last version of Windows, and Microsoft wants to keep polishing the turd and convince you it's a brand new OS with every major update.

      Traditional OS releases every 3 to 5 years with service packs in between, are too 'old fashioned' for the millennials' taste.

      Even emulating Apple's OSX release cycle and pricing scheme would have been more palatable.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: If it was only security patches

        > Even emulating Apple's OSX release cycle ...

        Unfortunately, that's gone to shit as well. OSX is now yearly releases, with as many - or more - regressions as there are improvements.

  3. BobChip
    WTF?

    MS abandoning Windows??

    The only thing that will make MS sit up and take notice of it's (Windows) customers is that they start losing them. Losing money will do it.

    That said, since they seem determined to move to being a "cloud and services" business, and have suddenly decided to "love" open source and Linux, could it just be that they have simply lost interest in Windows - not making enough money - and are preparing to abandon it?

    Interesting times.

    1. Warm Braw Silver badge

      Re: MS abandoning Windows??

      I've just resurrected Windows 2000 in order to run an old version of QuickBooks as I had no interest in paying the SaaS tax for the latest version just in order to produce some accounts for a small charitable group.

      The only reason for having a recent version of Windows is in order to run recent versions of applications. If the applications are "in the cloud", then what would you particularly want Windows for? Would you want to pay a regular subscription for software that simply enabled you to access other software?

      There is still a small category of applications that need precision pointing, large screens and/or local processing power, but the primary purpose of Windows - to provide a stable platform for a wide range of local application software - is much diminished. The issue for Microsoft is whether they concentrate on an increasingly niche market for which Windows is appropriate, or whether Windows effectively becomes another Android or iOS. They've pretty much failed at the latter and don't seem ready to accept the former.

      1. AMBxx Silver badge

        Re: MS abandoning Windows??

        MS already know that Windows is becoming less important. Their focus now is Office 365 and Azure for IaaS.

        Try Office 365 in a web browser. Certainly good enough for most day to day tasks. Web version of Outlook is better than the full client in many respects (folder search when filing especially). Only thing missing for me is the ability to duplicate calendar items as I need that for my timesheet.

        1. Dave 15 Silver badge

          Re: MS abandoning Windows??

          Really? Not if you are trying to use outlook without a broadband connection direct onto the main backbone it isnt... far too slow. Frankly I also object to MS and the NSA having direct access to all my emails ... especially the work ones with confidential data in them

          1. Khaptain Silver badge

            Re: MS abandoning Windows??

            "especially the work ones with confidential data in them"

            Third party encryption is your friend..

          2. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

            Re: MS abandoning Windows??

            This is a British company, if you are worried about the NSA access then they must be ge

            Hang on...

            Wait a minute...

            ttining it from....

            Um!

        2. styx-tdo

          Re: MS abandoning Windows??

          er.. no.

          shared mailboxes are a PITA. Does calendar sharing / shared calendars finally work?

        3. julian_n

          Re: MS abandoning Windows??

          You must be running a different version to me. My Office 365 is vastly inferior to the thick client. Loads of the shortcuts either don't work now or are intercepted by the browser

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: MS abandoning Windows??

        the primary purpose of Windows - to provide a stable platform for a wide range of local application software

        Surely you jest about the stability of windows? Experience tend to point in the direction of instability especially with the latest offering.

        1. Richard 12 Silver badge

          Re: MS abandoning Windows??

          "Stable" as in "APIs maintain near-perfect backwards compatibility"

          And to be completely fair, Windows 7 and Windows 10 are also very stable as in "Don't crash and recover nicely if you do".

          The problem with Win10 is the incessant forced feature upgrades, which break/move/ruin existing installs and features.

        2. Cpt Blue Bear

          Re: MS abandoning Windows??

          "Surely you jest about the stability of windows? Experience tend to point in the direction of instability especially with the latest offering."

          Your experience must be limited to old and crappy hardware then 'cause stability hasn't been a serious issue for any OS in the last 10 years. Kids today don't know what instability is...

      3. Roopee

        Re: MS abandoning Windows??

        QuickBooks 2000 runs perfectly well on Windows 7 64-bit, as does Quicken '97; installing them however is something of a challenge, involving manually identifying and copying a bunch of supporting files from a working copy on XP or earlier. I've been using all 3 for years and have no plans (or need) to change them since they do their respective jobs extremely well.

        Hope that helps.

    2. TheVogon Silver badge

      Re: MS abandoning Windows??

      "could it just be that they have simply lost interest in Windows - not making enough money - and are preparing to abandon it?"

      Quite the reverse based on what they are up to recently. You can now run Linux apps under Windows 10 and on Server 2019 without a Linux kernel. Embrace then replace.

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: MS abandoning Windows??

      "The only thing that will make MS sit up and take notice of it's (Windows) customers is that they start losing them. Losing money will do it."

      You'd think so in a NORMAL world. And, as far as new computer sales go, this is probably ALREADY happening. Micro-shaft does not care about losing money right now. They have way too much 'spare capital' to do whatever THEY want. And it appears to be a LONG GAME strategy, which means they're driving "the masses" in a direction THEY want, because THEY CAN.

      Think about the purchase of GitHub. Think about how developers "moving to Linux" has prompted them to "Embrace Extend Extinguish" a kind of 'linux clone' subsystem that runs in Win-10-nic. None of this is a coincidence, I'm sure of it.

      In a normal world, they would care VERY much about losing customers, and do what they could to try and WIN THEM BACK. But they're not. They're smugly, arrogantly, even DEFIANTLY moving off in whatever direction they *FEEL* is right, DAMN the customers, full speed ahead.

      Unfortunate, because in the 90's, I really liked what they were doing.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: MS abandoning Windows??

      Not abandoning... more like 'reshaping' Windows, similar to the transition from Office to Office 365.

      The monetization comes from subscriptions and/or ad delivery, not selling a new box of the same software every few years.

      What I can see Microsoft abandoning is its alliance, or at least its dependence on, Intel. By cozying up to Qualcomm.

    5. Terry 6 Silver badge

      Re: MS abandoning Windows??

      Since Microsoft have apparently restructured ( others here will TBH know much more about this than I) and become much less Windows focussed it's clearly a yes.

      So many ordinary users use their smart phones to do TwitBook and Google to search, with Amazon to shop that consumer PCs are a diminishing market. Most home users don't much need a computer, they are content consumers, not producers. School kids and students need a home computer. Beyond that it's business. And none of these markets are going to replace machines as often as they used to. And frankly, why should they. Several years back we reached peak upgrade. Very few users have computing needs that exceed the capacity of a machine made after about 2010.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: MS abandoning Windows??

        @Terry 6

        Succinct summary of what you've commented:

        These days, you could easily get by a day** without touching a single Microsoft product or service. And you wouldn't be missing anything. Back in the late 1990s to early-mid 2000s, this wasn't the case. Kids these days do not understand that dark, helpless era; they think Xbox, Minecraft, Github, a jeans-wearing CEO and a hipster minimalistic window tile corporate logo make Microsoft a palatable company.

        **Unless your workplace forces Office and Exchange/Outlook on you.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: MS abandoning Windows??

      @ BobChip

      It frightens me that MS have embraced Linux. Not trying to start an init war and I'm not suggesting that Linux's init system(s) couldn't be improved but systemd is massive overreach and may have been their first steps toward and embrace of Linux.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Post-Truth Society

    The problem is, no one actually listens and addresses anything anymore. Put this in front of a Microsoft executive and expect to get the Zuckerberg treatment: A lawyered and different answer, to every question asked!

    Take Microsoft recently: calling out Facebook for human-rights 'data' abuses... WTF?

    Its like the whole of Silly 'con' Valley have bought into Jobian reality-distortion-field economics. Deny it. PR it. Throw money at conferences / journos and by sheer will create the perception you want people to swallow!

    1. onefang Silver badge

      Re: Post-Truth Society

      "Its like the whole of Silly 'con' Valley have bought into Jobian reality-distortion-field economics."

      The problem is that it worked very well for Jobs, well except for the whole cancer thing, and made Apple a very very very profitable company. So naturally other evil companies are trying to emulate that success.

  5. JimmyPage Silver badge
    FAIL

    Good luck with that.

    UK tort law starts with having to show a "loss", and your time is worth .... nothing.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Good luck with that.

      "Need to show a loss"

      Well, all it would take is for one small business to get hit with a fine from HMRC for late filing of a Tax return and you have a loss allright.

      OR an author to lose a 500,000 word manuscript that was due for publication.

      Time spent fixing the issues can be taken into consideration IF that time would have been spent earning money.

      For us mere plebs/mortals/ordinary people, MS could not give a F***. In many cases I think that they'd rather we went away and didn't bother them again. Well, IMHO, Windows 10 from a consumer POV seems hell bent of driving users to other platforms so... you make your own mind up.

      Yet again last month, I had to tell a family member "I don't do Windows 10" when asked for help because MS in their 'wisdom' (sic) had screwed up their computer with an update. sigh.

      1. Milton Silver badge

        "... lose a 500,000 word manuscript"

        " ... OR an author to lose a 500,000 word manuscript that was due for publication"

        So that's what happened to George Martin's next Thrones novel.

        The rewritten version has an army of robotic, faceless, rapacious monsters that cannot be killed gradually being forced back beyond The Wall until they are returned to confinement in the Tomb of the Undead, in Redmond.

        Windows is Coming

        1. TonyJ Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: "... lose a 500,000 word manuscript"

          "...Windows is Coming..."

          He took a [Windows] patch to the knee....

          I'll get my coat.

        2. Mage Silver badge

          Re: what happened to George Martin's next Thrones novel?

          I thought he still uses CP/M?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: what happened to George Martin's next Thrones novel?

            Martin surfs the Web and does his email on a modern computer (using I don't know which OS), but he famously does his writing in WordStar 4.0 on a painstakingly maintained, air-gapped DOS box.

    2. John H Woods Silver badge

      Re: Good luck with that.

      "UK tort law starts with having to show a "loss", and your time is worth .... nothing." --- JimmyPage

      But, if you can't fix it yourself, and you pay someone to fix it for you, I think* their time is worth something, and you might well be able to claim that having to pay them is a 'loss' you might expect to be at least partially reimbursed.

      Perhaps, by making the updates compulsory, MS have increased their exposure to such claims?

      *IANALBIPOOTI

    3. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Good luck with that.

      @JimmyPage

      Lots of people have not just lost time. If the Win 10 update screw up stops you working / reduces effectiveness then it costs money - e.g. borked PC so cannot use webcam to record bondage session and burn DVD for your punter, so cash is lost.

      (There may be more family friendly use cases)

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