back to article 'I thought my daughter clicked on ransomware – it was the damn Windows 10 installer'

At the end of April, Microsoft's Windows 10 nagware interrupted a live TV weather broadcast to urge meteorologist Metinka Slater to upgrade her computer. A week later, while playing Counter Strike: Global Offensive to 130,000 spectators on Twitch.tv, Erik Flom was blasted out of his match by the Windows 10 installer. This was …

  1. AlbertH

    SAM Broadcaster? Forget it.

    We used SAM Broadcaster - briefly. We found that it was rather unstable on Windoze 7 (though it wasn't bad on XP), and would spontaneously crash, often requiring a complete reboot. When the Win 10 nagware started, it became completely unusable!

    We made the biggest change possible - we moved to Ubuntu and "Rivendell" for our 24/7 streaming service. It took a little time to learn our way around the new OS and software, and to integrate it with our record library (which has always used Ubuntu).

    We stream using Icecast, and the results are superb. Quality is high, stability is perfect and the "live" option works flawlessly for programmes with live presenters.

    There was a fairly steep learning curve, and there were a few configuration niggles that were sorted out with the help of the very active Users' Group. We now use entirely FOSS software and operating systems throughout our studio centre - saving us a fortune in licensing and support costs!

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      And the cherry on the cake is that your OS is not going to go change its settings behind your back.

      Microsoft : the best reason to go to Linux that ever existed.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        FAIL

        Yep! Amazing what the "greasy hair mongrel" has created!

      2. Turbo Beholder
        Devil

        Indeed.

        I, for one, fed up with micro soft nonsense even at home long ago. But to have anything on air and get a pop up like this? The next time (on air) it would be something to the effect of "Bonus: installing Lubuntu for the beginners".

    2. BobChip
      Unhappy

      Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

      Don't go in for an operation when the anaesthetic machine runs on a Microsoft OS..... Or indeed anything else your life depends on, for that matter.

      1. Peter Simpson 1
        FAIL

        Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

        Don't go in for an operation when the anaesthetic machine runs on a Microsoft

        You can say that again:

        https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfmaude/detail.cfm?mdrfoi__id=5487204

        Personal experience: I work for a consulting company. A client had asked us to prototype a diagnostic tool, using LabView (a bad idea for a number of reasons, but...). We built it up, using a "panel PC", running Windows XP Embedded, and delivered it. Time passes. Client calls up, says the system is running poorly.

        I do some basic investigation and discover he's picked up a virus. Now, this PC has no networking, only a USB port for logging of data to a thumb drive. WITH AUTORUN ON BY DEFAULT. Yes, he'd plugged in a borrowed thumb drive and XP Embedded had autorun whatever nasty was on it.

        I wiped the drive, reinstalled everything, DISABLED AUTORUN, and told him not to use anything but new thumb drives.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

          Sorry, but this is a competence fail rather than a Windows fail. Disabling autorun would partially mitigate the risks here, but you should have enabled the File-Based Write Filter, and allowed persistent writing only to folders where your embedded application needed to write it's data. You have other tools than the FBWF too. XP Embedded made it easy to build a system that's pretty much invulnerable, very very simply; you chose to leave it wide open.

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

            Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

            XP Embedded made it easy to build a system that's pretty much invulnerable

            This is some kind of sicko joke, right?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

              "This is some kind of sicko joke, right?"

              No, embedded xp can be made totally readonly using write filter.. the example mentioned previously was poorly configured by wannabe "developers" without embedded experience.

              I could make an embedded xp image that's more secure than Windows 10. It would only offer core functionality, but it would need very stable have a small footprint and be virtually bulletproof

          2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

            Sorry, but this is a competence fail rather than a Windows fail. Disabling autorun would partially mitigate the risks here, but you should have enabled the File-Based Write Filter, and allowed persistent writing only to folders where your embedded application needed to write it's data.

            As is perfectly obvious to everyone who writes Windows software. Just as no one ever uses "it's" when they mean "its".

            Why not tell us it's the OP's fault for dressing their application in such a provocative manner, while you're at it?

            Security by perfect vigilance. Yeah, that'll fix things.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

        "Don't go in for an operation when the anaesthetic machine runs on a Microsoft OS....."

        Don't know why you'd think that: the NHS runs on XP...

        As a side note, hospital networks are fairly secure and update services are blocked/redirected to prevent things like this happening - the updates have to be tested and 'released' by the sysadmin before PC's can pick them up.

        So you'll probably be alright going in for an operation.

        Probably...

        1. AndrewDu

          Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

          Hospital networks are fairly secure?

          ROTFLMAO

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: SAM Broadcaster? And the moral is...

            Yup, hospital NETWORKS are fairly secure (mandated encryption, penetration testing, network audits - the sort of thing you'd hope would be taking place to ensure patient information is kept secure).

            Users, however, aren't.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: SAM Broadcaster? Forget it.

      +1 for Rivendell and Ubuntu. We use this exclusively at Destiny 105.1 FM in Oxford for all our daytime output. Obviously on an FM station you can't have any downtime and (touch wood) it's been faultless since it was installed over two years ago. Also being open source we've been able to add our own customisations and give presenters their own copies of the system for training etc.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: SAM Broadcaster? Forget it.

      +1 for Icecast, which we ran for many years on FreeBSD.

      We streamed a radio station using a cheap second hand Sun Netra server which ran continuously for quite literally years on end. I think uptime was in excess of 3 years when we had to power it down one time to move to a new cabinet at the colo datacentre.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    300 million infections

    Did anyone watch an episode of Equinox (Channel 4) called "The King of Chaos" which aired around 2000?

    The episode was about a media mogul, who wrote an operating system which spread around the world like a virus.

    Uncannily like Window 10 no?

    1. LDS Silver badge

      Re: 300 million infections

      "Mogul" applies perfectly to Nadella, albeit he may prefer "Maharaja". He has the same contempt for serfs customers.

      Accept the "gift" of Windows 10 and shut up.

      1. asdf Silver badge

        Re: 300 million infections

        >Accept the "gift" of Windows 10 and shut up.

        Yep you are now the product not the customer so please shut up.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: 300 million infections

      "Did anyone watch an episode of Equinox (Channel 4) called "The King of Chaos" which aired around 2000?"

      unfortunately, no. But I *did* see 'Kingsmen' and the big-bad offers free phone service with a 'special' feature... maybe that's what's behind Win-10-nic?

      OK not *that* but still...

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: 300 million .... big deal

        It has been out since last summer, and Microsoft went to great lengths to prevent OEMs from being allowed to preinstall older versions. So you can assume that almost every PC sold since it came out (modulo inventory clearing) came with Windows 10. Even with the declines in PC sales, they have still probably sold 200 million new PCs that would have come with Windows 10. So only 100 million took the bait and upgraded, and judging by Windows 7 & 8 market share almost all of them were Windows 8/8.1 users.

        Can hardly blame those saddled with Windows 8 for upgrading, as going from 8 to 10 actually is an upgrade, while 7 to 10 is definitely not.

        1. art guerrilla

          Re: 300 million .... big deal

          yeps, exactly...

          wife running win 8 on a new laptop, got fooled into upgrading, fortunately, her needs are so minimal -web browsing, email, word, etc- that it has had little effect, other than the strange interface where she can't find anything anymore, minor stuff like that...

          my laptop, a year or so old, got the stupid nags so often, i gave up and went to install win 10 against my better judgment... takes a half day to download the crap, then tells me my system isn't compatible ? ? ?

          WTF ? terabyte drive, mainstream AMD processor, 8 gigs ram, runs win 8.1, and it isn't 'compatible' ?

          well, ultimately, i was never so happy to be incompatible, but at the time, it was WTF micro$oft ? ? ?

          1. Montreal Sean

            Re: 300 million .... big deal

            Weird about your laptop.

            I installed Win10 Pro on an old Dell Precision 390 to see what it was like.

            Core2duo 2.4GHz, 8 gigs of RAM and an old 1 gig ATI Radeon card.

            It ran. Wouldn't say it ran quickly, but it was passable.

            For the 2 days until I reinstalled Linux Mint.

        2. asdf Silver badge

          Re: 300 million .... big deal

          >300 million .... big deal

          Yep sadly my PC counts (got gifted it recently) even though I boot into Windows 10 maybe one a month at most (other %99 of the time LMDE). It sucks about the time they finally have a decent OS they decide to give it terminal spyware cancer.

        3. s2bu

          Re: 300 million .... big deal

          I don't find 8.1 to be half bad... After you put Classic Shell on it!

  3. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

    It is ransomware - they just haven't posted the ransom notes yet. MS can afford to play the long game. Ain't no such thing as a free lunch and all that.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Windows

      Iroinc

      It's like a FREEEEEEE ride when you've already paid.

      1. MyffyW Silver badge

        Re: Iroinc

        @massivelySerial It's the black fly in your Chardonnay ... when you asked for a bottle of Barolo

    2. hplasm Silver badge
      Happy

      "It is ransomware - they just haven't posted the ransom notes yet."

      They did- but they are stuck in Exchange.

    3. Shufflemoomin

      They *have* posted the ransom notes. If you installed it during the free offer period, the license is not transferable to another PC. When you change out your motherboard, Microsoft considers that to now be a new PC and you WILL have to pay for a new license. It's already happening to people even though it's still during the free period. Microsoft say the only way to get it back for free is to install a previous version of Windows with a legit key and go through the upgrade process again. They've given it away to 300 million people for free and they *know* that those people are going to have to give them the full price at some point in the near future. It's the dodgiest move Microsoft have ever pulled.

      Anyone who doesn't believe me only has to go and dig a little. Microsoft certainly didn't trumpet this little fact but they *do* have the information out there if you want to look for it.

      1. Blank Reg

        The vast majority of PC users don't upgrade, they replace. And they don't build, they replace with something off the shelf with the OS pre-installed, so Windows 10 will be "free" as far as they are concerned.

        1. Trigonoceps occipitalis

          Preserving Windows 10 Activation

          I regularly reload OS, say twice a year on a dual boot Win/Linux box. I have taken the free upgrade to Win 10 from Win 7. How do I reload Win 10 after 1 Aug, can I copy the activation files?

          I only run Windows for some old games so perhaps I'll just junk it at the next reload.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        not always true

        I upgraded from 8.1 to 10 on an AMD Phenom II system and then some time later replaced the motherboard, CPU and RAM as I moved to Skylake. I did have to reactivate using the 'enter lots of numbers' method, but it worked first time. Still fine over a month later.

  4. Ole Juul Silver badge

    oh boy!

    This looks like it's going to be the year of the Windows 10 desktop.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

    But were these users running under an adminstrator account? If not then there is a gaping hole in windows which allows anybody to install software. If so, then they deserved what they got.

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

      Windows 7 doesn't have an administration account. (That can be logged into locally)

      It has accounts that can elevate applications to admin - similar to sudoers.

      By default, every user except the Guest account is able to elevate - unless you know how to turn that off.

      So why be surprised that almost everyone uses the default configuration?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

        Oh dear, vagueties of comments combined with pendants. But if you need it spelling out, I meant that they were running under a user account as an adminstrator as opposed to a user account as a normal user.

        That they don't change defaults is neither here nor there.

        1. Stevie Silver badge

          Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened 4 Chris W

          Yes I see your point.

          Now let's prosecute all the Volkswagen owners for operating a vehicle in contravention to the emissions laws. You can't tell me they didn't know that their computers were jiggered and if they didn't they should rtfm and serves 'em right.

          What?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened @Stevie

            That is the most idiotic analogy I've seen for quite some time. How to use something and knowing about corporate deception hidden in the depths of the code are quite different.

        2. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge
          Headmaster

          @ Chris W (Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened)

          Oh dear, vagueties of comments combined with pendants.

          Vagaries and pedants (presumably).

          .

          Sincerely

          A pedant

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @ Chris W (Forgive me for not understanding how this happened)

            @Sorry that handle is already taken.

            I actually did see that, chuckled to myself and left it, after all, no knowing what might happen if you break the laws of the internet.

      2. Ransoman

        Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

        Unless of course some dozey bugger disables user account control because "it just gets in the way" or "I don't like it". I work in IT support and meet a lot of people like that, even some of my own collegues!!

        Sometimes even explaining to them how it works and why turning it off is a very bad idea isn't enough!

        1. s2bu

          Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

          That would be me. UAC gets disabled immediately and the "Administrator" user gets reenabled and renamed to me. It's my internal BOFH.

    2. riparian zone

      Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

      show me an average user that knows how to set up a standard account, and then ask them how/why they know. Your judgement call is unwarranted.

    3. 1Rafayal

      Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

      @Chris W

      Dont question, this is an MS hate article.

      Just accept, nod politely and move on.

      1. ecofeco Silver badge

        Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

        You make hating something that is a fucked up piece of shit sound bad.

      2. Joe User

        Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

        1Rafayal: Dont question, this is an MS hate article.

        Why yes, this is an MS hate article. We, Microsoft's customers, hate being treated like doormats and having MS walk all over us.

        1. waldo kitty
          Facepalm

          Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

          Why yes, this is an MS hate article. We, Microsoft's customers, hate being treated like doormats and having MS walk all over us.

          if one is tired of being walked all over, they need to get out of the traffic path... vote with your feet and leave m$ holding its sack...

          no animosity, down putting or ugliness intended... just stating facts...

      3. raving angry loony

        Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

        By your definition anything that honestly describes Microsoft policies, or honestly describes Microsoft software failures, is a "Microsoft hate article".

        Let me guess, you work for their marketing dept?

    4. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

      Nick Burns, is that you?

    5. Fluffy Cactus

      Re: Forgive me for not understanding how this happened

      I understand how stuff happens. Someone clicks on something to see what that thing does. And as a completely ignorant person I can see how that might be a problem.

      The other thing is: After suffering through various Microsoft updates, MS Security updates, and MS upgrades, (3.1, 95, 98, XP) I have learned, from experience, that one has to set the automatic update on Windows 7 to the setting "Do not download or install updates, let me decide whether to download and install'. Because I want to see what trouble other people run into by installing unproven, untested, undebugged updates from Microsoft. That saves me a lot of trouble.

      After that, MS did trick me into installing KB4952664. That's the one that seems to put the little "upgrade to windows 10 thingi" on the thing called a "Taskbar". So, I uninstalled that, and when I look for updates, I have to uncheck that thing KB2952664 in the update list each time. Even though I uncheck it, it checks itself again. I know it by heart now, the good old KB2952664 trickster, the way I know my own phone number. It helps to actually click on the "More information" button for each and every Win update, to see

      what it is, and whether it has "issues", and whether it looks "suspicious" simply from the file names being

      used in it. Because, so far,software programmers do have to name their files in a way that tells them what each file does, and that way you can guess that the item called "Appraiser..." or "Telemetry3000" or whatever, is something that phones home early and often and makes you do things you don't want to

      do, at least not now, at least not yet. That's how I keep Satan-Nutella out of my fairly frazzled registry.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Interesting how none of the comments in the article complained about Windows 10, just that it arrived unexpectedly. The only issue we've had with it is that AutoCAD LT doesn't get on with it. Otherwise we have happy end users.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Otherwise we have happy end users.

      Really? These people weren't aware enough of the malware lurking in their OS and so were downgraded against their will. I would suggest that anyone caught like that would be very wary of trying to undo something they didn't understand in the first place.

      Not 'happy end users', but 'helpless victims', I'd say.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Let's start a list

        When switching between users the mouse pointer sometimes disappears. Never happened with any other version of windows.

    2. John 104

      No, that complaining is for a different article. The tracking and usage alone should be enough for a class action law suit.

    3. Stoneshop Silver badge
      Holmes

      "Reg readers share their tales of spontaneous OS upgrades"

      Interesting how none of the comments in the article complained about Windows 10, just that it arrived unexpectedly.

      Funny how that actually matches the headline and the byline of the article. Kindof unexpected around here, but there you have it.

  7. Lee D Silver badge

    I work at a school.

    The headmaster's wife somehow managed to press the magic upgrade button on an otherwise perfectly working Windows 7 machine.

    When it came back up hours later, it would boot, login, and explorer.exe would crash and the start menu and taskbar would disappear. And then reappear. And then crash. And then reappear. Repeat ad infinitum.

    Honestly, the IT team couldn't work it out and it wasn't our machine so we couldn't just image over it, and, no, you couldn't actually system restore with explorer crashing like that.

    We did "solve" the problem in the end, though. She just cared about getting back in to her files to submit her thesis. So, on a whim, we slapped buttons until we managed to get a command prompt. Then we were able to run programs quite normally, actually. We could have copied her files from there, but we actually found out that installing Classic Shell - as we do everything else as a matter of course - was a decent enough solution. We'd only done it so we could get something resembling a control panel menu to start up enough to dig into the logs and settings, but having Classic Shell as the shell= command (probably not nowadays, but you know what I mean) stopped explorer crashing and we were able to open folder windows as normal and get her stuff off.

    As far as I know, months later, the laptop is still in that configuration and working fine. I'd guess if we took CSM off again, explorer would just go into its crash loop again. Though quite how that works, I'm not sure. Surely the taskbar is explorer.exe too? And file windows? But only the shell start menu copy of explorer.exe crashes, which you can replace.

    Whatever, once we got it working, she was so happy she snatched it back before we could do any more diagnosis and it's still like that today. But that was one of 5-6 upgrade stories we had, including one member of staff managing to wipe out - including all her documents and programs - her entire laptop by clicking Upgrade to Windows 10. God knows what she pressed en-route.

    1. jaywin

      > Though quite how that works, I'm not sure. Surely the taskbar is explorer.exe too? And file windows?

      explorer.exe is basically two different programs run from the same file. On start up it detects if its 1) the currently assigned shell program, and 2) if any other copies are running. If yes to both, it runs the shell launcher version. If no to either, it runs the folder browser version.

      Main reason for running the two programs from the same executable is for early versions of windows where the overhead of launching a separate process just to look in a folder was undesirable. Doing it this way meant the folders could be opened by the same loaded process as the shell UI, requiring minimal additional resources.

      Personally, I've always ticked the "Open folders in separate process" box, as it makes the whole thing more stable, but I can understand why they did it the way they did in the days of 12MHz CPU and 4MB RAM machines.

    2. Fluffy Cactus

      Right, and overall, it seems to me that anyone who wants to upgrade an "actually working Windows Operating System" to a new one should be required to sign and initial 30 pages of complicated legal disclaimers, like they were signing up for a new mortgage, a new brokerage account, signing themselves into an insane asylum or agreeing to an experimental type of cancer treatment, ... just so they realize that they might lose their data, their life, their money and their freedom (which they might still care about), and that the process is more likely than not irreversible.

      That's how much I like upgrading a Windows Operating system.

    3. leexgx

      once you got it working you could of just reverted the windows 10 install back to windows 7 (you got 30 days to do it and i do it quite often) and TURN off Recommended updates (does not turn off important updates)

      and remove these updates (batch file or via a command prompt) no more windows 10 nag screen (it has never come back on my PC or any other PCs i have done this on)

      wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:3035583 /quiet /norestart

      wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:2976978 /quiet /norestart

      wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:2952664 /quiet /norestart

      moderator these are the updates you need to remove to rid windows 10 GWX and the daily telemetry scan that slows the PC down for about 10-50 minuets depending how many files you have on your system

  8. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Alert

    GWX Control Panel or Never10

    Get one of these now before they push out the update which takes care of the other 700 million devices they thought they were going to have by this time but don't.

  9. eJ2095

    Does make you wonder

    Whos in charge of you OS of choice....

    Running Unbunto Mate atm.. been running/learning it for teh last 2 months.

    I do like it, amy problems and a quick google search and all sorted.

    Fun to learn :-0 (I jumped from Amiga OS 3.9 to XP back in 2000) then of course win 7, then got fed up with that and onto Unbunto.

  10. Novex

    Slow checking for updates...

    ...seems to have become MS's way of trying to kick us into Win10 land. Well, not for me. I now use Mint for my general stuff, and keep a partition for remaining Windows stuff that won't run on Linux. Since most of that legacy use doesn't need internet, I've switched off updates completely. When I have several hours to spare in a month I might go for a manual update attempt, but I'm even contemplating stopping that. You've lost me MS, all because you loaded Win 10 with telemetry and forced updates, and have been trying desperately to retrocompromise Win 7. Bad behaviour means loss of custom. And no, I don't believe your 300 million install shit.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Slow checking for updates...

      I don't believe your 300 million install shit.

      Maybe that number includes all the boxes that got the download 5 or 6 times before GMX was put on? Or includes all the boxes that attempted or actually did install it and the user/owner rolled back?

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge

        Re: Slow checking for updates...

        re: not believing the 300 million...

        Another possibility is that, like the "Ape" (8.x) sales figures, about 1/3 of users actually *LIKE* the 2D FLUGLY and other "features" of Ape (and now Win-10-nic).

        that leaves the OTHER 2/3 of us *SCREAMING* *BLOODY* *MURDER* and vowing to NEVER {down}UPGRADE to 10, *EVAR*.

        strangely, Micro-shaft ignores the 2/3, believes the 1/3 to be "everyone", and *INSISTS* the rest of us MUST! HAVE! Win-10-nic!!!

    2. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: Slow checking for updates...

      I noticed that as well, Windows 7 VM was "checking for updates" for a couple of hours before I turned it off as not needed.

      I used to dual-boot Windows and Ubuntu, but now its Ubuntu with a couple of Windows VMs for stuff that needs it. Much more flexible and works fine with most things, though not much good for games that need top graphics performance or any special hardware that needs hardware drivers for PCI connections (OK for USB, etc).

    3. Michael Kean

      Re: Slow checking for updates...

      If you install a number of computers, try googling 'wsus offline installer' - it stores most Windows Updates on a hard drive / USB stick, etc and will install them all for you without needing an Internet connection.

    4. Innocent-Bystander*

      Re: Slow checking for updates...

      Windows 7 has always been slow checking for updates.

      I remember waiting for hours for the list to show up back in the SP1 days. It was one of the catalysts to move to Mint. System install, customization, updates and extra installs were done before Windows 7 would generate an update list.

      Windows 10 is far better in that regard. The update list comes up in less than a minute, applies in about 30 minutes and that's that.

      Still would be nice to have some control over the update process but f*ck it. I'm too old to care.

      1. Novex

        Re: Slow checking for updates...

        Windows 7 has always been slow checking for updates.

        Not on my PCs. It was always quite fast ('checking for updates' completed within five minutes) until the beginning of the Windows 10 bandwagon, and since then that initial check just got slower and slower. The rest of the update process is as per, sometimes slow, sometimes fast, depending on what was updated. But that initial check is where the problem seems to lie.

        1. techmind

          Re: Slow checking for updates... (on Win7 systems)

          Mine too.

          It's getting the list of updates in the first place which takes forever (sometimes a few days) - though sometimes they can be reluctant to start downloading too. Never had this problem before Win10 was lurking in the wings.

          I wonder if it has to do with M$ update servers being overloaded...?

          Notable that away from patch-Tuesdays, other updates such as Windows Defender are found and install without trouble.

  11. redpawn Silver badge

    Set up wife's computer to dual boot

    Wife's Lenovo laptop, one which came with Superfish, is set up to dual boot Windows 8.1 and Mint a year ago. She hasn't had any problems with Microsoft nagging since, as she never boots Windows. Shouldn't have wasted the drive space.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So the

    overwhelming consensus is that Win10 is steaming dog egg.

    Not that most of us didn't already know that.**

    So, as others stated, this 300 million figure?

    From whos arsehole have these figures been cherry picked?

    300 mill initiated installs is NOT 300 mill devices running Win10 on a daily basis never to be reverted back the wonderful OS that is Win7..

    ** Even if its pretty good, the tactics employed to distribute it have left a sour taste that will always be there.

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: So the

      It's most likely the old record company accounting fraud. Ship 1 million records and claim a million sold, even though 500,000 are sitting in some warehouse and will forever, but tell the musician you only shipped 250,000 and pay them royalties on that.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This morning the W7 updates prompt appeared. Claimed it had two "important" updates - one for Outlook - one the usual malicious clean-up. No problems there apparently - ran the updates. Then had to reboot as Firefox hadn't restarted after its coincidental update.

    A few minutes later the MS updates prompt appeared again with one important update - with the pre-ticked. KB3035583 resurrected yet again dated 3 May 2016. Do MS not understand "NO!!!!!" ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      no means Yes in MS Speak

      The same goes for Silverlight. Even though they apparently have canned it, like a bad penny it still keeps coming back.

      Dear Satnad,

      I think that windows 10 is the worst pile of steaming dog poo to ever be released into the unsuspecting world. I studues Operating systems some 40+ years ago and have used countless different ones since. Without a doubt, Windows 10 is the worst and by a very long way.

      I will never upgrade to it. I am like a good few of my peers actively removing any MS product from our IT kit.

      Regards,

      A former MSCE.

      1. Captain Badmouth

        Re: no means Yes in MS Speak

        Obligatory music reference :

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53u7LuGJecw

    2. Zoopy

      > Do MS not understand "NO!!!!!" ?

      It's as with a rapist. The problem is not their failure to understand your wishes.

    3. Number6

      I always check what the updates are for now, so I spotted that it wanted me to install a W10-related thing on my W7 VM. So I told it to hide the update. No doubt it will be re-issued in a couple of weeks with a different KB number.

  14. chivo243 Silver badge

    Vendor Techs

    We have vendor techs periodically visit, and they usually have shiny new mobile computers. I'm always asking what they run, it's usually win10. Some love it, most don't. One guy uses the computer for only the trouble shooting software for their gear. He does all his com stuff with his smart phone, said he didn't like how much data was flying back to Redmond...

  15. VinceH Silver badge

    "The fun starts about nine minutes into this recording of the live stream.."

    No it doesn't - you've misread a report from elsewhere and didn't check.

    According to other reports "the Windows 10 upgrade starts after minute 8:54" - and when it's a recording of over nine hours, that means 8 hours 54 minutes in. (And if you watch it from the start, you'll notice a Windows 10 taskbar at the bottom of the screen and wonder WTF?)

    However, another option is to look at a shorter video, showing just the relevant few minutes, on YouTube.

    1. Cynic_999 Silver badge

      Yes, I took a quick look and saw that error - but my first thought was to wonder who the heck sits playing a video game for a solid 9 hours? Then my second thought was to wonder who the heck sits *watching someone else* play a video game for a solid 9 hours?

      In this case the forced update may have done several people a favour if it made them remember even for a few minutes that there is an entire real world out there for them to interact with. Or maybe give them time to at least change their socks.

  16. Bill M

    I quite like Windows 10

    Light the blue touch paper and wait.........

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I quite like Windows 10

      Apparently there are a surprising no. of people like to shit on each other. I don't understand it, but live and let live and all that.

      1. Sean Timarco Baggaley

        Re: I quite like Windows 10

        Or, you know, maybe your opinion isn't actually representative of the majority of PC users. None of the people I know who run Windows 10 actually give a toss. Hell, many still think their operating system is called "Microsoft Office"; few of them could tell you what an operating system is.

        Unless you're running on a tablet of some kind, most people will barely notice the difference. It looks very similar to Windows 8.x, which has been around for a while now. Windows 7 is pretty ancient by IT standards, being released nearly seven years ago. It's roughly the same age Windows XP was when Vista was released in 2007.

        1. Number6

          Re: I quite like Windows 10

          None of the people I know who run Windows 10 actually give a toss.

          This might be because all of those who do give a toss have made other arrangements in order to avoid having to run Win10.

          I have it on a virtual machine that I rarely boot up. It irritates me too much to use for more than the time it takes to apply security patches and even that's pushing it.

        2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
          FAIL

          Re: I quite like Windows 10

          Some eejitconfused co-citizen says:

          Windows 7 is pretty ancient by IT standards

          Did you mean to say "Windows 7 is pretty ancient by Microsoft marketing standards"?

          I don't want to diss the probably excellently skilled and extensively manicured as well as quite likely female-by-a-high-percentage Microsoft marketing section, but these people are fuck bonkers crazy and no mistake.

          Some other eejitfukken dumbass says:

          The best test is to give a computer to a child and see if they can use it in a proficient manner quickly

          A child can also proficiently use a suicide vest. I think we have reached the bottom of the retardation now.

          1. MonkeyCee Silver badge

            Re: I quite like Windows 10

            "The best test is to give a computer to a child and see if they can use it in a proficient manner quickly"

            If only normal users had the abilities of a 10 year old child......

            Seriously, most kids are better at figuring this stuff out than those over 50.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I quite like Windows 10

      I like Windows 10 too but apparently that isn't popular round here...

      The best test is to give a computer to a child and see if they can use it in a proficient manner quickly, whatever you might think, Windows 10 passes that test.

  17. sweeme

    How could they force people to upgrade?

    don't we have a choice anymore? Damn I paid for my windows 7!

    1. 1Rafayal

      Re: How could they force people to upgrade?

      no one is forcing you to upgrade.

      its been a choice to upgrade.

      1. TechnicalBen Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: How could they force people to upgrade?

        Choice of upgrading or a kick in the teeth.... see. ;)

      2. redpawn Silver badge

        Re: How could they force people to upgrade?

        If by "choice" you mean: if you have the knowledge you could block it from happening in most instances, you are right.

  18. phuzz Silver badge

    So, my folks have a laptop that's still running Vista. Is there anyone out there who'd like to swap their free Win10 upgrade for a legit copy of Vista?

    You'll get to stick with an old OS, and their laptop will run much better, win win right?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Fit an SSD, max out the RAM, and Vista will be fine.

    2. TechnicalBen Silver badge
      Mushroom

      No...

      Because I've seen it happen. They spent a good amount of their time learning XP, then Vista then Windows 8.1.

      They spent a LOT of time learning it. They could just manage to print and organise their photos. It "just worked" for them. They were happy.

      Then the unremoveable update (they told me after the 30 days, the update removed the reinstall partition of the original OS thanks to MS new fangled method... clever planning of MS there!) to Windows 10 hit.

      Photo printing and organising is so different that even I'd burn it out for a Linux swap at the drop of a hat. Poor things have decided to go back to their Vista laptop for photo editing and printing, and the Win10 machine is just for email and web now.

  19. Stratman
    Devil

    One has to wonder

    what kind of security software allows the OS to be overwritten and replaced

    1. phuzz Silver badge

      Re: One has to wonder

      One that allows security patches?

  20. Missing Semicolon Silver badge
    Go

    Fix for slow updates

    http://www.wsusoffline.net/

    You can download it once, then install to multiple machines with a USB key.

    It also supports blacklisting updates, so you can avoid the Telemetry and Win10 nags.

  21. Elmer Phud Silver badge

    Not Yet

    Thanks to the many posts on El Reg, I have deferred W10 until a reasonable release. Also thanks to those who point others towards GWX.

    I've been watching the update stuff and so far haven't seen a W10 installer either as non-crtical or critical update.

    I had the notification icon for months (now removed) and despite world+dog appearing to have the beast delivered I seem to have been forgotten.

    I still don't trust the buggers and expect to have to spend a while digging around unticking boxes eventually in various 'security' and 'personalization' sections.

  22. MJI Silver badge

    If they want to get more Win10

    Offer it free to XP users

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: If they want to get more Win10

      "Offer it free to XP users"

      Quite a few of the XP users will have no option but to continue using it as it controls equipment that would cost a fortune to replace and for which the custom software is limited to XP.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: If they want to get more Win10

        I know, I have working devices which are topped out at XP as they are old

  23. Len Goddard

    Don't worry, the upgrade will probably fail

    I had suppressed the upgrade for some time but having built myself a powerful new PC for gaming and moved all my productive stuff onto an intel NUC running Mint Linux I decided to upgrade the old machine before giving it away. After several failed attempts I installed Win10 off the installation media I had purchased for the new PC. The PC had had a fairly heavily customised Win 7 setup so from curiousity I tried to upgrade my laptop (before converting it to linux). Nope, that failed as well and the win 7 on it was more or less bog standard. The score among my friends (of varying computer literacy) is about 60-40 against.

    And the result? Win 10 seems to work ok (if I could just get to the bottom of the phantom ctrl- button) but the appearance and UI are horrible. After much effort I finally managed to customise it into something I can live with but it involved significant registry hacking. Fortunately I did manage to delete the software store before M$ made that difficult on a Pro system.

    1. Peter Simpson 1
      Thumb Up

      Re: Don't worry, the upgrade will probably fail

      Linux Mint seems to work quite well. I run it at home and on a second PC at work, and it's very solid.

      The rest of my family runs Apple gear.

      My work runs Win7. It's OK, so long as I don't have to deal with the upkeep. Except that it has decided not to see my USB keyboard. Good thing I had a PS2 one in the drawer. Can't be arsed to figure out why the USB one doesn't work...already spent an hour on it, that's more than enough.

  24. shifty_powers

    Slow update list

    http://download.wsusoffline.net/

    The guy in the article really should be using something like this.

    Would make his life far easier.

  25. Hans Neeson-Bumpsadese Silver badge

    Upgraded

    Just this week I decided to apply the free upgrade to a Windows 7 machine that I had downgraded to "sacrificial" status. The actual OS experience itself isn't *that* bad, but the fact I can't disable windows updates (I only install the updates *I* want to receive, when I want them) and it doesn't seem to allow me to switch off Windows Defender for any more than a few minutes p***es me off somewhat.

    Result of experiment - don't apply update to any other/non-sacrificial machines.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Before upgrading to 10

    Switch off your automatic updates to OFF. It stops Windows 7 from trying to update before you upgrade to 10. Saves so much time.

    I've upgraded several peoples personal machine to 10, mainly from 7, and make sure I always click the "Customise settings" option to stop Edge being the default browser (since IE11 is installed anyway) and switch off as many telemetry settings as possible.

    Where I work uses WSUS and enterprise installs of 7, so the dreaded Windows 10 upgrade does not rear its ugly head, unless it is a remote users laptop that looses its WSUS GPO settings after not connecting for about a month.

  27. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    They may have downloaded the files (and fuck them for doing that) but since the very first mention of the installer in these pages I used a registry update prined in the comments to shut down the nagware and haven't seen it since.

    I dunno why others don't follow suit. There are plenty of sources for how to do it out there.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Holmes

    May I humbly offer the following advice

    Don't ever use or install Windows.

    1. John Sanders
      Holmes

      Re: May I humbly offer the following advice

      Why people keep bending unconditionally to MS is one of the greatest mysteries of our time.

  29. DaddyHoggy

    I upgraded my Asus 1015PX netbook from W7 Starter to W10 (had planned to put Mint on it anyway). That went well and I'm still using it - it is considerably better than W7 Starter (not hard I know, but still).

    It's my 14yo daughter's machine that annoys me. It's a Lenovo G580. It was on Win8 when she bought it, it upgraded to 8.1 - we put classic shell on it. All was good. Microsoft know she's only 14, because when we set up her MS Live account we filled in the details properly so that I was the 'adult' who could turn on what she can and cannot do with regards Store purchase and the like. I get a weekly report of what she's been up to on her machine so it came as a surprise when it turns out she'd got sick of the W10 nagware and had accepted the upgrade. MS made no note of this in the weekly report they sent me.

    It's also slightly perplexing that they've let a 14yo accept all of the T&Cs that come with the upgrade without going "your designated adult needs to legally accept these because you're not old enough..."

    So, once I knew I had to go in and turn off all the stuff that is turned on by default under the express setup she had unwittingly accepted.

  30. Aodhhan Bronze badge

    Microsoft is turning into Apple... demanding conformity

    Wont be long, and we'll be forced to use only Microsoft products.

  31. Uplink

    Windows Update 1-5 days

    "Checking for Windows 7 updates now can take anywhere from one to five days before the list of updates appears."

    Oh, is that it? I thought it got stuck in an infinite loop.

    I _wanted_ to update from W7 and W8 to W10 on two machines and bleeping WU would just go around in circles. I went through all the troubleshooting steps MS had to throw at me to no effect, so I ended up installing W10 manually after searching Google to see how it's done. Once on W10 WU worked as expected. Both machines were fresh install of W7 and fresh activation of W8, things I did only as a step towards W10 anyway - which I then deleted to install Linux instead. I just wanted to make sure I get the licence for the machines in case I ever need to upgrade my phone software using an .exe from the manufacturer or other similar stuff I can't do on Linux or OS X.

  32. MR J

    SlipStream

    If your installing Windows7 on tons of computers then you really should update your install media to include the patches. I showed a guy how to do it with XP when he used to get Dells to refurb (seems they had some bad caps at some point). He went from doing 4 computers a day to being able to do about 20...

    Okay, a charity might be different as not all installs are going to be the same, but still a updated installer would be so much better!.

    I have let all of my computers update and didn't suffer any real issues. I have seen two laptops (one not mine) that really struggled with updates and can take hours to patch, but For the life of me I cant see why they do... An old Core2Duo system I have churns along just fine with Windows10.

    I would prefer to use some Open Source OS but to be honest it is just not good for the family. The school has offered me "Help" with getting Microsoft publisher for my kids, but they cant seem to understand that I don't want that system. Heck, even their mailshots are sent home with Publisher files attached for the parents to view. It took me about 5 years to get the Primary school to send home PDF or Plaintext documents instead of what they had previously, the High School cant grasp it.

    Users of W10 cant complain that much to be honest, they are getting an OS with Updates in exchange for not using a Older OS. I loved 98, 2000, and 7. Keeping those going today is just not worth it from a security point of view, and if it helps keep some of the masses more secure then I am all for it.

    1. YetAnotherLocksmith

      Re: SlipStream

      More secure? My parent's brand new Win10 laptop was ransomwared by the 4th day, I think because it had a "free" trial of Office and hence a macro was run.

      (Proper "Yours files are in the same place heavily encrypted" ransomware, not the Win10 update!)

  33. Marty McFly
    Thumb Up

    Never10

    Google: "Never10"

    Best Windows 10 prevention tool out there. Lightweight, not a hack, using MSFT's approved avoidance procedure.

  34. ma1010 Silver badge
    Angel

    Windows X now runs on over 300 MILLION devices!

    And in other news, Big Brother has INCREASED the chocolate ration by 10 grams per week!

    The GWX virus hit my wife's computer, too. She complained that wouldn't boot correctly, nor would any of her programs work. She was right, it didn't work at all. Then I realized it had tried to sneak Win X on behind our backs. I managed to do a system rollback and got Win 7 working again, then quickly installed GWX Control Panel to keep her computer safe from the GWX virus.

    Next move will be to get her onto Linux, as I did with my own machines many months ago.

  35. 1Rafayal

    Hmm, I wonder.

    Out of all the people who claim to hate Windows 10, what is the basis for this?

    As a user experience, its quite good. Its stable, runs very quickly on an SSD and is stable.

    If the only gripe is the forced updates my question would be this; why wouldnt you want to have the latest updates on your machine? I mean honestly, how many people didnt set Windows update to auto check, download and install updates on previous versions of Windows?

    Is it just because you dont get the choice to turn off a feature that you would otherwise have turned on anyway?

    Genuinely curious.

    1. John Gamble

      I'm sure thousands of people had an uneventful experience with W10. But here the main conversation is about upgrading to W10, on machines that may have been designed with W7 in mind.

      Yes, we have no idea what the success/fail ratio is, but that's not the point. The problem is the stealth(ish) upgrading that's aggravating users.

      (Have to ask. Is your Windows 10 experience on a machine that came with W10 pre-installed by the manufacturer, or did you upgrade an older machine?)

      1. 1Rafayal

        I upgraded three machines, one was a Windows 7 era machine, with Windows 7 Pro installed. Upgrade went fine, no problems to report. The only problem I had with this machine was after it had upgraded, the old Windows image previewer that came with Windows 7 was still listed as available under the "open with..." context menu. When I tried to use it, Windows 10 ground to a halt. For this particular machine, I ended up just reinstalling Windows 10 from scratch using a USB stick, after that, no problems and no legacy applications either.

        The other two machines came with Windows 8/8.1 installed. The only issues I have had with these machines have been to do with video, sometimes watching stuff on YouTube is a bit hit and miss. One of these machines is now on build 14332, and everything seems to be fixed.

        None of my machines came with Windows 10 pre-installed.

        As for the stealth upgrade, that just isn't the case. People are complaining that its nagware - yes it does download a whole bunch of files to your machine and that's not on, to pre-empt you wanting to install it, but it doesn't install itself and it certainly takes well more than one mouse click to start the process.

        1. TechnicalBen Silver badge
          Big Brother

          It is a stealth update. I've not had it happen on my Windows machines, because I killed it all with fire (from orbit), but did have it happen on my mobile device. Though that runs Android, it's the same kind of setup.

          I'm busy working, playing or surfing. I'm texting or typing. All of a sudden a box loads up in front of my focused window/app/homepage. I click the screen/type on the keyboad just as my mind registers the input. 0.5 seconds of human response time when mid flow in a task is not enough. No "are you sure" just "oh you seem to have accidentally click 'upgrade' so lets turn everything off right this second!"

          I have no sympathy for MS, and have deep concern for those they have pulled the wool over the heads of. While the OS is fine, it's about as good as getting a perfectly good 3 course meal from the person you know is just waiting for you to turn your back on them...

          1. 1Rafayal

            I am not sure what you are trying to say here.. How can you know if it is a stealth update if you have never carried out the upgrade?

            it isn't a case of clicking a button and then bam, you have Windows 10, it asks you quite a lot if you want to install it in the first place. And if you don't have it downloaded already, it schedules the upgrade for you.

            So, with the facts in mind, how its it a stealth upgrade?

            Also, how are MS turning their backs on you? One of the biggest complaints about Windows 10 is that it will update, whether you want it to or not, so that's hardly being left high and dry is it?

            Even the Android update process you allude to isn't as simple as one button press.

        2. Captain Badmouth
          Windows

          Same old lie

          "but it doesn't install itself and it certainly takes well more than one mouse click to start the process."

          Still at it, then?

      2. Alan Brown Silver badge

        > (Have to ask. Is your Windows 10 experience on a machine that came with W10 pre-installed by the manufacturer, or did you upgrade an older machine?)

        So far all the boxen I've put W10 on are all old crap that barely ran XP/8. They're actually a bit better under W10, but they're a LOT better under Lubuntu (multibooters)

    2. Number6

      I mean honestly, how many people didn't set Windows update to auto check, download and install updates on previous versions of Windows?

      More to the point, I always go and disable automatic updates. The OS is free to tell me there are updates available, and I'll even let it download the files, but it doesn't do the upgrade until I say so.

      If you've ever left a machine running a task overnight and come back to it the following morning to see the smug "updated" message and no trace of the work it was supposed to be doing, you'd probably be disabling auto-updates too.

      There's also the previous history of borked updates - far better to let an update settle and make sure there's no outcry of "MS broke my PC!" before letting it loose on your own.

      1. PaulFrederick

        You should read your EULA more carefully. Microsoft reserves the right to make changes to your system whenever they choose to do so. Regardless of what settings you may think you have. Well, technically it is not even "your" system. It is their system. They are just letting you use it.

    3. Shadow Systems Silver badge

      Answers to your questions.

      First off, my Win7Pro64 has the updates set to Notify Only, that way I can choose which updates (if any) to apply & when. If any given update turns out to be a telemetry spewing, Win10 downloading, or other trojan in disguise, I uncheck it, hide it, & refuse to ever download it. I certainly don't let it install. I can't do that with Win10. Each & every "update" they shove down my throat WILL get applied if I want it to or not, even if it turns out that doing so will crash my system.

      Second, I use a Screen Reader Environment (SRE) that *has* to work or I can't interact with my computer *at all*. If an update might brick my computer, I *can't* let it get applied as I would have no way of fixing it. Thus the Win10 you'll-take-it-and-apply-it-and-STFU-about-it policy is *guaranteed* to cripple my system at some point, at which point I won't have any recourse. I can't fix what the SRE can't read to me, & the SRE can't do it's job if the system is hosed.

      Third, I bought a full, retail copy of Win7Pro64. I expect it to be properly supported until it's listed EOL. Anything less on MS' part is a breach of contract. I did NOT buy a copy of Win10, I don't want a copy of Win10, so for MS to alter my paid for copy of Win7Pro64 into a Win10 against my express wishes is tantamount to a criminal act. If I changed the OS on your computer without your permission, there would be a cop pounding on my door with a warrant for my arrest on charges of criminal hacking. Yet MS doing the exact same thing is supposedly a GOOD thing? Not by any stretch of the imagination.

      So I've repeatedly told MS that I'm not interested but they refuse to accept that "No Means No". As I've stated elsewhere in my posts, if they were a bloke in the pub doing this shite, they'd be up on rape charges a long bloody time ago. No Means No, not Maybe, & certainly not Yes. I said No, so stop trying to sneak that trojan back in.

      Windows Update has repeatedly renamed & rereleased the GWX trojan so many times in an attempt to sneak it past our notice, it's like they *refuse* to take NO as an answer. Again, if this were a bloke at the pub doing this shit, the woman holding a knife to his balls & threatening to cut them off and FEED them to the fekwad would never wind up before a magistrate. The cops wouldn't be able to charge HER with anything more than Self Defense in face of a potential/probable rapist. Yet MS can use the exact same tactics to get Win10 in where it's not wanted? No way in hell.

      Win10 collects such a massive load of your private data that MS has NO need to know about, then sends that data to MSHQ. It leaves any mic or webcam that you might have connected turned on & streaming to MS. Everything you type into the Search bar (or ask Cortana about) gets sent to MSHQ. Every time you alter or view a file on your system, that file & any changes are sent to MSHQ. It scans your local drives, any network drives, any USB style drives, & all other connected media for the files residing therein & sends that data to MSHQ. It notes every device you have connected & sends that data to MSHQ. It can, has, & will continue to determine which (if any) of those files, drives, or devices are "authorized" to be used on "your" system, then disable &/or delete them from the computer as they deem necessary. YOU don't get a say in this, it's THEIR operating system and THEY determine the "security measures needed to maintain a secure environment". So all your movies, music, porn, torrents, game cheats, pirated software, personal writings, *everything* is included in the "telemetry" that gets uploaded to MSHQ, and there's *fek all* you can do about it.

      You can't block them with the built in firewall, blocking them with a hardware one stops MS from updating the system *at all*, and many of the address' MS uses were *hard coded* into the OS itself; you have to find some other way of blocking/redirecting them than a simple HOSTS file or the like.

      It may be your computer, you've even got a bill of sale to prove it, but it's THEIR operating system & they'll do with it as they damn well feel. YOU don't get a choice in it... Except the choice not to run it in the first place. If it's not installed, then there's exponentially less telemetry going on, less MS control, & far fewer chances of "your" computer being used against you.

      It's why folks are sticking with Win7 as long as possible, or going so far as to switch to either Apple or Linux. If we've got to buy a new computer anyway, then the jump to Apple isn't as costly as it otherwise would be. Linux has a steeper learning curve, but once you've figure out where your programs are stored, you're well on your way to Getting Shit Done.

      It's not an upgrade if the end result is to force you to use your computer the way *they* tell you that you can use it.

      1. 1Rafayal

        Re: Answers to your questions.

        I was completely agreeing with you until you started on about what gets sent back to MS. You can on almost complete privacy with Windows 10. The same data slurp is present in windows 8 and 7.

        Given that you use a SRE, have you considered using Vinux? I had to look into accessibility a few years back and this OS really impressed me. It can be ran from a USB stick, so you could have whatever OS installed in your box and just boot from Vinux.

      2. TechnicalBen Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: Shadow Systems...

        No idea who downvoted you. Downvoting someone who requires a SRE. Wow, that's low of them. :(

  36. Sean Timarco Baggaley

    Barrel. Scraped.

    "I volunteer as a recorder with a Talking Newspaper charity..."

    So... nobody thought to disconnect the machine from the network while working? Odd. That's often the first thing you get told to do by experienced audio engineers.

    Furthermore, a computer capable of handling voice recording through Audition (or even Audacity) costs peanuts today. Christ, you can even do multitrack audio recording on almost any tablet or smartphone! Didn't anyone in the room bring such a device with them? Nobody had access to a spare laptop? Nobody knew where to get one?

    "I let my six-year-old play Minecraft on my gaming rig."

    Of course, blame Microsoft for your decision to let your apparently illiterate six-year-old child play unsupervised with your expensive gaming rig. After all, what could possibly go wrong?

    "...and that’s disaster for the box that’s meant to be streaming music to listeners 24/7."

    Are you seriously running a mission-critical server on a box with a consumer desktop version of Windows installed on it? You are aware that there are versions of Windows that have "Server" in the name? Why do you think that is?

    *

    Not one of the cry-me-a-river "stories" in this article holds up to scrutiny.

    Vista is nine years old. Windows 7 is almost seven years old. How long do Android devices get support for? How long is that LTS version of Ubuntu supported for? What about Apple? Yet Microsoft is expected to provide ongoing support and patches for longer than their rivals, for free? Why? Only the heir to the throne to the Kingdom of Idiot could seriously expect this at the consumer level.

    Corporations don't have to put up with this because (a) they pay Microsoft for their licenses, and (b) they pay their own IT people to set and manage their own updates. And they also have the option of paying Microsoft for ongoing support for legacy versions of Windows too, if they really feel like it.

    Home / individual users are farming their IT support out to Microsoft directly, who are offering their support as a service for "free", using much the same definition of "free" as Google, Facebook, Twitter, et al.

    You get what you pay for. The moon on a stick costs extra. Welcome to the Wonderful World of Corporations. Damn right they're in it for the money! All of them! Always! Microsoft, Apple, Google, Red Hat, Oracle... every damned one. If anyone tells you otherwise, they're lying.

    1. 1Rafayal

      Re: Barrel. Scraped.

      yes, but dont point out the obvious - it takes far more than one careless click to start the upgrade to Windows 10.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Barrel. Scraped.

      Are you seriously running a mission-critical server on a box with a consumer desktop version of Windows installed on it? You are aware that there are versions of Windows that have "Server" in the name? Why do you think that is?

      Another version that's just not fit for mission-critical operations, just with a different price tag to re-enable "features consumers are not interested in"?

    3. Adrian 4 Silver badge

      Re: Barrel. Scraped.

      "Are you seriously running a mission-critical server on a box with a consumer desktop version of Windows installed on it? You are aware that there are versions of Windows that have "Server" in the name? Why do you think that is?"

      I always assumed it was because the server versions contained extra features useful to people operating servers. Like the old 'Windows Home won't run remote desktop" - the Home versions are crippled so bulk licence purchase doesn't cut into the pro sales.

      But if the Home version has the facilities needed, I would expect it to do the job. What you're saying is that it's a version that is inherently less reliable than the more expensive one.

      I don't think that's reasonable. In fact, I think it's criminal.

  37. Kev99 Bronze badge

    "In the interests of balance, your humble hack must point out that Windows 10 has now managed to find itself running on 300 million devices, according to Microsoft's own stats." As I've said many times, how many of those devices were forced to run Win10 by they're builders? Can you get a new pc from Dell, HP, ACER, Lenovo, etc. without Win10 preinstalled? And how many of those devices are toys computers (tablets, phones, etc.)?

  38. J J Carter Silver badge
    Trollface

    As always...

    Luser error.

  39. jurrabi

    Not on my watch...

    I don't like Windows 10. It's not that it is not pretting, functional or usable.

    I don't care about the Windows Store, as long as I still can install stuff from other sources.

    I don't care about Cortana, Edge or any other bullshit that MS wants to force on me as long as I can opt-out of it.

    It is simply that it exceeds its purpose. It goes beyond duty and does things without my consent.

    I don't want the OS to decide for me when and how I install updates.

    I don't want the OS to decide for me what software can I run on MY computer.

  40. Omar Smith
    WTF?

    What do you get when you cross Scientology with Disney?

    Microsoft: they're relentless, they infiltrate everywhere and they charge a lot for mediocre product.

  41. doughensley

    In the end, I simply had to give my perfectly good windows 7 computer up for lost. The "update" slagged the file system. Programs couldn't save files to specific folders, only to the main one.

    And that was after solid days of struggle just to get back to Windows 7, because 10 just flat didn't work.

    A new computer that starts as a clean 10 is another story, but I would advise to never try and update any 7 to a 10.

  42. npn

    Your daughter did click on ransomware

    The Windows 10 installer

    1. YetAnotherLocksmith

      Re: Your daughter did click on ransomware

      It's just a ransom to be paid when demanded *some unknown time in the future*

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Funny old world

    Where something not quite as shit as windows 8 can be classed as a great update..

    After a week of nagging, I took the win10 plunge, and it lasted another week before I went back to windows 7 and aero.

  44. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Flame

    OROROROROROROOOOOOOUUAAHHhhh~~~!

    Just looking at the El Reg headlines reveals how utterly toxic and dis-empowering "consumer IT" has become.

    Like getting rogered repeatedly by a cloudy, decadently embroidered and patent-encumbered elephant in must who demands money, proceeds to action, then pisses on you once his immediate needs have been fulfilled.

  45. Alan W. Rateliff, II
    Paris Hilton

    Microsoft Managed Services via Windows 10

    I have been considering the amount of Windows 10 connectivity to Microsoft and the telemetry that gets sent in. I would not be surprised if by next summer we start getting partner emails telling us we can manage our customer computers remotely via Microsoft Managed Services (MSMMS) once we register some ID generated on the customer computer in our partner dashboard.

  46. Peter Christy

    Shortly after Windows 10 was released into the wild, my (grown-up) daughter started getting the nagware to upgrade her Win 8.1 laptop to Win 10. She's reasonably computer literate at a user level, but was aware of Microsoft's record on updates, so asked me to do it for her. The update went well enough, if slowly. There were a few niggles, but nothing un-fixable - but then I discovered that nearly all the available disk space had vanished!

    A quick google revealed that this was not uncommon on machines with small-ish drives, and recommended a "clean" install once the various keys had been recovered. Another couple of hours passed whilst this process went on, and I handed my daughter a fully functioning Windows 10 install on her laptop, with adequate disk space left over.

    All went fine for a couple of months, then I got a call: "The screen is blank!". Sure enough, once past the initial boot stage - about the time the Intel graphics driver kicked in - the screen went blank and stayed that way.

    "Safe" mode showed a graphics driver update coincided with the problem, but no amount of rolling back would undo the damage!

    A fresh install went fine until it came time to install the updates, when again the screen went un-recoverably blank! Nothing I tried would stop that b*****d upgrade from installing itself at the first opportunity, and borking the whole machine!

    After several hours (again!) of fighting the system, I wiped the disk, installed Mageia 5 Linux, and the machine has been running happily ever since. Daughter couldn't tell the difference between LibreOffice and Microsoft Office, and was very impressed by how much quicker and more responsive her old laptop had become!

    So that's another convert to Linux, thanks to Microsoft! Keep up the good work, Redmond! At this rate, Linux will soon be the dominant desktop system, thanks to your efforts!

  47. tokyo-octopus

    Parents: voluntarily upgraded to OS X around the time of the Windows 8 debacle (they were on ancient XP and Vista laptops), funnily enough the amount of "support" calls has fallen off to pretty much zilch. Father-in-law clicked "yes" by accident, I ended up downgrading it for him (only one user file went AWOL), given his usage profile I think the next upgrade will be to one of the end-user-orientated Linux distros.

  48. Andy Towler
    Trollface

    123 comments...

    123 reasons to stick with OSX.

  49. Alan Brown Silver badge

    Uh....

    Why would anyone run mission-critical 24*7 stuff on Windows desktop anything? (I know, Windows server isn't much better, but even so...)

  50. RonWheeler

    Numpty

    'I thought my daughter clicked on ransomware – it was the damn Windows 10 installer'

    Then you are either

    a: stupid, or

    b: don't like it so make stuff up to create a story

  51. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No Sweat

    Load it, activate it and roll back to Windows 7 if that's what you prefer. If you change your mind you will be able to upgrade for free.

  52. Yer Mother You Will

    Since Windows 10, I have been hijacked 11 times, my apps disappear after a week.

    Anyone here like a brand new computer for free?

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fortunately.. imaged both boxes, then tried to update.

    2 computers. Both were Win7 Ultimate.

    * ASUS yumcha with quad-core devils canyon CPU and 16gb ram. Everything else stock.

    * Supermicro HS8GL mobo. 12-core opteron. 64gb ram. 1x sata disk. nVidia graphics.

    The ASUS box truely is about as stock as it comes. I will grant the Opteron is slightly esoteric.

    Both machines sucked the download down, tried to install and crapped out with the Gen-Y sad face.

    Trying to restore previous O/S failed. Both systems bricked. So.. GFG microsoft. Don't trust you any more.

    Fortunately I could spray my win7 images back off the NAS and restore "Myself".

    For giggles an uncle's iMac that runs win7 pro, he clicked upgrade. Bricked it also.

    Windows 10 has simplified my family support of systems. If it runs windows 10 or you've tried to install win10 .. call someone else and pay this time. It's given the family and extended family a really great appreciation of >15 years of fixing their systems.

  54. MK_E
    Devil

    Remember getting a call from my mum last week because Windows 10 had been installed on her laptop - by her cat jumping on the keyboard.

  55. Zap

    The Real Scandal of Windows 10

    The Real Scandal of Windows 10 is that it has been morphed into nothing more than an affiliate and advertising platform.

    You have to opt out of your data being shared in over 120 locations and guess what, Microsoft sets them back to shared when you do a routine windows update.

    What did you think that Amazon, eBay and all that bloatware was put there because they were trying to be helpful.

    All those new apps like the music and Video apps that gets Microsoft a commission.

    One thing that also bugged me was that Microsoft no longer allows you to opt out of sharing your usage pattern data.

    There is NO OPT OUT all you get to choose is minimal.

    I am forming a complaint to the EU Data Commissioner

    The combination of this data to their advertising means you can effectively be identified and you cannot opt out.

    So much for privacy.

  56. Fascist Nation

    Jeez, Roger Ellison, download the latest from WSUSOffline. Yes, it takes a couple of hours to complete the download (still less time than a MS Updater), but once downloaded when a newer version becomes available it only updates the changes (minutes). Transfer a copy to a flash drive and do the Win7 update installs in a matter of minutes.

    http://download.wsusoffline.net/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXAOvbNJYyE - how to use and why it is head smacking important to you

    And be sure to install GWX Control Panel on those old PCs before they ever see the Internet (hopefully not needed after July): http://ultimateoutsider.com/downloads/

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows 10

    Who do you think you are kidding Yusuf Mehdi. There's a TQ mantra "Get it right first Time!"

  58. PaulFrederick

    People only have themselves to blame

    For what OS they use. I can rationalize why people run Windows, but I still cannot fully fathom it. I've no real sympathy for their plight either. When you lie down with dogs you get fleas.

  59. YetAnotherLocksmith

    When does the payment plan start?

    So, right, M$ are nicknamed that because they love the big bucks. Yet they are tricking and forcing people to take their product *for free*.

    So when and how will they be taking payment? Because they will.

    (And clicking a 5* review for "Calculator.exe" isn't going to be enough.)

  60. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows is by definition ransomware!

    Show me an example of someone using software to extort as much funds as microsoft have?

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