back to article Twas the week before Xmas ... not a creature was stirring – except Microsoft admitting its Windows 10 upgrade pop-up went 'too far'

Microsoft's marketing boss Chris Capossela has confessed the infamous your-Windows-10-upgrade-is-ready pop-up that tricked so many people into installing the thing was a step "too far." Speaking on this week's Windows Weekly podcast on Twit.tv, Capossela was asked to list his low points of the year for Redmond (it's 17 minutes …

  1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

    A half-hearted non-apology from someone with no power to affect how Microsoft behaves in the future.

    I won't even begin to trust Microsoft until Endpoint Antichrist has been fired with extreme prejudice and someone who isn't customer hostile is elevated to his position. Even then, Microsoft has a long - long - road to travel before trust can be rebuilt.

    And in IT - especially as regards public cloud computing - trust is everything.

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      I haven't trusted MS in 20 years and never will.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Same here. To pretend they think they went too far is laughable. They knew what they were doing and will do the same in an instant again.

        Watching Windows 10 trainwreck now they can't rely on free upgrade spin is great fun...

        Just like Xbox one failure, when people don't buy Microsoft suddenly shut up about sales figures...

    2. Mage Silver badge
      Mushroom

      for a lot of the year I think we got it right,

      Well, that's a delusion.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It was an informal chat, well, as informal as you can be at Microsoft.

      It's a difficult one this. Is it better to hear a 'sanitised reply' from the horse's mouth, or just write it up how it is and be ignored, Apple style.

      If you have watched Paul Thurrott in full 'flippin' rant mode regarding the Windows 10 Nagware, you'll know how polite he was been here with Chris Capossela. He was holding himself back massively, to a point of almost licking his boot laces.

      If we headline analyse every word coming out of CC's mouth, he's not going to be doing Windows Weekly anytime soon again. And that's the trouble, for all his faults, (I'm not a fan, of anything Microsoft Marketing, it's been a mess for years) CC does come across as having his feet on the ground somewhat and more aware than most at Microsoft to the actual Customer backlash, that took place, is taking place.

      He's trying his best to balance the point, knowing MS lawyers are watching his every word. Just compare what he says and how he says it, to Satya Nadella, scripted and airy, that connects with no one.

      I have one very close friend high up at Microsoft (Europe) and a family member high up at MS Seattle that worked there for 5+ years and I have learnt more about the internals of MS from Capossela (from snippets of interviews) than I have from those people close to me.

      For all its faults, the Windows Weekly interview was a good one.

      If I had to pin a character to CC, it would be the Good Cop/Bad Cop from the Lego Movie (it would have been a better caption picture too).

      Everyone at MS seems conditioned from day one to say absolutely nothing. The impression you get though overall is the money is good, the internal ranglings is the real shit (downer) part of the job, from just knowing those people close to me, really well. There are real arrogant, nasty, competitive folk there who aren't knowledgeable, but cause chaos all around them, giving instructions to code stuff like this (the sly Red 'X' close option). Time zones between Managers don't help either.

      1. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

        Re: It was an informal chat, well, as informal as you can be at Microsoft.

        Well, if they actually admitted anything, we wouldn't need to read the entrails so much on these interviews. So, entirely their own fault.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Aand

    No shit sherlock, too late.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Stevie Silver badge

        Re: It's called OS X

        Really? People at corporate level are opting for a branded proprietary *nix that will not run on their existing kit but will require a captital outlay I conservatively estimate at about three times what they paid before? Not counting the rip-out'n'replace costs? In this economy?

        Are you sure that alternative isn't pronounced "Red Hat"?

        Because that would be an unnecessarily high cost (but waaaay lower than OS X running on iThing) software swap only option. Corporate would love the "someone at the end of a phone in an emergency" factor and the techs wouldn't have to move, store and dispose of umptytump bits of kit that would suddenly be usless under the iScheme.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

          1. ElReg!comments!Pierre Silver badge

            Re: It's called OS X

            I'll have an ounce of whatever it is you've been smoking.

            1. Kiwi
              Thumb Up

              Re: It's called OS X

              I'll have an ounce of whatever it is you've been smoking.

              Are you sure? It seems pretty potent. A much much smaller dose might be better for a first-time (ab)user.

          2. pɹɐʍoɔ snoɯʎuouɐ

            Re: It's called OS X

            Some businesses have already tried apple in the past and where it falls down is with backwards compatibility.

            A while back when a new version of the OS was released it broke some software that was very popular. (cant remember what it was or what version of mac os it was) apples official response was "upgrade the software to something else that works"

            so for a business, that means more capital investment in the software, more expense in training users to use the new software and half the company using incompatible files with each other...

            This is why windows will always dominate any serious office environment. its all down to the TCO and good support. And lets face it, any business who has the updates enabled need to sack the IT staff. Updates are only installed when said update has been tested with the companies core software.

            1. nijam Silver badge

              Re: It's called OS X

              > where it falls down is with backwards compatibility

              So, just like like MSWindows, then.

          3. Rattus Rattus

            Re: "It delivers value for money"

            And it's called OSX. HAHAHahahahaha... Oh my god, I can't breathe.

    2. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: From the listening systems we have...

      Well, if the only reason M$ knew you had gone too far in completely undermining the accepted (and inviolate) rule that the 'x' means 'close this window and don't do anything else' then they need to do a lot of soul searching (as in looking for one).

      Until they find their soul, they can't possibly improve it.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Self Defenestration?

    Someone admitting that MS may have made a mistake? Not a career enhancing move.

    1. chivo243 Silver badge

      Re: Self Defenestration?

      Maybe a full on career enhancing move really... MS has taken heat about this. Send Jr. PR dude out, if he weathers the storm, he might be useful, and keep him around.

      Every company needs their "bad news" channel...

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Self Defenestration?

      I always thought that companies should hire a "corporate scapegoat" who's paid well to admit mistakes, take the blame for bad products and decisions and generally take shit from everyone. Maybe MS has one... this one?

      1. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Self Defenestration?

        Well, Daniel Pennac wrote some books about a professional scapegoat...

        1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

          Re: Self Defenestration? -Well, Daniel Pennac wrote some books about a professional scapegoat

          Upvoted. Recommended reading if you know French and have a somewhat perverse sense of humour.

        2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

          Re: Self Defenestration?

          Definition "Consultant - someone bought into a project at the last minute to take the blame" - from my sigmonster files.

      2. david 12 Bronze badge

        Re: Self Defenestration?

        Part of my job when working as a contractor. In-house staff would quit failing projects like rats deserting a sinking ship, and we would be brought in to take over the project -- which would then be labled as another project mismanged by outside contractors.

        We didn't mind. It paid the bills.

      3. DropBear Silver badge

        Re: Self Defenestration?

        "companies should hire a "corporate scapegoat" who's paid well to admit mistakes, take the blame..."

        Oh, Ostap Bender was fully aware of that, and he did indeed do just that for his "company"...

        1. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

          Re: Ostap Bender

          That fall guy was called Sitz-Chairman Funt.

          https://en.m.wikiquote.org/wiki/The_Little_Golden_Calf

  4. MNGrrrl
    Thumb Down

    M$ Long History

    Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces since basically Windows 1.0. It copies other people's good ideas well. It doesn't do so well trying to "innovate" on its own, and Windows 10 is just another example of how their attempt to "freshen up" the brand led to catastrophic failure.

    But why do they keep doing this to themselves? It's like they're punching themselves in the face while furiously stomping their own dick over and over again, year after year. Well, it starts to make some sense when you consider their corporate culture. Contrast with other tech companies, like Apple, which until recently was basically held captive by a tyrant in a black turtle neck sweater. Say what you will -- he was a cruel man that few who worked for him had praise for. But all of Apple was built around this one dude and getting things done wasn't a problem. Cohesiveness wasn't a problem. Every single thing Apple did was more or less the product of this one man's personal approval, and as a result, you got a product that looked like it was designed by a human being.

    Microsoft... has never been like that. Microsoft is about the committee. The user interaction surveys. The borg collective. And that's what their software looks like too: A mishmash of parts stitched together, horrifying to look at and seemingly built with murderous intent. We even very nearly averted disaster with a wholesale revolt of *every* windows XP programer when Bill's wife tried to make wizards part of everything in the OS. And you can thank those brave, brave men, who were threatened with being fired and more, for holding their ground and giving us the first truly usable Windows release. But for every success story like that, there's 10 "Let's make the Operating System a service!" bonehead maneuvers.

    Microsoft is a case study in how corporate culture can be more important than even brand identity and how deeply pervasive the impact of how we organize a large project can affect the final result. It's a shining lighthouse... warning ships away.

    1. Cirdan
      Happy

      Re: M$ Long History

      @MNGrrrl --

      for a split second, I read that as Microsoft being a Lining Shitehouse.

      What a glorious second that was!

      ...Cirdan...

    2. Ozzard

      Re: M$ Long History

      Sorry? Microsoft is about the committee? News to me - I thought it was about knifing the other guy in the back before he (almost invariably "he") knifes you. Open warfare between divisions. That kind of thing.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: M$ Long History

        "Open warfare between divisions."

        Yes, but to halt the open warfare requires negotiated peace treaties, hence the "committee".

      2. oldcoder

        Re: M$ Long History

        different committees...

    3. david 12 Bronze badge

      Re: M$ Long History

      The Windows 95 user interface was widely recognized as superior to anything else available. And it was extremely successful with end-users, vindicating both the extensive (and unprecedented) pre-release user testing, and the professional opinion of the independent UI experts who reviewed it after release.

      You may not like MS, but for a professional, ignorance of history is no excuse.

      1. Mage Silver badge

        Re: M$ Long History

        The GUI of '95 was good. The rest of it was garbage compared to their own NT3.5 and less stable than a properly installed WFWG3.11

        For over 20 years I've heard that the HW spec was too high for NT vs 95, maybe in 1993 it was, but not in 1995. In reality win95 needed as much RAM as NT to have Excel, Word, TCP/IP and Browser at the same time without paging massively.

        1. JC_

          Re: M$ Long History

          The GUI of '95 was good. The rest of it was garbage compared to their own NT3.5 and less stable than a properly installed WFWG3.11

          Adding a new GUI, plug & play, an actual 32-bit API and pre-emptive multi-tasking while still maintaining backwards compatibility with all the 16-bit applications and the crappy hardware they ran on was a minor coding miracle. Check out some of Raymond Chen's columns for a bit of insight into what it took.

          Of course Win95 was 'garbage' compared to NT - NT was a clean-sheet design that didn't have to deal with the compromises of 15 years of DOS. Windows 95 did and was still massively successful because of that work done to keep backwards-compatibility.

          What was a "properly installed WFWG3.11"? One that didn't crash because it didn't run anything but Minesweeper?

      2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: M$ Long History

        "The Windows 95 user interface was widely recognized as superior to anything else available."

        I agree. It was certainly based on a lot of ideas and features that had been around for a long time. Those included CUA and HP's New Wave (the copyright declarations included HP). However, they put it all together in a slicker interface than I'd seen elsewhere. In recent years they then seem to have brought in UX designers who've concentrated on throwing away as much of that as they could.

      3. Chika

        Re: Re: M$ Long History

        The Windows 95 user interface was widely recognized as superior to anything else available.

        Not so sure about that, really. At the time it was released it was certainly a step up from its predecessor, Windows 3.11 for Workgroups, but it had some problems and more than one competitor. The competition had their own problems but there were a number of benefits in these that were eventually "adopted" by Microsoft in later versions of the interface. Certainly it had its benefits though and on hindsight we may give it its due but even by Windows 7, the last version to even pretend to have the same interface, had its flaws and various other GUIs had benefits over it.

        The point is that while so many GUIs have surfaced, none of them have got it completely right.

        As far as this story goes, though, it's a typical bit of tat from Microsoft, admitting it was wrong long after the deed has been done and the damage has been sustained. It wants to be trusted and adored and is willing to sacrifice somebody to do it. They did the same with Windows Me and Windows Vista, you may recall. What they NEVER do is apologise and stop at the time, in this case because they were all too blinded by the dollar signs in their eyes.

        1. Version 1.0 Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: M$ Long History

          It's easy to criticize Microsoft but I think they did magic getting Windows to run at all on the friggin' huge variety of hardware and different manufacturers drivers out in the PC wild world. "Standards?" - the people manufacturing the PC hardware had heard of them but they expanded and modified them at every opportunity to show that their piece of kit was better than the competition's junk that did exactly the same thing.

          Sure - it's a big company and some parts are driven by the marketing monkeys - but let's give a big Christmas Cheer to the unsung coders who, having just finished writing and testing a hunk of OS code, are handed another new ISA card by Mr Marketing Monkey with the comment that, "This doesn't work" - only to discover that the new card uses another drivers interrupts and addresses.

          1. oldcoder

            Re: M$ Long History

            That would be the Microsoft legal department...

            locking the vendors into only allowing information for Windows...

          2. Alumoi

            Re: M$ Long History

            "Standards?" - Microsoft had heard of them but they expanded and modified them at every opportunity to show that their piece of software was better than the competition's junk that did exactly the same thing.

            There, fixed it for you.

          3. P. Lee Silver badge
            Linux

            Re: M$ Long History

            >It's easy to criticize Microsoft but I think they did magic getting Windows to run at all on the friggin' huge variety of hardware and different manufacturers drivers out in the PC wild world.

            Unlike the BSD chaps and the Linux guys... I mean, you could never do it without charging money, right?

            1. Mikey

              Re: M$ Long History

              "Unlike the BSD chaps and the Linux guys... I mean, you could never do it without charging money, right?"

              Well, if you want to get a working product out the door which doesn't require its users to bugger about compiling their own drivers and the like at the time, and ensuring their system has all the dependencies needed to get things working to a reliable and acceptable level, then you DO need to pay a proper dev team to spend their time and effort in ensuring it can be done to a shorter timescale, with less hassle and greater compatibility out of the box. Just because BSD/Linux is great at that now, doesn't mean it always has been, as we all know too well.

              Plus, Windows has always been a commercial product, Linux itself has never been. Only the pretty coloured layers that each distro company puts on top have been anything near commercial. And even then, the money was in the support, so ensuring things work properly is kinda at odds with that approach, weirdly.

              Pay to have it work well enough from the get go, or pay to have someone explain how to fix it when it doesn't work. Fixing things quickly and easily never comes cheap, be it time, money or both.

              1. Chemist

                Re: M$ Long History

                " which doesn't require its users to bugger about compiling their own drivers and the like at the time"

                That'd be Linux then ! Seriously how many users have compiled anything to get a fully-functioning system ?

                1. Hans 1 Silver badge
                  Joke

                  Re: M$ Long History

                  >That'd be Linux then ! Seriously how many users have compiled anything to get a fully-functioning system ?

                  Lets ask a Gentoo user!

                  1. Chemist
                    Joke

                    Re: M$ Long History

                    "Lets ask a Gentoo user!"

                    Yes, let's ask him/her !

                    To whom it may concern. I've used Linux since ~ the beginning. I use it all the time & nothing else since ~2006. I compile lots of stuff but the last time I compiled a kernel was ~~1997 and even that was a matter of ticking boxes and pressing the 'go' button.

                2. Craig100

                  Re: M$ Long History

                  " which doesn't require its users to bugger about compiling their own drivers and the like at the time"

                  I've been using Linux (Ubuntu then Mint) to run my business as my only OS since I lost it with Vista (2009). Never had to compile anything. Might have had to edit the odd config file for the odd esoteric issue (like running CrashPlan Pro headless on a Synology DiskStation) but other than that, all plain sailing. When Win 10 was announced I was nearly tempted to return. I saw it as a fixed Win8, but they shot themselves in the foot with all the privacy and update nonsense. Happy with Mint, as are a few friends that lost it with Win10 when updates screwed them up :)

            2. paulll

              Re: M$ Long History

              How long have you been using Linux? 'Cos when Windows 95 came out, it was a nightmare to get an entire system working with linux at all, let alone automagically. Soundcard? Bare support. Graphics? Sure, but good luck getting anything more than 640*480*16 out of it. DUN...yup, but you're gonna need to shell out another 100 notes for an external modem-and hope your MoBo's serial port is adequately supported. Not a big MS fan; But yes, what they did with HW support in Win95 *was* impressive.

          4. Hans 1 Silver badge
            Windows

            Re: M$ Long History

            @Version 1.0

            >I think they did magic getting Windows to run at all on the friggin' huge variety of hardware and different manufacturers drivers out in the PC wild world

            I beg your pardon ? Seriously, I beg your pardon ?

            Linux runs more efficiently, on a larger variety of hardware, with most (something like 95%) drivers contributed by enthusiasts, with hardware manufacturers trying to torpedo these same drivers since day one ... this has changed somewhat in the last, what, 5 years, with manufacturers developing their own set of drivers for Linux, but still ... Get a clue or change profession ... I heard they were looking for window cleaners in Hull!

          5. Jonathan Richards 1
            Thumb Up

            Re: M$ Long History

            Version 1.0 proposed a toast:

            > a big Christmas Cheer to the unsung coders

            If I remember correctly, most device drivers were written by the device manufacturers, not by Microsoft. Before the internet was a useful channel for software distribution, one got a floppy disk [1] (maybe even a Compact Disc <gasp>!) with drivers thereon, bundled with the hardware device. The ISA card manufacturer (per your example) would have been on the hook for supplying and debugging device drivers, not Microsoft.

            I subscribe to the sentiment re the unsung coders, though!

            [1] Exhibit A: ftp://ftp.msan.hr/drivers/LAN/3COM/3C509B-tpo/README.TXT

      4. PhilipN Silver badge

        Re: M$ Long History

        OMG so much Stalinesque re-writing of history here.

        Suggest those interested find Eric Raymond's comment about Win95 being "shockingly inferior" to another OS and take it from there

      5. oldcoder

        Re: M$ Long History

        No, Windows 95 was not superior to anything else.

        Anything else available from Microsoft maybe... But that doesn't say much for Windows 95.

        The same capability had been available for UNIX systems for quite some time. And had mostly left it as the menu system is a rather stilted interface.

        And it still is. Good for only what someone else has decided is good for you... but not all that flexible.

        1. JC_

          Re: M$ Long History

          Anything else available from Microsoft maybe... But that doesn't say much for Windows 95.

          The same capability had been available for UNIX systems for quite some time. And had mostly left it as the menu system is a rather stilted interface.

          The 'Start' menu is literally a Microsoft invention, right down to the (lamentable and inevitable) patents, so I don't see how UNIX had had it for quite some time.

          If you mean menus in general, what has replaced them since for mouse & cursor? Microsoft's own 'Ribbon'?

          If you meant that a shell is better than the GUI, that's indefensible for the vast majority of users, but the command line was in Windows 95, too, of course.

          Really, what you say makes no sense at all unless you take the attitude that everything from Microsoft is either crap or already invented. They've come out with plenty of crap & thievery without making some more up.

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: M$ Long History

            "The 'Start' menu is literally a Microsoft invention, right down to the (lamentable and inevitable) patents, so I don't see how UNIX had had it for quite some time."

            The single start menu is. CDE had multiple menus. Consolidating them was a stem forward but not wildly inventive.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: M$ Long History

              The start menu was just another program list drop down, nothing new, RISC OS had one first for example

              To be honest I am hard put to think of anything technical that M$ actually invented rather than just bought up/copied.

              same goes for their applications, nothing new just rubbish imitations of existing products with an M$ badge stuck on and the original product either purchased or hounded into non-existence.

          2. Hans 1 Silver badge

            Re: M$ Long History

            @ JC_

            Keyword "CDE", for example, had not one, but 7 or 8 (cannot remember, too lazy to look it up) "start" menus ... no, they were not called start menus ... I am also too lazy to look up the patents MS holds on that thing, all I can say is, there is prior art all over the place.

        2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: M$ Long History

          "The same capability had been available for UNIX systems for quite some time."

          The standard Unix offering of the time was CDE which I used a lot under its HP guise, VUE. It featured a whole series of pop-up menus. Reducing that to one produced a much tidier interface. Gnome, for some reason, didn't quite take the hint with the default there, as I recall, being two. My preference has always been for Unix or Unix-like systems and my preferred UI is KDE but MS did, I think, move UI forward at the time.

      6. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Re: M$ Long History

        The Windows 95 UI was far, far ahead of the ridiculous "program groups" pseudo-file system shell (progman.exe) of 3.0/3.1. MS put a lot of effort into the 95 interface-- they even made a selling point out of all the research they'd done into usability and how people use PCs. It worked; 95 was a quantum leap in usability. I remember saying at the time that it was the first Windows that really had a reason to exist. Its instability was a completely separate issue (among other things, it was the early days of PnP, and PCs of the era still had ISA slots, which were never designed for any kind of self-configuration).

        All of that research MS did into the UI is still valid. Human ergonomics haven't changed, and the way our minds work haven't either. Evolution doesn't happen in a 20 year time frame (unless you're a bacterium or something similar, I guess). With that in mind, one might wonder why MS, after reaching the holy grail of UI development, has subsequently spent so much time trying to bury the successful and popular interface they introduced with 95. We've had to resort to aftermarket programs like Classic Shell, Old New Explorer, 7+ Taskbar Tweaker, and other similar things to undo Microsoft's often bizarre decisions to change things that people liked and that worked well for them.

        Windows 2000 was the last version of Windows that didn't need considerable tweaking to get it to work the way it should (IMO). XP required only minor modifications to system settings to get it back on the right track (disable Luna, enable Classic start menu). From that point forward, each successive version of Windows would require more and more effort to restore sanity.

        With Windows 10, it's simply not possible to restore sanity anymore. The UI is more similar to the "Classic" standard on the surface (no pun intended) than with 8, but it still pales in comparison to a UI made strictly for the desktop (one without any unavoidable "app" bits like Settings, complete with the oversized, simplistic controls typical of mobile UIs).

        If the "am I a phone or a PC?" UI was the worst of what 10 had to offer, though, it could perhaps be forgiven... but all of the other stuff that's wrong with 10 make complaints about the UI seem like rearranging deck chairs on the sinking Titanic.

        I was still using XP well into Windows 8's reign as the newest Windows. When I built a new PC several years ago, I knew it was time to ditch 32-bit Windows... but I (like so many others) took a pass on 8 and went instead to 7. That was only a short time before retail shipments of 7 (from MS) were ended-- and I was just getting on board. I had little interest in 8, from what I'd seen of it.

        The irony! Win 8 failed as a product because so many others avoided it as I had. Win 10 was the answer; it was going to be more like 7 to get all of the desktop PC users back on board. Now that I've seen 10, I've rejected it even more strongly than I had 8... and now I'm toying with the idea of migrating to 8.1 in 2020 (when Win 7 security support ends) for what I can't then do in Linux (if there is any such thing I need native Windows for at that point).

        It took something as bad as Windows 10 to make me appreciate Windows 8... not for what it has, but for what it lacks: forced updates, Cortana, a EULA that could be summed up as "all your data is belong to us," telemetry that can't be turned all the way off and that turns itself back on whenever it wants to, unwanted app downloads/installations, ads in the OS, unwanted uninstallation of whatever programs 10 thinks I don't need... on and on.

        I never thought that having a commercial OS without ads, that didn't spy on me and phone home to MS, and where I had control over updates was even something I had to think about. Now, those formerly taken for granted must-haves have been stripped from Windows, and 8's UI (whose rough edges were softened with 8.1, and can be improved even more with aftermarket addons) doesn't seem as intolerable as it once did.

      7. LeeE Silver badge

        Re: M$ Long History

        My first impression on seeing the W95 UI was that it had adopted many features of the AmigaDos 2 UI.

        1. Chika

          Re: M$ Long History

          My first impression on seeing the W95 UI was that it had adopted many features of the AmigaDos 2 UI.

          They hoisted bits out of a number of UIs, it seemed. There were quite a few similarities with RISC OS as well, for example. Then, of course, Apple fanbois would probably have a list of rip offs they could invoke...

      8. Dave Lawton

        Re: M$ Long History

        The Windows 95 user interface was widely recognized as superior to anything else available.

        But it is a poor copy of another UI, with most of its features either missing or implemented badly.

      9. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: M$ Long History

        Actually Windows 95 was still the same crap with a new overcoat, if you want something from the time to compare it with then try a real multitasking OS like AmigaOS or even the mac rather than the prettied up old DOS bolt on.

        IMHO Intel and M$ have been bolting crap on top of bad design since the PC came out and any systems of the time that were actually were a designed before sale were vastly superior.

    4. Blitterbug
      Happy

      Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

      Well, Windows 7 was bang on the money and has long taken over from XP as the 'gold standard'. In fact, the only two features from later versions that would make it better are Fast Start and Explorer's up-arrow (go to parent directory),

      1. Mage Silver badge

        Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

        Win7 is a fix of Vista.

        MS themselves now admit Aero was a mistake.

        For years they tried to put Windows GUI on small Gadgets. Then after Zune / Phone 6.5 tried to to put the Zune inspired GUI on everything.

        So in 35 years they got the GUI shell almost right (Explorer File manager should have had a two window mode and Win7 adaptive non-customisable panel is nasty).

        Win10 is like Win2.0 on Hercules or CGA, but with less GUI customisation. I can't believe how unusable it is compared to Win3.x, Win9x, NT3.x, NT4.0, Win2K, XP, Win7 (with classic theme).

        First workable Windows 3.1, first stable decent WFWG 3.11 with all the 32bit parts. First real GUI 32bit Windows, decently supported, NT3.5

        Low points / junk= Win1.x Win2.x Win3.0, WinME, Vista, Win8.x Win10

        Win2K was an unfinished rushed out version of XP, but not too bad.

        USB deliberately withheld from NT4.0 (I had and tested MS USB for NT4.0 and it was fine).

        NT4.0 less stable than NT3.51, which did have the win95 style explorer as tech preview, which was better than NT4.0 release.

        MS experts at making money.

        Idiotic at everything else.

        1. soulrideruk Bronze badge

          Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

          How is Win10 so unusable?

          You turn it on, then you turn it off.

          Almost everything else you do in between involves the use of 3rd party programs that are bugger all to do with win10.

          1. Chika

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            How is Win10 so unusable?

            I'm not sure that this is the argument here, but...

            You turn it on, then you turn it off.

            True, but it's what you do with it between those times that makes all the difference. I turn on Windows 7, openSUSE, RISC OS, Mint and Devuan systems and turn them off again. They all do things differently and I do different things with them.

            Almost everything else you do in between involves the use of 3rd party programs that are bugger all to do with win10.

            That's a bit of an oversimplification. A typical operating system does quite a bit in the background, even the ones that don't slurp your data. If they didn't chances are that your 3rd party programs would probably do nothing!

          2. Adam 52 Silver badge

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            "Almost everything else you do in between involves the use of 3rd party programs that are bugger all to do with win10"

            No. You use the Start menu. Where it throws unwanted recommend apps at you. You browse the web and read a PDF, which fires off some weird full screen PDF viewer. You attach a Bluetooth device, which involves another full screen app inexplicably not linked from the Control Panel. Then it decides to forcibly reboot. Then it pauses for an hour during which time you can't do anything. When it restarts it has removed the app you were using because it's no longer compatible, but that doesn't matter as you can no longer get online because the DHCP client has broken.

            And you can't do anything private because it's logging everything.

            1. leexgx

              Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

              Adam 52

              very good post

              also Vista HDD problems have come back to windows 10 as well (a lot of the servicing tasks that run in the background are not been ran as background disk priority they are running as Normal, resulting in slow system sometimes, tends to be norm within first 10 minutes of the system starting up)

              Fast startup needs a 10 day time out so if the system been booted up using fast start up for more then 10 days it should make sure it does a full shutdown

              got that bad there was notification on MS website to press restart instead of shutdown , as people's internet stopped working as shutdown does not shutdown the computer on windows 10 or 8 (its hibernate shutdown i been seeing some people's systems have 30-50 day uptimes), restart does a full shutdown or tapping the power button on the computer if its set to shutdown on button press

              automatic driver updating that then Brakes the driver or the system if its the Video or SATA driver it updates (why do it, once its installed it should Not be updated automatically was never a problem on windows 8 and lower)

          3. bombastic bob Silver badge
            FAIL

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            "How is Win10 so unusable?"

            the 2D FLATSO FLUGLY bugs me to the point that it affects my productivity. "Ape" is the same way. I actually gave "Ape" a fair try (with classic shell, even!), then QUICKLY went back to "XP or 7 only" for Windows-related things to avoid the unnecessary nausea.

          4. Terry 6 Silver badge

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            For a start, many/most installed programmes place themselves in the Start menu in alphabetic order, often as a folder rather than even the programme link. But since many programmes have remarkably unhelpful names, since the publishers think that their company name is more important than what the programmes do ( e.g. Hornil Stylepix, Abbyy Finereader and so on) it's likely that you are only going to remember what it's called if you use it frequently which makes locating, say, a graphics programme that you only need from time to time much more difficult. But Microsoft, in their "wisdom" have made reorganising the start menu slightly more difficult than eating porridge through a straw. The menu itself can't be accessed by right clicking on a folder where they've been installed, only on one of the links inside the folder. The menu itself is stored across more than one place, and the locations of the various items managed through a database that doesn't always seem to realise that a programme link has been moved into a different folder unless you actually edit the name. It will continue to display the icon for the original folder, with the programme link apparently still in it and functioning, even though when you explore it is in the new location. Of course this also makes removing programme links that you'll never start from the menu (like the pdf reader that will only ever be started by clicking on a pdf) very difficult. And if that isn't complicated enough, they also have their own apps' links in the alphabetic list, unmovable. So that if you want to keep a Microsoft app in the same folder where you've placed programmes that do a similar job - tough sh*t. It can't be moved. Camera, for example, will be there filed under "C" no matter how much you want to move it and file it with other photograph related programmes that you have neatly placed in a folder called "photographic".

            Or to put it another way; they've made sure that for most users the Win 10 Start menu is a total Horlicks. Completely cluttered with an alphabetic list of often obscure programme names and useless obscure folders containing their programme names, with any other crap such as links to other software they want to try and sell to you) that the publishers choose to stick in there, whether you want or need them or not.

            1. Updraft102 Silver badge

              Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

              "But Microsoft, in their "wisdom" have made reorganising the start menu slightly more difficult than eating porridge through a straw."

              I think you're referring to Windows 10 here, right? Previous versions of Windows (before 8) had a start menu that could be easily edited in just the way you want by means of simple dragging and dropping. Alphabetical, non-alphabetical, system file, folder, it doesn't matter-- drag it to a new place, delete it, do as you wish! Double click on the folder in the start menu and you get the actual folder containing the links (shortcuts) to the files in the program group the folder represents. It's very flexible and easy to do.

              Windows 10 is a major step backward in UI in more ways than this, for sure.

              1. Terry 6 Silver badge

                Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

                Updraft102

                Yes.

                Pre Win 8 I was quite happy with Windows.

                And I'd even tolerate telemetry if it was just accumulating machine statistics and analysing crash data etc. ( i.e. what telemetry is supposed to be as in this definition http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/telemetry )

                But not when it really means monitoring my computer so that they can get valuable marketing information, push crap "targetted" ads in places where there shouldn't even be ads or sell my data to the highest bidder.

            2. cutterman

              Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

              Terry 6 - couldn't agree with you more.

              Classic Shell makes everything a BIT easier, but changing things around to the way you work is virtually impossible. I prefer to group apps by functionality - Sound/Music, Languages (Python, Pascal, C++ etc., Browsers, System, Odds and Ends, and so on. It just declutters the Start Menu and makes things easier to find. Plus, I have so many little specialised apps installed that some things no longer fit on the screen!

              Yes, you can do it and with Classic Shell it seems to work, BUT, if you then run SFC /verifyonly it finds loads of integrity violations and encourages you to repair 'em.

              Back to Square one...

              This aspect alone drives me nuts - I have a few other beefs (why is my biggest drive filling up with draft upon draft of of old .py files! If I needed that I's use proper version control!), but the overall OS seems OK.)

              I was one of the lucky ones who MS, in it's wisdom, decided to upgrade from Win7 without my permission. What a tangle THAT turned out to be! Eventually I gave up and did a full reinstall, but even then I keep finding leftovers here and there and unexplained behaviour (but maybe that is a feature....)

              Finally, I am one of those odd people who prefer to keep their System and Data on separate drives on separate buses. That means that I shift cutterman to the D: drive and leave a Junction to the real cutterman in D:\Users - Win 10 copes with this pretty well, but there are a number of apps that get very confused - debugging shows that it is Win10 that is confusing them and that the apps are not at fault.

              I could go on all day like this but I won't.

              God knows what a mess the next big upgrade will leave...

              Happy New Year!

              The cutterman

              BTW: Yosemite is not nearly as bad, though it adds a lot of junk that I don't use but can't remove without borking the system. One youngish (non-essential) app now INSISTS that it can only run on Intel processors, which I have (and yes, I do have the right version of the app - it worked perfectly well before the upgrade). I'm putting off the Sierra upgarade as long as possible

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              3. Terry 6 Silver badge

                Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

                Thank you cutterman

                I had begun to think I was the only one who needed an organised start menu

                https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/2767594/2016-12-29%2022_10_23-Greenshot.png

                And wanted my data on a different drive, or at least partition(s) from software and settings...On the main family machine I have partitions for family documents and photos which are shared for all of us. I want them to simply be there for us all to find. Then we have partitions for backup1 and individual family members' stuff. I do not want these buried in c:\....\username. Or even on the hdd that contains the OS. If that gets corrupted, my data isn't on there. I just like all that precious data where I can find and secure it easily, and keep it safe.

                To me having everything on a family/SOHO PC on one hdd in one partition, with so many files that we have in common - not just the holiday photos but also correspondence etc. buried away in a system folder is just plain crazy.

          5. Clive Galway

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            You turn it off, you turn it on, fix the start menu, reboot a couple of times...

            TFTFY

          6. pɹɐʍoɔ snoɯʎuouɐ

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            I dont get the downvotes...

            I dont particularly have any issues with windows 10.. It works and all the software I use all works.

            I have had less issues running windows 10 than any othe OS since windows7

            yes, IT does have some annoyances, but not so many as would make me abandon ship and go with a linux desktop.

          7. nijam Silver badge

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            > You turn it on, then you turn it off.

            And you leave it turned off, if you have any sense.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

          Quote

          MS experts at making money.

          Idiotic at everything else.

          not Quite.

          They are experts at collecting lots of lovely user data in the name of 'security' from W10 and using that data to mess your start screen up with adverts. You are the product not the OS or Email or whatever. You. They graciously allow YOU to use their stuff in return for loadsamoney and lots of lovely data about your system, what it is doing and when. The NSA must have lots of friends in high places inside MS.

          If you use anything with the MS brand on it, don't forget the EULA that you agreed to (you did didn't) you stops you from filing suit against MS for any reason.

          MS are shite and even people who live in Redmond and rely on MS for a living privately admit it.

          I managed to escape the MS-Borg earlier this year. Don't miss it one little bit.

        3. leexgx

          Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

          no windows 7 is what Vista should of been (making sure stuff that should be a background task does not interfere with the operation of the PC)

          1. Chika
            Headmaster

            Re: Microsoft has been getting it wrong with user interfaces

            no windows 7 is what Vista should of been

            *sigh* Merry Christmas all!

        4. Blitterbug
          Facepalm

          Re: Win7 is a fix of Vista

          So? Firstly, referencing the popular opinion of Vista as a failure is a disingenuous appeal to the masses. Secondly, Vista was clearly the harbinger of good things to come. Yes, it was initially badly broken. Yes, after two service packs it was still stodgy. But a fully patched Vista install contains the Win 7 driver model and much else from Win 7, and is pretty solid. Vista / Win 7 sharing the same DNA is a bad thing only in your worldview.

          And what is wrong with Aero? Do you even know what Aero is? It is *not* solely the transparency effect that everyone supposes. It is a fundamental move to modelling the 2D traditional desktop using 3D GPU power, instead of using old, slow raster blitters, and is still very much fundamentally part of the Win 8 and 10 GUI.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried"

    ~~ Don't kid yourself sleazy Microsoft marketer, you seriously damaged your brand. I've held off buying new tech and am actively checking out Linux-app alternatives.

    ~~ Meantime, no reason to buy Windows. At best its going to slurp you, and worst its going to reset all the privacy settings after each update. No thanks!

    ~~ There's still plenty of time to hold off too (2020). Lets wait and see if your hand gets called by a regulator / consumer agency / legal case etc.

    ~~ It didn't have to be this way. MS could have just sold Windows as before. But the people @ Redmond are Facebook-Google-Ad-Worshipping-Imitation-Bitches!

    1. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: "not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried"

      Windows 10 could have been a great success..

      Except for the updates to win7 machines

      Except for the data slurping

      Except for the "Update or else" thing

      Except for the crummy desktop

      Oh and will m$ give me back the 45 mins 3 weeks ago when our CAD machine decided to update and locked everyone out when it did it, and the 30 mins after a Win10 machine crashed, then the screen showed a silly smiley and please wait while m$ downloads data about this crash.

      The computer has crashed, 3 finger salute, wait 3 mins and I'm up and going again... sheesh how hard can it be.

      PS Part of my Mint 18 desktop crashed the other day .. error message was "Panel bla blah blah is not responding, restart application y/n? " whats so ^*%*%ing hard about that m$ ?

      1. asdf Silver badge

        Re: "not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried"

        >Except for the crummy desktop

        Agree totally with your other points and hate Microsoft as much as the next guy but ironically if not for its other huge showstoppers Windows 10 is actually IMHO the best Windows desktop by a long shot. Sadly I find myself using it more and more due to the Xbox steaming app. Of course I am posting this message with a browser running in a Whonix VM to avoid the data slurp and because surfing the web with windows native browsers is like bathroom sex at a bus stop without a condom.

        1. asdf Silver badge

          Re: "not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried"

          Not saying btw Win 10 is great just sadly it has for me what's a unreplaceable app (and fsck Sony for releasing PS3 firmware that reduces fan speed so you buy a PS4 due to sudden PS3 reboots, pissed me off so much actually went Xbox this generation). Just saying at least with VMs you have options even if you need to use Redmond's desktop garbage.

          1. VinceH Silver badge

            Re: "not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried"

            Wait, what?

            I haven't powered my PS3 up in ages - I only ever use it once in a blue moon - it's not even currently connected up. Is this fan speed reduction a real thing?

            I have an awful lot of games (PS1, 2 and 3) - a very large number of which I have yet to play - so upgrading to a PS4 is absolutely NOT something I want to do.

            So if it's a real issue, I guess my best bet might be to lock it out of the network so it doesn't pick up any updates the next time I use it. (I don't play online anyway).

        2. Chika
          Trollface

          Re: "not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried"

          the Xbox steaming app

          Doesn't that invalidate the warranty? ;:

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

    Security? Don't you actually mean 'from a SLURPING perspective' M$ shill???

    1. alain williams Silver badge

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      Why ? For the earlier versions that are still supported I would expect security patches. He seems to be saying that they can't be bothered to fix security problems in older versions. Other operating system distributors offer 10 years and 13 years support, these are smaller companies than Microsoft - but they can manage it; why don't they ?

      1. oldcoder

        Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

        why? Microsoft didn't before - that why you end up having to run so many different "virus" applications.

        Microsoft just didn't bother to fix the security problems.

        Quite obviously Microsoft cannot manage it.

      2. ArrZarr Silver badge

        Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

        Remind me - is 2020 less than ten years after 2009? Is 2017 less than ten years after 2007? How about 2014 being less than ten years after 2001?

        My maths skills may be failing me in my advanced age.

    2. LDS Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      When your machine DHCP doesn't work, you're more secure. Unless you plug-in an infected USB stick, of course...

    3. Big-nosed Pengie

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      "A security perspective! Yeah! That's it! We'll say it was a from a security perspective!"

      1. 404 Silver badge
        Childcatcher

        Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

        But it's for the children! -> see icon

    4. joed Silver badge

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      It was the job security he meant.

    5. RW

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      This reminds me of some dealings with my bank.

      Advertising bumf arrives from bank announcing that now I can do my banking from home, hip, hip, hurray!

      I phone bank and say "disable online banking on my account." "Why?" "I consider home computers inherently insecure." "Oh, no, our online banking system is completely secure." "Oh? Then how could it have been enabled on my accounts by some marketing wonk without my permission?"

      [silence] "We'll disable it as soon as possible, sir."

      The analogy is not exact, but it's much the same spirit: "hold still while we do you this unasked-for favor."

      1. Mage Silver badge

        Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

        Or automatic issue of NFC debit cards by your bank (they are insecure, in reality no faster). Bank "But you'll lose features and security using the old card"

        "What features? Also my old card doesn't let passing strangers read my banking details or take up to €20 without asking"

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Alien

          Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

          "my old card doesn't let passing strangers read my banking details or take up to €20 without asking"

          you need tin-foil in your wallet to act like a mini faraday cage and block the RFID.

    6. Mage Silver badge

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      More Secure?

      So why STILL by default almost every service on?

      I can see no genuine real world improvement.

      Making sure Autorun is off, that a VM client (the default in Win7's XPmode is atrocious) has no WAN and only one data only or no host directories, that a browser has Noscript or alternative, external firewall (use a 3G/4G dongle via WiFi with firewall or via router with firewall), firewall/router has no uPNP, all are more important than any MS security feature.

      MS seem to be clueless.

      Oh and WINE (a security flaw, I know) on Linux Mint + Mate (redmond theme) works with more of my old programs than Win7 or Win10 does and XP in VM with no network for test gear (/dev/ttyUSB0 mapped to COM1:) is a better user experience than Win10 or even Win7.

      Office gone downhill since 2003.

      MS has lost the plot on UX and GUI and privacy.

      1. soulrideruk Bronze badge

        Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

        "American Tech Companies have lost the plot on UX, GUi and Privacy"

        There, fixed that for you..

    7. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: 'We want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'

      That entire statement deserves dissection:

      "We know we want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective"

      i.e. Micro-shaft "more secure" in their pwning you as a revenue generator

      "but finding the right balance where you're not stepping over the line of being too aggressive"

      i.e. not getting caught nor being criticized too much

      "is something we tried and for a lot of the year I think we got it right"

      i.e. didn't rock the boat enough to make water come in

      "but there was one particular moment in particular where, you know, the red X in the dialog box which typically means you cancel didn't mean cancel"

      i.e. "we got caught and it's obvious now"

      Everyone who gets caught is SO sorry afterwards...

  7. redpawn Silver badge

    Better to beg for forgiveness...

    than to ask permission. The way to get what you want, not what is right.

    1. joed Silver badge

      Re: Better to beg for forgiveness...

      Exactly the statement I was looking for. Perfect match. By hook or by crook MS has achieved their goal (all while justice system/ftc was looking the other way). As the result they've cemented their monopoly on desktop systems while capturing beached in the cloud conquest (I can bet that they convert their captive audience into PAS/SAS serfs). Once the status quo is reached on consumer side it's just matter of time before enterprise will embrace the new way. So convenient it's got to be this way.

  8. EastFinchleyite

    Repentance?

    Those who believe in forgiveness first require repentance, restitution, and responsibility

    http://www.luke173ministries.org/466804

    While this twerp may now believe he got it wrong, he sounds more like he regrets failing to serve Microsoft better rather than for messing up millions of customers.

    I see little of the three Rs here. My view of Microsoft in general and Win10 in particular are not changed by this.

    Merry Christmas to all Regophiles

    1. RW

      Re: Repentance?

      M$ is sorry only for the flap they caused, not for any harm or inconvenience they caused their customers.

      Much like people who are only sorry when they are caught at doing something reprehensible.

    2. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

      Re: Repentance?

      There was no repentance only an attempt to manipulate the media and fanbois. About the only way the can show they are serious is pay damages to all the users who suffered from their antics and truly fix 'bloat. I do not expect either to happen unless there is massive court case.

  9. Rich 11 Silver badge

    Low points

    Capossela was asked to list his low points of the year for Redmond (it's 17 minutes, 44 seconds in).

    OK, so that's the first hour of 1st January 2016 he's covered. What about the rest of the year?

  10. Erik4872

    Apology or not, results are the same

    I'm actually not as much of a doomsayer as most people about Windows 10, but the reality is that for whatever reason, Microsoft is done with any versions of Windows before 10 and Server 2016. They will not have another XP or Office 2003 moment, period. I know why they're doing it (to gain ad revenue and extract monthly subscription fees for Win10 Enterprise users), I'm not a fan of it, but you're just not going to get anything beyond half-hearted support for previous Windows versions. I'm pretty convinced that they're also done with on-premises software and are waiting to lock everyone into Azure, but that's the next phase.

    Taking this as the assumed end state, I'm actually glad they were able to get as many customers upgraded as possible. Millions of consumer PCs are completely unmanaged. They go unpatched, and Windows 7 is no longer being looked at with the same scrutiny when it comes to the less-than-thorough job they do patching it. Leaving these systems out to dry means they'll eventually be a botnet member, get ransomware, get a virus, etc. I don't like the way it was done, but at least they telegraphed that the end was near for Windows 7. I think they should have waited until the official end of life date to allow the free upgrade, but the shareholders would have eaten them alive if they were fully or partially supporting 3 complete release cycles of Windows. For better or worse, Windows 10 is the new client OS for everyone as Microsoft sees it.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Apology or not, results are the same

      I don't understand the downvotes you got. We might disagree about doomsaying W10 (I assume that means objecting to the slurping) but otherwise I think it's a fair summary of MS's intentions.

      1. DropBear Silver badge

        Re: Apology or not, results are the same

        "I don't understand the downvotes you got."

        Oh, how about asserting that MS patches are any sort of viable replacement for actually managing a machine, for starters?

      2. Glenturret Single Malt

        Re: Apology or not, results are the same

        I speak as someone who has never awarded either an upvote or a downvote in any online discussion forum because I believe the system is silly and childish and should, of course, be scrapped.

        In the case of the Register, I also think that many people click on these because of their prejudices (justified or not) about the subject of the post and not as a balanced assessment of its truth/accuracy etc. But that would mean having to read them all to find out what they actually say.

        1. Kiwi

          Re: Apology or not, results are the same

          I speak as someone who has never awarded either an upvote or a downvote in any online discussion forum because I believe the system is silly and childish and should, of course, be scrapped.

          Why do you believe it is silly or childish?

          In the case of the Register, I also think that many people click on these because of their prejudices (justified or not) about the subject of the post and not as a balanced assessment of its truth/accuracy etc. But that would mean having to read them all to find out what they actually say.

          You may be right in that there are some who will upvote or downvote based on things other than the merit of the post, but that is not the case for all of us.I'd believe that while we get many shills from various orgs, most people here do vote honestly.

    2. hplasm Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Apology or not, results are the same

      "Leaving these systems out to dry means they'll eventually be a botnet member, get ransomware, get a virus, etc."

      You really think Win10's 'stop what you are doing while I roll out some more broken patches' will stop that?

    3. Grimfandango

      Re: Apology or not, results are the same

      Anyone relying on Microsoft security is eventually in for a nasty surprise.

      To have a chance of being safe, you must run layers of aftermarket anti-everything protective software, and a real, serious firewall. And following this practice you can be safer on an XP machine than a Windows10 machine without additional protection

    4. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: Apology or not, results are the same

      They're contractually obliged to support 7 until 2020 and 8 until 2023, whether the shareholders want to eat them alive or not.

  11. moiety

    Too little too late. My next OS won't be from Microsoft.

    1. Geoffrey W Silver badge

      My next operating system will be Windows, Linux, and Android. Spice of life and horses for courses, and all that. Not prepared to hurt myself by going mono culture.

    2. Chris G Silver badge

      I'm going to continue with 7 until it either suffers from half hearted support or 2020 comes along, the next machine I buy though whenever that is, will be Linux. Win 10 and it's cloudy service can go and throw itself in a lake. Sooner or later I can see a monumental outage or fuck up coming with Azure and then MS will sink, slowly or rapidly I couldn't say but they will lose whatever goodwill they have and sink.

      Maybe the Raspberry Pi OS will develop enough to take over or it really will be the year of Linux.

      1. RW

        > I can see a monumental outage or fuck up coming with Azure and then MS will sink,

        Just wait until such an outage utterly destroys important data that can't be replaced.

        1. oldcoder

          "important data that can't be replace" .... certainly won't be the customers data (Danger failures?).

          I'm still waiting for the virus that replaces Windows with a linux distribution...

          1. agatum
            Linux

            I'm still waiting for the virus that replaces Windows with a linux distribution...

            Virus? In my books that would be a cure to a virus. Sort of like antibiotics are for bacterial infections.

            1. Hans 1 Silver badge
              Happy

              >>I'm still waiting for the virus that replaces Windows with a linux distribution...

              >Virus? In my books that would be a cure to a virus. Sort of like antibiotics are for bacterial infections.

              Hm, that would trigger the year of the Linux desktop instantly and most users would not even realize, at least since the Windows 10 nagware .... hmm, maybe even get a nobel prize for writing it .... hm .... which distribution, Mint ? with Redmond theme ? ... hm ... shall I ?

        2. Alumoi

          Just wait until such an outage utterly destroys important data that can't be replaced.

          If it's so important what the f... is doing in the cloud?

    3. RW

      Too little too late. My next OS won't be from Microsoft.

      I switched in Linux in 2008 and have never regretted it.

      Modern distros for the home market are perfect for Aunt Sally who only uses her computer to send and receive emails, look at photos of her grandkids, and occasionally watches a porn video.

      They work very well for a lot else too, but even your doddering old aunt may appreciate a computer that never crashes. (Actually, Linux crashes once in a long while, but the problem is more than I don't know how to recover from a crash without rebooting.)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Too little too late. My next OS won't be from Microsoft.

        If that is your use case, a Chromebook (or Chromebox) is even better, even more secure. At runtime, even the running OS is read-only and SHA checksum checked on every boot.

        It's essentially a live CD running from your hard disk, but with a read-only OS partition, and it's the only OS that consistently walks away unscathed from hackathon conventions (and often they exclude chromeos, as they know it's too tough to crack)

        I have recommended these to many people that just use the internet for mail, browsing, basic office docs, and every single one of them has been overwhelmed by how fast and easy everything is (and how cheap the Chromebook was in the first place). If they don't use Win32 stuff, no need for a PC.

    4. Mage Silver badge
      Linux

      Next OS

      I've wiped XP, Win7 and Win 10 from multiple laptops for people in last few weeks. Replaced with Linux Mint, Mate + Redmond Theme, Firefox (Classic Theme & Noscript).

      Two are setup up dual boot win 7 & Linux. One, the Win7 no longer used

      Three new laptops ordered Lenovo with Win7 pro not Win10 since Oct (one now used only in Linux).

      In last 21 years of installing Linux, Windows etc, I've never seen such a big switch to Linux as this year. IMO Linux Mint, Mate + Redmond Theme, Firefox (Classic Theme & Noscript), LibreOffice, Thunderbird email is now actually better and as usable as XP. It's more like Win9x / NT / 2K / XP experience than Vista/Win7/Win8/Win10 is. LibreOffice is as good as Office 2003, i.e. more usable than Ribbon!

      Thunderbird, Firefox, FileZila, Calibre, Audacity, Eagle, Inkscape, Gimp (actually usable now PSP10 is a mess compared to PSP7 and Adobe is rental), Putty, Skype and many more on Windows and Linux now.

      Is Sage and Outlook the only reason left to run Windows?

      Most people only using Browser, basic Office features, Email, Skype anyway.

      It's a big difference even to five years ago,

      1. Adam 52 Silver badge

        Re: Next OS

        "Is Sage and Outlook the only reason left to run Windows?"

        I'll give you ten more:

        Photoshop

        Adobe Premiere

        VMware

        Numerous games

        GoPro studio

        TP-Link's rather nifty network monitor

        Garmin update

        ANT+ support

        SQL Server Analysis Services

        Excel

        1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

          Re: Next OS - I'll give you ten more

          Correct. I have to keep Windows for one purpose only now: to update the maps on my satnav. While I was working, if I didn't have it I could not work from home.

        2. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

          Re: Next OS

          @Adam 52 - I see a mixed bag of stuff that many home users will never care about. There are plenty of good photo editing software available on Linux (some commercial), virtual machines run on Linux, games are a problem only for gamers. The others seem to be more specialized needs even Excel.

        3. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Linux

          Re: Next OS

          VMWare has a Linux version, FYI

      2. keithpeter
        Pint

        Re: Next OS

        "In last 21 years of installing Linux, Windows etc, I've never seen such a big switch to Linux as this year."

        Do the users you support have sudo to allow installation of software and updates?

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Next OS

        "Is Sage and Outlook the only reason left to run Windows?"

        LibreOffice is not fully compatible with my usage of Excel VBA and Selenium - at least it wasn't when I tried moving my application a year ago. Will have another try before W7 is out of support - and possibly see if I can tweak LibreOffice VBA to be compatible. It's well within my skills set - but I don't like having to spend time reinventing wheels - unless absolutely necessary.

        1. Mage Silver badge

          Re: VBA

          VBA etc in Office is evil and a huge source of problems. Solutions without it are more robust, easier maintained and more secure.

          VMware and other VM solutions run on Linux.

          PC games are now a niche compared to phone/tablet and Console, esp. PS4.

          Adobe is pricing themselves out of the market due to rental model except for rich corporates. They are no longer the only solution for photo/video, except for a small niche of professionals with well paid IT support.

          Even MS is porting their SQL to Linux. I abandoned MS SQL in 2004.

          1. Rattus Rattus

            @Mage

            "PC games are now a niche compared to phone/tablet and Console, esp. PS4"

            Like hell. Steam still sells as many copies of AAA_Game_of_the_Month as both console markets combined, and the newest consoles still have no more power than a midrange PC of five or more years ago.

            I used to use Linux on the desktop, and quite liked it. Games, however, are the big sticking point. Consoles are not an option, and WINE is still not good enough.

  12. Terry 6 Silver badge

    The weirdness that is Microsoft

    The thing is, even setting aside the general anti-Microsoft tendency, it's impossible to argue away the fact that Microsoft don't ever seem anymore to build software that intuitively suits the ordinary user and makes life easier, or even makes any kind of logical sense. Instead since Win 7/ Office 10 it's so often over-complicated, difficult for ordinary users to manage and often contradictory.

    Why did they think that Win 8s hidden away controls that would randomly appear if you moved the mouse too abruptly but then couldn't be found when you wanted them was a good idea? Why do they think that having every damn Office control in the "ribbon" so that the user is stuck in a forest of menu items they'll never use is better than some kind of customisable menu ( with a simple way to bring everything back if you need it).

    Why did they think it a good idea to default user work files to a deeply buried folder alongside the settings, so that they were really difficult to get to, reorganise, copy or to move to a better place?

    Why did they thing that a desktop full of stupid tiles (many for junk and unwanted links) was better than a manageable list, such as (but not necessarily) the Start menu (win 8)? And why did they think that a forced alphabetic Start menu/ list of programmes, no matter how obscure and unhelpful the programme name, is better than a list that can be grouped into folders according to function if the users so wish. (8.1 onwards)? And if they are going to have such an alphabetic list of individual programmes, why allow install routines to do what the users can't and place a folder of links in that same list no matter how much crap is included within it?

    Why the immovable "apps" even when users decide they don't want them in the list,or on the computer? Why make these rather basic "apps" suddenly become ( and frequently revert to ) being the defaults even though the users have opted to use a more appropriate programme of their own?

    Why provide a disk management tool so limited that it only lets you shrink or expand a partition on one side,so that you can't use it to move spare capacity in one to an adjacent partition? Why have the various setting controls split up into several different places? Why hide System restore?

    The list goes on. All the things that make Windows really difficult for an ordinary user to manage. I could understand having some of these things controlled through system policy for corporate use. But for SOHO use they are at best stupidly annoying and at worse a fu***g nightmare

    1. david 12 Bronze badge

      Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

      >hat Microsoft don't ever seem anymore to build software that intuitively suits the ordinary use<

      When MS started, all the money was in Business Computing (green screen), or Home Computing (apple, bbc comodor etc). MS identified a small niche, "small business" that was not well served.

      All the money is still in Enterprise or Games, but MS's not a small startup anymore. They've got a big chunk of Enterprise and Games/Facebook, and those are the targets. They've abandoned their traditional customers.

      I'm one of the legacy users that MS no longer builds software to suit. But my family and my large corporate contacts aren't having the same experience.

    2. Nolveys Silver badge

      Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

      Why did they think that Win 8s hidden away controls that would randomly appear if you moved the mouse too abruptly but then couldn't be found when you wanted them was a good idea?

      The reasons for the interface design decisions in windows 8 seem pretty self evident to me. The real question is how they managed to write it while laughing hysterically.

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

      " it's impossible to argue away the fact that Microsoft don't ever seem anymore to build software that intuitively suits the ordinary user and makes life easier, or even makes any kind of logical sense."

      Sadly Microsoft don't have a monopoly on that. It's these UX experts who get everywhere like a plague of mice. They decide they know what one thing you want to do and tailor the UI to that and only that. The fact that you want to ten other things hasn't occurred to them and the fact that you might want to do at least one of those others at the same time is utterly beyond them (they've been brought up on mobile devices that have tiny screens where you can only do one thing at a time). So they build something that needs full screen to work and their lobotomised UI now makes it a pain, if not right down impossible, to do some of the other things you wanted to do.

      1. Hans 1 Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

        >Sadly Microsoft don't have a monopoly on that. It's these UX experts who get everywhere like a plague of mice.

        Gnome 3 and Gimp 2.8+, to name but two non-Microsoft pieces of softwarecrap ...

        I do not know where these guyz get their weird ideas from, somebody is a head too tall, if you ask me ... worst is, basic immutable software design "RULES" are considered "philosophical verbiage" when one mentions them, such as "principle of least surprise" ... which, imho, is the number 1 rule of software design, if you ignore that, you should not be allowed near digital devices, as simple as that, no, NOT A JOKE ... I try as hard as I can to keep software that does not adhere to that principle/rule off my hardware. Look at the downloads of Gimp ... more 2.6 downloads than ANY OTHER VERSION SINCE, if that is not a sign ... apparently, not to the Gimp team, I have tried telling them and was told about a deity, corporate policy of other BS as the reason (I cannot remember, some standard BS reply), and no, mentioning the number of downloads did not deter them from their foolish decision ... people actually have to go through "heaps" to get the 2.6 version iso the latest, still ... nope, that is how we want to do it ...

    4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

      "Why do they think that having every damn Office control in the "ribbon" so that the user is stuck in a forest of menu items they'll never use is better than some kind of customisable menu ( with a simple way to bring everything back if you need it)."

      I suspect the answer to that is lock-in.

      In the ?good old days MS could bring out a new version of Office which would default to writing files the older versions couldn't read so everyone had to buy upgrades because they needed to open those documents and spreadsheets.

      Then those terrible people at the Document Foundation pulled a nasty on them. They got their formats made an ISO standard and the big purchasers - i.e. govts. - like specifying support of standards. So they then had to get a standard of their own, a story of its own but not for here.

      Having to support their own standard they couldn't play their old games any longer to force upgrades. What was worse, they were having to compete with free and, given that their interface followed fairly standard lines the free competition wasn't that difficult to migrate to for users.

      So they changed the UI. All the old users hated being forced to migrate but from MS's perspective this was for the greater good. In the fullness of time there was a new cohort of users who'd been taught the new interface in "CS" lessons in school (Microsoft loves to support education) and if they then joined organisations that had migrated to Open/LibreOffice they found the old-style interface just as difficult as the older users found the ribbon and that introduced pressure to migrate back to MS.

      LibreOffice, however, is now fighting back with a move to support for multiple interfaces so that either style can be accommodated. https://blog.documentfoundation.org/blog/2016/12/21/the-document-foundation-announces-the-muffin-a-new-tasty-user-interface-concept-for-libreoffice/

    5. David Woodhead

      Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

      @Terry 6

      I love you and want to have your babies. The fact that I'm in my 60s and male is a mere detail.

      Is it just us? Why was there no non-ribbon option after Office 2003? Why does a Windows 10 installation need six different partitions on the HDD? Why has UEFI been so slewed to Microsoft's pre-installed OS that getting your BIOS to accept anything else is a nightmare? Why can't the right panel in Windows 7 Explorer stay in sync when you navigate the left panel with the keyboard? And while I'm on my pet hobby-horse, what happened to the right-click search function after XP? I've paid good money to buy a third party add-on just to get this back. I could go on and on, but it just raises my blood pressure.

      Looking on the bright side, in 30 years time we'll all be dead and no-one will know how things used to be and should have continued to be. And they won't care, because they'll all have been absorbed into the MS Borg.

      Right: time for my tea. Hope I've cheered you all up a bit.

      1. Terry 6 Silver badge

        Re: The weirdness that is Microsoft

        The other truly annoying thing is that I happily use a Windows phone because it a) isn't Google's and b) works really well. I have no concerns or annoyances from it. I like using it, as it seems do all the tiny group of us who do use one. The one decent thing that Microsoft has produced recently and they well and truly f***ed up their marketing and pretty much put it out of business. At every turn they seemed determined to make the Winphone non-viable. They even managed to screw up the market positioning - jumping between high-end over-expensive might as well get an iPhone and low-end-with-important-bits-missing. without ever covering the middle ground for ordinary users who want function without expensive bling. So, for example, my original had, among other things, no front facing camera. Who'd buy a phone like that in the age of Skype and "selfies". And they failed to make it attractive to devs of the usual "apps" that the competition supported and failed miserably to make alternatives that users might accept instead.

  13. AndGregor
    Coat

    Stopped reading at 'We know we want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective'. Was a big fan and advocate of MS, until WIndows 10..

    I am not sure how losing control of my privacy and, more importantly, my young family members' privacy is helping me secure anything..

    My next OS is WIndows 7 again again..

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Don't forget that MS have tried to retrofit their spyware telemetry updates to W7. Even if you have blocked them specifically - there is still the unknown content in their current "rolled up" updates.

      1. Justin Clift

        > Don't forget that MS have tried to retrofit their spyware telemetry updates to W7.

        As a data point, Spybot Anti-Beacon (free util) seems to be helpful for blocking the telemetry bits:

        https://www.safer-networking.org/spybot-anti-beacon/

        There are likely other utils which can do the same thing too.

        1. ecofeco Silver badge

          Very cool! I'll test this right away!

      2. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Indeed, the telemetry has been in at least one of the rollups so far... the November one, if I recall. I don't yet know if it is in the December one.

        You can get the security only November rollup for 7 from the Windows Catalog, and it won't have the telemetry. This will likely continue for the rest of the time MS is supporting 7 with security updates, as they will get into hot water with their business customers if they try forcing them to take the full rollup just to get the security updates.

        Still, MS has already tipped their hand how they intend to "convince" us to install the full rollups... they introduce annoying non-security bugs in the security fixes, but the fix for the introduced bug (not being a security issue, after all) is only in the full rollup, right there next to the spyware. Install only the security updates and you'll have a secure but increasingly buggy Windows until you give in and get the one with the spyware.

        Even with that in mind, the telemetry service is easy to identify and disable (or remove) from the Windows services. I installed the full update on one of my PCs and removed the service (not just disabled it) without any issues at all in the month or so it's been since. Windows 7 never came with the spying baked-in like 10 did; it's just tacked on around the edges, and can be removed quite simply, at least for now.

  14. Frank N. Stein

    Windows 10 is such a substantial improvement over Windows 8, ESPECIALLY with CLASSIC SHELL installed, to give you a Taskbar and tasklist you can live with. if your hardware can handle it, go with Windows 10 64 bit, w/ at least 16GB of ram.

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Hmmm, so "Windows 10 is such a substantial improvement over Windows 8" that it is a working environment that "you can live with", eh?

      Well, yes, I'd have to agree with that. I'm not aware of a single respect in which 10 is not significantly better than 8, now that they've back-ported all the slurping. (A pity that the important comparison is with 7, because that's what all the corporates are still running.)

      "if your hardware can handle it, go with Windows 10 64 bit, w/ at least 16GB of ram."

      There's no question of whether the hardware can handle it. The OS and shell works fine with 1GB, even for 64-bit editions if you can trick the setup image into accepting the system in the first place. You'd only need 16GB of RAM if you were running an app that demanded the other 15GB. Also, you will struggle to find an x86-class CPU from the last ten years that isn't x64-class, though they do exist, and struggle to find one from the last five years that doesn't have sufficient graphics on the CPU to handle the Win10 UI. (I'm not sure they do.) You probably *won't* be able to find a system that could run Win8 that can't run Win10 (and rather more efficiently, too). But again, the important comparison for corporates is probably Win7 and there probably are low-end machines running Win7 that would need a RAM or graphics change before the Win10 installation will work.

    2. Mage Silver badge
      Flame

      Win 10 & Classic Shell

      Still garbage reminiscent of Win2.0

      Less customisable than any Windows from 3.0 /NT3.1 onwards.

      Ghastly. I really tried hard. Even 1999 Red hat Linux was better.

  15. 404 Silver badge
    FAIL

    That was moment...

    ... I mentally placed Windows 10 in the malware category. If the builtin spyware, forced updates, and dismantling the Pro editions of Windows wasn't bad enough - the Red X Betrayal was the final nail in the coffin.

    I even bought a cheap $149 Dell laptop just to run Raspberry Pixel for shits and grins - wouldn't bother before, but now? Fsck 'em.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: That was moment...

      Me too, the last time I used Win10, I was given 15 minutes to save my work and watch it update (normal Windows updates). While I was in the middle of writing a stored proc. There was no option to prevent this. The "schedule for a convenient time" dialog was disabled, I'm assuming due to the "notify but don't download" GPO meaning the updates hadn't been installed to Microsoft's liking (i.e. when convenient for me).

      This was Win10 Pro, where you know, I paid extra for a work oriented build and didn't think I'd be in a position of having to spend 10 minutes desperately trying to stop an update, just to carry on working. I decided it'd be quicker and less future hassle to go back to Win8.

      Before the "switch to Linux" group popup, I am a heavy Linux user, this project needed to run on a Windows host.

  16. Mikel

    IE share

    Market share of IE is down by half this year. Is that mentioned?

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Gimp

      Re: IE share

      Only people with braindamage and deplorables still use IE. Don't even mention "Edge".

      (Pepe The Frog icon when?)

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: IE share

        The only 'Edge' I'm interested in at the moment is listening to

        'Close to the Edge'. Yes it shows my age but I've been around long enough to know that Windows 10 is a lemon of the highest quality and should be consigned to the great OS graveyard with others like Varian Vortex.

        W10 is nothing more than Spyware and should be treated as such.

        1. Captain Badmouth

          Re: IE share

          Upvote for YES, it shows my age too.

      2. 404 Silver badge

        Re: IE share

        Don't even need Internet Explorer to download something else anymore - I have scripts for that now ;)

  17. sikejsudjek

    Windows 10 has some good points. The bsod screen is pretty and it can't read ext4 file format.

    1. Dwarf Silver badge

      Windows 10 has some good points. The bsod screen is pretty and it can't read ext4 file format.

      ext4 is a file system, not a file format, but yes, it would be nice for MS to realise there is a world outside Redmond, but they only do that if they are on the eliminate bit of their strategy.

      You can get an open source ext driver for windows, in the Ext2Fsd project

  18. Lion

    A step too far ?

    This is not an apology from this Executive. He is complaining about two weeks of hell for Microsoft. He did not acknowledge the impact it had on their customers. MS took over a month to remove that popup. The 'step too far' was beyond the dirty trick. Trust was at issue.

    This Executive is the top Marketing guy so he is responsible for the brand. The brand was damaged by several steps too far with the GWX campaign. He was responsible for all those antics that angered Home users and small businesses.

    There was no mea culpa. They were expecting no consequences for their bad behavior and this interview revealed that. MS knew what they were doing was wrong and expected to get away with it.

  19. Doc Ock

    Pop-ups that execute unwanted programs that change your computer without your permission is pure and simply malware, possibly even an offence under the Computer Misuse Act.

  20. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Flame

    What a load of bull

    "We know we want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective, but finding the right balance where you're not stepping over the line of being too aggressive is something we tried and for a lot of the year I think we got it right, but there was one particular moment in particular where, you know, the red X in the dialog box which typically means you cancel didn't mean cancel," Capossela said.

    "Within a couple of hours of that hitting the world, with the listening systems we have, we knew that we had gone too far and then, of course, it takes some time to roll out the update that changes that behavior. Those two weeks were pretty painful and clearly a lowlight for us. We learned a lot from it obviously."

    Everything in that declaration describes an organization that specifically decided to push things to the hilt, and detect when the hilt was reached. Nothing in those words tell me that they were trying anything else, or had the slightest twinge of conscience about doing it. It was not a "Oh God what have we done" moment, it was a "Right, that's it, they won't take any more" moment.

    Remorse ? He showed none, like a good corporate drone he just mentioned having a hard fortnight. Please wait while I dab my eyes (yeah, right). Then he went on to put ads into the OS. Effing ADS. If you ever wanted a sign that MS no longer gives a flying one, that's it.

    And for me, that's it for MS as well. In the week before New Year, my server is going Mint. My other PCs will follow in due course. I intend to keep the Personal in Personal Computer.

    1. VinceH Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: What a load of bull

      This bit in particular stands out:

      "Within a couple of hours of that hitting the world, with the listening systems we have, we knew that we had gone too far and then, of course, it takes some time to roll out the update that changes that behavior."

      As I recall, at the time, Microsoft was trying to justify its behaviour, and eventually backed down on it - yet here the guy is saying that within a couple of hours they knew they'd gone too far, that they knew they were in the wrong.

      As for the bit I've emboldened - that'll be all the people that ended up with Windows 10 as a result of the trick, with 10's telemetry reporting back to home base when those sufferers went on to talk about it in emails or on forums. 8)

      1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

        Re: What a load of bull

        I'd say they saw the Windows 10 uptake go from a few individual percentage points to double figures (10% or 20%?). They knew with that high an uptake the customers must have been "tricked" or "mistaken" and not have chosen themselves. Especially as they could compare to the changes via options like "you'll run out of time" which is usually the biggest cause of conversions.

        So if this had the biggest spike in Windows 10 uptake, it was obviously a trick on being unclear on the facts ("you must upgrade" which is a lie, as it's "you may upgrade"), or plain false information ("Close down now" turns out to be a lie and it upgrades you now instead).

        However, I doubt they checked peoples individual emails and forum posts (though they may aggregate general social tracking). Most companies just go by the big statistical data, and this is enough.

        They don't need to track your individual forum posts... they know if you install (and which buttons you press), they know if you uninstall (and which buttons you press). That's all they need, the rest is window dressing.

        1. VinceH Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: What a load of bull

          "However, I doubt they checked peoples individual emails and forum posts (though they may aggregate general social tracking)."

          I wasn't being 100% serious when I wrote that paragraph, you know. I was just having a combined dig at the telemetry and trickery.

  21. Winkypop Silver badge
    Flame

    Bullshit!

    see title

  22. Dwarf Silver badge

    A year not to forget - for MS

    A year where they lost the trust of a huge percentage of their customers, p***ed off another large segment and drove another large chunk of previously happy customers to other OS's

    Then to top it off, they failed to get their stupid "single thingy vision" across the devices they've now not got due to the flop of everything mobile.

    So, fortune telling for 2017 - the impact of all that will come back to bite you in the butt and you're going to have to really go some to make things any worse. See what you can do to the corporate market and cloudy everything - see if you can screw that up too.

    Oh, Office345 outages - forgot about that, your'e doing it already ....

    And you wonder why customers stopped trusting you.

  23. Haku

    Horses and water.

    So M$ admitted they not only dragged the horse to the water but when they got to the water they forced its head under until it coughed and spluttered, and now they're apologising for 'cruelty to animals'?

    No thanks, not interested in any hollow apologies.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Like you cant move on...

    So many negative comments and many who have "jumped ship" around the web, but yet act like you just broke up with your girlfriend/boyfriend and haven't gotten over it and moved on yet, of which I seem to hear the first verse of Lips of an Angel By Hinder.

    Guess what? So many companies continue to screw up and hit their lowest point multiple times. I am pissed with Microsoft and everything that happened, but luckily, where they have done real well with fixing their mistakes, Windows 10 has become the best platform I have ever seen.

    So many times I have used Windows 8.1 and 7, and by far it is a less comfortable feeling until going back to 10.

    It was nice to know that the start menu could load without worrying it was gonna tell me to sign out, but every OS has teething issues and most bugs are stamped out with more stamping to come.

    Some of Microsoft's decisions have been, are and future maybe stupid, and I among all will give them crap if they do. If you have so much hate and think Windows 10 should be scrapped, then Windows 10 won't have a percentage in Usage and you would see Windows 7 at 100% (or 90's if adding other OS's) or even a 50/50 between MacOS and Win 7, hell, even a complete turn around and all windows low and Linux, MacOS of the like, super high. But guess what? It's not like that because there has been more to like then not. And besides, despite a big factor that Windows 7 Usage is high because businesses, especially big, take forever to migrate to new OS's, Windows 7 is still high, but Windows 10 is hear to stay, Windows 10 will continue to grow, and that's that. Hell, despite the fact the biggest factor of usage is business migration, I have seen so many businesses move faster to Windows 10 then any other Windows ever.

    Yes, you have every right to whin about Windows 10, but your kidding yourself if you feel you need to convince people to agree with you and want everyone back on Windows 7 or jump ship with you. Besides, its not like you have a gun held to your head, you can still use Windows 7, you can move to a new OS. Just saying.

    We all know that the pop up scheme was happening, but its like you think we all think you are crazy and want complete admittance to prove that you ain't.

    Remember, just like the Australian Government caring about the old ways more then the future of creating better Internet for the country, Windows 10, like the world with better internet and media, will move on without you. Are you gonna stay behind and hold grudges, or are you going to move on and enjoy what you can get and thrive?

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Like you cant move on...

      I get where you're coming from; the Redmond back office by the sound of it, and been told to get a positive comment on this thread.

      Not a mention fo the 'telemetry' aka snooping that Win 10 does or the fact that sooner or later the patch Tuesday/Updates will become a paid for part of Win as a service for everybody.

      For everybody else I recommend the Spybot link above to deal with MiSpy 10.

      1. ArrZarr Silver badge

        Re: Like you cant move on...

        Yeah. You can really tell how he's a MS shill by the various insults.

        Win10 is basically fine. There are bad decisions, stupid decisions and downright painful decisions but if you look past those, there is an operating system which just works.

        But then I seem to have been the only person on earth who didn't mind windows 8 so apparently I'm just an idiot.

        1. Kiwi
          Linux

          Re: Like you cant move on...

          Win10 is basically fine. There are bad decisions, stupid decisions and downright painful decisions but if you look past those, there is an operating system which just works.

          Yeah. 'Cept of course those times when it kills your webcam. Or your network drivers. Or stops responding to DHCP needing CLI work to fix it. Or MS decides you didn't really want that specific package that you shelled $$$ for and so they delete it, without warning. Or the cloud "services" that fail to work. Or...

          The only things that 10 seems to work at is reporting your private data back to MS and crapping on your productivity like the very sick puppy that it is.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    End it

    Until they fire Myerson and the rest of the cretins that created WinTin, they will see their fortunes decline.

  26. Grimfandango

    How the Mighty have Fallen

    Waaaay back in 1998, Microsoft released the greatly anticipated Windows98 at gala midnight retail extravaganzas, where people actually stood in queue waiting for the doors to open.

    Fast forward to 2016, and Microsoft has major problems GIVING away their flagship product, Windows10. It is so rejected by consumers that Microsoft has to trick you into upgrading (for free) like some spyware phishing scheme.

    1. Hans 1 Silver badge
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: How the Mighty have Fallen

      >Waaaay back in 1998, Microsoft released the greatly anticipated Windows98 at gala midnight retail extravaganzas, where people actually stood in queue waiting for the doors to open.

      Yeah, and that was only because Windows 95 spent 50% of its time booting-up and throwing BSOD's than anything else .... so 98 was really needed ...

  27. sdaugherty

    They'd have been better off to declare Windows 10 as a service pack from day 1.

    Playing devil's advocate here, but A much more effective, and much less antagonistic response from Microsoft would have been to declare from day 1 that the upgrade to Windows 10 was a service pack to all supported upgrade paths, and therefore, a mandatory upgrade for anyone who wants to continue getting support.

    It would have gotten them bad press, and complaints, sure, but those would have blown over quickly, instead of the gradually escalating war on users that was the Windows 10 promotion

    In the end, Microsoft could have preserved a lot of goodwill with this approach, gotten to their adoption goals quickly, and consolidated everyone onto a single supported platform.

    1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

      Re: They'd have been better off to declare Windows 10 as a service pack from day 1.

      One word. Marketing. You could not market it as "new Windows" if they did that. It would have no marketing potential.

      It's all down to that. If you make it a mandatory update, it becomes a service agreement, it becomes a maintenance requirement. It becomes a risk and a cost to the business.

      There is a reason companies give away "Free*" offers with products, and don't just upgrade the base product. Or give huge "Discounts (I don't need an asterisk for that one)" on new products instead of upgrading the old one.

      *Limited to terms and conditions, no guarantee provided for the free gift, subject to availability, limited stock, no cash value...

  28. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Linux

    A blatant attempt to work your way off the naughty list

    But you're not fooling SanTux, Chris! You're getting a Linux-powered lump of coal!

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not only is Microsoft jumping the shark but it's buttphucking it .

  30. whoseyourdaddy

    Sigh.

    There can be only one Apple.

  31. Jeffrey Nonken Silver badge

    "We know we want people to be running Windows 10 from a security perspective..."

    Another lie, Chris. Microsoft wants it from a marketing perspective and couldn't give a rat's ass about security. Unless it brings in money, of course. You're just trying to save face.

  32. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Just setting up Windows 10 "Professional" on this DELL here..

    Woah that system is a rape of the consumerlike entering a souk.

    That's the level of "Professional" we have come to?

    "Send all your data to Microsoft?" No, thanks.

    "May I interest you in a Microsoft account". No, thanks. "It's free!" No, thanks.

    "Use Cortana?" No thanks.

    "WE ARE HAPPY TO SEE YOU HERE". Lies.

    "What about some addies in the Start Menu?" Yeah a good idea. Please go away.

    "Netflix" "MSN News" (one of the worst gutter places, only bested by Yahoo), "XBox Live", "Get Minecraft", "XBox", "Films and TV", "Get Office", "Microsoft Solitaire Collection" etc.?? NO!!

    Set the date correctl to 25th. The start menu is retarded, still things it's the 26th. That's confidence-inspiring.

    Install Firefox and set as default. "Hey do your really want that?" Yes. "Check out Edge instead, no?" No.

    The DELL popups do not help either.

    HEY MICROSOFT. THIS IS NOT FUCKING AD-SUPPORTED SHAREWARE, GEDDIT?? IN FACT, IT'S ABOUT 120 EUR.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Just setting up Windows 10 "Professional" on this DELL here..

      So I just would like an Office, please.

      So I go to a site "https://www.microsoftstore.com/"

      Why is a "Microsoft Designer Bluetooth-Maus at 29.90 EUR" being showed in my face and why in German? Why can't I select "I am not currently in the UK but want to read stuff in English, please". Why is Ghostery showing 10 (TEN!!!) "Advertising Trackers" (ok, that makes 6 I never heard off that I can block ... forever!) (plus 2 "Site Analytics" trackers, 2 "Customer Functionality" trackers, and 1 "Essential" tracker (Ensighten)). This is ".microsoftstore.com". It is not "newegg.com" or "unknownwebstore.ro". This is fucking INSANE.

      Meanwhile I'm glad to be able to borrow the neighbor's broadband connection because WinTin has decided to "update". Then I find that some UX specialist had the idea to get rid of a "search an application" (now called an "app" because Redmond got a special delivery of marketing moronium) entry field, just typing in the start menu launches the search, fantastic because in EVERY OTHER APPLICATION "just typing" leads to catastrophic, unforeseen and surprising results, fucking genius!!

      The Microsoft Experience is like no other.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gone too far? No, not at all...

    It's just Microsoft being... Microsoft.

    Any honest student of tech history should understand that this kind of behaviour is deeply embedded into Microsoft's company culture. Switching to a hipster CEO won't change the culture.

  34. N2 Silver badge

    Their arrogance

    Is astonishing, beyond belief

    Just what took them so long to work this out?

    Idiots.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Listening systems"

    Tw@t

  36. Novex

    Well, this kind of 'apology' seems about as much as we can expect from MS these days. An actual proper apology would have included recognizing the truly crappy way they have treated their customers, and then changed their attitude and approach to the way they do business to correct that treatment. Personally, the only apology I will accept is to fix Windows 10 to make it possible for me to have control of my PC again with regards to updates and data privacy.

  37. Doug 3

    Your devs were told to specially code that window control to fool your users

    And you dance around the idea today that it might not have been the best choice?

    You people at Microsoft are STILL piece of work. I REALLY hope you have a happy new year. And like you all at Microsoft Marketing, this interpretation of "happy" looks like lingchi.

    This is the same old Microsoft and using the same dirty tricks we've known for 30+ years. And to do it to your customers shows another level of anxiety towards your market position.

    1. Terry 6 Silver badge

      Re: Your devs were told to specially code that window control to fool your users

      Yes. That X to install thing didn't happen by accident.

      It was a choice, and one determined by its intended outcome. It has no other reason or purpose. It does nothing else. There is no positive interpretation that can even bye spun for it. A choice that works in a cynical and duplicitous way because the development was directed to be duplicitous by people who are are cynical.

      Is there any saving grace for Microsoft? At best, by saying that they're all at it in big business/IT? Which is no saving grace at all. Well no, not even that. Maybe they are all at it in the IT marketing world. But that is never any excuse.

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seems very clear to me. Then again, I'm not a complete retard.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fitting that his broadcast channel was...

    Twit TV

  40. Andronnicus Block

    Are they really sorry for their users?

    It also seems to me that they realise they have been caught out but are more sorry about that than about the trouble they have caused. And why the security argument? surely an updated older version they still support should be close to being as secure (slurping apart, obviously) as the current version.

    It is nice to be able to post as an interested observer rather than as one directly affected by their antics. I started using Linux late 2009 and have never looked back - progressively and rapidly moving more and more to it and while, in the beginning, I went through the whole Wine thing for stuff like Office 2003, and creating VMs of WIN XP for one or two programmes that really needed me to use Windows, I reached the point some time ago where I don't need (and definitely don't want to use) Windows at all.

    I am only saddened that so many people feel they have to put up with this sort of behaviour and accept it as part of the price for using a computer. I also really, really wish, that more effort was made by the powers that be to create a clear space between PC manufacturers\sellers and Microsoft so that a real choice to move away from Windows was easier.

    Don't get me wrong, I know a lot of people like Windows and that's great for them. Also, an awful lot of people don't know that there are alternatives and that is a shame - like many others who post here, I truly believe that Linux has gone from strength to strength in the 7 years that I have been using it so much so that my wife - who is a complete technophobe - happily uses Linux (Mint 17) without any problems.

  41. Hans 1 Silver badge
    Facepalm

    >And why the security argument? surely an updated older version they still support should be close to being as secure (slurping apart, obviously) as the current version.

    Hello ? Hell Ohhhhhh ?????? Slurping has been backported, all the way back to 7 .... and maybe Vista, but nobody runs that, so ... and with the bulk updates you cannot easily prevent the slurping from getting installed, you "could" uninstall it, but who tells you that the updates have not left some BS behind .... after the 10 nagware disaster, I would not be surprised, hence, my downvote ... enjoy it ;-)

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Trust gone - ears closed

    Sorry dear I couldn't help myself, it must be your fault somehow

  43. Belardi16

    Everything about W10 is not trustworthy.

    It was a bit more than the pop-ups.

    - The changing and sneaking W10 updates into Win7 updates and security patches.

    - renaming patches that gave Win7, W10 spyware ware which WE DID NOT WANT.

    - After the user removes said W10 updates, you would CONTINUE to re-install W10 nagware updates.

    I like others, cannot fully trust any more Win7 updates without checking various sources to see what kind of crap MS had tried to sneak in.

    Hence, I have 4 legit Win7 PCs at home. NONE OF THEM are "upgraded" to Win10. Nothing. I can still buy Win7Pro for a while longer in the stores/online - will do so as needed.

    In the next few years, my migration to Linux will be complete. I'm already building Linux systems for some of my clients. And if one of my other business gets traction and I need to buy a few PCs for the office employees to use, I will build them and they will be Linux .

  44. Michael Jarve

    From my own experience...

    I had been using Windows 10 on my main gaming/daily driver desktop for over a year- until earlier just this month. That system is going on 6 years old (the last upgrade was a new video card in 2013), and Win 10 ran pretty smoothly on it- better than Windows 8/8.1 on the same hardware. Through third-party utilities, I managed to get the UI more or less how I wanted it, defeated Cortana (every time she re-appeared, searchui.exe was mysteriously renamed c*ntana), made sure deferred "upgrades" was active, and so on. In all, I managed to mitigate most of what I found to be the most egregious sins and trespasses pretty well. The forced ordinary updates that actually caused some sort of problem were few and far in between, and could often easily be fixed. Many of the under-the-hood improvements in security and performance were welcome (at least relative to Win 8/8.1).

    Back to earlier this month: on or about the 15th of December, when I shutdown the system (a real shutdown- I disabled quick-start or whatever it is) I was not surprised to see that the system was once again installing updates before going to bed. When I booted up the next morning, the system would appear to hard-freeze shortly after loading the desktop, and after about 5 minutes, would give me the condescending "Something has gone Wrong :(" BOSD and reboot. Of course, MS removed the traditional F5/F8 safemode startup, and it's pretty hard to tell the OS to boot into safemode by restarting it when it's locked up, so there was nothing else for it. The system was well and truly borked, and needed reloading.

    At this point I very nearly decided to install one of the more consumer friendly Linux distros. I'd used Ubuntu in the past on a Compaq laptop with excellent results- I could do pretty much everything I needed with it, easily and efficiently. I fired up my ancient, trusty Wind-tunnel G4 PowerMac running OS X 10.5, and started downloading Ubuntu and Fedora's latest and greatest. Either would support a good deal of what I did on that system, except one very important caveat, and indeed my Windows system's very reson d'etre: Gaming.

    Were it not for that, I would have gone ahead with my plan. However, it was a sticking issue, and I was compelled to go out to my garage in sub-freezing temperatures, climb into the loft, and dig out my Windows 7 restore discs, and begin my 5 hour odyssey of reloading the OS, downloading service packs and updates, finding that Windows Update (under Win 7) wasn't working, diagnosing, resetting, downloading updates to update the updater, changing registry settings, ad naseum. I still do not have all the programs reinstalled that I need (though I was pleased to find that, unlike under Windows 10, my copy of Adobe CS2 launched like a charm). I would have had to do similar with Linux, save for reinstalling Steam and all my games (when you only have a 4Mb/s internet connection, Fallout 4 with all the trimmings takes a week to download). That said, it did make me appreciate how "Mac-Like" Windows 10 was in that, after installation, Everything Just Worked™ (at least to the point where it didn't).

    Still, I am not, at this point, keen on reverting back to Windows 10. Windows 7, at least as of now, handles everything I need without the need to "fix" it. And it gives me control over my OS (privacy, updates, etc) instead of the other way around. If Linux had broader gaming support (either internally or with software publishers), I would have ditched Windows. At the very least, if the games that I played were well supported with WINE or similar, it would have been viable. I mentioned that my other system is a vintage Mac, and while many newer games are being released for OS X, this rather excludes my old G4 system, and would require purchasing a new, expensive system.

  45. Florida1920 Silver badge

    Not the worst thing that happened this year

    There was a method to prevent Windows 10 from invading your PC. Unfortunately, there was no way to prevent Trump from invading the White House.

  46. Kiwi
    Linux

    We know we want people to be running Windows 10[..[ from a security perspective[..], I think we got it right,

    No. You got it wrong. Completely stupidly wrong.

    Of those I knew who thought they liked X when it came out, not one is running it. Most reverted to 7, a few to 8 and some to Linux.

    For some the issues were the network and other hardware failures. Others found the removal of programs they use to be an issue (something I see from time to time in Win 7 as well - a program I use every few weeks and is a "standard install" for me suddenly isn't on the machine at all, or just a dead shortcut?), the lack of compatibility with legacy stuff (and not so legacy stuff, eg movies) drove more off. The horrid not-quite-as-bad-as-8-but-still-terrible UI with it's gouge-my-eyes-out=PLEASE fugliness drove more off.

    But the big driver for most I saw over time was the pushiness of MS to get 10 on to people's machines, and the concerns over its phoning home.

    MS, you had a chance to do something better than Windows 7. You blew it. And you've actually done me a favour by bringing a lot of people over to Linux. A hell of a lot of people. People who never again will be MS customers. For that I thank you. Though I would've liked to see a MS OS that improved on 7 in some significant way.

  47. MT Field
    Stop

    Stop

    Dear Microsoft,

    you are no longer a trusted supplier of systems or application software.

    That is all.

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