Microsoft Windows and Lost Man Hours

Real life scenario:

A previous client wants to take me on to work on a project for a few weeks.  Great!  They send me a new user account form to sign, scan and return.  “No biggy” you might think?  Shouldn’t be should it?

However, the Word Document looks like a bomb has hit it when opened in LibreOffice on my Linux Mint workstation.  Hmm.  Here we go.  No bother, I’ll dig out my Windows 10 laptop that I’ve not used in a few months, and open it on there.  Hahahaha.  Yeah right!

I’m immediately plunged into Microsoft/Windows Defender/Windows Update HELL.  Literally nothing works properly, everything’s slow, I plug in my printer and the HP Installer attempts to run to install the drivers – Nope, the OS isn’t having any of that and Windows Defender steps in to stop it.  So I run it as admin, Nope.  Not falling for that either.   Brilliant.  I’m reminded how much I hate Microsoft.  When I need it to do real work, this is my XPerience.  Every. Damn. Time.

Microsoft is protecting me – I should be grateful.  Well I’m not grateful, It’s my laptop, my printer and my form to fill in.  More importantly than that, It’s MY TIME and I’m not being paid.  How many man hours are being wasted across the planet due to Microsoft having to “protect” everyone, making them wait while the system is updated to an acceptable level before functionality is allowed to resume?  It’s a joke.  And it’s really not funny.  Nobody is laughing.

And protecting us from what?  An operating system that is so inherently unsafe and vulnerable by design that an entire economy exists around the fact to protect it from every man and his dog trying to attack and destroy it – and WE are left footing the bill.

A tool that cannot be relied upon is no tool at all.  It’s a hindrance, a nuisance and needs to be thrown out and replaced with a tool that IS reliable.  Leave a Debian Linux disto un-used for a year, then pull it out, run sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade and you’ll be back up and running in literally no time.  In fact, you won’t even need to update – it’ll still let you use it.  It doesn’t ever get in your way.  THAT is a Tool.

I reach for my Android phone, open the email and its attached form in Word for Android, export it as a PDF and upload it to my Cloud storage (MEGA since DropBox announced a lack of support for Linux for file systems other than ext4).

Once uploaded to my cloud storage, it’s immediately synced with all my  other devices, so I’m able to print the PDF from my Linux Mint workstation, sign it, then scan it using Tiny Scanner on my Android phone and email it back to the sender – working entirely around my self-crippled Microsoft Windows 10 laptop, which has been stuck at around 30% apparently “checking for updates” the entire time.

To coin a quote from the Urban Dictionary.  “This Is Bullshit”.

It’s the morning after, and after getting the blue screen on boot that makes us wait for an indeterminate period as updates are installed, after 30% up pops my login screen (Nice to see MS still is struggling with the concept of meaningful percentages when it comes to displaying progress).

OK, Lets see where we’re at anyway…  Oh, hang on.  It’s just shut itself down.  Maybe it’s rebooting.  Nope.  OK, Power on….  Login screen, great.  Log in.  Ah, this is going bette… Ah.  It’s shut down again.

Eight power cycles and a recovery prompt admitting it’s broken and now my laptop that was just a vanilla Windows 10 build that committed the crime of being rarely used is now as useful as a house brick.  Less so actually.

I find myself wondering how often retail stores have to rebuild the display laptops as they must also just die a death after running for a while.

20 years in IT and at one time, a Microsoft Certified Professional and advocate.  So it comes from good authority when I say that Windows 10 is a confusing mess-of-a-user-experience.  An apparent hybrid of a traditional Windows desktop and some newly contrived one-interface-fits-all-devices utter balls up.  It’s all about itself, and not about you and your efficient productivity like it should be.

I don’t even want to dig into the system anymore to understand its quirks and the clever fixes that accompany them – because those fixes aren’t clever.  They shouldn’t need to exist and are only relevant to this incarnation of Windows, they aren’t “skills” that’ll endure.  They’re just a time suck.

Not a problem when I’m being paid 50/hour in a blue chip.  Massive problem when I’m sat at home and would rather have a life.

Even clicking the Start menu and you’re bombarded with distracting tiles that offer tabloid news and consumerism in favour of doing some actual real productive work.

I just can’t believe that this is all “OK” with the many businesses that use Windows on their corporate desktops.  All I see is people earning a wage and man hours lost to Microsoft’s appalling excuse for a “Desktop Operating System”.   I look around the offices wondering what they’re all doing that is of benefit to their employers business.

Has Windows become something other than a “Desktop Operating System”.  Yes it has.  And nobody is benefiting.

Throw it out.


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