Microsoft Vista – The End of an Era

Alas, this will likely be my last Vista rant. I gave it several second chances, stuck with it a few months longer than could be expected of any rational person, about seven months in total. In the end it just wore me down to the point where I decided it was time to upgrade my OS – to Windows XP.

Vista Sucks comic strip

That’s a pretty good cartoon (cite at bottom). Yep, I’ve never been so close to leaving Microsoft completely as I am right now. Not sure that Mac is the answer that I’m looking for, but I do want to learn more about Linux on the desktop.

I’m not going to bore you with the whole story, which actually starts back on my old blog with posts about 1) it can’t find the disk drives, 2) no driver available for a very popular digital video cam, and 3) just general Vista suck-i-ness. Then I quit posting about it because I didn’t want to turn into one of THOSE bloggers.

So here’s the latest (and final) edition. I was in Tennessee last week for a 3 day Web 2.0 summer institute. At the end of the first night I decided to answer affirmatively to Windows Update which was literally begging me to install SP1 to make my Vista experience so much more pleasurable. Now I knew that there had been plenty of issues with installing SP1 in the previous months, but those just had to be resolved since they have had so much time to fix it and there’s no way that Microsoft would let Windows Update automatically push out to me something that was going to cause problems. Right?! Of course not.

I realize that installing a major Windows Update in the middle of a 3-day workshop is the height of stupidity. Actually, I think it’s just short of the top of the mountain. At the top of the stupid mountain sits Microsoft who continues to push out crappy (even damaging) product updates and somehow expect the users to figure out what will work and what won’t. So who’s the most stupid? Me, or Microsoft? That’s a rhetorical question.

Again I will spare you the details. Let’s just say that I was never able to boot my computer again during the last two days of workshops when I was making five presentations. After I returned home I had one of our very skilled (seriously) technicians get Vista up and running again. That lasted about half a day and then I am met with the blue screen of death and several problems such as no wireless driver any more and a whole multitude of other problems. Imagine how bad this would be for someone who doesn’t have a staff of I.T. folks in his own department.

Finally, we decide that it is not the worth the huge number of labor hours that are going to be required to possibly get Vista running properly again. Tomorrow morning I will have my convertible laptop/tablet back in my possession – running a bright and shiny installation of Windows XP. Still, I know that XP is not the long-term answer (although they are now promising support until 2014) so I will continue to evaluate options that will eventually lead me off Microsoft OS platforms altogether.

“There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.” If that reference doesn’t mean anything to you, then you’re the only person in the connected world who hasn’t seen this. That same sentiment perfectly sums up my attitude right now about the Redmond Demon.

Photo/comic courtesy of mringlein, Creative Commons licensing, Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 Generic

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