Thursday, April 24, 2014

Nasty Surprise - Thanks Micro$oft!

To hell with Micro$oft, we are getting royally “scr***d” over. “We” here being every home user with Windows 8! We have to decide if we want to stay on version 8.0 or upgrade to 8.1 and then to 8.1 Update.

Watch the capital U in Windows 8.1 Update, it is a major distinction, sort of like of but not quit like a service pack. What is Micro$oft thinking - if somebody is thinking there at all?

There is no big harm in staying with Windows 8.0, Micro$oft is going to supply at least two more years of updates. But after these two years? Not a word ... yet.

Totally out of the blue Micro$oft has decided that Windows 8 users need Windows 8.1 and on top of that 8.1 Update if we want to receive future updates. No warning, no information that gives us time to prepare, nothing. You can read the truly puzzling, no almost confusing details here.

Remember, these Updates are mandatory for the average non-geek home computer user.

Micro$oft defenders put it like this: “If you want security patch C, you need to have installed security patch B first. In this case, security patch B just happens to be the 8.1 Update.” What a joke, what an arbitrary and confusing labeling system!

While there is some merit in above point of view, it overlooks three important facts:

  1. Many people are having problems installing Windows 8.1 and Windows 8.1 Update — and Micro$oft hasn’t fixed the problems.

    Not the least problem being the huge size of 8.1 (ca. 8.2GB!) and of 8.1 Update (ca. 890MB); it is a pain to download that on “slow”, in our area regular DSL connections.

  2. Windows 8.1 Update is a lot more than a security patch. It includes some significant changes to the Windows User Interface.n The latter luckily is no problem for my customers because of the way I set up Windows 8 computers.

  3. Micro$oft is going to continue making patches for Windows 8.1. It just won’t give these updates to the average Windows user. That hurts.
And as if to add insult to injury Micro$oft puts a deadline of May 13th on having Windows 8.1 Update installed!

It all boils down to trust, trust that Micro$oft is recklessly playing with.

And here is an important side note: The whole process takes a lot of time. Basic DSL connections and slower computers will be greatly affected. Brace yourself and prepare for many hours of work. Thank you Micro$oft!

For anybody with original Windows 8 and wanting to update to 8.1 I hope to be able to amend this article with instructions on how to get from Windows 8 to 8.1 and then to 8.1 Update. Hopefully I can do this on the upcoming weekend. Please stay tuned and check back if you are interested.

Update 4/25/2014:

For users with Windows 8:
  • If you want to avoid the pain of updating to 8.1 you can stay on Windows 8.
  • If you want the newest and greatest then you should update to 8.1 and then to 8.1 Update. Please consider the implications, especially the extreme time it takes to download over 9GB of updates on average Internet connections!
  •  On slower computers the installations can easily take two to four hours!
For users with Windows 8.1:
  • Micro$oft has made that decision for you: You have to download and install 8.1 Upate if you want to receive future security updates via Windows Update. 
As usual I welcome suggestions and comments right here in the blog.

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