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  • Thurrott: Stop the relentless release of new Windows versions

    Posted on February 12th, 2018 at 10:23 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Another great post in (paywalled) Thurrott.com premium:

    Apple will slow down the addition of new features to iOS in order to focus on quality. This is exactly the strategy that Microsoft needs to adopt. In fact, it’s years overdue.

    Amen, bro.

    One little observation. Paul says that Microsoft will soon be forced into a three-year support cycle and “at that point, we’re pretty much back to where we started.” Which is correct, but there’s a subtlety: When Windows as a Service gets out to three years of support, there will be six (or more!) versions of Win10 being supported.

    We’re already on two years with 1511, 1607, 1703 and 1709.

    Version Released End of service Days
    Home/Pro Ent/ Ed  for Ent
    Win10 1709 17-Oct-17 9-Apr-19 8-Oct-19 721
    Win10 1703 5-Apr-17 9-Oct-18 9-Apr-19 734
    Win10 1607 2-Aug-16 10-Apr-18 9-Oct-18 798
    Win10 1511 10-Nov-15 10-Oct-17 10-Apr-18 882
    Win10 1507 9-Jul-15 9-May-17 670

    Microsoft’s digging itself into a support nightmare even worse than the one we have today.

    If that helped, take a second to support AskWoody on Patreon

    Home Forums Thurrott: Stop the relentless release of new Windows versions

    This topic contains 62 replies, has 22 voices, and was last updated by  anonymous 5 months, 3 weeks ago.

    • Author
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    • #166791 Reply

      woody
      Da Boss

      Another great post in (paywalled) Thurrott.com premium: Apple will slow down the addition of new features to iOS in order to focus on quality. This is
      [See the full post at: Thurrott: Stop the relentless release of new Windows versions]

      8 users thanked author for this post.
    • #166798 Reply

      WildBill
      AskWoody Lounger

      Will Microsoft ever realize that “Windows as a service” is just a BIG pain in the butt & it will be easier to go back to Home, Pro & Enterprise (maybe Education too) & Service Pack updates? Maybe never?! As long as “head-in-the-Cloud” Nadella is CEO…

      Windows 8.1, 64-bit, Group A.
      Wild Bill Rides Again...

      7 users thanked author for this post.
    • #166799 Reply

      Cybertooth
      AskWoody Lounger

      I’m on this side of Paul’s paywall. Question: going forward, how would Microsoft end up supporting six or more versions of Windows 10 if they went to a three-year release schedule?

      Maybe it’s a definitions issue, but to my mind a three-year release schedule means one new version released every three years, compared to what they’re doing now which is releasing new versions every six months. So, over time, on a 3-year schedule the number of versions being supported is bound to go down. No?

       

      • #166806 Reply

        woody
        Da Boss

        I probably should call it a three-year support cycle. With WaaS, Microsoft releases two versions per year. Microsoft recently extended support for Enterprise SKUs to two years, and it’s likely (IMHO) that they’ll be forced to extend that support even farther. Thus, six different versions.

    • #166802 Reply

      Microfix
      AskWoody MVP

      Thurrott is bang on the money! IMHO

      Linux distro’s are 9 month (testers) or LTR of 2 years (stable) IIRC, that is long enough surely. Personally I choose LTR versions that works brilliantly with a great timescale. The timescales of release in W10 are too short..

      | 2x Group A- W8.1x64 | Group A+ Linux x64 Hybrid | Group B W7x64 Pro | Group W XP Pro
        No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created IT - AE
      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #166957 Reply

        lurks about
        AskWoody Lounger

        LTR for Ubuntu and Mint  have 5 years of support with a release every 2 years. But as you note, at least 2 years without having to even consider a version bump.

      • #166967 Reply

        Ascaris
        AskWoody MVP

        Ubuntu LTS releases are supported for five years.  Mint releases are supported for the same period of time as the Ubuntu LTS release they’re based upon, so it’s up to five years.  That’s not as long as pre-10 Windows releases, of course, but then Linux distros have little reason to try to reinvent the wheel every few years to get people to buy the new version (like model year changes in cars).  Any change is likely to be driven by a genuine need, or at least a perceived one, rather than marketing “needs.”  It’s not absolute, though; an argument could be made that Ubuntu’s Unity and GNOME 3’s similarly Windows 8/10-like “one UI to rule them all” changes were as much about marketing in this “touch-oriented age” as was Windows 10 itself.

        With Linux, though, you get a choice if the desktop environment devs or the distro maintainers go off in some weird direction you don’t want to follow.  Mint’s Cinnamon is a fork of GNOME 3, but with the wacky UI changes reverted.  If you didn’t like the Ubuntu move to Unity, there are all kinds of other DEs you can use instead.  With Windows, you get no choice.

        In other words, Linux distro upgrades are typically a whole lot less traumatic than Windows upgrades, making the five year support period (of Ubuntu, at least) a lot easier to tolerate than it would be in Windows.

        3 users thanked author for this post.
        • #167020 Reply

          anonymous

          @ascaris

          Linux distros are free to use. Windows is not free to use = Windows is paid OS software. “Apples and oranges”.

          Users pay M$ Windows license fees. One of the benefits of paying M$ is 10 years of LTS support from M$ = a great advantage over the 5 years of LTS support from the major free Linux distros like Ubuntu.
          LTS support requires quite a lot of resources in staff and time/effort.

          If Win 10 had remained similar to Win 7/8.1, many of the users would willingly upgrade to Win 10 for free or otherwise, i.e. without the forced auto-updates, auto-upgrades and Telemetry collection.

          • #167025 Reply

            Ascaris
            AskWoody MVP

            They’re both operating systems, each with its own costs and benefits.  They’re not apples and oranges.  If paid support is your desire, there are Linux versions that offer that, like RHEL and certain versions of Ubuntu that have even longer than 5 years with a paid agreement with Canonical.  I’m mostly writing from a consumer standpoint, though; the Microsoft support we’re talking about generally refers to the length of time that a given version will receive updates.

            Windows versions prior to 10 have not been one singular monolithic update chain.  Win XP had three service packs; Vista had two; 7 had one.  Windows 8 had one by the name of 8.1.  Each of those updates is easily equivalent to a Mint or Ubuntu LTS version in terms of the changes it brings, so you’re not really getting anything much different than a ten year period of time where you end up having at least two versions of Ubuntu or Mint during that span.  You’d have had two versions of 7 or  8 during the ten years as well.  The big difference is that there’s no “you’re out of time, now pay up” deadline at the end of it.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #167027 Reply

              anonymous

              @ Ascaris

              No, Service Packs for Windows XP/Vista/7/8 are unlike new LTS Versions of Ubuntu that come every 2 years or new non-LTS Versions of Win 10 that come every 6 months because the Service Packs came as an irregular update of a few hundred MBs while new Versions of Ubuntu/LM and Win 10 come normally as an ISO file of 1.6GB and 4GB respectively. The latter fact is not disproved by the availability of in-place upgrades for Ubuntu/LM and Win 10 which is often not reliable as compared to a clean install.
              Eg … https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=5842 (Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 (KB976932) )

              Service Packs in Windows were created mainly for the purpose of reducing the huge number of important updates(= about 500MB of updates in Win 7 SP1) that have to be installed after a clean install of Windows. This “feature” was especially helpful for the OEMs who have to preinstall Windows on millions of new computers.

              Win XP/Vista/7/8(= released about every 3 years) were more like Ubuntu 10.04/12.04/14.04/16.04(= released every 2 years) and Win 10 Version 1507/1511/1607/1703/1709(= released every 6 months).

              Even though free, Linux distros lost out to Windows during the 1990s and 2000s mainly because they were late(= 1991) to the party and not very user-friendly to the average computer users, in terms of GUI and device driver support.
              Windows 1.0 was released in 1985, whereas the first Linux distro was FreeBSD 1.0, released in 1993.
              .
              Yes, Ubuntu and Red Hat do offer paid support but only mostly enterprises/companies and professionals who want to avoid paying M$ for hefty Windows licensing fees may opt for it. Real facts prove that 90% of enterprises and professionals still opted for paid support from M$ for Windows.
              .
              If we want to compare Apples to Apples, we should compare free Android(based on Linux) from Google and free WindowsPhone/Win 10 Mobile from M$. Both are free Mobile OS software and support is also free from both companies.
              In this case, M$ lost out to Google because they were late to the party and they did not license out their free Mobile OS to the various OEMs, just like what Apple did with their MacOS during the early 1990s.

              1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #167040 Reply

              anonymous

              @ Ascaris

              Win 10 Version 1507/1511/1607/1703/1709 which were released every 6 months and supported by M$ for only 18 months, are very much like the regular Ubuntu Version 16.04/16.10/17.04/17.10 which were also released every 6 months and supported by Canonical Inc for only 9 months(except for the 1st LTS Version released every 2 years which are supported for 5 years, eg Ubuntu 12.04/14.04/16.04).

              The regular 6-monthly Ubuntu releases, ie Ubuntu 16.10/17.04/17.10 non-LTS, were to cater for the latest software features and hardware/devices, security updates and bug fixes. It is mostly Ubuntu users who like to stay on the bleeding-edge of software features, buy the latest hardware and become Beta-testers who would install the Ubuntu releases every 6 months.
              While many of the rest of the Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based(eg LM) users prefer to install the Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based LTS releases every 2 years or 5 years – similar to most Win 3.1, Win 95, Win XP and Win 7 users.

              M$’s Win 10 Version releases are just copying Canonical’s Ubuntu releases.

              The difference is that M$ force their Win 10 users to stay on their 6-monthly release track whereas Canonical Inc do not force their Ubuntu users to stay on their 6-monthly release track = M$ force their Win 10 users to use their bleeding-edge software features(eg Edge and Cortana), buy new hardware regularly(eg every 3 years?) and become their Beta-testers, ie whether they like it or not = Win 10 may be like a train-wreck waiting to happen.

              1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #167197 Reply

            RamRod
            AskWoody Lounger

            I did not give MS $ for WinX. Nor will I. I bought a computer from Lenovo. Lenovo paid MS an undisclosed amount of $ to provide WinX on their computers. Thus to use my Lenovo computer out of the box I have to agree to a software use licensing agreement with MS (the EULA). Remember, in this day of the internet and information harvesters, if it’s free, you are the product. MS sells my information that the license agreement gives them the right to harvest from my Lenovo computer, and any other information I store (OneDrive) on their computers. As I said in an earlier post, I don’t want to be in that group of people that sells themselves.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #167257 Reply

              Ascaris
              AskWoody MVP

              If it makes you feel any better, it’s likely that the Windows license doesn’t add much, if anything, to the cost of the PC.  Apologies to any that have already heard this one (I’ve mentioned it before), but when Dell elected to begin selling pre-equipped Linux laptops some years ago, people were shocked to find that it cost slightly more than the Windows version of the same PC, not less.  Dell supposedly remarked that the “partner” trial versions that they install on Windows PCs offsets the cost of Windows, and in this case, slightly (in the 20s of dollars) subsidizes the PC.  Since the crapware is not available in Linux form, the Linux installation is clean– and unsubsidized.

              I recently bought a low end Dell laptop with Windows 10 Home, and it was right in line, cost wise, with similarly-specced Chromebooks.  I did a drive image of the mostly virginal Windows 10 install (I hadn’t removed anything yet, but I did go through all of the initial setup stuff), then wiped it and put Mint on it. My first Windows-free PC, right there!

              The Dell was my third laptop in a row to be relieved of its original OS on or close to the day I received it.  The second was my 2008 Asus laptop with Vista Home, which I replaced with XP Pro, and the first was my 2005ish HP/Compaq with XP Home, which I also replaced with XP Pro.

              Even my first laptop didn’t keep its original OS… it came with the maligned Windows ME, which I actually liked.  It was manufactured before the release of XP, but Compaq (not then part of HP) had slipped an upgrade CD into the box when it was available, leaving it to the user to install it and put the nifty little sticker on the bottom of the case.  I was skeptical, but soon my curiosity got the better of me, so I imaged the drive (using Norton Ghost or Acronis True Image 6 at that time) and installed XP.

              I found Luna appalling, but I soon found the option to turn it off, and when I saw how much more stable XP was than 9x, I knew I was not going back to ME.

              The “Pro” upgrade to XP Home was all about EFS.  After having had one laptop (my second, in between the Compaqs… the only one that kept its preinstalled OS, XP Home) stolen with all of my personal stuff on it, I now insist upon having my personal stuff encrypted, and Microsoft decided that only businesses (ostensibly the targets of the Pro version of Windows) would have reason to have their personal stuff secured from prying eyes, for some reason.  Why would mere consumers like me ever have any need for that?

              2 users thanked author for this post.
            • #167291 Reply

              anonymous

              RamRod wrote; … “I did not give MS $ for WinX. Nor will I. I bought a computer from Lenovo. Lenovo paid MS an undisclosed amount of $ to provide WinX on their computers.”

              That’s not true, eg …
              https://www.novatech.co.uk/laptop/home/

              No operating system £279.98

              Windows 10 Home Value Notebook £339.98

            • #167312 Reply

              RamRod
              AskWoody Lounger

              My point is that no $ changed hands directly between MS and myself. I paid Lenovo for the computer. I knew it had an OS on it, and I knew that OS was WinX. I have no knowledge of the arrangements Lenovo and MS have for placing the MS OS on Lenovo hardware. The other OS choices I had when buying new hardware were Apple and Linux. I understand that MS no longer makes much if any $ from sales of Windows. They make their money from the enterprise services they sell, and from the information harvested from Windows users that they sell to…?

            • #167329 Reply

              anonymous

              RamRod wrote; … ” I have no knowledge of the arrangements Lenovo and MS have for placing the MS OS on Lenovo hardware. “

              This is public knowledge, ie buyers of new OEM Windows computers pay M$ indirectly through OEM Windows Volume Licensing = the cost of the preinstalled OEM Win 10 Home license is already included in the price tag.
              “Ignorance of the Law is no excuse” . Eg …
              https://www.onmsft.com/news/new-windows-10-editions-windows-10-in-s-mode-what-you-need-to-know-about-this-weekends-revelations

              Note that while Microsoft is making these delineations for OEMs, there will apparently only be 3 Windows 10 Home Editions: Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Home Advanced, and Windows 10 Home in S Mode. In other words, while OEMs will be able to pay less to put Home on a low end PC, it will still be Windows 10 Home whether it’s Entry, Value, or Core, etc.

              Low end PC =
              Entry: Intel Atom/Celeron/Pentium ≤ 4GB RAM & ≤ 32GB SSD AND ≤ 14.1” screen size (NB), ≤ 11.6” (2in1, Tablet), ≥ 17” AiO

              Pricing for the SKUs is as follows: Advanced ($101), Core + ($86.66), Core ($65.45), Value ($45), and Entry ($25).

            • #167580 Reply

              woody
              Da Boss

              I don’t know of any instance where Microsoft has sold harvested data. AFAIK, they use it for their own marketing efforts.

            • #167637 Reply

              Sessh
              AskWoody Lounger
            • #167704 Reply

              MrJimPhelps
              AskWoody MVP

              I don’t know of any instance where Microsoft has sold harvested data. AFAIK, they use it for their own marketing efforts.

              If they don’t, then they will never be able to compete with Google, even though that’s exactly what it appears that they are trying to do.

              Group "L" (Linux Mint)
              with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
      • #167309 Reply

        anonymous

        @ Microfix

        Canonical Inc releases new Versions of Ubuntu every 6 months, eg Ubuntu 16.04/16.10/17.04/17.10/18.04 . Only the first releases of even-numbered years are LTS, eg Ubuntu 12.04/14.04/16.04/18.04 LTS = supported for 5 years(prior to Ubuntu 12.04, it was 3 years). The others are only supported for 9 months(prior to Ubuntu 13.04 it was 18 months).

        Ubuntu LTS releases are followed by Point releases every 6 months, eg Ubuntu 16.04.1/16.04.2/16.04.3. The Point releases cater for newer hardware support, security updates and bug fixes. Linux Mint versions are based on Ubuntu LTS Point releases, eg LM 18.2 LTS is based on Ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS.

        The other non-LTS Ubuntu releases cater for the newest features, newest hardware support, security updates and bug fixes. …
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubuntu_version_history

        Seems, M$’s Win 10’s relentless 6-monthly release cycle is copying Canonical’s non-LTS Ubuntu release cycle.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #167455 Reply

          Microfix
          AskWoody MVP

          IIRC, obviously which i didn’t, thanks for the clarification #167309 🙂

          W10 just seems like a waste of time and effort, especially given that individual tweaks and settings post-upgrade will be undone in such a short timescale compared to alternative OSes. Ain’t got time to faff about with this W10 OS anymore, I’ve got better things to do with my time. W8.1 is the next best thing MS has produced once customised, hardened and tweaked accordingly and at least it will do what Microsft I want it to do.

          Where do you want to go today?

          | 2x Group A- W8.1x64 | Group A+ Linux x64 Hybrid | Group B W7x64 Pro | Group W XP Pro
            No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created IT - AE
          • This reply was modified 6 months ago by  Microfix.
    • #166803 Reply

      Jan K.
      AskWoody Lounger

      Didn’t he forget the variants?

      S-version, Home, Pro, Workstation, Education, Enterprise? N? IoT??

      I think, it’s great and surely must be an easy system to maintain!

    • #166810 Reply

      woody
      Da Boss

      Didn’t he forget the variants?

      This is at the highest possible level. He didn’t talk about Home and Pro and Enterprise, the S’s (er, S Modes) of all of the above, Server SKUs, Ns, and on and ons.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #166814 Reply

      MrJimPhelps
      AskWoody MVP

      I don’t refer to the current version of Windows as “Windows 10”; I use the actual version number. In other words, the current version of Windows is “Windows 1709”. The previous versions of Windows were “Windows 1703”, “Windows 1607”, “Windows 1511”, and “Windows 1507”.

      The inclusion of “10” in the name is meant only to deceive the public into thinking that they are dealing with one version of Windows with service packs (service pack 1709, service pack 1703, service pack 1607, service pack 1511, and service pack 1507), in other words, like Windows used to be.

      Group "L" (Linux Mint)
      with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #166821 Reply

      anonymous

      Well, beside different ‘features’ available for each ‘new’ version, there’s just one Windows 10 version. Actually, most of the code in Windows 10 is still code running in Windows 7/8/8.1. And yes, Microsoft only ‘supports’ the latest Windows 10 version shipped. Shipping updates to previous versions is no brainer at all since they match all versions released.

    • #166841 Reply

      ryegrass
      AskWoody Lounger

      This is slightly off topic, but speaking of new features: “ars Technica” reported today that Windows Defender advanced threat protection is coming to Windows 7, and 8.1 .

      https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2018/02/windows-defender-advanced-threat-protection-coming-to-windows-7-and-8-1/

      5 users thanked author for this post.
      • #166935 Reply

        MikeFromMarkham
        AskWoody Lounger

        According to this article – https://www.thurrott.com/windows/windows-10/152168/microsoft-bringing-windows-defender-atp-windows-7-8-1 – “The new solution will only be available to businesses that are moving to Windows 10, and not all businesses with Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 will be able to use it.”

      • #166947 Reply

        anonymous

        Gad! What will Big Brother be blocking inappropriately?! Win7 Pro x64 and trust Kaspersky Internet Security FAR more than M$ not to tamper with my programs… 🙁 Time to turn off Defender?

    • #166876 Reply

      Noel Carboni
      AskWoody MVP

      “ars Technica” reported today that Windows Defender advanced threat protection is coming to Windows 7, and 8.1

      That, plus Microsoft’s policies over the past few years, invariably made me think of this: Windows Defender not as a security package but as another means of forwarding Microsoft’s hidden agenda.

      I sure wish we could get back to the days where software was valuable for what IT did, not for what it could do for the company pushing it.

      -Noel

      5 users thanked author for this post.
    • #166887 Reply

      Ian Gerald
      AskWoody Lounger

      I have two laptops. A Lenovo Ideapad and a HP Pavilion. I use the MS update toll wushuhide on both for preventing feature updates until they have been tested and proven reliable. I am currently running build 1703 and plan to continue using that build until it is no longer supported. My previous build was 1511 and I never bothered with the anniversary update 1607. As a result, I have never has any issues with my cumulative updates each month.

      IGS

    • #166893 Reply

      jescott418
      AskWoody Lounger

      So I thought the whole ideal of Win 10 was less fragmentation of versions? I would say Microsoft has completely reversed that and many said from the start trying to keep enterprise in this rapid release cycle would never work. In fact we have home users with hardware that’s simply stuck with no ability to upgrade. Yeah its a mess alright.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #166902 Reply

      EP
      AskWoody Lounger

      at times I wonder woody, why can’t MS use the same release schedule for the Home, Pro, Workstation, Education, Enterprise, S editions of Win10 like MS did for the LTSB or LTSC versions.

    • #167016 Reply

      anonymous

      Windows Update and the Rapid Twice-per-Year Win 10 Upgrade cycle (= WaaS) have been added by M$ as their financial “weapons”, eg processor-blocking updates and only 18 months of support for each new Version of Win 10.

      Previously, i.e. with Win XP/Vista/7/8.x, M$ only used Windows Licensing fees, esp Volume Licensing fees and Software Assurance/Insurance “premiums”, as their financial “weapons”, e.g. https://www.onmsft.com/news/new-windows-10-editions-windows-10-in-s-mode-what-you-need-to-know-about-this-weekends-revelations

      Note that while Microsoft is making these delineations for OEMs, there will apparently only be 3 Windows 10 Home Editions: Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Home Advanced, and Windows 10 Home in S Mode. In other words, while OEMs will be able to pay less to put Home on a low end PC, it will still be Windows 10 Home whether it’s Entry, Value, or Core, etc.

      Low end PC =
      Entry: (US$25 per OEM license) Intel Atom/Celeron/Pentium ≤ 4GB RAM & ≤ 32GB SSD AND ≤ 14.1” screen size (NB), ≤ 11.6” (2in1, Tablet), ≥ 17” AiO

      2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #167026 Reply

        Elly
        AskWoody MVP

        I made the mistake, once, of getting Win 7 Starter for my daughter, on a low end net-book. It looked cute, and Win 7 was great on my desktop, and I thought we were getting an upgradeable version… but it caused no end of frustration for her, and me, because it wasn’t really Win 7. It just couldn’t do what she needed it to do, and actually it was the processing speed that was limiting as well, so upgrading still wouldn’t get us what she needed. Inexpensive and not repairable are actually red lights to purchasing something for me, now.

        Evaluating an OS based on my hands on experience. I don’t see any of the W10 Home versions as useful to me… they are spying, advertisement-pushing, neutered operating systems that might be suitable for checking e-mail and social media… for people who already put their whole life out there. W10 Pro has been degraded as well. The other versions, that might have some value, are not offered to home users at all. Taken along with the forced, lock-step, upgrading, W10 is pretty much a disappointment, in any form of Home… Home Advanced? Really? It doesn’t matter what the name, Microsoft has disrespected me for too long. Can I skip updates that cause my system problems and update on my own schedule? Can I turn off all telemetry? Can I eliminate any programs or apps that I don’t want from showing up on my system? Can I keep all my data locally, out of the cloud (other people’s servers)? Can I customize my desktop and tweak my system, and have it stay the way I have it set after each and every update? Can I keep using my current, hard working programs? I need adaptive helps, will they keep working?

        I don’t have a single yes vote on any of those items, and they are the things that really matter to me…

        But…

        If there were yes answers to the things that matter to me, I just can’t take the speed of changes and the need to retweak everything all over again. I’d buy another Win 7 license for 5-10 more years of stable support, but I will never rent an OS or programs or apps. I don’t need or want new features, I just want what I have to keep working… and I’d like to be able to replace what I have now, if something happens to my precious laptop before my end of days…

        It is too late to stop my relentless marching towards an open source operating system… even if Paul Thurrott’s message gets through to Microsoft. They haven’t indicated that they are listening, despite all the data that gets sent to them…

        Win 7 Home, 64 bit, Group B

        5 users thanked author for this post.
        • #167053 Reply

          anonymous

          +1.  HMcF.

          Indeed, “speed of changes” is a major issue.

          Info: my main machine is Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit, Group B.

          Peace be unto Woody (who doesn’t recommend Windows Update Mini Tool, for reasons which I do completely understand):  I do use WUMT on an experimental Win10 desktop (currently 1703) to try to control what gets downloaded and when.  During the recent MS-DEFCON 3 period, I asked WUMT to check for updates on the Win10 machine, and it offered the feature upgrade from 1703 to 1709 — at a download size (wait for it) 192 GB.  My monthly data cap is 5BG, so 192 GB is more than a year’s allowance (even if I was allowed to store up monthly allowances for future use — which I’m not), for a single SAC 6-monthly upgrade.  This is intolerable.  I grant that the calculation (by WUMT) may have been wrong, but this sort of mischief by the regular update channels really is unacceptable.

          • #167063 Reply

            anonymous

            HMcF again.  Apologies for a typo: my monthly data cap is 15 GB not 5GB.  But my main point stands.  Thank you for reading.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #167054 Reply

      Canadian Tech
      AskWoody MVP

      How is the new Windows numbering system any different than Windows 11, Windows 12, Windows 13….. Windows 49???

      CT

      3 users thanked author for this post.
      • #167177 Reply

        Jan K.
        AskWoody Lounger

        Four digits springs to mind? 😀

        Plus you can add a cool names like “Creators Fall Edition” to it!!

        Choosing only two digits, suggests it’s a new version, which it… isn’t…

        Oh, wait… it is new, isn’t it?

        Perhaps we should just add the question to the ever-growing list of things, we don’t quite understand Microsoft do?

        4 users thanked author for this post.
    • #167055 Reply

      anonymous

      You know what, s*** it. I’m just not going to install any more upgrades from now on. I’m done with Microsoft. It’s taking too much effort to update my computer AND make sure that everything I need to work WORKS at the end of the day. I don’t even think Microsoft knows what they’re doing with this WaaS. Windows was never designed to be sold as a service; it was supposed to be a stable OS that you could count on to work tomorrow. Well, not anymore — in their bad attempt at trying to be like Android, they actually made it WORSE than anything else I’ve seen before. This is not the Microsoft that I have known, this is not the Windows that I have known.

      Edit for content

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #167072 Reply

      AlexEiffel
      AskWoody MVP

      The thing is,  a once a year upgrade makes sense from the perspective of a company that needs to push new things to sell its stuff. Take Apple and IOS. The once a year big upgrade to IOS helps them sell their new phone. What if you could only buy a faster phone with nothing new? Less sexy in the mind of the public. They need to push fluff, just for the sake of selling something new, appealing to an unconscious desire for novelty. Animaloji? Really, you need that enough to buy a new 1000$ phone? No, but the whole thing work. Not saying things should be that way, but since it works, they do it. And since people buy it, they continue. When did Apple produce a lower priced Ipad instead of their increasingly more expensive Ipads? When people stopped buying them for a while because they were happy enough with their current model and they didn’t have incentives like hidden costs in a phone package to change it. It was a new product: Ipad with less advanced technology and no new feature, but at an attractive price. This met a need.

      Now, it is a dangerous game because if you push too much stuff and reliability suffers or obsolescence seems too well programmed, people starts to get mad and might consider not upgrading or moving to something else. Why pay a premium for a phone that drains your battery and has all kind of annoying issues? They need to push as little feature as possible, just enough to entice buyers to make a move, without compromising what have made the past success of the product.

      I find IOS is getting uselessly more complex, making it harder to disable everything you don’t need. I disabled background apps and everything I could, but I see there is still some stuff running in the background from apps, so clearly we don’t have the full story about what is going on. The phone gets hot and the battery drains fast sometimes, and no it is not because of the pictures work that happens in the background.

      I am curious what would happen to a company that would only sell the same reliable, highly functional, stripped down, clean, higher battery duration due to improvements in chip efficiency, fast phone, year over year. You could have a system of extensions for it, à la Firefox, where if you just want the basic business phone, be it. Not sure if that many people would use it. Maybe more in business, but then again, some business users also want a consumer phone in the same package, maybe that is why in part Blackberry lost the market to Apple. Many business users don’t want two phones and they were not that excited by their business phone. I know there is many other reasons Blackberry failed, especially bad execution of a sound strategy of having a split personality phone with Android support, but I think the point about novelty and consumers stand. For a work desktop PC, the company just decides what employees get and often it ends up with a bad 1366×768 laptop with a 5400rpm Hd that dies in 2-3 years. Different world.

      The problem with Windows and its twice a year release is it is not related to any need. Microsoft doesn’t need to sell Windows to consumers. You buy it when you buy a PC. And you don’t want to change your PC every 2 years. There is a mismatch here. Maybe they want to change this perception but it is not going to work. People don’t have the cost of PC hidden in a monthly package that provides them other services like a phone line and data plan. They don’t have improvements in camera that they might want. Tablets have suffered from this problem, PCs are worse. This whole strategy is ridiculously wrong and good sense seems to be a rare commodity in today’s world so I don’t know how long it will take for Microsoft to realize it just doesn’t work.

      Windows 7 is liked and there is no competition to it. People are not going to use Windows 10 instead of their phone or tablet because they find it more cool. When their need is better met by the phone, they use the phone. If they need the PC they use the PC, Windows 7 or 10. You could maybe have made this argument if the continuum idea worked, then having Windows 10 and its whole ecosystem could have provided value to some, but they failed that one so now what is left?

      Microsoft had more of the privacy and reliability in its wallet of strengths. Now, what do they have to offer? Lower grade me-too features for the wrong market?

       

      5 users thanked author for this post.
      • #167094 Reply

        Canadian Tech
        AskWoody MVP

        Alex, consequently, Windows 7 is the last product or service I will every buy from Microsoft. Likely true of 99% of my clients too. They are managed by a bunch of incompetents who have lost their way. The sue sign of how empty that house is (lights are on, nobody at home), is the fact that the vast majority of the people who created Windows 7 have taken their pensions and are off to other places.

        CT

        9 users thanked author for this post.
      • #167096 Reply

        anonymous

        AlexEiffel wrote; … The problem with Windows and its twice a year release is it is not related to any need. Microsoft doesn’t need to sell Windows to consumers. You buy it when you buy a PC.

        The change from releases once-in-3-years in previous Windows to twice-a-year in Win 10 by M$ is mainly to target Enterprise  and not Consumer .

        Before the release of Win 10 in 2015, many companies bought and were using Win 7 Ent Volume Licenses with a life expectancy of about 10 years, ie until its EOL in 2020, before they need to upgrade.
        ___ With Win 10’s twice-a-year release, such companies can no longer buy and use Win 10 Ent VL for about 10 years until EOL, unless they pay M$ double the money for Win 10 Ent LTSC VL or pay M$ for Software Assurance/Upgrade Insurance’s annual “premiums”. Unlike Consumers’ Win 10 Home and Pro, Win 10 Ent VL cannot be upgraded without SA or subscriptions.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #167261 Reply

        Cascadian
        AskWoody Lounger

        AlexEiffel, I agree very much and enjoy the way you make a point. I also understand the business sense and most of the technological pacing you discuss.

        But it also brought other things to mind. Not good comparisons, and off topic. But substitute just a few words and you are communicating the same ‘give them just enough to keep them coming back’ approach used by drug pushers, con-artists, domination groomers, and those are just the examples I could find printable names for. There are more that I would rather not name. It is an abuse cycle recognizable in relationships defined by an imbalance of power.

        This does not mean that any specific corporation is breaking any laws. It might even be accepted practice within ethical boundaries. That is not my decision to make. Just sharing the thoughts that occurred to me while reading your post.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #167079 Reply

      Ascaris
      AskWoody MVP

      Oops, hit thanks again when I meant reply… not that I mind thanking, but it’s just confusing when I am aiming to disagree.

      I think we’re talking about different things.  I’m referring to the disruption that comes from having things that used to work stop working, as Windows 10 has done with great regularity lately.  It doesn’t make much difference that Windows has in-place upgrades that cause this kind of breakage… breakage is breakage.  When the Clover Trail laptop users found themselves out of luck because their laptops, which GWX had approved as fully Windows 10 compatible, no longer had the requisite drivers to run Creator’s Update, even though Windows 10 drivers for Clover Trail were readily available.  The owners or users of these laptops didn’t find it convenient that they were able to do in-place upgrades rather than install cleanly; the lack of compatible drivers meant it simply didn’t matter.

      The very next update, the troublesome Fall Creator’s Update, brought a warning from Razer that it should not be installed on any Razer PC, since all of them had Windows 10 drivers that were incompatible with this newest version of Windows 10.  I would imagine that in time this one was rectified, though the Clover Trail one never really was, as Intel simply said that no more drivers would ever be forthcoming, and that was that.  The point is that stuff got broken because Microsoft decided to break it, again.

      It’s happened so often that the developer of Classic Shell bowed out.  Every new version of 10 had all kinds of breakage and incompatibility issues, and he decided he’d had enough.

      When I ported my Windows 8.1 theme to 10 back when I was still running 10 on one of my PCs, one of the updates completely broke it… it was (as far as I could tell) still installed, the theme-enabling mods still intact, yet it didn’t work.  I never investigated it fully; I could see that this Windows 10 roller coaster was not going to work for me.

      All of those breakages came from Windows 10 updates that were installed in-place.  It didn’t make any difference; to the people so afflicted, they were still game-breaking changes.  How the destructive changes came to exist on the computer in question isn’t the issue… the point is that if you want to keep current and keep getting security patches, you have to go along with it.  It doesn’t make it any easier to cope with the breakage and the trail of drivers, themes, and programs designed for 10 that no longer work in 10 as it is now.

      4 users thanked author for this post.
    • #167083 Reply

      anonymous

      One reason MS may reconsider the rapid upgrade cycle is that there is at least anecdotal suggestion that it is impeding the adoption od W10 in the enterprise environment. It seems that the IT overhead for enterprises in adapting to this protocol is not appreciated so much by CTOs trying to manage a budget constraint and keep mission critical systems operating reliably.  They prefer extensive compatibility testing on dedicated test platforms before any decision on widespread deployment of upgrades and patches. Microsoft has been encouraging corporate IT to adopt its ring deployment release strategy which has such a proven track record in the consumer market. They basically suggest that a part of the production platform become beta testers, akin to the poor folks who leave Windows ‘automatic update’ enabled. Pick a part of the organization’s computing infrastructure that you are willing to risk and abandon extensive test platform testing for the sake of adapting to MS new protocol. It seems to be a harder sell than MS anticipated and they cannot afford to ignore the concerns of their large enterprise customers. Sometimes it seems like MS is trying to ship its ‘organization chart’ rather than software and practices customers truly desire.

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #167148 Reply

      anonymous

      I hate it so much there are no words for it. Multiple monthly mega updates, bi annual complete new versions. What a waste of my precious time. I steered away from this whole Windows-disaster. There is no future in such a relic from the past. I liked Windows pre-10. But it became an unmanagable monster since then. Every pushed update brings troubles. That was so tyring 🙁 And mind you: I am not Windows-bashing here. I just started to get a physical aversion against the whole ecosystem. And when looking around me, I seem tombe far from the only one. An OS should SERVE a user, not FORCE it to do things he or she don’t want.

      3 users thanked author for this post.
    • #167154 Reply

      anonymous

      Not sure if this exactly “belongs” here but I came across this video from Techquickie about the telemetry Windows 10 collects and sends to Microsoft against your will. In it Linus says: “There have been documented specific cases where Microsoft was honestly using this collected data to fix legitimate problems”.

      Just a wild thought, but maybe that’s why Microsoft thinks it’s okay to plow full steam ahead with their lousy update scheme. I bet they’re thinking, “Oh why bother making sure our upgrades actually WORK before pushing them down the Automatic Update chute when you can just break stuff and fix things later with all the data we collect!”

      I don’t like the idea of you having all of my data at your disposal just so you can break my computer and then “fix” it later. Why inconvenience your customers with all this nonsense when you can be professional and be smart and get it right the first time?!

      3 users thanked author for this post.
      • #167179 Reply

        Ascaris
        AskWoody MVP

        That’s exactly it.  I don’t doubt at all that Microsoft is using all that telemetry data for exactly what they say they do.  When you’re using the end users as beta testers, you need some way to get the beta test data.  The untrained beta testing users don’t know how to narrow the scope of a bug or write a useful bug report, so if not for that telemetry, there wouldn’t be any bug reports at all.

        Even if Microsoft is only using the telemetry data for improving Windows, just as they say it’s for, it doesn’t mean it’s okay.  They still should not be pressing users into service as beta testers; they still should not be attempting to make the decision on behalf of any/every user whether or not to send helpful diagnostic data to MS.  No matter how much MS may claim they need that data, my PC is still my PC, and I have sole authority to dictate what data is sent and to whom.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #167200 Reply

          RamRod
          AskWoody Lounger

          You ceded your authority when you agreed to the EULA. Want it back? Stop using Windows. The only way MS will let you use Windows (legally) is if you agree to their EULA. Otherwise the only alternatives you have are Apple and Linux.

          • #167262 Reply

            Ascaris
            AskWoody MVP

            I never ceded my moral or philosophical authority over my possessions, and those are what I refer to when I’m describing what I find unacceptable about Windows 10.  EULA or not, I know what it does; I was not suggesting that MS should be taken to task in a court of law, the only place where the EULA means anything at all.

            Even then, it remains to be seen exactly where the line is on shrinkwrap contracts… while courts have upheld their validity in a general sense (unfortunately), how far that will go has not, as yet, been decided.  If Microsoft decided to put a clause into the EULA that said they could come to my house and take whatever of my things they want if I agree to the EULA, it’s a good bet that no court is going to give that their stamp of approval.  That being the case, it’s evident that just writing “all your base are belong to us” in the EULA doesn’t necessarily make it so.

            It’s also interesting to note that a EULA isn’t really a license.  It’s a contract.  A license simply means that the holder of a copyright or patent agrees to permit someone else to use whatever it is that we’re talking about.  All a license can do is exempt the licensee from copyright laws and liability; it cannot impose any restrictions on how the product is used, nor can it grant Microsoft any right to scoop up your personal data or any such thing.

            To do all that requires a contract… and that little factoid doesn’t play into their whole “you’re only licensing our software, not buying it” screed that they use to quash any hint of the customer having any control over anything.  I had to sign a contract to buy my car and my house, but no one’s suggesting that I’ve really only licensed them.  I don’t have the right to make my own Toyota Camrys, for example, when I buy a Toyota Camry (which would require a license for the patented design), but the one that I may own is most certainly mine to do with as I please (subject to contractual limitations while there’s a lien, but once it’s fully paid for, it’s mine alone).

            3 users thanked author for this post.
            • #167314 Reply

              RamRod
              AskWoody Lounger

              I most certainly understand your POV, and legally you opinion sounds valid if not outright attractive. I’m cheering for you. In the meantime, just exactly what/which data of yours on your computer is MS helping itself to? That’s my point – we don’t know and MS won’t tell us. Nor will they allow us to simply opt out. I share your distaste and indignation. I feel helpless to do anything about it except to change my computing paradigm by switching platforms.

              2 users thanked author for this post.
            • #167456 Reply

              Ascaris
              AskWoody MVP

              Well, I am not a lawyer, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

              As for Windows 10… as you say, the choice we have is to refuse to get on board with it.  I’m still sticking with Windows 8.1, as a secondary OS in a dual boot setup on my Core 2 Duo laptop, and as the primary OS in a dual boot on my desktop.  Even then, that’s only after I followed Abbodi86’s guide (posted here a while back) for removing the telemetry from 7 and 8.1, then tested it by using Wireshark and looking for any unaccounted-for packets.  I didn’t see any… I saw a lot of phone-homes, but they were all desired ones… CRL checks, Windows Update checks, things like that.  I didn’t find anything that I didn’t want.  That doesn’t mean it isn’t there, of course (can’t prove a negative, that sort of thing), but I didn’t see it during the time I had Wireshark up.

              Even as someone who spends a lot of time in Linux now, I still concede that having a dual boot setup is a crutch; I know that I CAN go to Windows if I can’t make Linux do something for me, and that very fact means I am not fully committed to going Windows free yet.  No doubt my heart’s not in it; though I loathe Windows 10 with every fiber of my being, I still have a hard time accepting that it’s really coming to an end.  I’ve been a Windows user for 27 years, and while it’s never been perfect, it’s been my home, and one that until 2015 I had never really considered leaving behind.  But if Windows 10 is all there is, the choice is out of my hands.

              There’s no hurry to get the transition done quickly, though… I have several more years before Windows 8.1 runs out of security support, and even then it won’t magically stop working on that day.  I can put Windows in a VM and do what I need in there if WINE won’t do, and certainly I would avoid using that VM for any general internet use.

              I’d really be torn if MS changed course and made a Windows 10 (since all Windows must now carry that name) version that had all of the characteristics I want.  I’ve lost so much trust for MS that I don’t know if there is any going back.  Certainly I do not envision going back to the single-boot Windows setup I was using until late 2015.  I’m keeping Linux; of that I am quite certain.  Whether I keep Windows into the post-2023 future is looking a lot more hazy.  It’s even hazy for me whether Microsoft will keep Windows much longer than that.

              If MS did change course and give us a Windows version that fixes what ails 10, would we be fools to fall for it after all that MS has done, knowing they could reverse course again once they get us laggards back on board, or would we be justly rewarding them for finally doing the right thing, and giving them an incentive to keep doing right in the future?  I have no idea… a good case could be made for either.  It would be a good problem to have, though.

              3 users thanked author for this post.
            • #167466 Reply

              anonymous

              @ Ascaris

              If MS revert Win 10 into something like Win 7 SP1 and give Nadella and his gang the “EOL” or the ‘boot’, many ex-Win 7 users like me will jump back on the Windows bandwagon. At the moment, this seems unlikely. Maybe after 2020 or D-Day.
              ___ Like they say, “Action speaks louder than words”.

              1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #167486 Reply

              Canadian Tech
              AskWoody MVP

              I would not be too surprised if they did something like that.

              Remember the “Oh we are so sorry about Windows 8” announcement. They said at that the next Windows would be completely new. So new they would not use the number 9. As it happened, Win 10 is really Win 8.2.

              So, I do expect some kind of oh we are sorry moment, but do not expect anything like Win7. Problem is Win 7 is too good. So good they cannot sell more or take back the sale and offer it only for rent.

              CT

              2 users thanked author for this post.
            • #167972 Reply

              anonymous

              Couldn’t they bring Windows 7 back into mainstream support and put it back on store shelves again instead of just driving it into its grave? They can’t be this deaf to be unable to hear their customers heralding Windows 7 and dumping on Windows 10. Maybe they should be looking at what they did GOOD in the past and improving on that rather than forging out this new path that their customers EVIDENTLY do not want to go down.

    • #167206 Reply

      anonymous

      Be nice if Mozilla would follow suit, too.

    • #167299 Reply

      anonymous

      Thurrott: Stop the relentless release of new Windows versions

      Because of the many bugs in their yearly iOS upgrades that mainly cater for the yearly release of new fancy iPhones, Apple have announced that they will try to reduce the number of new features in their yearly iOS upgrades. … http://www.zdnet.com/article/apple-admits-ios-is-a-mess-has-a-plan-to-make-it-better/ (13 Feb 2018)
      M$ may just follow suit for their 6-monthly Win 10 upgrades, ie reduce the number of new features.
      M$ won’t stop the relentless release of new Win 10 Versions because that is how they are going to make more profit$, especially from the enterprises. M$ will only stop if many enterprises and consumers stop using Windows, especially after 2020, eg by moving to Linux = less profit$ for M$.

    • #167625 Reply

      GoneToPlaid
      AskWoody Lounger

      I don’t know of any instance where Microsoft has sold harvested data. AFAIK, they use it for their own marketing efforts.

      There must be something which has never been disclosed between Microsoft and third parties — given that Windows telemetry is also sent to third party servers. KB2999226 does this. I am not sure if KB2952664 does this.

    • #168118 Reply

      Cascadian
      AskWoody Lounger

      Following on from the anonymous subthread above with Ascaris and others. I continue with Win7, and so would enjoy having that continue. But I also recognize that is an internal entropy showing resistance to change. Win7 has had its glorious run and is overdue for an upgrade.

      The churn of alternative Operating Systems from Redmond, Palo Alto, or global has not bubbled forth a satisfactory replacement that also addresses interaction with others. Even the few voices here that stalwartly hold forth on Win8.1 start their descriptions with making it operate more like Win7. For me and many voices here and elsewhere Win10 has eroded any remaining trust in the former benevolent giant that was Microsoft.

      So, Win7 needs to retire; Win8 will retire soon enough that beginning with it now is only a stopgap; Win10, the last Windows ever, has suffered enough self-inflicted damage it should be sent home with a dishonorable rating. So my prediction would be a new marketing campaign that leaves behind even the name Windows. I could suggest Next. But they may want to look into copyright expiration on that one.

      • #168175 Reply

        anonymous

        “So my prediction would be a new marketing campaign that leaves behind even the name Windows. I could suggest Next. But they may want to look into copyright expiration on that one.”

        I think that “Private Data Sponge” would be more appropriate.

         

        -lehnerus2000

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #168510 Reply

          Cascadian
          AskWoody Lounger

          I had Apple property in mind when I hinted at Next. But I think Google may feel infringed with Sponge.

          • #169344 Reply

            anonymous

            Good point. 😀

            -lehnerus2000

            1 user thanked author for this post.

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