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Windows 10 - Deeper Impressions


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Woody weighs in on the Win10 Anniversary Update:
10 reasons you shouldn't upgrade to Windows 10

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8. Privacy concerns are getting worse, not better

Privacy was, and continues to be, a major concern for Windows 10 customers -- particularly for those who aren’t connected to a corporate network. Microsoft has published a metric ton of web pages about its privacy policies and procedures. What they haven’t published is a simple list of the data they collect as part of their ongoing “telemetry” efforts.

--JorgeA

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34 minutes ago, JorgeA said:

Woody weighs in on the Win10 Anniversary Update:
10 reasons you shouldn't upgrade to Windows 10

--JorgeA

Woody's got his head screwed on straight, and he tries to be balanced.  A memorable quotable quote:  "the annoyances substantial".

Am in the process of upgrading my Win 10 VM for testing.  In a little while I'll see whether they've de-fanged my current re-tweaker script.

-Noel

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23 hours ago, JorgeA said:

Microsoft rewards Windows Insiders with exclusive wallpapers, reveals more stats as well

Among those stats, this one stood out for me:

Microsoft has also stated that Insiders spent a total of 443 million hours on Windows 10. Keeping in mind that there are roughly 7 million Insiders, this can be calculated to almost 63 hours utilized by each user on average. Additionally, the company also announced that the Program is now available in 30 languages.

This is strange. I wonder (and the Neowin piece doesn't specify) over what period of time those 443 million hours were spent on Win10. "63 hours by each user"? Heck, I spend that -- and more -- at my Vista machine in a single week.

    Well that explains everything.  No wonder Microsoft can't get the design right—the people influencing all the votes are hardly using their computers at all!  I wonder how many of these "Insiders" hopped on only for the ride and free copy of Windows 10.  Looking at Dona's (and Gabe's) Twitter feed, I see so many build junkies.  I'd much rather wait for serious, tangible improvements to Windows, and help guide the process along with a number of truly dedicated users such as are here in this thread.  Then gimme a build when you really have something new to show.

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Details are starting to come in on the new $7/month Windows 10 Enterprise version:

Microsoft's plan to move more small-business users to Windows 10 Enterprise

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Enterprise E3/E5 users will get a choice of two servicing options. They can be on the Current Branch of Windows 10 Enterprise, which means they will automatically get all security updates plus regular bundles of new features, automatically; or they can be on Current Branch for Business, which gives them between four and eight months to delay their new feature updates. Those on Enterprise E3 cannot opt to be on the Long Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) via which they will not get new features, just security fixes, for 10 years or so.

[emphasis added]

My first thought was that this was going to be Microsoft's (sneaky) way of steering users into a subscription model: the idea (in my mind) was that some people would gladly pay $7 a month for the option to decline the "feature updates" Microsoft sends down the pipeline. But if this report is true, then there's not even that benefit to the $7/month subscription. So, you can put off for a few months the new features that Microsoft's pushing -- big f#$%ing deal.

--JorgeA

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Those three branches are true at least. They exist in the Embedded Channel as well for the Enterprise SKU, but I have only seen LTSB.

The article says some small percentage is on Enterprise, I will believe it. It says that it is because companies are sticking with Home and Pro... well obviously but it isn't the reason. Because Microsoft isn't really caring about what Editions businesses are using, it is what licensing model. SMBs are on Retail or OEM licensing instead of VL. MS wants companies on VL. It has been this way for a loooong time now. They set specific rules/policy on each license type to make it perfectly clear which type of license a person should be using, but this information isn't readily available to the end users.

Another issue with VL is the fact that the process is complicated. If you have a VL, you can't just buy or build a computer, download your software and then install your VL onto the hard drive. First you have to buy your VL from Microsoft, then you need to go to an OEM and buy a computer with an applicable Windows license on it. Then you can take that computer, erase the hard drive and then install your VL software on it. You could consider it a double-dip on the license. You have to buy a computer with Windows pre-installed. That means you are paying extra on a computer purchase for an OS you won't even be able to use. That's $100-200 extra on a computer purchase right there, per system.

The article doesn't say (or if it did, I missed it) if that whole dumb process is being replaced by the new subscription plan.

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The Dental van today was running XP. The theme showed it was Server 2003.  It was happily running which ever awesome Win32 software that fits their needs

Sysadmins only need an OS.

Any cosmetic features Microsoft will ever add are unlikely to change our interactions or contribute to computing in general.

I don't think that will change for a looong time.

Letting them process my emails to 'remind' me of a flight number is simply 'sales talk', Cortana is as useless as a plastic news reader.

With the processing power IN the machine, can't it now process voice control and give me Star Trek style voice control without telling the whole cloud?

Sometimes you feel like.. "So what do you do with a powerful i7 other than play demanding games?" All this horsepower to just animate bloated webpages?

Used to be fun rendering fractals and even patiently wait for some code to compile.... but those delays are over. It should be reading stock data and filling my bank account.

All the talk of being connected gives the insidious feeling of loss of control. Eula agreements always felt like selling your soul... its either click or not use the printer unless you agree its not our fault if anything at all goes to plan or s***.

When corporations design an ashtray you can be sure it might turn to ash.

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Voice Recognition had its own flap, 15-20 years ago. It was not so popular due to how much work you have to do to get it working properly. Basically, the computer can't understand what you say because people do not speak their own language in textbook fashion. There was some Star Trek voice recognition software at one point, as well as the Dragon product. Where you teach the software how you talk, so that it can recognize that it is you talking and not just anyone. Just like in the TV show!

Of course you can talk to your computer now, but companies seem to have skipped the voice recognition and training portion of the technology. Now it is more like the robot people you talk to on the automated phone call, that say "sorry, I did not get that" or "I didn't understand you." Cortana seems to be just like the voice thing in the XBox. It isn't personal at all, just a receptacle for sound. It doesn't know your voice or can tell the difference between you and someone else. In the old voice recognition software, once the system knew your voice, you could make it so only you could give it commands. There wouldn't have been any "Xbox turn off" moments while playing Call of Duty if that had been the case.

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1 hour ago, dencorso said:

Dragon Naturally Speaking still exists, AFAIK.  :dubbio:

Sure it still exists, but you need (besides an initial longish training lesson) to have a very good microphone or headset, and it is not like it is particularly friendly outside a restricted number of selected apps (and not even on some version of them), particularly Outlook 2013 and - drum roll - Windows 10 (initially):
http://nuance.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/17805/~/information-on-dragon-naturallyspeaking-13-and-windows-10

http://nuance-community.custhelp.com/posts/905182eaea

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/insider/forum/insider_wintp-insider_personal/dragon-naturally-speaking-13-on-windows-10/5fc51812-f70d-471c-a2b4-da9e094dac3b

If you actually *need* it (imagine a doctor taking notes while visiting a patient or however anyone that cannot use their hands on the keyboard because they are either too clean or too dirty) or if you have some disabilities that prevent you from using more traditional input methods, it is more than OK and a great little thing, but it is not AFAIK[1] to compare with the speed (and reliability) of mouse/keyboard.

I believe that current version (revised and seemingly working fine with Windows 10) is the "professional" version that sells for US$ 300, whilst the "home" version which sells for a more reasonable 74.99 US$ is still a hit and miss when it comes to Windows 10 :unsure:.

The "legal" version (which might be particularly useful as a "transcription" software) and has a specialized dictionary is US$ 500, but that's OK, it's for lawyers ;).


 

jaclaz

[1] To be fair, the one I have seen being used was some 5 or 6 years ago and the software (or the power of the hardware on which it is run) may well have reduced the inconveniences.
 

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Interestingly enough, when the user naturally speaks one of (chinese; hindi/urdu; russian; arabic; portuguese; indonesian/malay; bengali; ki swahili) there be no dragon...  :angel

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So even though Microsoft was for some crazy amount of time tricking users into upgrading and then hoping they wouldn’t care enough to complain and/or roll back the system to their previous Windows version, the firm was only able to convince about 1 in 5 people to upgrade. To a free new version of Windows. 1 in 5, or 20 percent.

And MS statistics of Windows 10 upgrades probably don't take into account reverters, including those who "upgraded" only for the sake of registering their free license for potential future use. I myself have added 4 machines to the "upgraded" count, none of which have actually been running Windows 10 since then.

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On ‎8‎/‎3‎/‎2016 at 7:16 PM, JorgeA said:

Details are starting to come in on the new $7/month Windows 10 Enterprise version:

Microsoft's plan to move more small-business users to Windows 10 Enterprise

[emphasis added]

My first thought was that this was going to be Microsoft's (sneaky) way of steering users into a subscription model: the idea (in my mind) was that some people would gladly pay $7 a month for the option to decline the "feature updates" Microsoft sends down the pipeline. But if this report is true, then there's not even that benefit to the $7/month subscription. So, you can put off for a few months the new features that Microsoft's pushing -- big f#$%ing deal.

--JorgeA

Doesn't Software As A Service actually have to provide some valuable service in order for business people to want it?

Admittedly, $7 a month isn't a bad number (not terribly much more, accounting for inflation, than spending a few hundred dollars every few years to have the latest NT, XP, Vista, 7, 8.1), and if Windows 10 ever DOES actually become interesting by adding that aforementioned value, I would probably consider paying it.

That being said, it takes a little effort but it is still possible for a geek to technically turn Windows 10 via tweaking and adding 3rd party software into something that:

  • Doesn't spill the beans online.
  • Has no Apps.
  • Delivers no advertising.
  • Delays updates until such time as you want them.

I really don't think that until their App Store is chock full of Must-Have Software, Microsoft can succeed at differentiating pay-for vs. free versions just by having the more expensive software NOT do unwanted things.  It kind of needs to DO wanted things too.

Is anyone seeing a lot of new Must-Have Software showing up in the App Store?

Any? ??

Their strategy is pretty sound, and it's clear it's a multi-year plan, but their poor execution is just keeping it from happening.  Engineering excellence is quite simply the key to high tech success, no matter what!  Time doesn't always fix a lack of intelligence.  The world has a way of competing...

-Noel

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7 hours ago, NoelC said:

Doesn't Software As A Service actually have to provide some valuable service in order for business people to want it?

[...]

Is anyone seeing a lot of new Must-Have Software showing up in the App Store?

Any? ??

The last two lines basically answer the first one.  ;)

IMO, Cortana is one Windows 10 feature that could grow up to become a truly useful assistant, reminding me of appointments and the like -- but only if the information that I gave it were to remain strictly in my possession. That is, nothing going out to Microsoft (or anybody else's) servers. I could see Cortana working then as a glorified Outlook calendar keeper.

I could even see the mobile/synching benefits of having stuff go back and forth between my PC and my phone... but again, puly in the context of a home- (or office-) based cloud service that never went to anybody else's server. No Bing searches, no appointments or travel arrangements recorded by anyone or anything but me and my own equipment. Ain't nobody's business but my own. Let Cortana, if necessary, contact the airline via StartPage or DuckDuckGo.

Otherwise, Cortana is of no interest to me.

--JorgeA

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Per Woody, Windows 10 goes from bad...

Avoid the Windows 10 Anniversary Update for now

...to worse:

I recommend that you actively block the Windows 10 Anniversary Update

The case against Windows 10 Anniversary Update grows
 

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Given the massive testing and repeated refinement that brought us Windows 10 Anniversary Update, you’d think the rollout would proceed with few debilitating problems. But you’d be wrong. From common installation problems to minor irritants to significant data destruction, reports of problems are mounting up.

[...]

Everyone who's been paying attention to Windows 10 updates expected installation problems. Microsoft hasn’t yet delivered a Cumulative Update that installs on all machines, so it shouldn’t come as any surprise that Anniversary Update installs trigger a wide variety of failures, rollbacks, flakey Universal Windows programs, and error codes such as 0x80070020.

[...]

There are very credible reports that the Anniversary Update is making entire volumes/drives invisible, prompting a reformat. The newest version of Win10 refuses to see some drives, identifying them as RAW, and prompting for an NTFS reformat. It’s easy to accidentally reformat the drive.

[...]

There are more credible reports about Win10 locking up completely after the Anniversary Update. Redditor KuruQan found out that running a clean install fixes the problem. There are many different solutions proposed, but nothing official from Microsoft. We don’t even have official acknowledgment that the problem exists.

What a mess. More gory details in the full article and in the comments to Woody's blog posts.

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There’s one conclusion that rings out loud and clear: Windows 10 desperately needs a way to control forced updates.

Amen.

--JorgeA

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