Windows Update reboots her computer "outside of working hours". Of course, she leaves the computer running with partially completed work sitting in the application because art isn't something you do in one sitting. She comes back on occasion and finds that Microsoft rebooted the computer, LOSING ALL HER WORK.
This shows that Microsoft does not value its users and their work.
I could, of course, BUY an "upgraded, professional version" but I have a better solution.
I'm about to reformat the machine into Linux.
Seriously. I've been doing digital art for money since 2000. I've lost work. I've learnt to consider anything unsaved as potentially something I could lose any minute. The sooner your wife learns this, the happier she will be as a digital artist.
(And set her up with automatic backups while you're teaching her this. "Oops I deleted half my sketch by accident ten saves ago" is wonderful to recover from.)
You have your art tool running, a browser with a dozen open windows, a couple PDFs open, a chat window with the art group, and all of the other open applications. POOF. Gone.
It's like someone came to your office and "cleaned off your desk". Some of us rely on where things are as part of our "external memory". Do you remember which 3 PDFs (aka books) you were looking at last night?
The image might not be lost but WHERE you were working on the image, the state of your toolbox, what brush you were using, what color you had picked, etc. are mostly all in your head and reflected on the desktop.
That said, it is truly ARROGANT to reboot someone else's computer without permission.
Next time you go to work, walk around and reboot everyone's computer while they are working. See how that goes.
Hell, maybe I'm also spoilt by the fact that Illustrator defaults to re-loading a file with the view sized and centered exactly the same way it was when you last saved it.
Even with all these things making life easy for me, I'm still saying that "don't walk away from your art app with anything you'd be sad to lose unsaved" is a habit worth having.
I am not defending Windows rebooting and ignoring unsaved changes in the least. That is inexcusable.
It seems Microsoft does not value uptime anymore either.
While I don't agree with the most recent iteration, this is just a continuation of the slow march they've been on since they added Automatic Updates and downloading the updates before prompting you to install, then increasingly invasive prompts, until now, where you can't opt out of restarting without highly invasive registry changes or an enterprise license.
Now why those boxes are even online so that they can download updates, never mind reboot at "random" intervals, is the biggest puzzle.
If a "reboot" simply meant a few seconds where the computer is unusable, and then you get put back in the exact same environment with everything being exactly the same as before, I would probably think it acceptable, but the reality is very different.
(I worked on a micro-Emacs-clone, Mince, in 1981, that ran on a 64KB CP/M machine and had very usable auto-save -- on floppies! You can't tell me it's too hard.)
That's a cop-out. I'm about to start a number-crunching process that usually takes about a week to complete. Is that supposed to have some magic facility to be interrupted at any point and restart from where it left off, or at least somewhere close? How much of my time should I spend on that, given that I wrote the scripts so I'll be the one implementing any auto-save as well? Should I also reimplement the dependencies that are doing a lot of the heavy lifting, given that calls into some of that functionality can take considerable time to complete?
Oh, wait, I don't have Windows 10. Never mind.
True enough, but so can a UPS and automatic sleep function in the event of extended power outage, and we already have those routinely installed anyway.
I would expect the two markets to have very different requirements.
Neither of the above, though this specific type of work might be unique to the project in question for all I know.
I also don't know how many other projects with unusual or unique long-running tasks are out there. However, given that there are hundreds of millions of people, if not billions now, with personal computers, I imagine the answer is well into "quite a lot, actually" territory.
The game was over as soon as Microsoft decided not to allow some users to install individual patches any more and to bundle security fixes with other changes as part of the same update mechanism.
I've been late to work before because my Surface restarted to install an update, it got stuck rebooting, and my alarms didn't go off.
Amazon has alarm clocks for as low as 55 cents!
FWIW, good apps should support session restore. If a hot fix gets pushed, especially for an active exploit, then getting it installed asap to everyone (not just those of us on HN who keep up with security bulletins!) becomes important.
Not for all updates every time :(
They missed their chance to "spy" on us as much as Google (google search, gmail, maps, google-analytics, android) and Facebook (facebook, whatsapp, instagram) do.
They are trying to catch-up (skype no more p2p, linkedin) and I've noticed that XP & 7 were leaking a little, 8 was leaking moderately but 10 gets the cake!
They want their piece of the pie, they want to enter, see everything, read everything, snatch everything.
They went from "neutral OS minding their own business" to "your business is our business". Something like installing XYZ app on an iPhone and see that it "talks" to 5 trackers and facebook (for the betterment of the services).
1. There is no such thing as a FREE meal (OS).
2. If something is given to you for FREE then the product is YOU.
Good luck to all of us. The discussion remains the same: whose data is our data and if/what can we do to keep it ours.
Edit: also the tendency to use "cloud" for all Office files (which 100% are scanned, analysed and given to any government that sneezes) is also deplorable but hey, "clouds are cool"
"If something is given to you for FREE then the product is YOU."
You can be the product either way. They could be selling value to both sides. Why stop monetizing someone just because they paid you?
Also you could be a user without being a product if they get their value elsewhere. Yes, user numbers are an input to their bottom line but that's it.
Basically a MARKETPLACE has two sides. As long as one side is paying you can call the other side a "product"!
Its a reminder to be aware of of probable commercialization of their personal data by 'free' apps. Not a logicians proof.
It's a very flawed rule of thumb for information products, as the MS debate clearly shows.
Windows is not free.
As long as there's no provider whose product you could be, perhaps, but be careful even with Linux- awhile back, Canonical added a feature to Ubuntu where the user's use of the dashboard search function was reported back to the company . That got taken out after a mass uproar, but we now know that Canonical wants to be just as creepy as MS.
By the way, I have noticed that it is rather common for HN commenters to fail to pick up the assumed meanings, and jump on the words alone as being mistaken.
I have both Windows and Linux desktops, and both annoy me tremendously during updates. On Windows its a new feature that I have to 'click to disable' and on Linux is a new feature that completely screws up my settings and I have to click to go back to the way it was, or construct my settings using the new paradigm.
Both of these annoyances are driven by software change. As the software changes, it changes the environment in which it runs, and symbiotically a bunch of other things change. Why do these things change?
Basically capital. In the free software world it is intellectual capital. Most people who want to contribute to open source, want to do so by "creating a new feature" or "improving and existing feature to be better". Few people want to contribute by "fixing compatibility bugs" or "fixing configuration confusion." They have intellectual capital to spend and they want to spend it on change, not on status quo. In the commercial software world it is worse, they are constantly paying their programming team, every day, every week, 11 paid holidays a year. They can only do that if they have revenue. And they get revenue by selling change not by polishing the status quo. So they change things and they get 'creative' about ways to get revenue.
The ugly truth is that the software business could in fact be "done" for a lot of things. You could just declare the kernel "done" and only allow bug fixes or new processor support. You can declare AutoCAD done and only fix bugs or add GPU support. You can declare graphics Done and simply build GPUs that do what the graphics library need, perhaps a bit faster.
The world changed in a fundamental way when computers got to be 'fast enough' for the imagination of people who wanted to use them. Upgrade cycles started lagging and now it is not uncommon for someone to have a computer for five years before an upgrade. Microsoft needs to make enough money on the OS they sold you once ever 5 years to pay for a crap ton of developers. The math doesn't work, so they are being 'creative' about other ways to make money on those users. Linux/FOSS needs new developers to survive but those developers mostly want to work on 'features' not bugs. So Linux systems suffer arbitrary feature churn.
I think the author's peeve is a symptom not the problem. The problem is that the money is leaving the software space and without it commercial software is not viable.
Really, though. I think you make a great point and are truly on to something here.
That said back to the aforementioned tiny counter example: Windows, for instance is coming up with things such as Game Mode that are incredibly interesting. This is a feature that doesn't really compromise existing behavior, rather amplifies.
It's proof that some degree of continuous iteration can be healthy, it isn't necessarily healthy all the time. But saying development should stall outright is always a hard sell, there's always a way to improve anything.
The "enterprise" model of software development often has a base product that you install with all of the features but individual features are enabled or authorized by specific authorization keys. This was something VMS did and I'm surprised that Dave Cutler didn't make it part of NT unless it was protected by patent or something back in the day. But generally game mode is a wonderful thing for gamers, turns your PC into an "x-box" like experience, and makes it easy to use from across the room. As a gamer would you pay $25 to enable that? $50? For me a killer new feature is Windows System Linux (WSL) which I use all the time now. Would I pay $50 to enable the "developer edition tools"? Probably. But then I want bug fixes for those tools essentially forever. Pay for features, bug fixes for free.
Even there however you end up with odd cases where things like NFS support, is that "enterprise" software or is it "developer" software or both? You know the "enterprise" guys have no problem paying $500/seat to get "enterprise" support but if they only want NFS client support and they pay the $50 "developer mode" upgrade instead Microsoft might feel like they are leaving money on the table (they aren't but that is a longer post).
Want more RAM for that mainframe? Have some IBM service rep show up, pop the doors open, move a jumper, and bill your company a massive number of dollars.
Intellectual Capital consists of human, structural and network capital. You need to work out the important activities or ingredients and measure where you are and where you want to be, then you can adjust or change your activities to enable you to achieve your new goals.
I've been using Linux as my primary desktop in the form of Ubuntu since early 2009. What settings are screwed up by up by updates? I can think about init scripts becoming upstart and then systemd. Is it that?
I didn't notice anything else in these years unless we're regarding desktop environments as settings (Gnome 2 to 3 or to Unity). The change of desktop environment has been the most annoying change of the period. Luckily I managed to keep an almost Gnome 2 experience within the Gnome 3 environment using the Gnome fallback mode. However I wished they never spent time working on Gnome 3 and left it as it was. I have the feeling I had to work to undo all their work which is a pity.
Sadly in recent years Linux has taken on more and more of a Windows like black box experience.
What used to be clearly defined lines between parts have been blurred. And what used to be debuggable by running the same commands manually has turned into heisenbugs mediated over dbus.
Sad part is that while this makes me sound like an old graybeard, i am not much older than the people that are implementing all these changes.
Debian provides a generally well supported and documented upgrade process. However it's the sort of thing that you frequently want an expert on hand to do. Still, many people pay to have their car's oil changed.
But I do hope Microsoft improves WSFL to the point that I can say: just write for linux instead, you get windows support for free [and this is already partly true].
In fact, I might say it is our duty as developers to make sure the default version of our program is good enough that almost no user should have to change it.
And I believe Windows accomplished that, at some point. Then some asshole decided to add ads to it all, just to squeeze a few more cents out of the users.
Well said. I couldn't agree more. That's also why I think "plug in architectures" which were all the rage a while back are stupid. If a plugin becomes quite popular that is an indication of a shortcoming of the software that should have been addressed by the developers. Unfortunately user privacy and security often require defaults that make certain things harder or impossible so defaults are set to make everything just work. I'm increasingly convinced that forcing people to enable features is better than giving them the option to turn them off when they get too frustrated.
That's a major exaggeration. The home suite's ads are more like tooltips than actual ads and they only appear once on a new install; every paid OS has similar things. Chrome OS, OSX and Windows. Ubuntu has sponsored search. Most people I know like Windows 10, it's largely a small group of people that are in love with Windows 7, are die hard Apple fans or Linux diehards that refuse to adopt 10 and most of them are scared of telemetry data being collected (which as a privacy "concern" has largely been disproven by Thurrott and others.) That being said, I hope Microsoft changes course and gets rid of most of these items. I actually find the one time reminder to use Edge and the plug OneDrive vastly less annoying (and more inline with their competition) and intrusive than having to disable "promoted apps." Anyhow, calling it "malware" is utter nonsense.
It's an opinion shared by many. Including myself.
Personally, for my gaming box I've moved back to Win 7. When 7 completely runs out of support, hopefully I've lost interest in the Windows only games.
Everything else either runs OSX (desktop), or various BSD.
This is malware. And you're paying for it, which is mind-boggling.
Edit: you might think I'm a zealot about this, but I actually started my dev career on Windows 9x back in the day, with Visual Studio no less. When windows introduced online activation, and Visual Studio (2005?) followed suit, I started to look around.
Siemens NX is a notable exception (Win/OSX/Linux). Seems like the only one though. :(
People in these fields, generally start out in larger firms and thus are only familiar with Windows as good corporate staffers. Those that go freelance or join startups, tend to continue using what they are already familiar with.
The CAD/CAM software vendors are motivated to go after enterprise licenses, thus there little incentive to support anything but the most widely used operating system.
The other commenter mentioned VPN becoming more regular which is good, but also maybe indicates something troubling. If it's regular for people to feel they need to take extra steps to protect their privacy from companies they're already paying then it would seem something's wrong.
The movement of Windows 7 "Professional" features into Windows 10 "Enterprise" editions was purposeful. E.g. monthly payments are required for Enterprise.
It is not easy for individuals (professional users) to buy Win10 Enterprise and LTSB editions. As a result, features/policies can be forced onto individual users. Such policies would likely not be accepted by system and security admins at businesses.
Also, having any OS collect your data is an incredible privacy violation, since, Operating systems, by their very nature have incredibly overarching access to essentially everything you do. And then, on top of it all, they serve ads.
Essentially, so far, software was either "sold", ad supported, or data supported, or both ad and data supported. Windows is trying to triple tap.
And again, the OS has access to absolutely everything. Having a platform have access to a slice of your life feels very different from having a platform have access to everything.
they all see "power-users" as something rotten. A infestation in their perfectly pruned UX world of grazing users.
Note btw that MS is keeping these ads out of the market where their real money is, enterprise.
To MS, private and soho sales are just a pitch point when they go to sell their package deals of volume licensing. One about reduced costs of training employees.
The worst aspect, though, was that they made Amazon search the default, and provided no opportunity to opt out during installation.