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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    Upgrading Windows: An ever-more-complex decision




    FIELD NOTES

    Upgrading Windows: An ever-more-complex decision


    By Tracey Capen

    Windows 10 Technical Preview build 10122 gives a clear image of where Windows is going. But do we want to follow? Also: Finding a quick solution to Firefox synching issues and a useful discussion about machine names on the ShieldsUp! site.

    The full text of this column is posted at WindowsSecrets.com/field-notes/upgrading-windows-an-ever-more-complex-decision/ (opens in a new window/tab).

    Columnists typically cannot reply to comments here, but do incorporate the best tips into future columns.

  2. #2
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    Wanted: Apps, apps, and more great apps. Where it appears Microsoft is truly missing the boat is with applications. I might like the ability to use essentially the same app on my desktop, tablet, and phone, but not if all editions are relatively brain-dead. That’s been the problem with most of the offerings at the Windows Store.

    So far, I’ve seen no evidence that Microsoft will soon release excellent applications such as VideoLAN, Adobe Lightroom, Picasa, Kindle, iTunes (don’t send me hate mail, please), and the many other third-party programs that are the real reason we use Windows.
    VLC media player has been in the Windows Store for more than a year. A Kindle app has been there for three years. Lightroom is also there (but as a classic/desktop app).

  3. #3
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    When I read the following lines in your article I stopped reading!

    "I've still not put Windows 8 on my production systems."
    "The decision not to upgrade was driven mostly by the bulky batches of fixes and changes for both Win8.1 and Office 2013, released each month. (I have Office 2013 on my test system, but I've never developed a taste for its stark UI; I've kept Office 2010 on my main systems, as I suspect most other Office users have, assuming they had a choice.)"

    All I can say Tracey Capen is "Embrace change it's the only thing that is ever constant."

  4. #4
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    Change may be constant, but change in the name of progress is usually best avoided. I've yet to buy a "new and improved" product that lives up to the description !

  5. #5
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    LEAVE my start menu alone, and please stop trying to force tiles on me- I want the ability to CHOOSE to keep the look I now have- minimalist- folders, scroll menus- full screen programs- I don't want ugly tiles all over my desktop- nor do I want apps constantly connected to the internet updating info on my desktop- While Cortina sounds like it will be useful- I want the chance to choose not to use it and disable it- I want to update MS when I want to- there was talk we will no longer be allowed to do manual updates?

    I worked hard finding workarounds to windows 7 to get it looking and acting the way I want- now I will lose all this- When I upgrade a vehicle, I don't want to find that they have moved the gas pedal to the back seat floor- or to the glove compartment, or find that the blinker lever is now hidden under the floor mats- or the radio is now in the trunk- whatever- you get the point- I want key features to be left alone- to be where I expect them to be- to be as functional as I expect them to be- I want my start menu and desktop icons left alone- I want my folders to look a certain way- please stop mucking with my operating system and forcing changes on me just to adopt change- The start menu worked perfectly fine in windows 98, xp, windows 7- there was no need to change it- please stop deciding for me that it should be changed MS- by incorporating both windows 8 and windows 7 features into the new start menu and claim it's "The best of both worlds" translates into "1/2 as good as you're used to"- forcing you into changing what you're used to-

  6. #6
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    Tracy, in response to your Firefox Bookmarks fiasco --

    There's a Firefox extension called FEBE. This extension makes a folder which contains a full backup of a Firefox Profile, all organized into categories. When restoring, FEBE can select just Bookmarks, or any other type of Profile items. (I particularly like being able to roll back Extensions in case I download one which messes up my browsing experience.) There also is a third-party utility called MozBackup (info), which will back up Firefox or Thunderbird Profile items, and can selectively or entirely restore those items.

    Between the two, I prefer FEBE, as its folders aren't in a proprietary format, so the contents can be accessed even without the extension.

    I make FEBE backups before accepting Firefox updates, and before updating my extensions or plugins. So I use it a lot.
    Last edited by bobprimak; 2015-07-03 at 18:28.
    -- Bob Primak --

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    Tracey Capen (2015-05-29)

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    Not sure if correct place to post this. As a LONG time Firefox (and Netscape before that) user, I too like the interface, but hated the new Chrome-like minimalist view that came a while back. Found the add-on Classic Theme Restorer and love what it does.

    Instead of using Firefox's sync (never tried it), I've been using Xmarks free add-on since origins as Foxmarks for syncing my bookmarks. Never had a problem and the ability to sync bookmarks across browsers is a huge plus for me.

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    bobprimak (2015-07-03)

  10. #8
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    I agree with someone above complaining about the search always looking to the internet as well as locally.

    I REALLY don't want that, and not ONLY because my internet speed is about the lowest cable speed you can get (but otherwise suits me fine and is cheap).

    When I'm searching my computer for something, I just want the stuff on my computer to be found. I know I can click on My Stuff (or whatever it's called) but would either like that to be the default, or, preferably, disable the internet searching (as you could do in the Start Menu of Windows 8.1).

  11. #9
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    Oh, regarding the free upgrade from W7/8, is this an ISO, or ??? So suppose I upgrade a machine, and the drive dies. Instead of restoring an image backup, I decide I want a fresh/clean install (possibly to eliminate quirks from having the OS installed for several years)? How will I be able to do that? Will I have to reinstall the previous OS, install all updates, then do the W10 update again? VERY tedious, and suppose this happens after the free upgrade year, can I still bring it back to W10?

  12. #10
    jwoods
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    As of March 19th, this was the published Upgrade Matrix...

    http://www.computerworld.com/article...0-and-how.html

    How the choice will be made is unknown at this time.

    I certainly prefer ISO's for my systems.
    Last edited by jwoods; 2015-05-28 at 19:03.

  13. #11
    Silver Lounger wavy's Avatar
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    LEAVE my start menu alone,
    +1
    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

  14. #12
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    As things get more complicated and with each new version, the user's problems become more curious and troublesome especially for pulled and reissued patches.


    I bought a W8.1 ASUS laptop that was very inconsistent when in wireless mode.

    It worked fine when connected via ethernet cable but was totally useless for our initial intended purposes for my son at university.

    After many wasted research hours and trying different settings (over 8 months) it became apparent that power saving options were at fault. If I now use the laptop on adjusted power settings without being plugged in, there are no issues.

    If the laptop is plugged in, when it goes to sleep or other power saving options kick in I cannot recover the WIFI signal nor see any available connections. A reboot is always needed.

  15. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by vopthis View Post
    I bought a W8.1 ASUS laptop that was very inconsistent when in wireless mode.
    Not sure what this has to do with Win 10 but I'd have returned the laptop ASAP if I ran into that problem.

  16. #14
    jwoods
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    Quote Originally Posted by vopthis View Post
    As things get more complicated and with each new version, the user's problems become more curious and troublesome especially for pulled and reissued patches.


    I bought a W8.1 ASUS laptop that was very inconsistent when in wireless mode.

    It worked fine when connected via ethernet cable but was totally useless for our initial intended purposes for my son at university.

    After many wasted research hours and trying different settings (over 8 months) it became apparent that power saving options were at fault. If I now use the laptop on adjusted power settings without being plugged in, there are no issues.

    If the laptop is plugged in, when it goes to sleep or other power saving options kick in I cannot recover the WIFI signal nor see any available connections. A reboot is always needed.
    Were you able to link your issue to a specific update?

    Windows Update automatically creates a System Restore point before installing any updates.

    If you start having issues you suspect are patch related, you can restore to the point before they were installed.

    Doing frequent full disk images when your system is in a known good working state can save you a lot of time and trouble.

    I think that will hold true in Windows 10 as well.

  17. #15
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    The primary upgrade path will be via Windows Update in Windows 7 or 8. I suspect you will be able to specify a clean install or an Upgrade install as with past OS's. Since Greg Aul stated that they intend to support an upgrade install of the Technical Preview, I suspect that will be via windows update as well with either a valid Product ID from one of the qualifying OS's or an existing dual boot with a qualified OS. There has been no mention of upgrading via and iso but that wouldn't surprise me either since an iso upgrade of new Windows builds are supported now. We should know more soon as Windows 10 is rumored to be released in late July.

    Jerry

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