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Windows 10 Destroyed My PC

30th Sep 2015
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Do not load Windows 10 until you have read this column. Once you have, you probably won’t want to.

This horror story will all sound Kafkaesque, as for 10 days each succeeding Microsoft support employee tightened the grip and made it less likely that I would ever see some of my data again and, at the least that I will face weeks of hard work to get the PC up and running as it was before.

After last week’s article about the perils of Microsoft’s latest product, things became much worse and my PC was locked, possibly forever.

You will recall that having installed Windows 10 the program failed and support staff created an elaborate fix.

This weekend, my computer started running slowly and Windows 10 said that there was no memory. Once again I spoke to the company’s support staff and they claimed that it was fixed. I also agreed with them that I would remove this infernal program from the PC and revert to Windows 7.

As the call staff were not in (even though I had been told that they worked 24/7) I used the online chat team. The guy seemed helpful and we were going well until, having deleted a user account on his instructions and set up by his colleague the previous week, I rebooted.

At that point, it asked for a password and nothing worked at all.

The following day, I called support again and was told that I needed to buy a USB Drive. Argos duly came up with the goods.

However, the next support lady seemed to have other ideas. She took me into the bowels of the program and duly locked my computer so badly that she eventually gave up after two more hours of agony turning it on and off repeatedly (something like 25 times) to no effect. I needed permission from a system administrator to get back in and my PC at home has no administrator.

She then said that I needed a level 2 technician. The unstated reason was because she and her colleagues had wrecked my PC so badly that they had no idea how to get it working again.

The bad news was that there was a 48 hour wait for the technician. He/she was due to call me back yesterday and failed to do so (surprise, surprise).

Impressively, it really did feel as if each Microsoft support person had made matters worse than the one before though, to be fair, the odd one added nothing, which in retrospect was a positive contribution in relative terms. Several also put the phone down when the problem became too much for them.

It was also frustrating that I kept being asked for case number and not one of the dozens of Microsoft employees had given me such a number.

I find it difficult to convey the stress that I have faced over the last couple of weeks and it will come as no surprise if there are reports of those in a similar position suffering from heart attacks or committing suicide. The idea that your computer would be wiped completely really is that bad.

This article is being typed on an old netbook, which is now my only lifeline to the outside world.

The obvious message is steer clear of Windows 10 for the moment as it doesn’t work, if three failures in 30 days is any indication.

As previously stated, I do not want Apple to get their hooks into me but just at the moment, it does seem a more tempting option than even before.

Hope eventually came in the form of Henry from the Philippines, the only one of dozens of employees of this mega-corporation who definitively knows how to do his job.

On the basis that he sounded like he knew what he was talking about I trusted him and eventually, dear Henry came up with the goods. The good news is that I have my computer back the bad news, it will still take a considerable time to get everything back to normal and I may well have lost some data forever.

The good news for both readers and writer is that next week’s column will not now feature round three of this heavyweight (or perhaps David and Goliath would be more accurate) contest. After this experience, even David Cameron and Jeremy Corbyn will seem friendly.

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Replies (4)

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By paulwakefield1
30th Sep 2015 08:29

Keep holding your breath

My upgrade worked fine for two weeks and then fell over terminally although data could be accessed and saved. After a clean reinstall, all was well for two weeks and then catastrophic failure with only the BIOS accessible and that only because of an override button that Lenovo built in (otherwise it was a brick).

Fortunately this was just my laptop which does not hold critical data and so I use it as a test bed. But the time involved in sorting the failures out, reinstalling and setting up everything was still substantial.

So I hate to put a dampener on the restoration of your computer to health - give it time before you tempt fate!

Touch wood, my laptop is running OK after about a month since the last disaster but I haven't used it a great deal. On the plus side, I do like Windows 10 when it is running properly! However I would hold off upgrading any mission critical computers for a few months yet.

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By susanrenew
01st Oct 2015 12:06

windows 10 - avoid like the plague

I bought a new laptop in the summer with a free upgrade from windows 8.1 to windows 10.  I have never liked windows 8.1, much preferring windows 7, as do most other people, so I was hoping, based on all the promises, that windows 10 was much better and after a month of being 'invited' to upgrade did so.

It took all night to download and install and then the problems started - my laptop ran at snails pace, my outlook wouldn't send or receive messages, yahoo mail didn't work and I couldn't attach any files to emails - rather crucial in a business environment.  So after a couple of weeks of messing around trying to fix everything I reverted back to windows 8.1, only to find that Microsoft had 'hidden' prompts on my laptop that meant every time I switched it on windows 10 tried to reinstall itself, no matter how many times I said no/cancel.

I went online to find a solution - turns out one of the essential updates included these hidden instructions to windows 8.1 to start installing windows 10 automatically.  I have eventually stopped it but have had to switch off the 'automatic check for updates' and be very careful about what updates I do install.

My laptop still doesn't work like it used to so I suspect some other settings have been changed which I haven't yet found, and bearing in mind it is only a few months old I will have to put up with that for some time to come.

so my advice is to think very carefully before you upgrade and wait until Microsoft get rid of all the 'bugs'.

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By Constantly Confused
15th Oct 2015 16:51

Oh dear

So I have an exciting time ahead then, given my mum asked if she should upgrade and I told her 'let's wait and see what people think of it before you upgrade'.

A week later I went over and noticed she was running Windows 10.  I assume she heard 'yes, go for it!  Upgrade now now now!' and so when it breaks it will be all my fault...

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By matttaxnpayroll
27th Oct 2015 11:25

My experience

My laptop had begun to suffer some serious issues with Windows 7 - I believe something had corrupted which caused the system to crash after being on for around 20 mins.  Trying to get it back just resulted in a black screen with a mouse pointer.

Having re-formatted the hard drive, I didn't want to risk staying on a potentially defective Win7, so while the system was still stable enough to do so, I upgraded to 10.  If only laptops would still come with a disc when you buy them these days, I would have reinstalled 7.  As others have noted, it looks good and works well.  I also have a windows phone, but will be less inclined to upgrade that until 10 has been more thoroughly tested.

So far so good for my laptop, but from the experience of others I will be keeping my fingers crossed for the next few weeks...

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