Thursday, June 30, 2016

I'll Settle for $5,000

As I reported a few weeks ago, after ignoring it's increasingly anxious hints, Microsoft updated my computer to Windows 10 one night without my having agreed to it ahead of time. Annoying, but at least I was considering it. But now I hear Woman Sues Microsoft for Windows 10 Upgrade
Do you know how to protect your computer against Microsoft's stealth upgrade process to Windows 10? I'll get to that in greater detail shortly, but one California woman didn't, but her frustration turned into a $10,000 payday:
Teri Goldstein of Sausalito, California, said a few days after Microsoft released Windows 10 publicly in July 2015, the computer at her travel agency business tried to download it without her consent. The update failed and her computer "slowed to a crawl," crashing at times and becoming "unusable for days at a time."
"I had never heard of Windows 10," Goldstein said. "Nobody ever asked me if I wanted to update."
Goldstein attempted to reach Microsoft's customer support department to fix the problem, but that apparently didn't work, so she decided to take Microsoft to court. She sought compensation for lost wages and to cover the cost of a new computer.
As it would happen, Goldstein won the case, earning a $10,000 judgement, after Microsoft decided not to appeal. A Microsoft representative said the company didn't want to take the legal battle any further to "avoid the expense of further litigation," according to The Times.
Microsoft denied any wrongdoing.
Microsoft was so, so wrong -- and that's why they settled the suit so quickly. Personally, I don't have any strong feelings about Windows 10 one way or the other. I switched to Mac ten years ago after Redmond pushed back a WinXP upgrade once again, and Apple finally switched to Intel chips. And I reserve the right to switch platforms yet again (Hello, Linux!) if and when Apple ever loses its way. But I am so, so against anyone taking over my computer for their purposes.
My own experiences with Windows 10. It still boots faster, and settles down quicker than the old Windows 7. I've gotten used to the largely cosmetic changes that it made in the way files are stored. Actually, it would be more accurate to say how it presents how files are stored; they're all still where they used to be but Windows Exploder seems to show them in different ways, possibly more useful ways.  It would also be nice to kill the lock screen on a computer no one else uses, and I miss my butterfly screensaver, both problems I could probably solve with a little research and some guts. But my big complaint so far is a memory problem with a program called runtime broker.
Runtime Broker is a Windows process in Task Manager that helps manage permissions on your PC for apps from Windows Store. It should only use a few megabytes of memory, but in some cases, a faulty app might cause Runtime Broker to use up to a gigabyte of RAM or more.

If your RAM use is high and your PC is running slowly, an app may be the cause of the problem. Press Ctrl+Shift+Esc to open Task Manager and then, on the Processes tab, check to see how much memory Runtime Broker is using. If it’s using more than 15% of your memory, you probably have an issue with an app on your PC. To stop Runtime Broker from using so much memory, select Runtime Broker in the list, select End task to close Runtime Broker, and then restart your computer.
Occasionally, once or twice a week or so, something sets it off, and it sends my drive whirring while slowing down the computer. At some point it usually breaks in and suggests closing runtime broker, but once I locked the computer beyond recovery, and literally had to pull the plug.

1 comment:

  1. Meh... Windblows 10. I've installed it (for the 3rd time) and am forcing myself to use it. Your comments about it's boot time etc are spot on.

    However the major blows against it are it flat out ugliness (to me) and the reports that it is basically a "Key Logger" for Microsoft. Two programs I'm running (that might help) are.
    "O&O Shutup" 10 and Spybot Anti-Beacon". IF that act as advertised they should be reducing or eliminating the spying on the behalf of MS that 10 is known for.