Friday, 7 March 2014

Grit your teeth and bite the bullet - buying stuff that doesn't change anything.

It's not like servicing a car!


In about a month windows XP will no longer be supported by Microsoft. No more updates, increasingly vulnerable to malware and internet attack, in order to keep doing the business accounts etc we are going to need to update (NOT upgrade) Chris's computer to a new version of windows. I'm debating right now whether to try to persuade her to try to learn W8 or just going down the easy route and accepting 7, even though it's got a more limited life and is distinctly less efficient. Along with that will go a new hard drive (SSHD to make things a bit more fluid and so I can archive her old drive 'in case').

Presently also debating over whether to do an Office update as well, though £180 for home business seems a huge whack for something to update Office 2003.

The annoying thing is that the tasks we're doing haven't changed that they need new software, nor will updated software improve the way the tasks are performed and will likely provide a very distinct downgrade to performance while they are learned.

I feel mild pangs of conscience over Office 2003. The disc and license was given me by the guys that ran the IT dept. 2 companies ago. License(s) were no doubt paid for at some stage by the parent corp, and undoubtedly no-one (or very few) are using the software bought under the original licenses now, yet at the same time because I didn't buy it I feel a little piratical.

Anyway, time to get Chris to try W8.

I showed her W8, set up the way I have it with direct links to the applications one actually uses on the start menu, rather than all the useless social-networking, weather, news and un-intuitive & confusing junk that's there by default. Clicked through to the desktop, it looked just like a windows desktop.

She asked the question "so what's the difference between this and what I already use?". Smart woman, my wife.

And this is why I don't get why so many get their knickers in a knot over W8. It's just like every other version of windows under the hood for the typical user. A few things are in different places from W7, and although you get presented with a confusing screen full of garbage the first time it starts up, that's easy enough to clear away - I figured out that all the tiles could be changed the very first time I used it - and replace with helpful things.

I really don't get it. Some IT 'professionals' declared it unusable from the off, and that makes no sense to me at all. The 8.1 service pack didn't substantially change how it worked, so much as make it run more efficiently (less like W7, which is slow and bloated) and more like a modern Linux build (which can often be quite heavy, but still reasonably quick).

Looks like I'm going to have to change my order with And hope that the old corporate version of Office 2003 professional will actually work.

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