Tag Archives: Computers

Only Child condemns Microsoft’s Windows 10 marketing

Computer_Assault_2I want to go on record as being 100 per cent opposed to the aggressive marketing Microsoft is doing with its new Windows 10. “Aggressive Marketing” is probably putting it mildly. Many of you with Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 have experienced this attack on our computers. Some of you may have wanted to upgrade to Windows 10, but maybe not now. Some of you have had no choice.

The horror stories abide – just Google and get into some of the forums. The one that I think wins the award for most invasive and disrupting someone’s business and its functions is the fellow who was at a conference who turned on his laptop for notetaking and other conference business-related functions. Imagine his shock and surprise when he found Windows 10 downloading and later installing when he didn’t even okay it.

Since the October 2015 monthly Windows updates, the nasty Windows 10 icon has showed up in the updates box. If there are other updates listed you can get into the list of what is available (there is another way which I found by a fluke but can’t remember offhand) and hide it. Earlier this year, in previous monthly update, Windows snuck in an update numbered KB3035583 – details for it were just the usual security update blurbs. No indication that it prepared your computer for Windows 10 download and installation. Before that Microsoft had snuck in a “Get Windows 10 free” connection on your computer toolbar. Apparently, that was supposed to be their okay to do the nasty.

It has been a lot of reading online and trying different things to get the damn Windows 10 upgrade from even showing up in the update box when you click on Windows Update. Woe to you if you have your updates set to automatic and have been just letting Windows do the updates as you shut down your computer. You have to change your Windows Update Settings to “Check for updates but let me choose whether to download and install them.” And hide that KB 3035583 or maybe uninstall (like I had to do) first. Good luck. No guarantee that Microsoft won’t automatically download and install Windows 10 in 2016.

I always went into the Windows Update and checked it out, when the Update (the orange exclamation point) showed up in the Shut Down box). But until I figured out a way to stop it – for now – I was afraid to shut down my computer. In fact, I cancelled going to the doctor’s because of it. You might say this Windows 10 snafu is bad for my health.

This is more than a bad business marketing decision on Microsoft’s part. Microsoft is offering Windows 10 upgrade free to those with Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 for a year. It is supposed to be optional? You think? Whoever came up with this marketing idea and those who put it into practice, should be named all over social media. And they should be fired. Because this is not ethical; this is not moral. It is an invasion of our privacy and it wouldn’t surprise me if it was illegal.

I was resigned to having to get Windows 10 when my current leased Dell laptop will run out next October and I leased another laptop. I figured that by then a lot of the bugs new systems get would be fixed (I know, there are always patches). Having lived with Windows 7 a few years back when it first came out and all the weird things that happened – I even had to have Windows 7 re-installed by a professional and that cost a fortune in my books. Now with Microsoft’s bigger than big booboo, I’m changing my plans. No offense to Dell, but I’m switching to a Mac. Ditto when the desktop PC’s lease runs out – but I have over two years for that. Meantime, I hope my son (who is in the computer business and encouraging me to get a Mac) will let me try out his Mac and give me some pointers on the differences in using a Mac and PC.

I bet a lot of others will switch to Macs. Microsoft you really screwed up this time.

Meantime, here are a few links to where I did my research. One of them is the well-known Windows and Office guru Woody Leonhard. I like his wit and knowledge. You can go to his webpage to read his regular postings on Windows and Office here 

The article is appropriately titled

How to clean the Windows 10 crapware off your Windows 7 or 8.1 PC

Here are a few more links, randomly selected, on the subject:



There is lots more – just Google for them.




Only Child Writes

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Filed under Computer problems, Consumer action, Life demands, Microsoft, Only child, Problems

Only Child on trust

Only Child and her son Martin -  one of the few people she can trust

Only Child and her son Martin – one of the few people she can trust

Who do you trust? Do you trust anyone? Why and why not?

Over the years I have learned that trust is worse than fleeting. I used to be this naïve person who had trust, even if it was in the form of praying for things to be all right.

Not anymore. I can count on my fingers the people I can trust. As for organizations (religious, utilities, and otherwise – hell no). It used to be I could get up in the morning and feel safe, feel that it would be a good day.

Not anymore. Always I have a hassle and/or problem hanging over from a previous day. And more are always lurking unexpectedly around the corner. This unending list includes the weather, utility problems, house repairs (impending, some done but not done properly – read Nigel Applewaite and the bad job he did four years ago on waterproofing the outside of my house – he didn’t dig deep enough and I shouldn’t have trusted him), health issues, family, computers, finances, etc. – not necessarily in order of importance.

The bottom line is I have learned from my experiences to be wary of who and what I trust. I try not to take anything for granted because you can bet once I do I get screwed somehow, somewhere.

What is the answer?

For me, it is trusting myself, doing and going it alone as much as I can, keeping in mind I can reach out to the under 10 people I can trust.

And oh yeah, dishing out repercussions to the culprits who mess up my life – but picking and choosing which ones and letting others go.

Not letting go will be one of the latest – Bell Canada’s screw-up for the static on my phone. They emailed me about doing a survey on their service about this – the technician hasn’t shown up yet. To add insult to injury the email did not contain a link to the actual survey. But it did contain the name of the customer service VP. She’s getting s*** once a technician has actually been here.

More anon, like maybe next week’s post on Bell Canada – the ding-a-ling company.


Tomorrow is Canada Day July 1. Enjoy it – despite yet more rain and possible thunderstorms.

And for my American followers, Happy July 4 coming up this Saturday.



Sharon A. Crawford

Only Child Writes

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Filed under Anxiety, finances, Health, Life demands, Only child, Problems, Rain, Snafus, Stress, Trust, Weather, Worrying

Only Child lives in two worlds

A no-no for Only Child on technology-free day

A no-no for Only Child on technology-free day

Lately I seem to be yo-yoing between living in today’s technological lifestyle and in so-called simpler times. I think today’s fast-pace and too swift changes are getting to me and I need the comfort of the past.

Not all past and some of it isn’t even my past. And no, I don’t want to move back into the past. I had enough of outdoor privies as a child visiting my grandfather’s and aunt and uncle’s farms, thank you very much.

This winter I’ve started to bake again (beyond the bread in the bread maker which I began doing a year ago) but cookies and crisps and soon muffins now that my son and his girlfriend gave me two muffin tins as part of their belated Christmas present (Note: we have our Christmas dinner here in January when both are back from visiting various other family members outside Ontario, over and beyond the Christmas season). Sunday I loaded up on baking and other supplies (Basmati rice) at The Bulk Barn. Now all I need is time.

Time may be a big clue why I’m “regressing” in how I live. As I posted last week time and its close relative, money, can be in short supply and when you add in the high cost and frenzy of living, something’s got to give and something’s got to change. So I bake, make soups from the proverbial scratch, and watch TV shows set during the Second World War (before my past). These shows Foyle’s War, Land Girls and Bomb Girls are set back home (Great Britain for the first two and Toronto, Canada for the third) depicting the lives of those who didn’t go off to war. Of course, the war impacts what happens and my interest here is not in glorifying war. I am also watching a couple of TV series set in the 1960s (Vegas and Heartbeat) which is my time as a child and teenager. Some of you probably watch Downtown Abbey. Not that any of those times were without difficulties and problems and some of the ways of life in the past I wouldn’t want repeated today (women stuck at home as homemakers only comes to mind). And with many fresh fruits and vegetables skyrocketing in price (grapes and lettuce, for example), I’m eating a lot of root vegetables and frozen vegetables and fruit (some from my garden and some from the Farmer’s Markets of last summer and some store bought). Fresh vegetables (outside of root vegetables) are limited to cucumbers, peppers, bananas , apples, oranges, grapefruit nd strawberries – which, except for apples,  are all trucked in from warmer climates. I would prefer local, but at this time of year what do you do? You need some fresh.

However, do we really need all the excess technology – the constant tweeting, texting, and being forever stuck to our smart phones or BlackBerrys? And don’t forget the reams of passwords. Many people go to bed with these (or their laptops) and the last thing and first thing they do is check e-mail or text. Studies are also showing that this glued-to-technology is affecting our brains, including short-term memory and our ability to multi-task (for videos  and “print’ stories go to http://www.thestar.com/living/health/article/1319796–your-brain-online). Hey, I thought technology was supposed to help us multi-task. Apparently not.

Confession here: I have a laptop and an e-reader but no cell phones – smart or otherwise. Just my landline. At some point I might get a very basic cell phone for safety’s sake but not before the exorbitant  cell phone rates in Canada go down down down. My TV is not inherently digital – I had to get a digital adapter. I actually buy CDs rather than download music and play them on my mini stereo system, but I also have a very old turntable from my teenage days. And I’ve started having one technological-free day a week (Saturday or Sunday) – no computer stuff although I’ll read using the e-reader and watch TV but I also use the landline to phone friends and I still read books in print. Compromise.

Maybe that’s the answer. Find the happy medium between past and present. It might be better for the mind, body and spirit. See another Toronto Star story “Tips to Reduce the ‘Infobesity’ in Your Life “http://www.thestar.com/living/food/article/1321197–tips-to-reduce-the-infobesity-in-your-life

Now, excuse me, while I return to rewriting my prequel mystery novel – set in 1998. I wonder why.

Comments anyone?


Sharon A. Crawford

Only Child Writes

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Filed under 1960s, email overload, Life demands, Multi-tasking, Only child, Sharon A. Crawford, Stress, Technology overload