Can you teach an old dog new tricks?

In recent years I’ve come to fear marketing speak. Phrases such as ‘innovative software initiative’ send chills down my back and tend to make me break out in a cold sweat.

Back in January I posted about the upcoming retirement of Windows 8.1, and announced that I intended to migrate to a Unix-based OS. Further consideration, prompted largely by the comment thread that post elicited, persuaded me against going down that road. The main reason is that my employer uses Windows, and, working from home, I need to be able to interface with their systems. There’s also the reality that the learning curve to make the switch from Windows 8.1 to 10 will be less steep than grappling with an OS with which I have only a passing familiarity.

As the old saying goes, “The first hit’s free.”

So, instead, I bought a Windows 10 installation disk a few months ago, and that has been taunting me from my desk ever since. (I bought it from eBuyer.com; yes, it would have been – slightly – cheaper to get it direct from micro$haft, but they only offer a download installation and I like to have disks available against the day that a hardware failure forces a PC replacement.)

As 10Jan2023 looms ever closer, the time has come to bite this bullet. I’ve been assured that the software switch itself should be seamless, but there will be a fair amount of struggling with the latest round of ‘enhancements to the user experience’; of that I have no doubt.

Lethal Weapon – Roger Murtaugh is too old for this shit.

Long story short: I may be offline for a while. We’ll see. Wish me luck?

About peNdantry

Phlyarologist (part-time) and pendant. Campaigner for action against anthropogenic global warming (AGW) and injustice in all its forms. Humanist, atheist, notoftenpist. Wannabe poet, writer and astronaut.
This entry was posted in ... wait, what?, balance, Computers and Internet, Core thought, Strategy and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to Can you teach an old dog new tricks?

  1. Dealing with new OS/computers in general always has its challenges. I’ve discovered they do tend to make installations easier. As proof, I was able to easily migrate ‘my stuff’ about 6 weeks ago when I bought a new laptop as well as a fitness tracker (please note I’m not particularly computer savvy so this was historic! ). Best of luck.

    Liked by 3 people

    • peNdantry says:

      Of course I’m glad that you encountered no problems with your migration. You’re not wrong; I don’t fear the installation itself so much (though there’s always the possibility that something will go wrong, and possibly badly); it’s the aftermath that concerns me. This icon has changed so I no longer recognize it; this option is now (inexplicably) accessed via some other place in the system; this function has morphed beyond comprehension; this application I’ve come to consider an old friend no longer runs at all – that kind of thing.

      Some people look forward to a day when all our tech is connected. As for myself, I anticipate being unable, in my dotage, to even make myself a proper cup of tea because I’ve forgotten that the kettle activates on verbal command and I go (more) insane because I can’t find the on/off switch….

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I hope all goes well! I didn’t have Windows 8. I was still using whatever came before until I needed a new computer which had Windows 7 installed. Strangely enough I was able to install Windows 10 for free when it was introduced. You know so much about technology so I doubt if you will have any trouble. :)

    Liked by 3 people

    • peNdantry says:

      Ugh. The ‘free’ Windows 10 upgrade thing: there’s stacks of (mis)information on the Internet that claims it’s ‘still possible’; I’ve wasted hours of my life trying. That option has clearly been closed for some time by micro$haft. Can’t trust what you read on the interwebs!

      I have yet to wind the frog (too many plates spinning and balls in the air currently) but thanks for your vote of confidence :)

      Liked by 1 person

      • I remember the free upgrade was only available for a short time. One would think Gill Bates would have at least given a discount after the free upgrade expired.

        Liked by 1 person

        • peNdantry says:

          I’m pretty sure the free upgrade was available for years and was only withdrawn in the last few months. It was certainly available very soon after Windows 8.1 was launched; I recall being nagged to upgrade to 10 every time I turned the PC on (until I sighed deeply and researched how to disable the nagger).

          Mr Gates – *tugs forelock* – has no need to offer discounts, even to ‘loyal’ users†. He (& co) can charge whatever he thinks the market will bear. (I think they call that ‘the free market’.)

          † Isn’t it appropriate that the term ‘user’ is used to apply to both those who utilise computers, and drug addicts?

          Liked by 2 people

  3. revruss1220 says:

    Good luck. Don’t sell yourself short. I have no doubt you’ve handled more challenging changes than this before, so you are likely to handle this one with a minimum of sweating and/or swearing.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Dr Bob Rich says:

    It’s worse with Apple. I used to have lots of excellent programs on my macbook. Then they made an upgrade of the OS compulsory with various little twists. These programs don’t work on the new system. They DO NOT AND CANNOT work on it.
    Sob. (note the double meaning)

    Liked by 2 people

    • peNdantry says:

      Ah, yes. One of the downsides of ‘upgrades’ is the loss of ancient-but-still-good software tools. I suspect that at least one of my favourites (Paint Shop Pro v6) may well not work on Windows 10. Fortunately, I do have two PCs, both running on Windows 8.1 currently, so I have a ‘Plan B’ for any such (keep 8.1 on the other PC and just disconnect it from the ‘net before 10Jan2023).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dr Bob Rich says:

        Yes, I have an old one with the keyboard not working and the battery bravely holding 0% charge. It is fine for Adobe Professional, which I refuse to upgrade because instead of a one-off fee they have a monthly one.

        Liked by 2 people

        • peNdantry says:

          Same with Paint Shop Pro v6. I bought an installation disk, it does what I need. From my point of view, “It ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, from the vendor’s POV, “If we don’t charge a regular fee, we’ll go broke.”

          Liked by 1 person

  5. Good luck. My Office Suite is expiring and things are supposed to stop working later this month. I wonder what that means… Will all of my docx files self-destruct?Anyway, I did download Libre and it works well.

    I’ve been dealing with issues with my work computer all day today. I was told reimaging it would fix an issue. Turns out, it made it worse and no one seems to know how to fix it. They’ve made some changes so that everything’s secure and more easily accessible, only it’s so secure that no one can access it (well, at least not anyone who actually needs it for work).

    Hope your transition goes well.

    Liked by 2 people

    • peNdantry says:

      Thanks, Goldie. LibreOffice is good (though I do wish they’d cure the annoying blocking dialogs on startup… must suggest that when I get a moment). Your .docx files will be fine, LibreOffice can handle them :)

      Heh… the ‘lockdown-on-permissions-without-considering-the-consequences’ conundrum. Not a fun game to play. There’s no option in such cases but to raise your SEP field and point out to your employer that you can’t work until they sort it out – but they have to keep paying you in the meantime…

      Liked by 2 people

      • I kinda like the dialogues when I open it up. I’m not very familiar with it yet, so the tips re interesting. (Unless you mean something else.)

        After 2 weeks they fixed it. (Unfortunately there were other tasks/ workarounds I could use in the meantime.) HOWEVER, they did tell me that the issue will keep recurring every now and again. Instead of fixing it now, they decided to wait until it breaks again. Ughhhh I swear they must get paid commission on tickets closed or something like that.

        Liked by 2 people

        • peNdantry says:

          Agh: terminology problem. I think I meant ‘modal dialogs’ (which I’ve always thought of as ‘blocking’ ones). I’m referring to the behaviour of software made by designers who believe that their application is so important that it simply must throw its windows up on top (which LibreOffice does whenever I start up a spreadsheet). It’s annoying, and lacks respect for the user’s focus, interrupting what they may be doing in another application. Here’s an explanation, in case you’re interested: Modal & Nonmodal Dialogs: When (& When Not) to Use Them.

          Pretty sure your IT support guys don’t get paid commission for closing tickets; I bet they’re just overwhelmed (and probably underpaid, too).

          Liked by 2 people

          • Ah, I see.
            Then wouldn’t it make more sense to solve something once and be done with it than returning to the same problem over and over again? But I’m aware that not everyone is as focused on solving problems as I am. Most prefer to just take things off their plate even if just for a short time. I think my approach is more long-term.

            Liked by 2 people

          • peNdantry says:

            It would indeed make more sense to do that; but providing long-term solutions is not something that the human race is particularly good at at the moment; the (vociferously denied) mantra is ‘short-term profit, long-term greed’. If that changes… well, we may yet survive.

            Liked by 2 people

          • P.S. I loved the IT series. Hysterical.

            Liked by 1 person

  6. jilldennison says:

    Best of luck! See you soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Best of luck, Colin. One would expect things to get easier over the years but the reality is different.

    Liked by 3 people

    • peNdantry says:

      Ah, it just gets worse as time goes on. Why on Earth must they keep redesigning everything?† If it ain’t broke, don’t bleeping well fix it! Grr… Of course I’m bound to point the finger at causes other than my own declining mental faculties (I’ll fight tooth and nail to my deathbed in the firm belief that it can’t be me who’s the problem… like everyone else).

      † I know the answer to that one: ‘progress’ and ‘growth, growth growth’.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Marcus Ampe says:

    Dear blogger, dependent on a computer and internet connection.

    When I came to use a personal computer it was in 1995 with still floppy disks and the Microsoft Dos system. I saw a lot of changes and was forced more than once to buy a new computer to be able to stay connected. I also tried other systems than Windows, like Linux (and another one), though certain Biblesoftware I want to use I need Windows.
    Once I worked with both systems on one tower computer, but having to change every time from one system to another just did not work. As such, I put other computer systems aside, except for my tablets which I chose for the family i-pads (though first for my wife I got her an Android system, which in the end did not satisfy us and was changed for an Apple Ios system)

    The change from Windows 7 to 8 did not go so ideally and after my computer crashed I decided to buy a Probook from a specialised company which now takes care of my pc service. Because I make every week a Backup they could (re)place everything in good order.

    I advise you to make a backup before you install Windows 10 and hope everything shall go smoothly so that you do not have to make such extra costs as I had to pay.

    Good luck!

    Liked by 2 people

    • peNdantry says:

      Thanks for your visit, your comment, and your advice. I’ve backed up all my important data in preparation for the move; like you, I’ve had to suffer this kind of malarkey several times in the last few decades so I have some idea how to prepare. Of course, one never can tell exactly what difficulties lie ahead; perhaps they will be trivial, perhaps insurmountable! My crystal ball has been cracked for some time…

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Dear Colin,

    Windows 11 has already been available since 4 October 2021.

    Yours sincerely,
    SoundEagle

    Liked by 1 person

    • peNdantry says:

      I know it has. But (a) Windows 11’s hardware requirements are greater than that needed for 10 (so my old machine can still cope with it), and (b) I never ‘upgrade’ [sic] to the latest OS – newer software has had less soak testing; I let everyone else beta-test micro$sloth’s latest offering. Call me a freeloader and/or luddite if you must, but this tactic saved me from being subjected to ‘Vista’, ‘Me’ and ‘7’.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: [SOLVED – finally!] Windows 10 installation has failed | Wibble

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