So I’ve been working in the tech industry since my first computer business in 2001 from Windows 98 to our current Windows 10. I got into building websites from people asking me where I got my websites from and it’s all history from there. Since then I’ve participated in many a Microsoft Tech Day across the country. Testing Microsoft products and tech has simply been a blast. As a business professional it’s not only my hobby but my profession.
When Windows 8 first came out I paid the $40 something dollars to go from Windows 7 to 8 and really didn’t like it on a desktop environment. It just simply wasn’t a good fit. My peers were paying for some 3rd party start menu and Microsoft lost out on a ton of revenue there. I wasn’t going to just out of principle. Then there was the 8.1 update which gave the start menu navigation but still didn’t make it quite functional the way one might expect. When the opportunity came came to hand off the 8.1 laptop to someone else that needed one I jumped at the chance to get back to work on Windows 7. It just wasn’t the kind of user experience a business professional needs in a work environment even with a touch screen laptop. On my desktop I simply switched back to my other hard drive and reverted to my daily use of 7 from Windows 8. Last night I decided that I would install Windows 10 Professional. Which was met with some interesting situations.
Unfortunately, on July 29th like many I wasn’t prompted to install Windows 10. Siting on a computer hard drive that I hadn’t used in a couple years I had some updates to do which I figured if I did them it would then ask me to install it but this proved to do nothing. I didn’t even get the Windows 10 prompt icon on my toolbar to reserve my copy of Windows 10. So after installing updates all day there I was a little frustrated to say the least because as you know navigating Windows 8 isn’t too much fun on a desktop environment without a touch screen. So I figured that maybe installing 8.1 would make a difference and installed that. That in itself took a small part of eternity even with a pretty decent hard drive much faster than your typical 7,200 RPM drive. Nope, still after doing all my updates over 2GB in size there was still nothing from Microsoft suggesting anything about Windows 10. I checked the App store as there was a suggestion to download 8.1 on it but for 10 there was nothing. What the heck Microsoft!?
Well, I’m not the kind of guy that likes to wait for things to get done so that wasn’t enough for me. I went to the Microsoft site which took me everywhere but where I wanted to go which was to a, “Download Microsoft Windows 10 Pro Now,” button. I mean come on now that’s just ridiculous. All the marketing speak about how amazing it is being the best ever and they can’t even give me a direct link to actually get the product. I don’t know why but this is consistently the case with Microsoft. I think Microsoft could easily do another billion a year just by simplifying their message. Most business professionals aren’t as technical as I am and if I’m having issues with it the typical business professional is going to want to throw their PC out the window. Hope you’re taking notes there Redmond, Washington! We’re an instant gratification society that doesn’t like to go more than 2 clicks deep. Don’t make me work!
Eventually I stumbled on a download tool for Windows 10. At least that’s what I thought it was supposed to be. This turned out to me the place to click on to actually download Windows 10 Professional. If you’re using a modern computer like I am you’ll want to select the 64 bit version. So I clicked on the download link and opened up the tool to install. Then I was prompted with an error during install, “Something has happened,”and then it closed. Not vague at all right? Are we starting to see the picture here Microsoft now? I tried this installer a couple times before deciding to search the error online resulting on a Reddit forum. Apparently you need to change your country region by going into, “Control Panel,” and the “Regional and Language Settings,” for both the keyboard and country. Keep in mind, this is only necessary for the download tool. For whatever reason the download tool is only set to work for the US right now for English US speaking people evidently. I’m not sure if that’s an accident considering they mentioned roll outs in many countries. This switch worked and I could finally actually start to download Windows 10 Professional. Talk about a lot of work for something that should be an 8 second search to click to install!
So if you’re like me and you have a pretty decent connection the download for 3GB or so suggested will take some time. However, compounded from the drive of the Windows 7 Pro to 8 to 8.1 with all the updates is going to take up a ton of hard drive space. Microsoft needs to introduce a cleanup tool ASAP to eliminate all that extra crud from the prior install. The amount of occupied space on an expensive high performance drive is simply too much.
The install seriously takes some time to get done. Microsoft seems to have some issues with counting as there’s a going joke about too as once that’s done you get this screen. Notice something funny about the counting here?
Then once that’s done after what feels like a small eternity playing on your phone waiting you’ll see this.
It’s right about here I feel like they’re just making fun of me now. They’ve now gone through the count down to 100% twice and then they give you this. Hey Microsoft, why not just throw it into one cohesive countdown with a stage indicator of the install. The reason why Apple continues to grab market share is user experience. This is an example of a bad experience on a great product. Yes, that’s right I think Windows 10 is amazing so far. With some simple fixes you could make your customers way happier but I can’t complain with the price $0. If you want to become Apple in the apps arena then you need to create more organized brand controls to get to the point faster and a more cohesive experience with decent continuity.
Finally, once all that downloading and installing is done you’re greeted by the Windows 10 Pro splash login page. “Step away from the light.” I think this signifies Microsoft saying it’s a whole new experience as their best OS (Operating System) ever. So far I’m going to have to agree. With some refinements it could really win us all back and then some.
That is of course after you finish updating your drivers. I couldn’t quite figure this out as to why it did this. After doing the install my screen was stuck in 1024 x 768 screen resolution which is typical of CRT (big chunk monitor) of the 15 – 17″ screens we used to see. I don’t know why some dummy drivers weren’t installed but I’ll give them time to get themselves to where Windows 8 installer was. Yes, the Windows 8 install was better but knowing all the moving parts changes between them I’m sure Microsoft has some sort of excuse right? So it never asked me to restart to install the video drivers which is imperative to actually seeing things properly. If you’re like me with dual high definition monitors seeing the screen for the first time you’re expecting just a little bit more. No prompt to restart and sitting there looking all over for ways to change the resolution none were to be found. If I’m a typical baby boomer there’s no way I am going to know what to do here. However, being a seasoned IT professional with a system I custom built myself I knew where to look. I installed the Nvidia drivers which are specific to my machine. I noted this on Facebook and another peer said they’d also experienced the same thing and a simple restart without installing any drivers fixed it. So Microsoft there installer still needs some work.
So after installing the Nvidia Windows 10 drivers it was a quick restart. I came back and the experience was pretty awesome. Clear, crisp, sharp desktop icons. Navigation enhanced for expediting your work day . One complaint being the desktop minimize icon on the toolbar could be slightly wider as most of us professional power users use it pretty frequently. Everything like a good webpage is almost within a few clicks. It performs really well.
The first thing I did was right clicked, “My Computer,” to click properties and then go in and “Change Settings” to change the work group to my local. All the local computers on the Windows Work Group from Windows 7 to Samba on Linux saw it fine. It was a much more friendly user experience then from Windows 8 which took a lot of digging to find anything.
One of the by far coolest features I’ve discovered from my new install is the, “Task Viewer,” icon displayed below which for all us multitaskers makes life a whole lot easier. This is simply awesome! Productivity was actually strongly considered here and it really shows.
This isn’t to be confused with the Windows 10 Task Manager as seen below which encompasses many enhancements to actually see what kind of potentially rogue programs are ruining your computer performance in the background. I seriously love this operating system!
Then there’s the start menu. Yes, the beloved start menu is back and enhanced! It’s still rough and like the app store needs refinement. Those random rectangle frames in the navigation just make it chaotic. The random colours etc just make it feel disorganized and not ready for production yet much like 8 was. I’ve no doubt from the app store it could be a lot better though as the scripting language used to create apps isn’t too bad from what I’ve read. The potential is there but not harnessed yet.
The pairing of my phone was a seamless and effortless process quickly downloading images without issues. The organization of the new menus is intuitive and doesn’t require any learning curve fortunately. As you can see by the drive used for testing though it takes up too much space after updates from Windows 7 to Windows 10 and a cleanup tool is necessary.
Here’s a picture taken with my cell to show the Windows 10 Desktop
The Windows 10 desktop view and start menu which pulls real-time feed information on weather etc from various resources. This all depends on the apps you grab from the app store of which many are free.
Overall, Windows 10 knocks it out of the park for a desktop experience. Everything loads blazingly fast and the productivity enhancements are great. I haven’t found any real bugs user experience aside after the install and as you can probably tell this article was written using the Windows 10 Professional operating system. I can definitely say that I personally back this operating system and would recommend it for production in a couple weeks or a month once some of the bugs are worked out of it security wise etc. As seen here http://thehackernews.com/2015/07/windows-10-wi-fi-sense-explained-actual.html there’s always some exploits to be had. The most dangerous system is the one that’s not configured properly. I’m also a Linux user and can say from personal experience it can also be very wide open if not done right. Below is a screen shot of my Linux install. All operating systems have bugs, security flaws and should be respected with appropriate software updates, antivirus (which is stronger in Windows 10 than previous) and a good router.
No, I don’t work for the NSA.. that’s just an amusing desktop and something for someone to freak out on if they should ever tamper with it. As you’ll see in a prior image the work group is Honeypot which to any hacker would make them think twice before going any further.