Rape is the only word for it. My wife’s computer is a Dell laptop running Windows 7. Windows 10, or at least the perverted “upgrade by force” so many of us are seeing these days, is a cyber world crime of the most violent sort.
Hyperbole, you say?
It’s understandable you might feel that way…if you haven’t been software-raped by the leering, lascivious thug known as Microsoft. If you’re a Windows 10 lover, fine; you’re the rapist’s wife, married to the cyber thug. You have to defend it by default, right? Fine. I get that. For the rest of us, however, the perspective is just a wee bit different.
Some months ago, Pam’s laptop started throwing “Upgrade to Windows 10 now” popups at her every time she turned on her computer. Since my redhead is severely ill, with dementia that appears to be progressing into the “sweet” stage–which is when an Alzheimer’s victim loses enough of her mind to let go of all the personal stuff before dying–anything that interferes with her hard-learned competence on that machine is evil by definition. She plays Hidden Object games, keeping her mind as functional as possible despite the fact that she mostly does a lot of chaotic clicking these days (and thus sticks to games that don’t penalize such activity). The popups alone were highly irritating, especially because after a while they didn’t have any place to click to shut them the hell up.
Stress. And stress for a physically ill, mentally ill, and half dead but devoted computer user is a bad thing.
Then it got worse. She never did authorize the Windows 10 “upgrade”. (What a joke, that word!) And yet, one morning she fired up her laptop…and the dirty rotten rapist was right in there, forcing its way where it did not belong.
NO MEANS NO, DAMMIT!
That time, since I had a lot on my plate and didn’t get around to checking out her computer problem for a while, Pammie actually found a phone number, called, and got a Microsoft tech who said he could walk her through reverting her computer’s OS (operating system) back to Windows 7 and setting something in her computer to block further rapes by Windows 10.
He did not use the term “rape”, of course. I paraphrase.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t home at the time and there was no way she could mentally handle anything like using the Recovery program to get back to Windows 7…let alone going into various sub menus on her computer (which neither of us wants her to attempt in her confusion). So, when I got home, she gave me a slip of paper with the phone number on it. I tried that. It was supposed to be a direct line to the tech who’d spoken with her. It wasn’t. How she got to the “good guy”, I have no idea. I never made it past the generic jerk version. Could be she got herself bucked up to a Supervisor with a clue and also some empathy; she’s good at that when she wants to be. In my case, I finally just hung up the phone, did a Google search, and changed Windows 10 back to Windows 7 for her.
Which (as many of you already know, having learned the hard way) was of course an extremely temporary fix at best. Every change (to or from the dreaded rapist Windows 10) kicked the screen resolution way down from its optimal setting, so that always had to be reset…and the thug was still right there, embedded in one of those earlier super sneaky, ultra arrogant “Important Updates” by the Bill Gates version of Frankenstein’s monster.
That’s it. There’s the right description. If Frankenstein’s monster had been a raging rapist, that would be Windows 10 as powered by Microsoft’s uber-aggressive “upgrade” campaign. Pitchforks and torches; where’s a good mob when you need one?
For some time after that first not-so-merry-go-round, we battled the continuing gropes of Pam’s computer by those Windows 10 popups. Then, a few mornings ago, slam-bam, thank you, Ma’am! Sure enough, Windows 10 forced its way between Dell’s legs and took over yet again. I could almost hear Dr. Doofenshmirtz from the Kim Possible cartoon show, practicing his evil villain laugh.
Sadly–I’m rather ashamed to admit this–I checked out the system and advised Pam to lay back and enjoy it. Windows 10 had messed with a few things, but it didn’t look that bad. We might as well submit to the rape and carry the bastard child to term.
That almost worked. If it had worked, you wouldn’t be reading this. But as time passed, Pammie kept telling me she “had no Internet”, sort of like a woman who’s been impregnated by rape “has no menstrual period” for a while. I thought she was mistaken. Stupid me. The Windows 10 rape had knocked out her Internet Explorer browser, so all her Dell had left was Google Chrome. I could call up a Google page, no sweat. Took me a while to realize that was all I could call up.
The next phase was horrifying. We had to abort the rapist’s child one more time. (Guess that makes Microsoft the rapist, Windows 10 being merely the monster child growing within the victim’s computer. I’ll get this right eventually.)
Okay, we know abortion is a testy issue. But we didn’t have any choice. Long story short, I eventually found out (it took much of the day on April 15 to do that)…if you “upgrade” from Windows 7 to Windows 10, WiFi cannot function at all. Since the only Internet connection for my wife’s computer comes from the WiFi router sitting on my desk in another room of the house, that is–as the Bill and Ted movie would declare–bogus!
All righty then. Back to Recovery. Back to Windows 7. No problem with that, as we weren’t anywhere near the one month limitation Microsoft put into the scam. This time, I did notice that on the way out of Windows 10, Microsoft wanted to know why we were going. For the first time, I used the word “rape” in my comments and, also for the first time, reminded them that NO MEANS NO!
Maybe they’re Russian and I should have said NYET!
A bit more online research (tons of us humans are cursing the rapist these days). Adjust Settings to Hide Notifications of the accursed “Upgrade to Windows 10 now!” so called Important Updates. Which probably won’t prevent the next rape, but at least we won’t have to deal with the endless screens gloating, “Gonna rape ya! Lay back and enjoy it! I are Microsoft and I can get away with anything! You know you want it! Nyah! Hah! Hah! Hah!”
Solutions? Most surefire solutions are drastic and impractical, such as swapping out the OS from Windows and going to Linux–which my ailing, failing wife could never master anyway. There is, however, one surefire option if I have to go that route in the end. It would mean changing computers entirely, but because of my aging E-machines desktop (purchased in 2010 and also running Windows 7), I’ve been fortunate to discover something magical.
Microsoft has never attempted to rape my computer with Windows 10. I began to wonder why, suspecting it might be because of the age of my beast.
And I was right.
In the interest of scientific curiosity, I actually attempted to “upgrade” my desktop computer to Windows 10 last night. This was a risky proposition, for sure, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do. I hoped to discover a clue or two before fully committing to the process…and by golly, did I ever. Windows 10 pouted in disappointment! Turns out it can’t rape my computer or even have a consensual relationship–because yes, the old beater’s display is incompatible with Windows 10.
What does that mean in the real world? Quite simply, if the Windows 10 rapes of my wife’s computer become so frequent and so invasive and so annoying that we just can’t take it any more, I will seek out a vendor of refurbished machines. Specifically, I’ll be asking these folks: Is your product old enough to look like a Neanderthal to Windows 10? Most of these sellers won’t have a clue what I’m talking about at first, but it only takes one.
Like I said, drastic solutions. The French Revolution, guillotine and all, would have been much simpler.
P.S. Sexual offenders, once they start acting out, never stop. Microsoft the rapist is a prime example of that. Just tonight, a new and moderately horrible popup blared onto my computer screen, announcing proudly that Microsoft will no longer let “websites” jack around with your homepage, sometimes changing it without your consent. So far, so good, right? Eh…not so much. That same popup provides only two options: Either accept MSN or Bing as your homepage, period. If you “X out” (I did, once), the popup simply comes right back at you in short order. I had to accept the rapist’s homepage “selection”, then go immediately into Internet Options and change the rapist’s baby back to my preferred Start Page for my homepage. Microsoft has been popping way too many male hormones.
UPDATE: 5:07 a.m., April 16, 2016
I wasn’t able to let go of the problem after publishing this rant. Eventually, rooting around on Google and also on various Microsoft pages, I ended up on Live Chat with a Microsoft tech.
The trouble is, don’t ask me how on Earth I found the right page, because I just tried again and had no luck whatsoever. Maybe it’s because the sun is coming up shortly and I’m pretty much brain dead. In any event, Christina (also known as Tina) was amazingly helpful. I didn’t really want to tackle messing around in the Registry on Pam’s computer, but Tina took over (with my permission) and Disabled the GWX entry. She also promised to email me, “…if we can find a permanent solution.” She was empathetic, caring, and competent. Wow.
Bottom line? Microsoft is still a rapist. Windows 10 is still a Frankenstein forced-implant baby. But that doesn’t mean all the front line employees at Microsoft are as evil as the corporate policy itself. Some of them are, in fact, quite human.