22 January 2009


There are some people who feel that Microsoft is a wonderful, forward thinking company that makes wonderful products that advance the human race. There are other people who think that Microsoft is a corporate monster that just swallows up independent thinking companies and programmers, or their ideas, and creates a half-baked, bug riddled version of their software. I don't wish to enter into the fray on one side or the other, but I can present some basic data and let you decide for yourself where the truth lies in this particular situation.

My current laptop, which is 3 or 4 years old, we can't remember which, has begun to have some problems. The battery is capable of holding a charge long enough for me to unplug the computer, walk to the next room and plug it back in, but not much longer than that. Occasionally when it has been in hibernation mode it refuses to wake back up. There are days that Firefox will allow me two clicks, and two clicks only. We decided last weekend that it was time for a new computer.

We spent a few hours last weekend in Circuit City looking to see what they have available, what with them going out of business and all. Husband spent several hours on the internet looking at various models and finally chose a winner. The order was placed, and today I found a box from Dell sitting on my doorstep.

I excitedly opened the box, unfurled the cord and plugged in my new baby. It slooooooowly booted up, and I got my first look at Windows Vista. I clicked around a little here and there to get the hang of it, then decided I would see if I could watch DVDs. I got out one of my Psych DVDs and put it in. Nothing happened. Hmm. Perhaps it just doesn't have a DVD playing program installed yet. No problem. Next I pugged in my external hard drive to see if I could play one of my MP3 files. Now that's a little strange, the light on the hard drive turns on, but the computer can't seem to see it. Maybe I just need to reboot. Turn it off, turn it on, and hey, presto, there's the external hard drive.

At this point I had to wait for Husband to get home from work so that he could get the internet connection working. He played around with the router for a while and brought me a 50-character key to type in. Once that was done I was able to see the internet. Before I could excitedly go check out the traffic on my blog Husband informed me that I should run Microsoft Update before doing anything else. OK, click on that, and wait while 21 updates are downloaded. After 10 minutes, that's finished and it's time to reboot.

In case that's too blurry to read, it says, "Your computer was unable to start. Startup repair is checking your system for problems..."

Husband is currently in the basement talking to Service Guy trying to see if there is something that can be done, short of reinstalling the BRAND SPANKING NEW computer.

Microsoft. Make of it what you will.

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