Documenting Problems That Were Difficult To Find The Answer To

Microsoft Don’t Do Information

In my experience over the years Microsoft products, from Operating Systems to Servers, routinely neglect to inform the user why something has gone wrong. In fact sometimes Microsoft, when they rarely attempt to be helpful, appear to go out of their way to give a wrong error message – which completely will confuse you!

I bought a new laptop which had Windows 8 pre-installed. I also have a friend with Windows 8.1. Both this laptops have had the same problem: the WiFi connection will show up as “limited” (and not work) with ordinary routers that every other WiFi device has no problems connecting to (such as phones, and other laptops running other Operating Systems such as Ubuntu, Windows 7).

The WiFi “limited” issue is the reason why I formatted my laptop and replaced the OS with Xubuntu. I’ve not had any WiFi issues since. It is also the reason why I’ll never purchase another Microsoft Operating System for home use in my lifetime.

It’s not just that Microsoft have seemingly broken ordinary WiFi connectivity. That’s a grave enough error in a modern Operating System. But the more severe error is that Windows 8/8.1 will just show the connection as “limited” without any description as to why. A reason might just help a poor customer diagnose the fault. Is it an inability to get a wireless signal? Is it because it cannot get an IP address assigned? Is it because Microsoft are trying to ping a server of theirs and it is failing? What is it!?!

And it’s not just WiFi connectivity that Microsoft stick two fingers up at the consumer with little-to-no information. I used to work with IIS (Internet Information Services, Microsoft’s version of a working web server like Apache). This incredibly crass piece of software would return the wrong error code – e.g. when a CGI application failed to execute property the server would return a 404 error (page not found) rather than a 500 error (server problem). If there’s one thing worse than returning no or little information – it is returning blatantly false information.

Conclusion? Microsoft hate people. Microsoft couldn’t give a passing thought about people. Information is not something Microsoft do. Instead they sell, market, and sell glossy interfaces. But helping you get a job done – like connecting to an ordinary WiFi router, or diagnosing why a web service isn’t working – well Microsoft will do their darnedest to make your life miserable.


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