Windows 10 second try. It works, but not to my liking yet.


I played around with W10 on a guinea pig machine last night. This time it did work as an upgrade to an Acer Aspire One netbook with other programs installed (like MS Office). However, while I got it to at least function this time, it still needs a lot of work before I would use it in a work/play machine.

Here are some things needed to make W10 more useful:

1. Make it fast and easy to restrict searches to files on the computer only. The default folds in web searches, which clutters the searches when you want a file on the computer. This one can require a lot of hacking around to change, especially in the Home version. If I want to search the web, I will do it in a browser. Windows searches are for finding local files.
2. A built-in app uninstaller in add-remove programs that treats it like how W7 (and previous OS versions) did things for Windows features. It was fairly easy to switch off features you would never use. W10 makes removing unneeded apps a difficult process that requires use of PowerShell and sometimes registry hacks.
3. Bake in the ability to restore the W7 start menu. Some of us really like the two-column view that has things we use a lot, like Control Panel and Computer, always there in the second column. W10 makes you hunt them up and then pin them manually. If MS was smart, they would take a hint that other software companies are selling tools that let one customize the start menu with ease. It should just be part of Windows. Users like to have a start menu (bloody lesson learned with Windows 8) and they also like to have it be configured to their preferences.
4. Allow users the option to ditch Cortana and still keep a rudimentary Windows search function. I can rip Cortana out by the roots, but doing so kills off the entire Windows search function. I just need a simple search function for local files.
5. Make OneDrive optional. I have no plans to use it. Again, treat it like a Windows feature that can be turned on and off.
6. Ditto for OneNote. I have no plans to use it. Let me turn it off and have it stop cluttering my start menu.
7. W10 seems built around selling me stuff and often acts more like a giant spyware program than an operating system. It makes Facebook seem shy. I want a simple way to enable a “Privacy Mode” that sets all user data options to the most restricted settings. I don’t want Cortana to get to know me. She is creepy and I want her to go away.
8. Automatic forced updates are a disaster waiting to happen. At the least, MS needs to fix the issue the freshest drivers from venders like NVidia being automatically rolled back by W10 updates.

Anyhow, I still regard W10 as being beta from a user perspective. It requires a lot of manual work to get rid of unneeded junk, create a modicum of privacy, and make simple things happen (like restricting searches to local files).

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