This last Wednesday night was fairly unremarkable – just another night really, until about 10 pm when all hell broke loose on my desktop here at home. For a day or so my AV had been telling me it updated itself and I need to reboot. So I finally did, and what happened next was followed by 3 hours, then 2 days of sheer joy.
I rebooted XP to be greeted by a win32 failure, quickly followed by a host of others things and apps dying which ultimately crippled XP, so I had to reboot. After about 7 or so reboots, a BSOD with only 1 line of text, and numerous other weirdo things I was finally able to get back in to a stable enough point to copy the important stuff to my backup drive and rebuild. My machine was acting kinda weird for a few months, some service would fail every now and again and I would have to reboot – but nothing too major; certainly nothing I had never seen before in XP.
Since I have been having good luck with Vista, I decided to go that route, but figure I would do a clean install and wipe all the drives and start clean with 1 OS, rather than an XP/Vista dual-boot.
Note: If you are planning on buying Vista, don't buy an upgrade. Get a full version – you can't perform a clean install and rebuild partitions from an upgrade.
I found out after I restarted and went to the setup disk that you have to install Vista from the OS you intend to upgrade if that's the disc you have – no clean build for me. But yet… I did figure out that you don't have to enter a product key, and then you select the version of Vista you have and it will let you at all the good stuff on the disc; which could let you perform a clean install. I found an article stating this works fine and all you have to do then is upgrade your system from within Vista and enter your key there, but my install would error out (with 0x80070241 – which seemed to be related only to the beta and a corrupt install ISO) after 9% every time. So I had to install XP just to upgrade to Vista. This is the most annoying, ignorant decision Microsoft has ever made in the history… okay maybe not, but WTF!? This isn't going to prevent piracy, since people don't ever hack upgrades anyway – so the only thing they accomplish by this stunt is to make it harder on people who have to rebuild their machines after Microsoft's crappy software poops out its brain.
I didn't get my machine back until 10pm on Thursday night. If I had just wanted to go back to XP it would have taken less than an hour, which asks for my 98 disc since it was an upgrade too; which is how it should be.
This last experience with MS is basically the straw that broke the camel's back; I'm done. Gates and Ballmer can take Windows 7 and jam in their collective arse for all I care – I won't buy it. In fact, I'm not spending another dime on anything from Microsoft. My next desktop will be a Mac. In the last year that I have had my MacBook Pro, I have had to rebuild my desktop 2 times, and that's not including the 4 times it took me to install Vista initially on my second drive. I have never had a problem with my laptop. Ever. If the Apple store hadn't been 2 hours away, I would have very likely just gone and bought a new machine.
Well, I'm back up and almost 60% reinstalled now, so I'm good for a little while – now I just need to find a way to skin the bots in Quake III to look like Microsoft execs, and I will be happily on a frag fest….