We’ve just called on Microsoft to overhaul how it handles Windows 10 updates after receiving thousands of your comments. Have you experienced a botched update?
You can read more about the woes suffered by Which? members in our news story, but I want to talk about some of my own experiences with Windows 10 and then hand it over to you to see what you think would be the best way for Microsoft to handle updates.
It’s my job to understand computers, and has been for several years. Three years ago, I recommended my partner buy a computer for working on the move – I found a great model, weighing under 1kg and costing £200.
Unfortunately, things haven’t worked out. We’ve experienced many problems trying to update Windows, such as the update breaking the Wi-Fi connection, requiring a new driver (software for the Wi-Fi card) to be downloaded each time.
We became so frustrated that we’ve switched to a Chromebook. Away from Microsoft and into the arms of arch-rival Google we’ve gone, and I don’t think we’ll be looking back.
So what’s gone wrong for Microsoft? For its part, the company says the vast majority of Windows 10 updates carry on without a hitch, but with over 600 million Windows 10 users, even a half percentage failure rate is hundreds of thousands of people.
It turns out the great strength of Windows is also its weakness: it’s so widely used on so many different types of computer, every single major ‘feature’ update has the potential to break some aspect of a laptop.
There have been plenty of examples over the last few years including touchscreens failing, fingerprint scanners no longer functioning and USB devices failing to be recognised.
More recently, serious issues involving some makes of solid-state drives rendered some computers unusable.
What’s the answer?
You can choose not to accept updates (or undo them if they cause you issues). Problem is, if you choose not to accept an update that you know might break your computer, eventually you’ll be cut off from important security updates. Microsoft says each major version of Windows 10 only has a support life of 18 months, after which point no more assistance or security updates will be provided.
So, do you think we should have more sympathy for Microsoft and just accept that it isn’t responsible for every single computer in the hands of more than half a billion people? Or can Microsoft do more to help?
Have you had problems with Windows 10 updates? Let us know your experiences.