Windows 10 (Now that I’ve been using it)

What is Windows 10 like?

How shall I compare thee?  Oh wait the Bard’s words aside what is Microsoft’s latest Windows offering really like?  Well my initial impression was that it was more like Windows 7 with a functional Start Menu once again, but also having some of the Tile features of Windows 8.1.

Today I don’t feel much different from that initial impression.  I have hit a few little things that bother me, but they are just nuisances not anything that is a total bust.  In fact there may be a better way I just haven’t found it yet.  Honestly I am finding more ways to change settings and customize than I can remember how to use.  I have access to the old Control Panel but there are a few other “settings” screens I stumble across from time to time as well.  Sometimes it can be overwhelming.  “Where was that screen that sort of looked like this one but had settings for X or Y?”

I am using Windows 10 on a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 a very sweet piece of technology, but with it’s own little hiccups.  I was so hopeful in the combination of these technologies working smoothly together and they almost do.  When I remove the keyboard it wants to switch to tablet mode which is great but it doesn’t always transition smoothly or switch back when I plug the keyboard back in.  Granted I can manually switch, but I should not need to do that.

The first main sticking point I have hit is the login screen that can’t be customized.  You get the Windows “Hero” picture and the only way I’ve seen so far to customize is a registry hack.  Fine, but what about the causal user that might want to customize.  I find it rather sloppy to have customizations for every other screen but that one.  The first week or so that image was fun and exciting now I find it rather dull and repetitive.

Another frustration (or irritation) is the way you connect to a VPN.  I am used to Windows 7 and Windows 8 where I can quickly connect using the Network icon in the system tray.  Click on the VPN I want to connect and click the connect button.  Now the VPN is listed there but when clicked it opens a network settings window and I have to click the VPN once again and then click connect and now I have an extra Settings window open!?

OK I know I am being picky but come on a new Operating system should simplify things not add more complexity.  I know UAC wasn’t simpler but there was/is a reason for that.  What is the reason to not customize the login screen or make the VPN connecting/disconnecting require a full settings screen.  I am sure there may be other ways to connect to a VPN, I will have to look.

Windows 7 users, I wouldn’t worry too much about upgrading just yet.  If you plan to keep your computer for another 5 years you may want to upgrade before the FREE upgrade to windows 10 offer is over next year in August.  However if you are happy with where you are at and don’t anticipate this being your computer for another 5 years just stick with windows 7.  The reason I recommend updating if you plan to keep your computer longer is the dreaded “End of Life”.  I am sure sometime in the next 5 years Microsoft will inform us of the End of Life for Windows 7 and then you will wish you had upgraded.   Don’t upgrade just yet though.  Let’s let windows 10 mature a little more.  The new “Thresholds” are sure to bring new features and perhaps some clean up to my complaints…