Windows 10: Worse than 7, better than 8

Edward Barrera, Staff Writer

Windows 10 is the newest edition of Windows, with its predecessor being Windows 8.1. Windows 10 features many improvements and new features over Windows 8.1. I’ve tried it myself, and I have to say it looks beautiful.

Sadly, there’s a lot of problems with it.

For people who wanted to test Windows 10, Microsoft had an “Insider Preview” version of Windows 10 available. Those who wanted to try it out were advised to do so on computers that were not their “daily driver”- meaning, don’t install it on the computer you use the most.

In its early testing stages, Windows 10 was not much. Windows 10 was barely in some development, so that was fine. Right off the bat, though, was the removal of the Metro menu. Windows 10 brought back the Windows menu. However, it was still basically Windows 8.1, with there being lots of things missing or broken.

Towards the end of its testing phases, 10 got really good.

Everything now looked much nicer than Windows 8.1. Logging in was quick. Things like a game recorder and increased game performance were added. The best part? Microsoft started offering Windows 10 as a free upgrade from 7 or 8.1. People saw the chance and took it. This went well.

Post-release, there’s a lot of things wrong.

Microsoft released an update to Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1 PCs, running a program called GWX.exe whenever your computer is running. This program would let you know that you are eligible for an upgrade to Windows 10, and it is available for a year. You had the option to upgrade to Windows 10 with the program — it WAS your choice.

What started off as an innocent reminder now turned into something mandatory.

A while ago (I want to say a month or two ago), Microsoft started to download copies of Windows 10 onto PCs automatically. Microsoft said this is to help people be ready for Windows 10 whenever they want to do the upgrade; they would not wait for the upgrade since it would already be downloaded. However, now you will be forced (yes, forced) to install Windows 10 soon. For people who connect to the Internet with a mobile hotspot, this eats up 6 gigabytes of data. Be warned.

There are also many settings for Telemetry: Your PC will submit info about the way you use your computer to Microsoft for… purposes. This can be used for bug fixes, statistics, or whatever they feel like doing. Disabling all of these (many) will have them disabled for a while. After some time, they will be switched back on. Clearly, this makes privacy a concern.

This is being pushed to Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 as updates.

Another thing is the fact that your Internet connection is used to assist other people in updating their PCs. Again, if you are on a mobile hotspot, this will use up your data. You can prevent this by checking “Metered connection” on your computer.

Advertisements are in the Start menu. They’re minimal and subtle, but they are there. You may receive “suggestions” or tiles recommending apps, programs, articles, websites — it can be anything.

Windows updates can no longer be postponed indefinitely. If updates are ready, Windows will forcibly install them if they are postponed for too long. This is bad for those who do work such as video rendering, which can actually take weeks depending on the content being rendered.

There are many things good and bad with Windows 10. It’s not a blunder like Windows 8 (not to be confused with Windows 8.1), but it’s not as great as Windows 7. It’s just in the middle right now.