It’s official: I don’t do Windows

I know, it sounds a little lame, but I realize now that, over time, my practical and useful experience with Windows — in any flavor — is now either many years out of date, or so thin as to be transparent.

The issue came to light a day or two ago with a question about how to change a desktop setting in Vista, and I was looking in completely the wrong place for the answer. I got the “I thought you were a geek” look from a co-worker, who went on later to get the correct information from one of the in-house gamers. I was a tiny bit embarrassed, for having tried to be of help at all.

So I am building the habit of referring Windows questions to actual Windows users, rather than trying to be of some help myself.

I take the approach to any variation of Mac operating systems, so it’s not a new idea. I haven’t used a Mac machine on a regular basis in decades, and I certainly wouldn’t offer advice to anyone having problems with that OS.

And the same goes for Ubuntu, although it is a little “closer” in my mind than the others. After all, I can install a vanilla Gnome Ubuntu desktop on my Inspiron and suffer through the weak performance, if someone needs an answer. But really, it’s one of the reasons I stepped down as a moderator for the Ubuntu Forums, about a year ago. I just lack the immediate experience to be of help.

And the last time I used Windows to any degree beyond setting my router software or setting up a sparse dual-boot system was … almost four years ago, and the playing field has changed considerably since then.

For a while I still felt relatively comfortable answering questions about Windows machines, but no longer. I tell Windows users to ask Windows users how to solve problems. I really don’t think I can be of much help.

Unless they want to get away from it altogether. 😈


8 thoughts on “It’s official: I don’t do Windows

  1. mckinnon81

    I am starting to take this plunge and move away from windows. I tried before but always went back because of gaming, but Linux has made leaps and bounds in this area so trying again wasn’t a hard choice to make.

    I am seemingly stuck in both worlds, IT Worker in Windows world trying to use Linux (at home and at work)

    I have found Windows users set in their ways, “old school” and has to be done a certain way. Where are Linux users, as a quote says; “All roads lead to Rome”, Many different ways to do this but you still get the same result. Just do what you feel is comfortable for you.

    Try applying that to a windows users or action. Doesn’t always work….Hmm this looks like a good blog post. Off to post it, LOL

  2. Shae

    I too find myself further from just knowing how to do things in Windows. I have spent most of my time with XP, but I did dabble in Vista to try it out and though I liked it more than XP, I missed what I could do in Linux. Plus almost all the games I want to play are either Linux native or work well in wine so I am not having that problem at least. I hope the only thing that might change this is if there are initial problems with Diablo 3 or Starcraft 2.

    I usually do have to research any issue beyond the standard bug removal measures for Windows. But I think having to look stuff up is not that bad.

  3. Ron

    I feel very much the same way, I feel very much out of my depth when using any form of windows. But for the most part I really dont care that I cant use windows from a practical point anymore

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  6. twitter

    I left Windows98, it was just not worth the trouble of keeping up. I moved from DOS to Win 3.1 to 95 to 98 and that was the end of the line for me. Each arbitrary changes at each level wrecked any customizations I made and erased hours of effort and learning. Each version brought more of these and more annoyances. I have used NT, W2K and XP at work but only when I had no choice and I quit making changes to these system five years ago. I treat it like the dumbest of terminals. The less of it I know, the happier I am. Now there’s XP, Vista and Vista 7, each with radically different but equally annoying ways to do the same things. Why anyone bothers to learn these things when they could just get gnu/linux is an unsolvable mystery.

    When I want to get some real work done, I pop out my laptop with Debian. When someone wants to know how to do things, that’s what I show them. The programs, features and organization I have in GNU/Linux land are simply not available on Windows. These tools and Debian’s easy upgrade system have saved me all sorts of effort.

    Windows use is a fight that never ends. Tell your friends, your family and your boss to dump it.

  7. The Doctor

    “I thought you were a geek” … yeah, I’ve had that… I just shoot back “I’m sorry, it’s been awhile since I worked with primitive OS’.”

    If you have the hard drive capacity to spare though, there’s no reason to not have a few VM’s installed to support “our poor cousins.” (heh!)


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