Damned if you do, damned if you don't (long rant) - Saab General Bulletin Board - Saabnet.com
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Damned if you do, damned if you don't (long rant)
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Posted by JerseySaab [Email] (#666) [Profile/Gallery] (more from JerseySaab) on Sat, 14 Dec 2013 12:40:17 Share Post by Email
In Reply to: Re: Alternative way to avoid installing unwanted updates, Steve in CT, Sat, 14 Dec 2013 12:01:43
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There is no good answer to the problem of whether to enable Windows updates. Microsoft Windows is a brittle operating system -- mistakes piled on top of mistakes piled on top of mistakes piled on top of mistakes going back 30+ years -- and I've seen updates on occasion trash entire systems to the point where they would not even boot up. On the other hand, if you don't enable updates you're open to unpatched security issues. (Most people just don't have the time or knowledge to go through and evaluate each update and its possible side effects for selective, manual installation.)

What I used to do for commercial concerns was to keep updates turned off and install them in a controlled manner during scheduled maintenance, starting with one workstation as a guinea pig to evaluate the effects. However with the increasing viciousness of malware and the spectre of numerous Windows security holes I've relented and enabled automatic updates for most customers. When the occasional problems occur we just clean up after the fact.

Most of the servers I deal with run Linux, but I manage a few Windows units due to back-end application requirements. No way do I enable auto updates on those suckers!!

Just to make things even more interesting, Microsoft reserves the right to push selected updates out to your computer whether or not you have updates enabled. For that matter what we are seeing with Windows 8 are the first steps towards making your PC a terminal on Microsoft's network. (They do their best to trick the user into creating and logging in via a Microsoft account rather than a self-contained local account. At some point they will no doubt make it mandatory and switch to a rental scenario for Windows as they are doing with their Office products.)

Coming from a non-Microsoft background (mostly DEC and Unix) and not using that company's products myself it is hard for me to fathom why people put up with this stuff. You would not stand for this kind of crap from a $10 toaster!

By the way it is not my intent to start operating system wars here, all OSes have their own craptastic issues. Linux, BSD, MacOS, Plan 9, etc., all have their own warts. All I can say is that from my perspective of nearly 40 years in the "IT" business (what we used to refer to as "EDP" or "Electronic Data Processing"), Microsoft products are pretty much the worst I've encountered. If I had my druthers I'd love to still be working with TOPS-20!

->Posting last edited on Sat, 14 Dec 2013 12:40:50.
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