Donna doesn’t like Windows or the Cloud very much. She writes:

After reading your tips, I wish to hell that I had waited until I could afford a Mac!

I have a car…I don’t need to know how all the mechanics work in order to make it go. I need a computer that is no more useless to me than this one with MS 8.1. I use yahoo and gmail and I don’t want now or ever to have one’s mail sent to the other. I don’t know (or care) what One Drive is. I have drives C, D, E, F etc and don’t need any additional “drives” and I don’t plan on EVER using the cloud. I don’t trust it any more than I trust our current federal government.

Your tips aren’t the problem, it is MS and their need to control everything we do. Thank you for doing your best with something that is expletive deleted. I certainly don’t want to have to speak my commands to “Cortana”. My computer commands are not the business of everyone within earshot. If things keep “improving” as they have since XP, I will likely go back to a land line, snail mail and banking in person. Everyone in the world knows or is able to know way too much of my business due to computers and OSs that are developed by people that aren’t smart enough to keep the crooks of the world from breaking their so called “security”. And don’t even get me started on cell phones and our wonderfully snoopy government.

Your tips are probably the best you can do with the garbage with which you must work and they probably will do what you say they will IF I should happen to have the version of 10 that you use as an example.

Perhaps World Start needs a separate edition to address the business versions so you, in your tips, could address the version most people will be using. (I haven’t been anti computer until recently…I started on computers with a Mac with no hard drive and graduated to a PC with DOS. Early windows weren’t terrible but if the security was addressed instead of adding Cortana and other unnecessary things, windows ‘could’ still be good).

I know, you are just doing your job and apparently do it well considering the material with which you must work. Sorry about the RANT but I have held this in way too long. BTW…I hate the tiles and just making them smaller won’t help. A menu and no other ms junk on startup would be nice…any tips for that.

Well Donna, I’ve got some bad news for you about your plan to switch to a Mac. Macs are heavily integrated into the cloud. In fact, Apple is following Apple’s lead in this area.  Microsoft is very proud of their iCloud Drive and their systems are actually more cloud-connected than Windows. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that the iCloud is actually kind of aggressive about making sure your devices are synced with the cloud.

icloud-file-menu

You don’t have to know how a computer works to use one, I impart that information to folks to sometimes explain why something isn’t working. Just like a mechanic might if a part breaks. Using the OneDrive is completely optional (and pretty darn convenient) as is Cortana. Though, to someone with mobility issues, a digital assistant like that can be a godsend. Also, you don’t have to talk to Cortana. You can just type your questions in or choose not to use Cortana at all.

cortana-reminder-set-salad

As for combining your mail, that’s completely up to you, but some people prefer the convenience of receiving it all in once place.

We also do address the versions of things most people are using – which is why I get so many complaints about not featuring Mac and Linux systems.  Out tips are almost always written on the Home and Pro versions of Windows. Most of our writers are freelancers, so they aren’t going to have an Enterprise edition of Windows at home. But I also address the questions folks are asking, and because 8.1 was the newer system folks had lots of questions about it.

For Windows 8, you can just go to the desktop and skip interacting with the tiles completely. In fact, if you have 8.1 and are using a keyboard, it should boot to the regular desktop.  You’ll probably like the Start Menu in 10, you can remove all trace of tiles and customize it to feature the things you want.

For the record, I don’t think Windows is garbage. I’ve used both Mac and Windows systems and think they are both perfectly fine. I think one of the major issues with Windows is that it often comes on PCs that the manufacturers have stuffed with bloatware that makes it harder to use. I know I’m not going to change your mind, Donna. But I think the issue isn’t really Windows, it’s that you don’t like the direction of cloud-connectivity and information sharing that technology is moving in. But in this case, Microsoft is actually struggling to catch up with Apple on that front.

I do have to admit that a return to a land line and snail mail has its appeal. Good luck with your future computing and if you have any questions about whichever Windows system is giving you trouble, I’d be glad to try and help out.

~ Cynthia