I have been running a Mac for the last 7 years and last week, I fixed up a Windows PC for the first time. I learnt a couple of things you should NOT do.
1) Don’t EVER try fixing up a PC if you don’t have a DVD-ROM drive.
In this day and age, I had thought that optical drives were optional. After all, my Macbook Air came without one and I get most of my stuff from downloads.
WRONG. Oh my goodness, how big a pain is this. First of all, some motherboards these days come with this newfangled BIOS mode called UEFI that’s completely not like the BIOS I know. You can’t just command it to boot from USB or an external hard drive because it won’t. Or maybe it’s just Windows doing its thing. I wouldn’t know because I can’t get it to work.
I’ve tried reformatting my USB/external drive, swapping out the directories of boot manager files, force-detecting my drives as “optical” instead of USB/Hard Drive… nothing works. NOTHING.
I gave up in the end and thought ok, I’ll burn the friggin’ ISO into a DVD and then use an old DVD drive. The motherboard I have runs on SATA plugs and my drive is an old one with IDE connections. I bought a SATA adapter but apparently the ones on the market here don’t work presumably cos they run on the old SATA format while my motherboard’s on the new format. NOTHING WORKS.
What did I do in the end? Hook up my hard drive on an old PC with an optical drive and install Windows. Does it work? Yea kind of, except it now detects phantom peripherals that I can’t uninstall and every now and then tells me that Windows Update has failed.
2) Don’t EVER try to customize anything. EVER.
Some installation program needs to alter a registry file via some command line scripts. Didn’t work because I lack the proper permissions. Please could I contact an admin although I’m the ONLY person who’s registered and is using the same PC. I try correcting the permissions in Explorer but can’t because they’re all greyed out. I try setting my hard drive as ‘Active’ which is apparently the wrongest thing you can do.
Windows has grown so bloody smart it now decides what to partition your hard drive into and which can be active and also that you shouldn’t have permissions to the drive. Who does? I don’t know!
Anyway, changing permissions caused Windows to fail to boot which brings me back to the useless BIOS screen again. Repeat all the actions in Problem 1.
3) Don’t EVER try to install anything if you don’t have an internet connection.
A computer in every household my ass. If you don’t have a reliable connection to the internet, Windows will insist that your software is illegal and remind you of that with pop-ups every few minutes. If you don’t own an internet connection, you’re OBVIOUSLY too poor to own Windows, peasant.
4) Use your mouse scroll button like how you’re expected to use it! Conformity is very important to Windows users!
My scroll button is in reverse. Let me invert it, I thought naively. After looking up the Control Panel, Google tells me exactly what it takes. Simple stuff.
5) Shutting down in a hurry? You can’t because Windows decides when it wants to shut down.
Automatic updates that run by default on shutdown. I don’t even want to elaborate.