I hate you, Microsoft!

There is a specific chain of events, which happened to me recently, that couldn’t have been more unfortunate. I was the owner of one of those Samsung smartphones that was running Windows Mobile 2003. The phone was pretty cool, but it had its share of bugs. I could live with most of them, but overall the thing was great as a PDA and terrible as a phone. At best I could get a day out of the battery if I didn’t make any phone calls or use the Wi-Fi or anything like that. This made it a very expensive tool to see what time it was. On top of that, it wasn’t really intuitive to use the phone function. It just seemed like the phone part and the PDA part didn’t really know each other existed. Well I got used to it anyway and just carried around a huge bulky phone that I ended hating after several months. So I went down to the store and found a pretty good deal on one of those new Motorola KRZR phones. This ended up being worse than the Samsung, since all the neat features of the phone had been disabled by my service carrier, and the remaining ones were extremely broken beyond any kind of usability. Failing to find any kind of decent software hack to get the back to its original Motorola functionality, I decided to return the phone to the retailer before my trial period expired. The retailer was happy to exchange the phone for a similarly priced way more functional LG enV. However, they didn’t have a way to copy my contacts from the KRZR to the LG. Not a problem, since all my contacts were still backed up on that stupid Samsung running Windows. Somehow, in the time it took for me to return the KRZR, leave the store with my new LG, and get home to the Samsung (which was working fine before I left that day), the Samsung completely crashed all by itself and did a handy little factory reset on itself, completely annihilating all my personal data including 8 years worth of collected phone numbers!!!

This is strange, since that phone never gave me any trouble like that in the 8 months that I had it. It’s almost like it knew that as soon as I actually really needed it to not destroy my data it did everything in its power to anger me. There was nothing I could do. Now I have a nice new LG phone with the 7 phone numbers in it that I could remember off the top of my head. I am livid!

The only thing that makes me feel better about the situation, is that deep down I am telling myself that Microsoft uses their own software to run their entire network infrastructure, including their backups. That is punishment enough, if you ask me. I severely hope that they lose 8 years worth of code or something.

Well enough ranting for now. If you are reading this and wondering why I haven’t called you in a while, it is because I no longer have your number. Please send me an e-mail with it, so I can stay in touch.


FredDecember 14th, 2006 at 11:57

I am sure that was its way to punish you for cheating on it with a younger, more beautiful LG phone.

fadda monDecember 18th, 2006 at 03:31

It is also a lesson on backups :-( Backups for a phone number list can be very critical. I keep mine in an extra file on another computer (too) and that is backed up at least twice somewhere else. (Yup – it is a pain to maintain – and no, I do not trust any of the bluetooth synchronization tools – I want to know that my phone list is up to date – if I do have to duplicate the work.) Poor Jabba.

JabbaDecember 18th, 2006 at 07:23

Well this is true. And the point was that that WAS my backup. All I needed it to do was act as the only copy of my info for a few hours.

[…] Next time Microsoft releases beta software for public testing, it would be nice if it would gracefully let you know when it expires and maybe even give an option to install the latest and greatest.  The whole “Application failed to initialize…” evil error message on January 1st doesn’t make my job as an IT Desktop Support guy very fun when it happens to 400 clients at once.  I stand by my previous hatred for Microsoft on this one. […]

DanielApril 5th, 2007 at 10:58

Actually, your comment about Microsoft using their own software? I’m not sure that’s entirely true. I have heard a lot about how a lot of their back office stuff is managed on Unix servers… that was a while ago and maybe that has changed since then, but I don’t know. I do know that Hotmail ran flawlessly from Unix boxes and when Microsoft bought it, they tried to port to Microsoft servers and it failed miserably. Not sure if the backend of hotmail is *nix or not now, but for a while there, they were windows front end and *nix backend.

I can’t imagine too much of this practice has changed. And for another, they don’t put windows boxes out on the net without a firewall… which is a computer running an OS other than windows. If it’s Cisco, it’s still a computer. If it’s something else… it may even be *nix variant.

jabbaApril 5th, 2007 at 12:35

Well you are right. I can’t image them having any kind of reliable network infrastructure if they only used Windows servers. I am sure they use Unix-based servers for many things. My comment was more a hope and a dream that they use their own software. It would force them to fix some stuff, if you ask me.

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