Windows Shuffle

I have been using some form of Microsoft Windows at home for thirty years. I have been using it to surf the Internet for at least 25 years.

During a good deal of that time, I was forced to get a new computer every time the version of Windows changed. My old hardware just did not have the horsepower to keep up.

I still need to run Windows today as Maria, Sarah, and the grandkids are used to it. I have some games that require it. And my Income Tax and Photo Management programs are Windows only.

Of course, the only sane Microsoft version to be running these days is Windows 10. So far I have managed to avoid the old Windows Shuffle when it comes to hardware replacement. My current Windows desktop is from 2012 and started out with Windows 7 Professional. I have managed to upgrade it to Windows 10 Pro, plus copy it to a couple of SSD upgrades, and it kept on chugging away.

Alas, it looks as if my luck is running out. Although Microsoft is not changing the name of Windows 10, they are indeed changing the version. My older desktop is stuck at version 1909 and there have been two upgrades since then. My old desktop won’t update to either of them – I just get a “failed to connect” error. Other updates have installed but not the most important ones.

I think the reason for this is that Windows/Intel no longer supports the aging Sandy Bridge processor that is in my nine-year-old desktop. Although I’ve upgraded a lot of stuff in the desktop over the years, I can’t do much with the motherboard and processor.

The version of Windows 10 I use is nearing its end of life and won’t be supported for security much longer. I have to do something to fix the problem.

Now under normal circumstances, I might save a few of the parts from the desktop and build a new one. However, right now is a very bad time to do that, since many parts I’d need are hard to get or very high priced at retail. What to do?

Well dude, I’m going back to Dell. I ordered a new Dell XPS desktop which should arrive later this month. Dell is one of the few companies that still allows customization when you order, so I got improved storage and memory and it’ll be futureproofed a bit. I assume it’ll come with the latest version of Windows 10.

I have plans for the old Windows desktop too. As constituted, it is a vast improvement over the 2008 desktop I have set up for my granddaughter Susannah. If I install and configure Linux Mint on it, it should give her a faster and more reliable PC. It’ll have more memory and much better graphics. I’ll just do the IT and then switch it out for the 13-year-old antique she’s using now.

Aside from the monetary pain, getting a new Windows desktop means backing up and restoring a lot of data, re-installing a bunch of software, making sure all the games work properly, etc. At least I know what to do.

I guess I shouldn’t complain if I only have to do this every 10 years. Be thankful for small mercies.

Published by Ray MacDonald

Ray MacDonald is a retired food scientist who lives in Almonte, ON.
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