[RESULTS] Your Top Windows Questions
Wow, over 5000 of you responded to the survey about my upcoming ebook. I sifted, sorted and summarized your answers, then created a word cloud of the top issues mentioned in your questions about Windows. Read on for an expanded view of the results, and ANSWERS to some of the most common and interesting questions you raised...
The Survey Says...
Several days ago, I announced that the next edition of my ebook "Everything You Need to Know About WINDOWS" was almost ready for release, and I asked readers to take a brief survey about their computing preferences. I also asked "What are your TWO top questions about Windows that I absolutely NEED to answer in the ebook?" Here are the results of that survey.
You can see from the word cloud pictured here, the most common issues that were mentioned in your responses. Questions surrounding Windows 10 were predominant, with Windows 7 following closely. Issues of security, malware, software updates, speed and performance were also high on the list. I was pleased to see that many of you are concerned about backups. And there were plenty of questions about privacy, the cloud, and web browsers. Quite a few had Windows registry issues.
Let's rewind just a bit, to my first question, which was: "Which computers, mobile devices or online services do you use?" Not surprisingly, 80% of this audience have a desktop computer in the home. 75% use a laptop, at some of the time. 60% tote a smartphone. 55% own some form of tablet (iPad, Microsoft Surface, Kindle, etc.) 65% prefer webmail (Gmail/Yahoo/Hotmail) over desktop email progams. Only half of you use Facebook, and just under 40% reported using cloud storage. Not so popular in this crowd: Twitter at just 14%.
Next, I asked: "On your primary computer, which operating system do you use?" Most surprising to me was the fact that amongst AskBob readers, Windows 10 is now the dominant operating system, with almost 48% using it. Another 36% reported that Windows 7 was their primary system. Those two operating systems combined made up 83% of the total user base. Of the rest, you reported using Windows 8 (7%), Windows XP (3%), Vista (2%) and Other (4%). I know a fair number of you are Mac and Linux fans, but I suspect they were under-represented here because the survey was aimed at Windows users.
I received 5142 completed surveys, and because I asked you to list your top two Windows questions, there were LOTS of great comments. Among them were several hundred birthday wishes, and some really touching remarks from long-time readers. I would love to thank all of you, but the survey was anonymous, so let me express my sincere THANKS here to all who participated and commented!
Let's Answer Some Questions
As I mentioned above, there were thousands of responses, but some common themes. One that jumped out at me was concern over being forced to move to Windows 10. Let me put your mind at ease on that point. If you are happy with Windows 7, you have until at least January 2020, which is when "extended support" ends for Windows 7. For Windows 8, that date is January 2023. I discussed this, and also how to turn off the Windows 10 "nagware" in my article Is Microsoft Forcing Windows 10 on You?
Other concerns about Windows 10 centered on cost, and the possibility of a bait and switch by Microsoft. Windows 10 is a free upgrade for those currently running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 -- at least until July 29, 2016. There are rumors that this deadline for the free Win10 upgrade will be extended, and I believe that's very likely. Don't count on it, but my guess is that it will be pushed out one year, to July 2017. After that, I assume those who wish to upgrade will have to pay something on the order of $99.
Microsoft has also stated that once you have Windows 10, all future updates will be free, for the life of your device. Some people suspect that Microsoft will not keep this promise, and will start charging a subscription fee for Windows. I have no reason to believe that's true, and it doesn't make sense that Microsoft would do that, especially since Apple provides free updates to their Mac OS X operating system.
Another common question was "What is the best best way to transfer content from an older computer to a new one?" There are several ways to answer this. The most straightforward, if you've just bought a new PC, is to restore your documents and photos from the backup you made before retiring your old PC. (You did make a backup, right?) Then you can re-install software from your CDs or download the software. That involves a bit of labor, but little or no cost. But if you're willing to spend a few bucks, you can speed things up with LapLink PCMover, a nifty tool that automatically moves your programs, files and settings to a new computer.
On the lighter side, I got this question from someone who is obviously fed up with spam and viruses in his email inbox: "Is there a way to extract latitude/longitude information from an e-mail, so as to be able to sanction the sender with a drone (or Tomahawk missile)?" Sadly, no. It's true that the "headers" in an email can indicate the IP address of the sender. But savvy spammers know how to cover their tracks by forging the From address, using anonymous relays, and other tricks to obfuscate their physical location.
Further, IP addresses do not correlate to a precise geographic location. At best, an IP will tell you the name of the originating city, but often it points back to the location of the user's Internet Service Provider, and not the user. Even if you could pinpoint the street address of an email sender, it wouldn't be wise to drop a bomb there. Spammers use malware to compromise the computers of unsuspecting users all over the world, and send their messages from there. It's best to hit the delete button, or mark a message as spam.
Stay Tuned, More to Come...
Tomorrow I'll be answering more of your Windows questions, and I'll announce the launch date for the "Everything You Need to Know About WINDOWS" ebook. It'll be soon, I promise, but I need to add a few finishing touches, and make updates to address your survey questions.
Your thoughts are always welcome. Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 30 Mar 2016
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- [RESULTS] Your Top Windows Questions (Posted: 30 Mar 2016)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved