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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Microsoft's response

After posting my observations and frustrations with Microsoft Vista's crash-laden software with a backup utility that 'locked' my backup data in still inaccessible format, I searched for and found a blog maintained by Microsoft relating to the topic. And I sent a rather firm and angry email, with reference to my earlier blog posting on my decision to switch to Apple.

Today, I received an email response from Malu Menezes at Microsoft.

Hello, Mark

Sorry to hear about your problems with Vista.

I actually faced something similar with my brand new laptop in 2006, before I came to work at Microsoft.

In my case, I was able to solve the problems once I performed a clean install of Vista, using a Vista CD - not the ones provided by my laptop manufacturer. Once I reinstalled Vista from scratch, I downloaded from the manufacturer's site only the drivers I needed to make the computer work - video card, webcam and a couple of others. I never had another problem again. I believe some pre-installed software was making my computer unstable. Some manufacturer put a lot of doubtful quality drivers and applications in the laptops.

Anyway, sorry again for your problem, and we hope we can win your business back in the future. I'm forwarding your comments to our internal discussion list.

Malu's Bio at Microsoft's "The Storage Team at Microsoft -- File Cabinet" says:

I joined the Storage Solutions Division in November 2007, as a Customer Connection Program Manager.

My job is to facilitate our team’s communication with our Customers. And to achieve that, I help people from my team to engage in Forums, Beta programs, Influencer programs and… Blogs!

Fair enough. I appreciate the response. But alas his observation just adds to the problem. He is shifting the blame -- not accepting responsibility for the fact that Microsoft entered into the licensing arrangement with the manufacturer to virtually force the end-user to use Vista. If the software cannot handle the conflicts, it should NOT be the consumer's responsibility to sort out the mess.

I've had my MacBook Pro for close to two weeks now, and it hasn't crashed once. I turn it on and it works. I do not want to deal with "system registry" issues and agonize over software conflicts. And I don't need to, any more.

Most people reading this blog, undoubtedly, are not working for businesses of the size and power of Microsoft. We don't have a fortune to spend on advertising in the most expensive national media, or to hire experts with six or even seven figure salaries. But if we've been able to stay in business a while, we know the essence of success in developing and maintaining our business (and our brand) is to deliver the goods in a way that clients feel connected and more than content. I'm happy that Malu is making the connection -- Microsoft has a long ways to go to create the contentment.

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