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My worst week with Windows 10 Preview: When downloads go very, very wrong

Mark Hachman | June 29, 2015
Windows 10 kicked my butt this week.

This is what happens when dumb reporters (me) don't read the build notes carefully enough. I thought that a soft reset might solve the problem--which rebooted the phone, of course. (Even though the phone was a Lumia, I found that the instructions for resetting HTC phones worked best.) That, of course, led to rising blood pressure as the problem failed to resolve itself.  Eventually I wised up and reflashed the phone with a fresh operating system, returning it to its Windows Phone state. But I'm apparently not off the hook. Now Microsoft thinks I have too many Windows Phones on my account, and it won't let me upgrade again.

Meanwhile, the Lumia 1520 upgraded flawlessly--or so I thought. Unfortunately, the new build breaks the phone's Wi-Fi--it simply doesn't turn on. And because I don't have the proper SIM for it, I'm stuck. I suspect I'll be downgrading it again in the future.

A quick review of Build 10149

So how is Build 10149? I can say a few things about it:

  • Microsoft advises downloading the new universal apps from the Store--without an Internet connection, I can't.
  • I'm still seeing some "Loading" screens while flipping back and forth between apps, the Settings menu, and the home screen. In general, though, many of those seem to have disappeared, thankfully.
  • The quick settings menu has been fleshed out with 16 or so default options, including the new flashlight icon (it works) and shortcuts to battery saving modes, display brightness toggles, and more. The font size seems a bit smaller, as it is on the list of apps, but everything is crisp and functional.
  • Unfortunately, I can't quite see what Cortana reportedly looks like in its final form, or some of the other connected aspects of the build, including the apps themselves.

From my very limited experience, the new build looks promising. But that's about all I can say.

Some Insiders may tire of buggy updates

Like most of the other millions of Insiders, the appeal of something new is undeniable; it's part of my professional DNA. Ditto for being on the inside, and helping in some small part to shape Microsoft's next operating systems. These feelings won't go away overnight once Windows 10 finally goes out the door.

Windows 10 for PCs will launch in about a month. Microsoft will be squashing bugs right up until the final RTM version is released, undoubtedly, then continue patching it for weeks later. That's just the reality of software development.

But the catastrophic issues I encountered make me wonder if we won't see an attrition of sorts--not in terms of Windows 10 users, but as part of the Insider program. 


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