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  #1 (permalink)  
Old December 4th, 2013
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Default Windows 8.1 & Toshiba Laptop

Hi Guys

Last night I spend a couple of hours setting up pre-installed Win8.1 on a new laptop for my son, I must say apart from two items the set-up procedure was the easiest I have ever come across.

However, in use Windows 8.x is a different kettle of fish, I found myself at certain points going around in circles, triggering unwanted functions without pressing any obvious keys or touch pad actioning, etc. There was just no intuitive or logical way of getting what you want when you want, if a particular program or function is needed then it tends to be activated through trial and error rather than straightforward choice.

I definitely believe that Win 8.0 was quickly designed for tablets then had desktop functions slapped on. Why Microsoft could not have designed two separate OS's, one for tablets and the other for desktops but able to communicate with each other, is way beyond me.

In fact, another major problem is that Win 8.x goes out of it's way to hide your system from you, it's extremely difficult to get to any of the hardware functions. This feature you would want in a tablet but not in a desktop that you may want to upgrade at some future date.

Win 8.x is like Vista, a bad OS that MS is trying to force down users (their customers) throats.

OK, the two problems that I had getting this laptop ready were the following:

1) Getting my modem router ready to accept a new Internet enabled device.

2) Having your external email user name and password ready.

Now, the reason I mention these two things because all that the "Quickstart" leaflet mentioned was how to plug the laptop in and switch it on, and that was it (nothing else) as far as how to configure and get the laptop going.

My son has the laptop now, it belongs to him, and he is fighting his way around the OS, he is getting there and, all I can say is, rather him than me.


UK Bob

PS. I managed to install a copy of Norton Internet Security and Sandboxie on the laptop, again very easy to do but I was not given the choice where I wanted the applications to be installed.
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Old December 4th, 2013
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Win 8 is very much into the permissions area. OSX is doing something similar with hiding various system/app folders so users cannot touch them (I downloaded an applescript yesterday which makes them all visible.)
In Win 8 the permissions for the applications folder are very strong. You need to change the permissions of the parent folder to change anything within. On Win 8 I ended up making shortcuts to various utilities and folders for fast access.
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Old December 5th, 2013
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Cheers LOTR

That bit of info was welcomed, but I can't help thinking that Win 8.x is a "bodged up" job, i.e. a tablet OS forced onto a PC.

This is basically why I don't want to spend my time wrestling with a system to get my work done. I can appreciate the intellectual kick someone may get from solving the new daunting puzzles and conundrums Win 8.x may throw at you, just like I got when I worked on Win 3.0, 3.1, WfWG 3.11, W95, NT & XP, but since retirement enough is enough.

I'll probably end up getting a cheap 10" android tablet in the new year for non-work stuff, e.g watching catch-up TV, browsing (non-financial), digital books, etc. while keeping my XP PC for my important stuff.


UK Bob
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Old December 28th, 2013
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Default Windows 8.1 & Toshiba Laptop continued

Hi Forum Members

This morning my son was using his laptop as normal, the machine is about 3 weeks old, and suddenly it lost it's wi-fi connection. And of course he came to me to sort out, what else are Dads for.

Anyway, after checking that my modem, wi-fi signal strength and IP addresses were as they should be I checked his laptop. I found that the machine was trying to connect to a different network's wi-fi signal and, what's worse, it could no longer see my modem's wi-fi.

At this stage I felt I had no other choice than to action a previous restore point, 23rd December to be exact. Once done, the laptop regained my modem's wi-fi signal and my son could access the Internet again, and all that was left to do was re-update my son's Norton Internet Security software.

My question is (to anyone out there that may know the answer) how is it possible for Win8.1 to suddenly abandon the Internet signal it is using, seemingly delete that signal and all it's properties, and then try to unsuccessfully connect itself to another wi-fi signal?

Please note, that the laptop has a fully updated copy of Norton Internet Security installed on it, the same software I use, and he never uses the Internet without sand-boxing his browser.

My son is now using his laptop again, without any further difficulty, but the problem I just fixed has me stumped on how it started in the first place.


UK Bob
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Old December 28th, 2013
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Does he have a mobile phone? Some mobile phone services can be used & show up in a wifi service option (I think, I do not really understand how it works.) The system might have detected another service (even if only temporary) & switched. Perhaps he might have been trying to hook his mobile up to the local wifi or vice-versa. Wild guesses on my part.
I'm basing my suggestion on a friend's macbook pro & iphone which apparently shows two other wifi options to connect through (due to the iphone), outside of the hard-wired LAN.
Edit: Just remembered I think they said the iPhone scans for wifi options.

Sleepless or one of the others no doubt understands wifi better.
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Old December 28th, 2013
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Hi LOTR

Yes, my son does have a mobile phone but I think, I am not sure, that it does not have wi-fi capabilities.

And there are other wi-fi networks in my area, ten others (found this out by checking my new Tablet). But I don't see the network his laptop was trying to connect to this morning.

This is a strange one.

Cheers for your suggestions.


UK Bob

Last edited by ukbobboy01; December 28th, 2013 at 02:42 PM.
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Old December 29th, 2013
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I have only noticed this with router hickups when they temporarily would forget their changed access point (SSID) name. But in those cases they have still showed up with their default name.

So in your case I honestly have no idea.

Your own wifi signal will most likely be the strongest one, so that's one thing to look at.
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Old December 30th, 2013
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Hi Sleepless

Router hiccup or central update from my ISP are the first things I checked but neither of these events happened because my modem was working as expected, with no changes, plus I could still log onto the Internet with my Tablet.

You know, I'm thinking it was some sort of hiccup within Win8.1 because everything else, i.e. all my hardware and software, were working properly, only Win8.1 had suddenly lost all it's w-fi settings and properties.

I know I cannot say with any kind of certainty why this problem suddenly occurred while my son was on the Internet but the problem is now cured.

Unless someone else can come up with a plausible explanation then this will (forever) remain a mystery.


UK Bob
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Old January 1st, 2014
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Default Wi-Fi Bug in Win8.1

Happy New Year to all Forum Members

LOTR & Sleepless

I was reading an online newspaper this morning, the Guardian, and came across a blog saying that lots of people are complaining about Win8.1's loosing it's wi-fi connection:

Boot up: Win 8.1 Wi-Fi Woes | The Guardian.com

Which lead to this Softpedia article:

Some Windows 8.1 PCs Are Still Suffering from Limited or No Wi-Fi Connectivity

And you know what's worse, MS engineers are not admitting there is a problem:

Windows 8.1: WiFi Dropping and Limited Connectivity - Microsoft Community

Considering what happened to my son's laptop, it is now "more than" obvious that it was the wi-fi bug that disconnected the laptop and deleted it's wi-fi properties.

You know, modern software have hundreds of thousands (may be even millions) lines of code and it is impossible to write a bug-free program. However, with something such as an Internet connection, there should not be any problems with something that is so vital to the whole reason of having a computer.

Anyway, MS has definitely dropped the ball on this one but hopefully they will rush out a bug-fix.


UK Bob
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Old January 1st, 2014
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I didn't update my Win 8 to 8.1. Could you possibly downgrade or is that impossible? I read something about 8.1 having issues not too long back, and some general sentiment in some ways it was going backward in design concepts; the article seemed to be a warning about 8.1. Not sure it was a link you posted in another thread or something I found myself.

For the past decade I've generally had a philosophy wait & see, of reading user reviews before updating software. In that way finding out if the updates are true updates & bug free or not or whether it could render my use of such software difficult or impossible, wrecking work flows. I've sometimes made exceptions, and sometimes regretted it. Downgrading after such mistakes can be difficult & troublesome.

Yes I know the worded hype in updates suggests you should update for security or other reasons, when it's often just a marketing kind of wording. (Improvements, but we don't yet know how many dozens or hundreds of bugs might show up or whether the improvements might actually be detrimental to general use lol.)
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