“Microsoft Swindles” – Fighting the Cartel Caper Con Scam, Tsssk!

pissing off Microsoft

So I bought a new machine last week and, gparted, have been busily treating it to Ubuntu.

It's cooler now. Literally.

And I figured, I'm fed up of being forced to pay for an excuse of an operating system that I don't want.

Damn, I wanted to buy a computer, not all the crap bundled on it:-

Setup Unmanaged VPS (4 Noobs!) ... with vpsBible
Secure WordPress. Properly. ... with wpCop, the platform's dedicated security website
Olly 'the_guv' Connelly's vpsBible.com site and 'WordPress 3 Ultimate Security' book.

.. the proprietary security/spyware and games packages that I will never use, the hard sell to Norton that, were I a savvy Windows user, I'd have to waste time uninstalling, along with the pitch to buy Office, the waste of space that is IE and, oh, that shoddy OS itself, Vista, to which all I wanna say is “‘hasta la nada .. buster!”

So, why not? This is improper trading, after all. Maybe a partial refund?

Then I came across this post from one of my haunts, The Open Sourceror, and subsequently this wiki piece from the ‘pedia.

I was inspired. Here's the letter:-

Dear Sir/Madam,

Having bought a laptop computer from one of your shops in Valencia last Saturday, 6 days ago, I wish to enquire as to the correct procedure to request a refund, please.

The computer itself, a HP Pavillion DV2-1140es, is satisfactory. However, it came with what, one might say, may be loosely described as an operating system, Microsoft Windows Vista, and it is this element that I would like to return.

Then again, “would like to return” is not always possible, with Microsoft-bundled computers ..

I would be happy to return the application to you but, for reasons beyond my comprehension, it did not ship with an installation disk. I can, however, provide its serial number, together with the sticker on the bottom of the machine. Of course, it would be destructive to remove the Windows key from the keyboard, but really I think that is part of the hardware and, sure, can be reconfigured to useful effect.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter. I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours faithfully,

.. also translated into Spanish, though I dunno sarcasm really travels.

Will let you know how I get on in my lil' bid for ethical computer shopping.


About the Author:

Olly Connelly (yeah, that's me) blogs at guvnr.com, polices WordPress security at wpCop.com and helps noobs build web servers at vpsBible.com, so if you've got sleeping problems you know where to come.


  1. the_guv  October 13, 2009

    hey Ray, always good to hear from the ol’ Welsh dragon 😉

    I agree about XP, it’s really not bad, for a Microsoft product. Hmmn.

    But IE. M8, I fear you are dangerously misguided. IE is pure, unadulterated crap in a bottle.

    .. but then I have to code for it, and it’s that process that makes you realise how cynical a company is MS, in the way they basically put their own market position – at every turn – above providing a quality, fun to use and easy to develop for, product. (Ha, a good eg is when you have a non-MS computer but decide to install Windows too, as a dual boot .. the MS install process then hides the original OS from you .. control freaks on MY machine .. gits.)

    “What happens to the copy of XP ratholed away on the motherboard of my 2003 machine if I want to ubgrade the board?”

    You are ***damn right***. And another thing. Say I already bought some Windoze edition. Why the devil should I have to buy it again as part of a factory install on a new machine?

    … complete ruddy con.

    “Is there anyway of accessing that program & transferring it to a disc?”

    Hmmn .. well, never tried it on Windows, which was silly considering all the reinstalls I’ve had do do. Dunno I’d ever use a Symantic product. What about Acronis? I think they’ve got some imagey type software where you copy the lot onto, say, an external drive, then copy it back.

    (.. it’s not stored on the board m8 (only the bios is, just ignore that for this). It’s probably in some dir like c:windowswasting_more_space_folder.)

    Why don’t you just bin it (not data, course) and do this ..

    Virtually the Best Web Dev PC on the Planet

    .. or wait for my Install Karmic Koala Guide, which I’m writing now. Karmic is soooo user-friendly.

    Or if you really want to support one of the most monopolising, freedom-threatening businesses on the planet (and, OK, I have a dual boot system, er, hmmn .. just like Photoshop!) ..

    Perfect Windows PC Install

    Lemme know how you get on. Definitely Google a lot about ghosting your disk, if you go that route. And ask at the relevant forums cos I’ve heard of folks saving the lot but it still not working .. ask here, best forum for this kinda thing, super-friendly, and also frequented by some poor sods who still use IE 😀 ..


  2. Ray Whelan  October 13, 2009

    All I will say is your a chancer & I agree. I may like XP & IE but the rest of that crud I can do without. I dont like games, I dont like Norton & just want an OS with an install disc – not a recovery disc. What happens to the copy of XP ratholed away on the motherboard of my 2003 machine if I want to ubgrade the board?

    Look – you (The Guv) know Im no techy but I preseum the OS is stored on the board somewhere with that Symantec Ghost nonesense. Is there anyway of accessing that program & transferring it to a disc?

    Also has the Guv any tips on building a kick ass PC?

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