Never 10. Never again!

2ba7b-computer__sadI came across a recently promoted utility called Never 10. It claims to easily and safely stop the regular reminders from Microsoft to upgrade to Windows 10. I checked out the reviews and all were positive. So I thought I’d give it a go.

The utility works by modifying the Windows Registry. Before doing this one is always recommended to back up the Registry first. I didn’t.

I ran the utility from my non-administrator login on my Windows 7 laptop, supplying the administrator password when prompted, and the utility appeared to run without problems. However when I tried to login the following morning (having shutdown the PC the previous evening), I got the message

“The User Profile Service service failed the logon. User profile cannot be loaded”

It was just my login that was affected so I was able to login as the administrator and to follow Microsoft documentation for recovering the situation. Sadly this simply made all the other logins disappear (other than the administrator login)! Fortunately I was able to reverse this step, so I was back to the situation of just having my login inaccessible.

At this point I gave up and decided to abandon my inaccessible login and to create a new login for me to use. I have a small issue with accessing my files associated with the previous login, but I can work around this.

So there you go. My experience of the problems I encountered running Never 10, and which no one else on the web seems to have had.

For the record, Never 10 did switch off the regular prompts to upgrade to Windows 10!

Microsoft Bob

I came across a great site of screen shots of versions of Windows and other graphical user interfaces. Ah, Windows 2, I remember it well. And then there’s Microsoft Bob, which was “designed to replace the desktop of Windows 3.1 and 95 with an interface designed mainly for novice users”. At first I thought this was a joke, but no, it existed, though it turned out to be a flop. Not surprising, I say!

Find more screenshots of Bob and other systems at



My days in IT are over

codeI’m old enough to have been involved in the early days of ‘computing’. Of course it’s now called IT (or is it?).

I was bookshelf-browsing and I came across some of my old computing books and it just seemed to be the right time to clear out a few of them.

So out goes Access 97 Programming For Dummies. My days of Access database programming are well and truly over. Back in the late 90s this was a well-used guide.

Out goes Web Design For Dummies. The only web design I do now is selecting a pre-designed blog template and adding some customisations using CSS (I have a manual!).

Out goes Short Order HTML 4 and JavaScript for the World Wide Web. Ditto previous paragraph. Two lovely books but I’m a blogger now and HTML and JavaScript, neither of which I really got going with, are no longer of use.

One thing always leads to another….

Google and the browser took me from one computer language to the next, from Mercury Autocode to Algol 60, then on to the very strange language APL (here there was a diversion after I came across an APL programmer I played badminton against many decades ago), then on to FORTRAN, then on to Prime’s operating system Primos (which, unbelievably, was written in FORTRAN!). Such memories – I could go on and on!

Prime User’s Guide

APL – a peculiar language

BlogPad Pro for the iPad

I’ve installed BlogPad Pro (£2.99 in the UK) on my iPad. It’s an app for maintaining a WordPress blog, and this is a first attempt at a post. It’s going to contain a bit of over-the-top formatting!

Type  Number
Fruit  5
Vegetables  4
Total  9

I’ve inserted this thumbnail image – the text is behaving, which is  good! Sometimes editing the image settings doesn’t work, but having another go seems to work ok.

First impressions!

  1. Of course ALL editing on the iPad is a pain compared to a proper keyboard! I don’t like that I can’t stretch the screen when editing markup or html in order to increase the size of the text. The text is just too small.
  2. You can insert images but not galleries, which is a problem for me.
  3. I’ve had some fast responses to emails to the developers. A suggested reinstall fixed a problem. Another email pointed out how to access the WordPress dashboard to deal with the galleries issue.
  4. I managed to overwrite a second post on this subject with (null), which is a little concerning. I’ll keep an eye on it.
  5. Overall it’s a very nice app and I’m hoping to use it to do more blogging from the iPad.

Implementing a new Blogger template. Phew!

I installed a new Blogger template I found on the Web, having backed up the existing one first. However I didn’t like the new template so I restored the old one. Except it wouldn’t restore because of code errors. Help! Fortunately I managed to work out what the offending code was and to get back to more or less how it was.

Next time I try this, I’ll save the existing template, then restore it immediately to check the code is sound. I suspect the problem was caused by the many customisations I had made to the code in my template. Be warned!

Processing camera images

So I’ve made the move to capturing camera pictures as RAW files rather than JPEG image files and to use a trial version of Photoshop Elements to process the RAW files and images. The Chatham Docks images are the first results. I’ve found Elements is relatively straightforward, having basic and advanced modes. These first images have come out pretty good and I’m particularly pleased with the indoor images, which were taken in poor light and without flash.

Splashing out on my birthday

For old times sake, I’ve just ordered 10 blank punch cards from the Centre for Computing History in Cambridge. At £6 they’re a bargain, or maybe not.
I loved punch cards and the mechanically beautiful punch card machines that you used to type new cards. It was all so tactile in those days! 
SUM = 0.0
DO 10 I = 1,100
SUM = SUM + X(I)
10 CONTINUE             <sigh>