Computer Rage: Comments About Microsoft and Windows

The following are partially edited comments by respondents to the Computer Rage Survey of the Laboratory for Automation Psychology and Decision Processes, University of Maryland, College Park, MD. © 2005 LAPDP

Windows is piece of _____ if it werenÕt for the dificulty of sharing programs and files I would have switched to MAC!

Thank God that i am allowed to use MacOSThe only thing that makes me furstrated are the ******* bloody Microsoft Programs.Excel and PowerPoint are driving me nuts! Bullshit Software! But my Clients force me to use that ********! I used to work with a mac for almost sixteen years! I know that it is possible tobuild software that works!

Microsoft should create programs which doesn't have holes in it. This company only creates programs giving a chance to the people to buy them and buy other programs from it. There's no sense for creating that trash. I think the company is creating all the time trash for getting money from those who DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO TUNE UP THEIR COMPUTERS so that there aren't any errors and blocking systems like "This Will Be Closed Because You Did An Illegal Operation"!!! Those who can configure computers by themselves are only a small number of all computer users!!! I think when I will have learnt C and all the other program languages I wll also hack the homepage of Microsoft; THIS SITE IS ONLY ****!!!

I get a lot more frustrated with Windows PCs than I do Macintoshes (natch). A lot of it comes down to the haughty, condescending tone of most Windows error messages "Something is wrong! It must be your fault, for I am without fault! Fix it!" or the now-you're-an-idiot/now-you're-a-genius schizophrenia routine eg a message that says:"Troubleshooting your scanner: Have you turned it on? Is it connected to the computer?"followed by:"BDOS error on B: at sector 0xFF314A9F interrupt vector 0xFE - the sector could not be "read" - Patch, Kluge, Abort or OK?"

Most of my frustration has been because of Microsoft Windows.

switching to linux has solved many of my problems, but then again I'm a technical support dude that know's a ton about computers, hates windows and everything to go along with M$, and has a 4 month uptime. The rage comes in when I'm asked to fix computer's for idiots that don't know how to turn their computer on but they still think they're smarter than me and know what's best for their computer. I would rather crush their head, computer, monitor, etc. then help them


I really hate that ******* vs.NET 2003 and MS office. OK I hate also allmost all m$ product but Office and vs.NET is something UFFFF"#­"##. I eat medicines so I dont destroy this **** but sometimes I think that I need stronger medicines... MS really blow up users brains! Easy to learn hard to use, hard to learn easy to use. So MS shit is easy to learn and it allways crash etc etc.

I have smashed 3 keyboards broken with bare fists caused by pure hatred against the Microsoft Windows.

Im angry at computer because myh windows never works properly.Error this and error that, Please shoot Bill Gates.

Yes, very angry at the computer (running DOS or Windows) when it crashes. Either a software running, or Operating System itself. After I changed to Linux (took a long time to learn), i haven't smashed or bent CD's, only some floppies which were broken. Now when I'm on Linux, I sometimes say "Oh, the program wasn't that good" and remove the prog, looking for a better (more stable) one. At least I can allways restart or remove crashed program without restarting the whole system.

I must say Windows XP theme really gets me down sometimes. Why it has to be so ickly blue and too cute? Plus that Microsoft Offices may-I-annoy-the-******-****-out-you paperclip makes me sick.The days email or internet are not working due connection errors or something like that make me very frustrated indeed.

**** off mr. Bill Gates. :)

I was probably a lot worse back several years ago -- I was maintaining 3 LANs and a dozen or so standalone workstations all running Win95 or Win98, all being used by people who weren't the most technically savvy (and some who thought they were a lot more savvy than they actually were). Since then, I've moved to a better position, and I've been through treatment for cancer, so I meditate and do yoga, and I'm a much calmer person.

I have a small business in Maryland providing personal computer support to individuals and small businesses. I heard Kent on NPR today (12/20) and would like to add a few notes based on my experience in working with clients:- virtually all our computer frustrations can be summed up in one word: software. The problem is not "the computer" as much as it's the software in the computer. We're victims of bad software design. Commercial software is often poorly designed, buggy, and full of *lots* of dead code (prime example: Microsoft Word). Software vendors compete on price and are left with insufficient resources to retain good system developers and invest in tech support; thus we are charged for questions. (Remember back in the old days when Word Perfect offered toll-free support to everybody?) My own computer rage comes from the perspective of having been a software developer for many years. It's directed at the programmers: why did they make such boneheaded decisions when they wrote this stuff? - the software architecture of Personal Computers today is highly complex. Windows XP is built on a very intricate infrastructure, and it must be able to support all the applications that we throw at it - including those that haven't been written yet; application software becomes more bloated and error-prone as it proceeds through the versions; multimedia support (photo editing, music and video)is now taken for granted; and we now expect computer networking to be a native operating system function....

...You did not ask whether I thought my "down time due to computer problems" should be accountable as something that software or hardware makers might have to pay for. I think Mr. Gates, his company and some other people actually OWE me (and most users) a lot of money, by selling something that simply does not complies to a minimum set of "working condition" rules that home appliances, for example, have to apply.If a toaster randomly burnt bread inserted into it, it would be at fault and would be returned. Word has done much worse to many important documents I was working on -- without any action on my part that was different from, say, "save file" -- and, even if I could "return" it, I would need something else or otherwise I'd loose my job.Another factor to be considered is: how much of the marketing hype people are actually taking as "truths"?? Maketing lies, and most of us know that when we go out to buy a car. Why do we "trust" computers and software so much and why do we expect them to do what "the box" says it does?Unlimited freedom? Get more done in less time? We'll do your work so you can go home and rest?Get serious.PS - I don't belong to any "pro" usability group. But I do belong to a list of "insiders" who are permanently discussing things such as "where can we find a better mouse?", "which keyboard is best for typing a lot?" and "WTF doesn't most software work with Proxies when sharing an internet connection?"....

I don't complain about the computer. I complain about the programmers, bad user-interface designs, requests for irrelevant/unneeded information, etc. And I avoid all things Microsoft.

I use computers very often and I consider myself an accomplished computer user. I usually don't experience frustration from a slow computer, considering that I built my own high-end PC. However, sometimes I do get frustrated when Windows crashes (which doesn't happen very much for me).

My frustration isn't so much with computers, but rather with Windows.

I used to get very frustrated with my old Windows PC laptop from Alienware it would crash all the time and usually when i was pushing the system pretty hard doing audio processing. Then I switched to an Apple Powerbook G4, and my computing experience has been much better. There are still some problems but its largely because I do something that makes it break and know its bad, but I do not get too frustrated because 1. i know how to fix it and 2. I know its my fault in the end.

... Most of my real acts of rage have been against my work winboxes, rather than my home mac laptops. I have done more damage previous to last year than in the last year. However, I still become enraged at my machine frequently, I just have better means of handling the issue now...

It's all about the operating system you run on your computer, and the level of knowledge you have of computers. I use Linux, I know that the problem is not the computers fault.People get frustrated because Microsoft Windows doesn't help people getting their jobs done. How would frustrated would you be if needed to read lots of manuals and learn a lot of stuff to use your kitchen devices, like an oven, or a microwave and then never be able to toast a bread or to cook right?Computers are our friends, sometimes they fail, but so do humans, a lot of more times and have a huge amount of times faster processor. With people I get frustrated a lot more times.Nice study, I see the point, I think that maybe you should ask a couple of software specific questions to see the true source of the problems that frustrate people.Good luck with your work.

My windows 2000 computer would freeze up sometimes when it goes to a web page that has a video or if i try to play a video with windows media player 9. Even the 3 finger salute doesn't work. I end up pounding my fist on the keyboard and cursing at it and then rebooting using the reboot button on the computer. I've since installed real player.

First of all, I am a computer science major. I am quite educated when it comes to computers and I have been using them for many years. Here are the things that really piss me off.1. Hardware failures.2. Lack of integration because of propriatary hardware/software.3. Software bugs...It's not that damn hard to spend a little extra time in testing and debugging. Trust me, I know. I have done it myself and I pride myself on taking the time to DO IT RIGHT!4. Viruses, spyware, trojans, popups, spam, etc. There are many evil people out there that like to steal and cause damage and they piss me off. However, I am equally pissed, if not more so, by companies that do not truthfully disclose the problems and put significant effort into fixing them (Microsoft). I am really pissed by developers that leave security holes because they took a shortcut that made the programming just a bit easier for them (Microsoft again, also see #3).5. Greed. I hate it when companies sell software/hardware for way more than it is worth (Micr...You get the idea). It might be worth more if it didn't crash so often and if it was a little more secure (see #1-4).6. Outsourcing. We have smart people right here in this country that are willing to work hard. Quit giving away what we created just to make more money(see #5). Also, I hate talking to tech people that I can barely understand because of a thick accent. Don't misunderstand this as racism or anything. The people themselves are fine. I just don't want to have to learn a new language just to be able to fix my computer.7. Ignorant tech support people. I hate trying to get support from people that know less than I do (95% of them). They only know a limited amount of things, and when the problem deviates from that, which it almost always does, I end up having to research for hours and hack around until I solve the problem on my own. Even then, sometimes the problem is beyond repair, which only leads to the feeling of hard work with no reward. Oh yeah, also see #6.This is why I am a CS major, I see the incredible potential in computers and I hope to be able to do my part to make things right.

My rage is limited to all non-Apple hardware and software. As a kid, AOL's busy signals so incensed me that I mightily heaved my mouse into the surface of my desk, promptly robbing it of its clicking ability. Microsoft ANYTHING fills me with a righteous indignation that has yielded CD-R casualties...

Answers above based on using my home Linux/FreeBSD boxes. They don't surprise me too often.Work machines are loaded with Windows and are unreliable, unpredictable, and slow. They would cause a large amount of stress except for the fact I'm on the clock and being paid to tolerate them. As an example, having to use Word usually has me cursing within five minutes. I don't attack the machines - I just take a break, go get some coffee, maybe tell the boss his report is late because microsoft broke again.

Your options did not go far enough. How many times have you reinstalled Xp only to get some ******* ERROR AT 99 ******* PERCENT. Micro$oft can go **** a cheetahs ****.

The frustration I typically exhibit towards computers is not completely the result of the computers themselves. Often, I have found that trying to properly set up a wireless network can be just as irritating. Windows software and vendor wireless software fight for control of the wireless connection on a regular basis without indicating a problem. (Meanwhile, your wireless connection is constantly dropped and you are forced to manually reconnect over and over again without any idea of why!) This is so frustrating that I have often entertained the thought of throwing the router and wireless card out a window or into a garbage disposal.

I mostly use a Mac, but I usually do get frustrated on PC's.

The most flustrating for me is Microsoft Windows behavior, specialy when it "forgets" folder settings, when "always on top" is on top when I watch a movie, play a game, and it's not on top when I need it to be. When I have to w8 about 10 sec. for explorer to display floder content I'm veeeeery angry ;]

Most of these problems were caused by using windows computers. With Linux, there is much less aggression...

I run a Macintosh, and with that the irritation factor is very minimal. I also work at a computer help desk, so my frustration with certain programs (Eudora being the most) on especaially Windows machines is very high. I however am a computer science student so understand why certain things go wrong, and instead get frustrated with the respective companies and programmers who were just too damn lazy to release a stable project.

My violence only exists against Windows computers. Any good responses are to do with my Mac, all bad are to do with my school/friends Peecees

The best way is to deprive the comp of all resources. A little hacking, DoS the network, kill Windows, have a good day. Then reboot in Linux and the world is a better place.

Linux: Rm -r -f /etc Rm -r -f /dev Rm -r -f / (kernal panics and destroys os)Windows: B S O D??!??!?!? WTF!!! (pulls out ide cables, and detaches heatsink- showing processor, then pulls processor off - feeling extreme heat, throws it against wall and walks away)

I generally don't have many problems with computer hardware. It's mostly related to software. With software, I'm most frustrated by Microsoft crap. It's very irritating and cryptic in that it hides information I need to troubleshoot the problems Windows creates. It's really annoying some times.When I use Linux, though, it's been mostly smooth sailing. I've had Linux running for 46 days without any problems I couldn't solve easily, whereas I'm having problems getting a printer to work over the network with Windows XP Professional (Professional is a misnomer in this case). I can't even send plain text to the printer, but I can send text to a different printer on the same XP box. It's very irritating.The behaviors I've engaged in were non-aggressive acts and were performed on old or useless media (in the case of disks, such as AOL CD's) or for cleaning purposes (popping off keyboard keys). I don't damage hardware out of anger, but if Windows were a physical object I'd like to destroy it in the most explosive way I could fathom. That would be fun. :-)

most rage is directed at microsoft ...

I would consider myself a computer expert, and I still get particularly frustrated when things I know *should* work don't work, especially if I can sense the lazyness of some person involved (whether IT people at work, or IT managers for specifying idiotic combinations of systems, or the people who designed the software or hardware sloppily in the first place). i curse them all on at least a weekly basis. Example is when I log in to Novell's corporate network environment in windows, if your network connection is down, it takes it like 5 full minutes to time out and allow you to log in to the "workstation only"- 5 minutes you angrily sit there knowing that some programmer could have easily had the program check if the network connection was down and immediately tell you that you can't log on. same thing if you try to access a file share on windows 2000 that you can't get to- the entire computer is useless until it realizes you can't get to it...

I'm not frustrated I don't use any thing MicrosoftYou could used some N/A in this servery

We are the Borg. You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile.Yes, you too, Mr. Gates, so get over yourself already.

I like computers and I know how they work (stop using windows already people, use linux =:p

I didn't bend and mutilate computer disks (floppy and CD-ROM) out of anger, just out of curiosity. I only get frustrated at the computer when I feel that it's some human being who has purposely made it such that it's frustrating. Like purposely not letting me do what I want to do with it. Mostly Microsoft.


What I hate most about computers, especially older systems is incompatibility. Proprietary designs that major corporations such as Compaq and Gateway bother me the most, although other incompatibility issues come in a close second. Proprietary systems usually get to become the object of computer golf or croquet. The only other major computer issue that bothers me is Windows 9x/Me. And spyware.

ms windows sucks

Switching from windows too linux has defnetly calmed down my fustration with Micosofts very poor operating systems. I cannot stand using windows these days anymore.

I went from WinXP to Linux and eased a lot of frustration. No more BSODs, no more random program crashes .. Got rid of the trackball mouse, that helped a lot, too.

I become aggressive about the software, not the hardware, hence I curse Bill Gates personally and not the poor electronics his software runs on. There's no frustration with my unix servers.

I have my 4th and newest computer running WIN XP...It has not worked correctly since the day I bought it. Dell and Microsoft have been no help and the 3-4 technician that repaired it don't know what is wrong with it.If Microsoft has more money than God and they want to know how to spend it, how about fixing all of the computers around the world that run their programs and freeze up, crash or give the "blue screen of death." The Dell laptop that I bought last year is the last Microsoft supported computer I will buy. I-MAC is the next computer I'm buying and Michael and Bill can kiss my a--!

Any software with Micro$oft -label on them are frustrating. Especially if you are an experienced user. Every time when I try to use M$ products (especially Office-tools) I get very angry. Linux rules...

I would like to visit Reno or Las Vegas and shoot at a computer with a machine gun one day, especially a PC-type running Windows.

Since I use a Mac 99% of the time and have never set up a windows machine and only occasionally use windows, I really have an all-together pleasant computer experience. ALL of my abuse of a computer has been directed at the windows machines I am sometimes forced to use at work...

more than the computer itself is the frustration of assholes that work as computer techs at isp,s that don,t know as much as i do and i,m not even a certified tech,and also the frustration of internet connection problems and the inept idiots that take days or weeks to fix the problem only to have it reoccuer several times.and then theres all that software that,s suppost to make your system run more efficient only to have it delete an important registry file and cause you to reformat the hard drive.and then calling tech support and having microsoft tell you it costs 278 dollars an hour because your running sever 2003,when support for xp is 30 something and it,s basically the same os and your friend ends up fixing the problem for nothing in probably less time than microsoft would have done it...

I more get frustrated at a computer running Windows than any other operating system...

modern windows-like interfaces are horrorableideal file manager is FAR (NC clone) driven by keyboard

I've only really been upset with PCs. Although I do get very irritated at the limitedness of the Apple Mac. I also hate the look and feel of most computer systems. I don't like some of the fans either, people who claim they are gurus and spit in your face when you want help. So annoying.

...I get most frustrated when I have to rebuild Windows OS. If you do this from scratch, every single application has to be reinstalled and all your settings have to be recustomized. SHEESE! What a pain in the ***! For this alone, I would like to string Bill Gates up. Just consider all the work that has to be done to reinstall the OS: 1. Save any user data on the C: drive that you may need.2. Reinstall the OS to C:3. Install necessary drivers like mouse driver, I/O card, hard drive, video driver, etc. 4. Apply the major service packs to the OS and IE.5. Install your firewall and AV software6. Configure net access7. Go online and locate and apply all OS security fixes8. Install major software like Office, Quicken, Symantec, Adobe Reader, etc. 9. Reinstall SP's on Office. Reinstall Office security fixes. 10. Install minor application software (shareware and freeware). I have about 250 programs to run through. 11. Reconfigure parameters, customizations, preferences, options, registrations, etc. on EACH program individually. 12. Customize desktop, toolbars, appearances, cursors, sounds, etc. 13. Reapply any tweaks X-setup, tweakui, etc.).This process usually takes about 2 weeks to get everything reinstalled, reconfigured and back to normal. Many reboots are required (and it is generally necessary to rebuild Windows systems every year or so).Last time I visited my sisters, I spent 2 days cleaning up the spyware and viruses on each of their PC's.

Most of my frustrations only exist at work, because they still use Windows. Personally, changing to Linux has greatly reduced alot of my frustrations, other than still have to rely on Windows for some tasks. I think I would enjoy a good Mac (now that OS X is based on BSD) if I could afford it.

Disclaimer: The selection, content, and editing of these comments does not necessarily reflect the attitudes or opinions of the Laboratory for Automation Psychology and Decision Processes or its staff.