And I get home and the computer decides it can't find the network its plugged into, even if it will read emails. So a virus search and destroy later I decide to repair windows. Which of course leads to the next clusterfuck. Windows won't accept my activation code. The automated telephone system doesn't work, none of the supposed work-arounds that relate to IE6 being a pile of crap don't work, nothing. I manage to get through to a technical support bod, who basically says your code has been used on too many computers so its probably counterfeit, report it. Which I'm pretty sure is bollocks because I'm looking at the disc and all the holograms seem absolutely fine. If its a copy, its a really effing good one, and besides I got it from one of the reputable shops in TCR. So I fill out the form anyway, but there's no way they'll send me a replacement disk, because I don't have a receipt for four year-old software.
I have often found that it pays to ask more than once, as the first person you talk to will often be completely wrong. Such as for instance the bizarreness with Natwest and Virgin Media a few years back. The second guy gets me to restart windows, makes no mention of the block on my code, and sees that it doesn't work, so he forwards it to a technical bod. Said technical bod does the logging into your computer thing that they do and finds that its the "System Builder OEM" version, for which he will charge £60 to do anything to. Stuff that I thinks, I can get a copy of Windows 7 for about that (oh, how wrong I was).
So a trip to Tottenham Court Road, where I discover that Micro Anvika have gone down the swanny, and no-one sells Windows 7 other than as the OEM system builder version- which, surprisingly enough I don't want to buy, in case I have the same problems X years down the line. PC World, despite listing it on their website don't sell it anymore. So I'll be picking up a copy in-store having bought it online. And its costs about twice what MS wanted to charge to fix bloody XP. Still, at least I've got something they'll still be supporting this time next year.
However, Nikon stopped supporting their film scanners back when Vista came out, and don't have a driver for 64-bit OS's, or indeed any version of Windows after Vista. Their proposed solution is to fork out another £80-£100 for third party software. Which is pretty bloody stupid really. Especially when it turns out that there's at least two free work-arounds that exist, one of which certainly means you can use their own software, and Epson are still supporting my flatbed that's about the same age.
Its almost enough to make me give up and run Linux. Except I'd almost always be getting it to pretend to be windows. Which rather defeats the object...