Monday, August 3, 2015

A Google Courtesy Has Saved Me From Breaking A European Union Cookie Law

Several days ago when logging into my various blogs I found myself greeted with the message from Google you see here, contained in the yellow box.

The message in its entirety...

European Union laws require you to give European Union visitors information about cookies used on your blog. In many cases, these laws also require you to obtain consent.

As a courtesy, we have added a notice on your blog to explain Google's use of certain Blogger and Google cookies, including use of Google Analytics and AdSense cookies. 

You are responsible for confirming this notice actually works for your blog, and that it displays. If you employ other cookies, for example by adding third party features, this notice may not work for you. Learn more about this notice and your responsibilities.

What fresh hell is this, I read and wondered?

Why would the European Union get itself all worked up over blog cookies? I clicked on the "learn more" link to learn more about my responsibilities regarding this serious issue. And to make sure the Google notice actually works.

Well, you click on "learn more" to learn that one needs to go to the Euro versions of ones blog to check on the Google notice, the examples given by Google were for France and the UK. So, I checked on and and found no notice added as a courtesy by Google.

I decided not to worry about it, except for a concern deep in the recesses of my imagination that the EU version of the FBI might soon be after me.

And then this morning I checked once again and was pleased to discover that Google has now added the courteous notice Google said they would  add as a courtesy...

All is now well with the world, with me no longer worried about a knock on the door be the EU FBI. Or Interpol...

Friday, February 20, 2015

Microsoft Changed Windows 8.1 Login Without Permission Causing User Lockout Frustration

This morning there was a knock on my door. Opening the door I found Big Ed holding his laptop, flipped open and on.

What fresh hell is this I wondered?

Well, apparently yesterday Big Ed was attempting to create an Instagram account. To do so somehow he was led to believe he needed some Microsoft app from the Google Play store.

To get the Microsoft app Big Ed needed to create a Microsoft Account, along with a Hotmail email address. This was sounding so ridiculous I have no idea why Big Ed did not bail at the Hotmail point of the process.

After creating the Microsoft Account I assume all was hunkydory with Instagram.

What had Big Ed knocking on my door was the fact that this morning when he turned on his computer the login had changed to being the Microsoft Account login he had created the day before.

However, the password did not work, Big Ed could not login to his computer.

Googling "Microsoft Account Login Not Working" soon indicated a lot of users have had the same problem, with it being a Windows 8.1 problem. The fixes were varied and some seemed absurdly drastic.

However, the suggest to hold down the shift key while restarting, causing the computer to go into troubleshoot mode where one could access System Restore, seemed like it should fix the problem. Simply restore the computer to a point before Microsoft mucked it up.

However, to access System Restore Windows was asking for the same login/password info that did not work.

Eventually I came to the Microsoft webpage you see screencapped above. Clicking on "Can't access your account?" had me going step by step to resetting Big Ed's password. A new password was generated, Microsoft then sent a validation code to a Big Ed gmail address I quickly set up on my computer. Microsoft indicated all was well, so I entered the new password at Big Ed's login and soon his Windows were back open.

I forgot to mention, Big Ed has very poor eyesight, thus needed help.

Now, why would Microsoft do this to users? Why, without asking, or warning, would creating a Microsoft Account, in order to acquire a program, cause Microsoft to overwrite the login on a user's computer? Microsoft changed Big Ed's login name from "Ed" to the Hotmail email address created the day before.

I tell you, I have never had a virus muck up a computer as badly as Microsoft has at  times.