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Microsoft Says Windows 7 Not Killing Batteries

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the epidemic-of-noticing dept.

Bug 272

VindictivePantz sends word that the Windows 7 team has posted a new blog entry discussing their conclusions about the reported Windows 7 battery failures. "To the very best of the collective ecosystem knowledge, Windows 7 is correctly warning batteries that are in fact failing and Windows 7 is neither incorrectly reporting on battery status nor in any way whatsoever causing batteries to reach this state. In every case we have been able to identify the battery being reported on was in fact in need of recommended replacement. ...every single indication we have regarding the reports we've seen are simply Windows 7 reporting the state of the battery using this new feature and we're simply seeing batteries that are not performing above the designated threshold. ... We are as certain as we can be that we have addressed the root cause and concerns of this report, but we will continue to monitor the situation."

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272 comments

Surprise (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078116)

Windows is not at fault. Hardware or 3rd party software always is

Re:Surprise (3, Funny)

socceroos (1374367) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078276)

...news at 11.

Re:Surprise (3, Informative)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078578)

...which will source the frenzied blogosphere shrieking conspiracy and propagating each others' blind speculation. And of course nobody will pay attention to the only source that can possibly know what they're talking about: the engineers that designed the system..

Re:Surprise (2, Insightful)

gd2shoe (747932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078858)

And of course nobody will pay attention to the only source that can possibly know what they're talking about: the engineers that designed the system..

That was sarcasm, no?

(Nothing about this particular problem, but we've seen denials before...)

Re:Surprise (2, Informative)

socceroos (1374367) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079066)

I think Brian is trying to say that he designed the system and is a bit upset that we're bagging it out without asking him for an explanation first.

Re:Surprise (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078420)

I can't tell if you are joking or not. I mean if a hard drive sector gets corrupt where a set of critical files are and on boot it can't recover them or load them from cache because that is corrupt as well, is that Microsoft's fault if the OS starts crashing? If memory is failing causing a BSOD is that Microsoft's fault? If the video card's VRAM is faulty and is causing the system to crash is that MS's fault?
The laptop flies off the top of someone's car roof after they left it there before driving off....yep Its MS's fault once again.
Seriously. There is a crap load MS can be blamed for over the years. But hardware? cut them a bit of slack on a few things.

Re:Surprise (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078656)

Graphics cards can be fried with DirectX calls. Why can't batteries be ruined by a glitch (or an undocumented feature) in whatever that is responsible for charging the battery?

Re:Surprise (2, Insightful)

omnichad (1198475) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078728)

That reminds me. Does Windows 7 finally report on hard drive SMART status? Glaring missing feature from XP.

Re:Surprise (3, Informative)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078876)

XP reported SMART status. It was in the Disk Management administrative tool. (Same place it is in Vista and Windows 7, actually.) Pretty sure Windows 2000 had it also.

To answer your question: Yes, Windows 7 reports SMART status.

Re:Surprise (3, Interesting)

omnichad (1198475) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078930)

No, not in a tool. I mean - pop-up warning "Hey, your hard drive is failing" without your intervention. Like the battery warning.

Re:Surprise (1)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078998)

The price of success. My operating system has never been criticized, but of course no one has ever seen it. BTW, it doesn't do much either.

Re:Surprise (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079138)

If the video card's VRAM is faulty and is causing the system to crash is that MS's fault?

How could that possibly cause a system crash instead of just corrupted graphics? Does Windows kernel use compute shaders?

And, frankly, after the fight against Windows 7 to get my CRT display working on the modes I want, with the refresh rate I want, I admit that "Microsoft's fault" is the first thought that comes to my mind whenever there's a problem with any PC with any Microsoft software in it.

Re:Surprise (5, Insightful)

lgw (121541) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078442)

Windows is not at fault. Hardware or 3rd party software always is

I have a lot of sympathy for the Windows team on this one - I don't think they're blame-shifting here.

It's been my experience that the software that reports a problem will get blamed for causing the problem. Maybe "shoot the messenger" is just human nature, but I've often been amazed at how users will blame software that repors a hardware problem that the software couldn't not possibly have caused. "Disk I/O error detected" results in calls of "why are you causing my disks to fail" - after all it must be you, since the other software isn't complaining (failing, mind you, but not complaining).

And now apparantly "battery failure detected" results in calls of "why are you causing my battery to fail" - after all it must be you, since the prvious version didn't complain.
 

Re:Surprise (3, Informative)

mdm-adph (1030332) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078572)

Ah, I hate sticking up for MS, but it's true. Ubuntu 9.04 introduced this feature, too, I think -- I remember seeing a box pop up for it after installing on my 7-year-old laptop and going "wait a sec..." ...and then realizing that, as far as the software was concerned, my 7-year-old battery with its 5-min lifespan probably has "failed" as a battery. :P

Re:Surprise (5, Insightful)

Kadaki (31556) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078670)

Yes, most of them probably just didn't notice the reduced battery life until this warning brought it to their attention. When I upgraded my notebook's Windows partition to Windows 7 I started getting this message, but I started seeing the warning over a year before, whenever I booted Ubuntu.

Re:Surprise (3, Interesting)

Chris_Mir (679740) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078722)

Pretty similar to multi-tier software development, where business logic is developed separately from the user interface. I'm doing the latter and guess who gets all the bug reports?

Re:Surprise (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31079124)

What people are missing is that this is not anything to do with bad batteries, or increased power draw of windows 7 or processes. The issue is that windows 7 corrupts the information stored on the batteries. My laptop ran fine with windows vista, the battery died within a week of a clean windows 7 install. This was a healthy battery, low cycles.

Got a replacement battery, installed vista and had no issues. We Ran windows 7 on it but only without being plugged in, then recharged by booting a ubuntu live cd. This arrangement worked and the battery was fine after 3 weeks. We then started letting windows 7 charge the battery and the battery was dead within a few days. Read the technet and you can see this duplicated over and over again.
Now, at work we did a transplant of the cells from the second battery to a third and guess what.. It works fine!

You wonder why microsoft is trying to downplay this? Imagine the recalls..

Re:Surprise (1)

BitwiseX (300405) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079210)

Yes, it rarely happens but I'm on Microsoft's side. "Shooting the messenger" is the best way to put this. The same beef would have existed with XP or Vista had it been implemented then. All the battery data is READ-ONLY. Period. The tin foil hats can come off now. It is not a conspiracy to between Microsoft and battery manufacturers.

All that being said: It IS a little confusing to an average user to see a 100% battery charge AND say your battery needs replacing. 100% means the same thing to everybody. "Perfect".

Microsoft has thrown everyone for a loop and released a fairly solid OS (IMHO). I just hope we aren't trying to hard to find a fault..... you know... because it's Microsoft..

Re:Surprise (1)

Deathlizard (115856) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078508)

It's not far from the truth.

Lenovo has had bad batches of batteries in both their R60 and R61 line that were not subject to the explosion recalls. The R60's would go bad spontaneously and without warning, and the battery indicator would blink orange fast as well as Lenovo's battery manager would report a battery malfunction until you did a warranty replacement. Since they only warranty batteries for only 1 year, we had to buy tons more until we got rid of them at end of lease, then the first sets of R61's started showing the same signs. The R400's have been ok so far, but they have other issues (usually involving a motherboard replacement) These machines had XP and was way before windows 7 came out.

So far with windows 7, the only time I've seen the warning is when Lenovo's power manager confirms the issue. The only thing I wish Windows 7 had built in is a battery reset option like the Lenovo Power manager. After that is run, you can sometimes gain a few more minutes out of your battery, but not all the time and never if the battery reports a failure rather than a loss in battery performance.

Re:Surprise (3, Interesting)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078780)

Windows is not at fault. Hardware or 3rd party software always is

That's generally a fair assumption with any OS.

Win 7 has about eight to ten percent of the global market. OS Platform Statistics [w3schools.com]

That translates into a hell of a lot of laptops and a good many batteries that were well past there past their prime before Win 7 was installed. But there have been only a few hundred complaints.

Re:Surprise (1)

Cougar Town (1669754) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079102)

Sounds just like what I hear about Linux. Oh it's not Linux's fault, it's nvidia's binary driver, or Logitech's crappy unsupported webcam, or some up-stream package the distribution uses but doesn't maintain (but includes in their default install... Ubuntu and PulseAudio, anyone?), etc...

My purpose here is not to troll, but to point out that this can, and does, happen with any OS that is aimed at a very very wide range of hardware and supports all manner of 3rd party software. This includes some things like drivers that plug directly into the OS itself at a low level, and only in an ideal world does everything play 100% nice with each other. Sometimes (some would even say "often"), Microsoft is to blame (or *insert favourite Linux distrib or OS here*), but definitely not all the time.

These are simply the facts of computing as they are today. As much as I wish things were different, they're not.

Re:Surprise (4, Funny)

Idbar (1034346) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079228)

Microsoft Says Windows 7 Not Killing Batteries
My guess is that batteries are killing themselves as soon as they know they are powering a Windows machine. They have become quite intelligent now.

Kidding, kidding!

LOL! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078156)

Apple sucks.

It would have been a story if... (-1, Troll)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078168)

...Microsoft had actually admitted a problem.

An American corporation covering up a mistake in their product is regular business. For MS that goes double.

Re:It would have been a story if... (3, Interesting)

Dr Caleb (121505) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078216)

Just to play devil's advocate; are we sure it's not the battery or laptop manufacturers that are not admitting their mistake?

Re:It would have been a story if... (4, Informative)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078454)

FYI: My Ubuntu install on a Dell laptop throws the same warning ("Warning, maximum battery charge is 44% battery may be old or defective yadda yadda") I never saw on XP, though I doubt that XP had that kind of warning system in place. My battery is an official Dell part, but to be fair, it is an old battery.

The warning systems are glitchy, or that manufacturers have been shipping substandard batteries and/or power subsystems. Either would come as no surprise.

Re:It would have been a story if... (5, Insightful)

Zocalo (252965) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078528)

I think that is what Microsoft is implying, without directly pointing a finger and risking a potential law suit.

Chances are that a lot of cells that are only now ending up in laptop batteries have spent quite some time sat on a warehouse shelf somewhere waiting out the financial downturn. Now that there are signs of recovery and people are buying laptops again, the production chain is starting up and those cells are finally going into laptop batteries. However, since the battery as a whole was only assembled last week, say, despite the fact that the component cells were manufactured last year, care to guess which date gets to go on the "Date of manufacture" sticker?

How about people think this through? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078280)

And why are you assuming there is a coverup. Windows has never done this in the past. Its a ne feature in 7. So someone upgrades and bam....warning. What is the first thing someone is going to assume?

And if this was Apple everyone would be lactating over how this isn't Apple's fault...fracking double standards.

Re:How about people think this through? (1)

SargentDU (1161355) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078354)

No, they would be saying it was Apples fault, remember that Apple makes their hardware as well as software. That would be exactly Apples fault.

Re:How about people think this through? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078534)

No, they would be saying it was Apple's suppliers fault, remember that Apple re-brands their off-the-shelf hardware as well as software. That would be exactly not Apples fault.

FTFY

PS) CAPTCHA for this post: optimism

Re:How about people think this through? (0, Flamebait)

STRICQ (634164) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078828)

> .snip. remember that Apple re-brands their off-the-shelf hardware as well as software. Now that's hilarious!

Windows 7 is correctly warning batteries? (3, Funny)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078174)

So what does it tell them? "Hey, you seem to be failing. Do you need me to help you?"

Re:Windows 7 is correctly warning batteries? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078632)

FTFA:

PC batteries expose information about battery capacity and health through the system firmware...The firmware provides information on the battery including manufacturer, serial number, design capacity and last full charge capacity. The last two pieces of information—design capacity and last full charge capacity—are the information Windows 7 uses to determine how much the battery has naturally degraded.

To summarize: Windows is reporting that the actual battery charge is *gasp* less than the manufacturers claim!

This notification is new to Windows 7 and not available in Windows Vista or Windows XP.

Before Windows 7 your battery life slowly died out over a year or so. Now there is a handy system tray icon telling you it's happening!

almost fooled me... (5, Funny)

Cornwallis (1188489) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078204)

I got excited for a minute because I thought the header read "Microsoft Says Windows 7 Not Killing Babies".

That would have been interesting.

Re:almost fooled me... (5, Funny)

ajrs (186276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078268)

I got excited for a minute because I thought the header read "Microsoft Says Windows 7 Not Killing Babies".

That would have been interesting.

So, Windows 7 is still killing babies?

Re:almost fooled me... (5, Funny)

Teese (89081) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078312)

I got excited for a minute because I thought the header read "Microsoft Says Windows 7 Not Killing Babies".

That would have been interesting.

So, Windows 7 is still killing babies?

They haven't denied it yet.

Re:almost fooled me... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078680)

Thank you, Mr. Beck.

Re:almost fooled me... (1)

grcumb (781340) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078328)

I got excited for a minute because I thought the header read "Microsoft Says Windows 7 Not Killing Babies".

That would have been interesting.

So, Windows 7 is still killing babies?

No, they're using them as batteries, like in the Matrix. RTFS, you ignorant sheeple!

Not news - just like last time (5, Insightful)

vcgodinich (1172985) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078236)

What's news here? Microsoft gets vague claims than win7 is killing batteries, with no hard data, no common variable, not even vaguely reproducable.

This isn't MS covering something up, there was never anything to cover up here.

Re:Not news - just like last time - wrong (0)

Locutus (9039) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079224)

no, this is Microsoft adding something to the system which wasn't there and instead of letting users know this, they use a new notification telling them to go spend money and be afraid their computer might suddenly stop working. Because so many Windows users have a minute amount of general computer education, they panic and blame this on this new operating system. If Microsoft lets the user right-click on the battery icon, see/set the threshold warning settings and has help info on this then it is not so much their fault. But if none of that is there, it is 100% their fault people are fearful of their system and blaming it on Microsoft. IMO.

LoB

similar story with Fedora and hard drives (5, Interesting)

FranTaylor (164577) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078240)

Fedora recently added a feature named palimpsest that checks your hard drive. I did an upgrade and all of a sudden I am getting complaints about my hard drive being close to failure. I think "no way, this is a pretty new drive". But I dig deeper and sure enough the drive really is bad.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (5, Insightful)

Naturalis Philosopho (1160697) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078406)

Bingo. If there's any story here, it's that Microsoft's reputation is so bad that people won't believe them even when they're right. That and that people aren't very technically minded. I once told my father to us a piece of software to monitor the SMART status on his HDD since it was "making a lot of noise". He just told me that he'd been doing it. About a year later he said that his laptop would barely run so I visited and noticed that the SMART was telling him that the HDD had irrecoverable errors and should be backed up and replaced immediately. When I asked how long it had been saying that, he replied that it had always said that (or something like it) since he first checked (at my encouragement). He just didn't think that it could be a real problem since the computer still ran at that time. Let's face it here, if a person is running Windows, they aren't going to believe that there's a problem until they can't work 'cause Windows gives alert after alert after alert and how can you know which ones to believe unless you're a "techie"? Sure if, you're reading here, you'll know, but 98% of people just don't.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078640)

I'm wasting mod points to respond, but I just had to jump in here with some evidence to the contrary... For years and years few people believed that Toyota cars had problems with their acceleration, nor their brakes. Toyota was a company with a good reputation (although some of us noticed a substantial amount of hubris on their part in the last decade, which made people like me stop buying them.) IIRC, a lot of people here on slashdot thought it was all the fault of the floor mat or driver error and didn't believe that the manufacturer was at fault. Lo and behold, there is a real problem and it's now come out that not only did Toyota have serious problems, their CEOs knowingly downplayed the importance of it rather than investigate it. To top it off, it's now coming to light that there is a problem with the sensors in the Prius brakes too.

The point here is that companies DO sometimes lie or act incompetantly, and the general populace DOES ACT hysterically sometimes. You just can't make a blanket statement saying X is guilty or Y isn't without investigating. Reputation only goes so far.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (0)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078724)

Windows trains people to ignore messages, simply by bombarding them with constant warnings. In order to get anything done, you have to click on messages to allow you to run non-Microsoft programs, you have to click more to get past the windows update messages, messages to install anything, messages to get to certain web sites, messages for this and that. You end up not bothering to read them so that you have time to actually use the computer, and most people don't understand the messages anyway. By bombarding the user with constant useless messages, they don't notice when something is actually seriously wrong.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078906)

What bullshit are you spewing?

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (1)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078818)

Give him a car analogy, like he's driving with his "Check Engine" or oil light on.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (1)

bertok (226922) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079040)

Bingo. If there's any story here, it's that Microsoft's reputation is so bad that people won't believe them even when they're right. That and that people aren't very technically minded. I once told my father to us a piece of software to monitor the SMART status on his HDD since it was "making a lot of noise". He just told me that he'd been doing it. About a year later he said that his laptop would barely run so I visited and noticed that the SMART was telling him that the HDD had irrecoverable errors and should be backed up and replaced immediately. When I asked how long it had been saying that, he replied that it had always said that (or something like it) since he first checked (at my encouragement). He just didn't think that it could be a real problem since the computer still ran at that time. Let's face it here, if a person is running Windows, they aren't going to believe that there's a problem until they can't work 'cause Windows gives alert after alert after alert and how can you know which ones to believe unless you're a "techie"? Sure if, you're reading here, you'll know, but 98% of people just don't.

However, the habit of just clicking "OK" to everything is at least partially Microsoft's fault. Their software systematically trains people to accept that popup warnings are going to occur over and over for perfectly innocuous reasons.

"This website is safely encrypted for YOUR PROTECTION! Click OK to accept your increased safety!"

"You may be.. omg.. submitting... INFORMATION to a web site! Panic now! Or just click OK!"

"You are changing the critical system setting 'background color'. Are you sure? ARE YOU? Then click OK!" ... 500,000 of those later ...

"Your mass storage device is reporting a fault status code... Click OK like you do every time!"

There's no ordinary user on earth who'll pay the slightest attention to that after being subjected to a bazillion meaningless warnings for years before.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (1)

superstick58 (809423) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079156)

Ummm, you realize that the software was giving a replacement warning for a YEAR. In other words, there was not a significant problem. A warning should not be given "all the time" unless death of the device is imminent and certain. Warn once, twice, or thrice and let it be until a more critical threshold is met. A good model is the battery monitor (not battery health but battery charge). It will warn once at 10% or whatever that you had better save or face a shutdown on low battery. It will then take a more drastic action either with a stricter warning or an auto-standby to protect the system from creating errors.

Harddrive warning 1 = "Harddrive has failures. Performance is decreased. Consider backing up data"

Harddrive warning 2 = "Harddrive is significantly damaged. Consider immediate replacement"

Harddrive warning 3 = "Harddrive WILL FAIL TOMORROW!"

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (1)

flatrock (79357) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079214)

It's nothing new. Windows has long gotten the blame for the consequences of buggy software and device drivers developed by others. They have come a long way toward reducing what mistakes made by others can crash the OS, but any kernel mode device driver can crash Windows, or any other operating system for that matter.

I've unfortunately released some drivers with bugs myself that I've had to fix at the insistance of justifiably irate customers.

What's different about this is they are getting blameed for messages they are passing on that come from the hardware.

Re:similar story with Fedora and hard drives (1)

Velorium (1068080) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078426)

I don't have mod points today or else I'd give this a +1. I hope this can suffice.

"Ecosystem knowledge" ? (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078248)

Wtf is this, aren't techies supposed to be, you know, techy? What's next, power (not di-lithium) crystals and mood rings to diagnose BSoDs ?

Sheesh. (4, Informative)

Esther Schindler (16185) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078264)

FYI, If you know that your battery has plenty of juice left, there's a fix available. Sort of. The #5 item in Fixing Five Common Windows 7 Annoyances [itexpertvoice.com] is "the undead battery." One way to know if it's necessary:

To see if your battery problems are likely to come from this conflict between Windows 7 and your hardware run the powercfg -energy command from a command prompt. If the result is that Windows was unable to determine the battery’s capacity, sooner or later you will see the misleading error messages or have the laptop shutdown prematurely.

Re:Sheesh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31079072)

so... you just referenced an article that proves Microsoft is lying. Huh... interesting.

Must be the newest OS fad (2, Interesting)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078278)

First Apple had laptop battery issues with OS 10.6 (http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2139186&tstart=0) and now it's Microsoft with Windows 7. Two completely different OS's both suffering from the same style of issue in their newest product. Are they both using a shared driver code in their newest OS that is causing this? Did they only implemented in these changes in these new OS's or did they get patched in their older OS's too?

Re:Must be the newest OS fad (3, Insightful)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078802)

More likely is that batteries are having their very limited lifetimes exposed to the user via the OS. Most people think a laptop battery is supposed to last indefinitely and charge the same every single time. The reality is you'll probably be replacing the battery before you replace the laptop.

Re:Must be the newest OS fad (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078924)

Two completely different OS's both suffering from the same style of issue in their newest product.

The problem is as old as laptops themselves. Look at all the entertainment linux laptop users have had for decades now.

Here is the problem:

1) Laptop mfgr only make the ACPI stuff work just barely well enough on a good day to sometimes work on the version of windows the laptop shipped with.

2) Laptop mfgr has no motivation to patch, if anything they'd tell you to buy a new one.

3) Even for vertically integrated companies (Apple) its entirely possible they don't have a stable of every combination of hardware and BIOS/EFI/firmware they've ever sold. And/or testing accidentally skipped the wrong one.

Its odd how generally speaking, no one screws up the keyboard port, which on PCs is a hideously complicated synchronous serial microcontroller based thingy with A20 gates and such and even worse its often done in emulation and converted over USB, but generally speaking, almost everyone screws up battery monitoring, which need be little more than a single port A/D converter.

In related news (2, Funny)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078304)

Umbrella Corp says that its virus is not causing people to turn into zombies. However, we were unable to get more information from their spokesman, as he was killed by zombie dogs.

Re:In related news (1)

Cryacin (657549) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079122)

Those dogs wouldn't have gotten much nutrition out of him. Once you get past all the crap, he's just a pair of lips and a briefcase!

Wha?? (5, Funny)

Itninja (937614) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078308)

"To the very best of the collective ecosystem knowledge, Windows 7 is correctly warning batteries that are in fact failing and Windows 7 is neither incorrectly reporting on battery status nor in any way whatsoever causing batteries to reach this state."

Can a brother get some restrictive clauses and pronouns up in here?

In other news, Republicans report .... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078368)

In other news, Republicans report that their party is not controlled by Jews

Re:In other news, Republicans report .... (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078772)

Which is true, otherwise Jews wouldn't vote overwhelmingly Democrat.

Not dead (4, Funny)

Lost Penguin (636359) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078434)

Microsoft: Oh yes, the, uh, the Battery...What's,uh...What's wrong with it?
          Laptop owner: I'll tell you what's wrong with it, my lad. 'E's dead, that's what's wrong with it!
          Microsoft: No, no, 'e's uh,...he's resting.
          Laptop owner: Look, matey, I know a dead battery when I see one, and I'm looking at one right now.
          Microsoft: No no he's not dead, he's, he's restin'! Remarkably charged, the Battery, idn'it, ay? Beautiful plumage!
          Laptop owner: The plumage don't enter into it. It's stone dead.
          Microsoft: Nononono, no, no! 'E's resting!

Re:Not dead (4, Funny)

MBCook (132727) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078972)

Microsoft: Bring out your dead batteries.
Microsoft: Here's one.
Customer: It's not dead.
Microsoft: Yes it is.
Customer: But it still holds a little charge.
Microsoft: Not really. It's as good as dead.
Customer: Look! It plays YouTube for over 2 minutes.
Microsoft: It's dead. Do we need to come back later?
Customer: But it's still good. It's happy!
Microsoft: *THWACK*
Microsoft: There. Now it's dead.
Customer: You killed my battery!
Microsoft: No we didn't. It was already dead.

It happened to me!! (1)

Xanator (1740516) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078484)

Actually this problem actually happened to me, I updated my HP notebook from Vista to windows 7 and within a week it told me my battery was useless, to be honest it never occurred to me that it could be a problem with the OS, specially since days later the video card melted, so the battery problem didn't seem that important compared to the dead video card :(, still saving to fix that laptop, i really liked it

Re:It happened to me!! (1)

RealErmine (621439) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078742)

Actually this problem actually happened to me, I updated my HP notebook from Vista to windows 7 and within a week it told me my battery was useless, to be honest it never occurred to me that it could be a problem with the OS, specially since days later the video card melted, so the battery problem didn't seem that important compared to the dead video card :(, still saving to fix that laptop, i really liked it

Sounds like a great machine.

Re:It happened to me!! (1)

Xanator (1740516) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078834)

LOL I know but it has hdmi port (which isn't common on a laptop on my country), and was of perfect size for playing WoW everywhere

Ubuntu does this to... (1)

Skuld-Chan (302449) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078494)

Before anyone gets too excited Ubuntu does this too. It told me on my old IBM T40 that the battery only had 50% capacity every time I switched it on - yes it was a very older battery with very little capacity.

And what if Windows 7 is the cause? (2, Informative)

Fri13 (963421) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078538)

Okay, I saw this in the news when it came. I thought "Okay, some laptops seems to have problems." But I do not think so anymore. Why?

a) I have three laptops.
1. 4 years old (2006), Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo A1645 (windows 7, Linux 2.6.31)
2. 1.5 years old (2008) Acer Aspire 1520 (Windows 7, Linux 2.6.31)
3. 3 months old (2009) Asus EeePC 1008HA (Windows 7, Windows XP, Linux 2.6.31, latest stable FreeBSD)
(Okay, they are not all mine, only the newest)

b) I now run dual- or quadboot on every one of them with Windows 7, Windows XP, + Linux 2.6.33 (Distro = Mandriva 2010.0) (+FreeBSD = latest FreeBSD stable)

c) I needed to install Windows 7 just on last sunday (family pack)

Here is estimation of battery state in hourhs when WWW surfing, coding and compiling stuff (usually the 2. and 3.)

1. 1h 15min.
2. 1h
3. 5-6 hours

These are on FreeBSD and Linux and Windows XP.

Windows 7 gives these.

1. about 30-35 minutes.
2. None..... NONE!
3. 1.5-2 hours!!!

Okay.... is Microsoft now really saying that my 3 MONTHS OLD BATTERY (6-cells) is DYING? And that 1h battery what has worked fine with Linux OS from last 2.6.28-2.6.31 releases is ALREADY DEAD?

Why does Windows 7 eat the battery but when I boot to other software system I get just normal times?????

I have only one thing to say. Sorry about bad language (and typos!): Microsoft, GO TO YOURSELF!!! And I cant not even RETURN THE "#!"#! Family Pack!

Re:And what if Windows 7 is the cause? (1)

Stregano (1285764) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078820)

Now here is something that will really bake your noodle: how positive are you about which one is correct?

I have personally never owned a laptop that has lasted more than 4 hours on a battery.

Re:And what if Windows 7 is the cause? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078994)

So leave the laptop running and measure how long it takes for it to die, then you'll know if 7 is giving you bullshit, or is the proverbial Cassandra.

A Tagging System Error? (-1, Troll)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078660)

I think there is something wrong with the slashdot tagging system. I see this story has been simultaneously tagged "microsoft" and "bug". We all know that Microsoft turns out only the highest quality of code, hence those two sets should be mutually exclusive. Perhaps the "bug" tag refers to an error in the slashdot code that allows the sets "bug" and "microsoft" to overlap?

Lamest blog ever (1, Insightful)

SirGarlon (845873) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078708)

Is it just me, or does the Windows 7 engineering blog post strike you as a bit ... defensive?

As we have talked about many times, we have a relentless focus on the quality of Windows 7 and we take seriously any reports we receive that indicate a potential problem that could result in a significant failure of the OS.

Talked about many times? Maybe in meetings at Microsoft HQ, but not on that blog (whose previous update was August 2009). Which is a pity, because blogging about how to achieve quality in a product as complex as Windows 7 could be downright interesting. This really seems like a missed opportunity to improve Microsoft's image with the technically literate audience.

Remember Kids... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31078736)

Windows 7 doesn't kill batteries, people kill batteries.

We need more honestly dumb software. (5, Informative)

argent (18001) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078756)

Windows Seven's problem is not that it's doing the wrong thing, it's because it's trying to be too smart about it. It's not smart. It's stupid. A laptop computer (running ANY OS) isn't as smart as a lizard.

But its user's smart. If your software is stupid (and all software is stupid), and the user is smart (and all users are smarter than their computer, even when they're stupid) then you're better off admitting it than trying to fake it.

Instead of popping up a "your battery might be about to fail", give us a gas gauge. "Your battery has only [====> 40% ---] of original capacity". Show that for *all* batteries. Let people pop that up even if there's no problem. Let people be smart about it. Or even... let people be dumb about it.

You might find that people are more willing to replace batteries when they get down to 20%. You might think that's stupid. And it may be stupid. But it's still smarter than stupid software trying to be smart.

Re:We need more honestly dumb software. (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079004)

Instead of popping up a "your battery might be about to fail", give us a gas gauge. "Your battery has only [====> 40% ---] of original capacity". Show that for *all* batteries.

A car analogy? On slashdot? Unpossible. Anyways:

Well, more like the accelerator pedal is sticking, and corporate HQ says there's no problem here please move along, and eventually too many pedals are sticking, and then the govt (whom owns their main competitor) starts squawking, then everyone whom was playing World of Warcraft while driving and had an accident gets the bright idea of blaming the gas pedal instead, next thing you know...

Re:We need more honestly dumb software. (1)

solsang (1364595) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079046)

As seen in the many postings replying to the link, the problem seems to be windows 7 using the battery "design capacity" value which in many cases are wrong, thus making the warning and possible causing haywire in the charging system Thus it is a real issue with many new batteries of various types and m$ is flatly denying it without reading the possible solution and test suggestions in the comment thread...

Re:We need more honestly dumb software. (1)

arikol (728226) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079054)

Yes, the user is smart and the OS and computer are both stupid.

HOWEVER, the user may be a very smart doctor (brick layer, astronaut, deep sea diver etc.) which does not necessarily make the user comfortable with computers or an OS.
The OS should assist the user by giving him all the information he needs in real human language.
If the assistance means showing a warning symbol on the battery and a popup (on hover) sayin "this battery will need replacing soon" or "this battery REEEEALLLLYYY needs replacing now" then that is what is required.

We technonerds who feel comfortable screwing our laptop computers apart and can look up all pertinent data (and understand it) are only a very small minority. Most users can use google in a very limited fashion and don't understand the difference between a .dll and a .avi
Not because they are stupid, but rather because they focus their brainpower on other things (brain surgery, for instance)

Re:We need more honestly dumb software. (1)

MBCook (132727) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079062)

40% implies the battery is still useful. Unlike a gas tank which the 2nd to last gallon is as good as the first, once a battery hits 60% or so it gets useless. Worse, the drop is exponential, so you can't say "60% = 0%" and scale things out. And since the time left depends on the current draw, 60% for a typist compared to a YouTube addict.

I'd say the real problem is this technology has been around for years but users haven't seen it until now. Their battery has been dying for years, their computer knew it, but it didn't tell them.

The software isn't trying to be smart. It's telling you exactly what your manufacturer did. Let's use another car analogy.

"Your tires are too low"

You don't wait until your tires are at 2psi to fix them, you fix them THEN. It's a warning something catastrophic will happen soon (you can't rely on a charge to power your laptop long), not that something bad might happen sooner or later if maybe you don't do a ton. This seems better than someone charging their laptop and taking it on a business trip and finding out it's only good for 1/2 hour. "But the software said I had 60% of my rated watt hours!"

Re:We need more honestly dumb software. (1)

Cryacin (657549) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079184)

The smart treating the stupid as stupid and the smart as smart, rather than the stupid as smart and the smart as stupid!

GENIUS!!!

Seems sensible (2, Informative)

arikol (728226) | more than 4 years ago | (#31078968)

The new OS has features which the old one didn't and now does more to inform the user about the computers state in an understandable manner.

Apple did something similar (I think it was with OS X Leopard) where suddenly lots of people got a "this battery needs servicing" type message. This was only due to Apple realizing the need for this feature to give real recommendations. Who knows at what health percentage a battery should be replaced?

Sounds like the windows team realized the same thing and decided to support the user in his decision making. That's great. No conspiracy needed.

Batteries and their lifespan (2, Interesting)

yoshi_mon (172895) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079166)

Over the years as my number of rechargeable battery items have gone way up I'd like to think I'm somewhat familiar with the tech behind them. At the very least enough to use them well and do some basic troubleshooting when problems arise with them. And one of the main things I've observed lately is that sometimes it's the battery chargers that are ultimately the issue when problems start to become reoccurring.

I've had a 3 set cordless phone setup for about 5 years now and when they started to act up I got them all new batteries. Given that they had still been using the originals I figured ok problem solved. However not too long after using them with their new batteries they started to act up again. And it was a bit harder because the pattern was very hard to see.

While I'm sure that the original batteries were due for replacement the satellite chargers had stopped working properly. While the phones normally would stay in their normal charger that was not always the case which what threw me off at 1st. But I noticed that as long as I charged a phone in the main station it would work fine.

However the damage had been done and even my new batteries are not nearly as good as they should be. Extend what happened in my story to say a laptop where it's built in battery charging system has stopped working properly. Not only is the battery not getting a good charge it's likely being damaged in the process. Leading to Win7 telling people so even thou they think, "But I just got this thing a new battery!"

Of course it's not (3, Insightful)

kurt555gs (309278) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079172)

Microsoft would prolly claims that Windows 7 isn't killing kittens or puppies either, but we know the truth!

It is not a bug, it is a feature (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 4 years ago | (#31079250)

And causing you to go through longer lines at airport security and not working - well, you need to slow down your life, and Microsoft is just there to help you do that.

Now, go outside, the sun is shining and you shouldn't be indoors coding ...

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