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PC Annoyance with Automatic Windows Restarts

For the second time in 36 hours, my Windows 10 laptop – which also serves as my primary device while working from home during this pandemic – succumbed to an automatic restart.

The first one happened sometime on late Friday night, while I still happened to have all of my work stuff open. Then this morning as I came downstairs, I noticed my screens had gone dark again. While Windows 10 is pretty good at being able to restore just about everything, it still causes an unnecessary panic (twice this weekend) while wondering what may or may not have been lost.

These restarts tend to take place late at night or overnight when I am least likely to be by the computer, meaning I am more likely to not see the prompt that warns that such a restart is soon coming unless I reschedule it for another time.

First of all, such prompts only give you seemingly an hour or two’s notice to halt the automatic restart, which the developers of Windows knows will be missed by most users. Secondly, the option to reschedule the restart doesn’t allow you to set the time. You essentially are telling Windows 10, “fine, restart it at another time completely unbeknownst to me, just as long as you spare me from this specific scheduled restart.”

Working in web development, I do have an appreciation for how important software updates are when it comes to security. I am also well aware that without Microsoft’s aggressiveness towards updates, most users would simply ignore them for as long as possible, thus increasing the vulnerability of their devices. However, that should be a choice that a user has the right to make, even if it is a shortsighted one.

Having used a PC my entire life, I knew I most likely would stick with what I knew the last time I shopped for a laptop, which was in early 2018. Though I did look at a few Macbooks out of curiosity, I quickly ruled them out upon seeing the higher price tag. Whichever laptop I purchased was going to be part of a workstation that included two monitors, a keyboard, and a mouse – all of which the Macbook by itself was less accommodating of.

With how much I detest Microsoft’s forced automatic Windows updates, I might be more inclined to give Apple more serious consideration the next time I am in the market to buy a new laptop – which I hope won’t be for a while still.

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