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Upgrading to Windows 8 - Microsoft & nVidia Fail

So I decided to take the plunge and run an upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8. I've heard from those that I've talked to that it should be a painless process and works great. I plan on blogging my initial thoughts on the operating system, it's usability, and eventually developing for the windows 8 platform via both the xaml and html 5 paradigms.

Installation - a little disappointing

I ran the installer and after a really long time sitting around with it checking compatibility on all my programs I had to uninstall a couple things - one being the wifi software on my laptop. I figured it was no big deal, I'm sure I'll find another wifi driver. The other was an internet security package that came on my laptop that I have never used so all-in-all nothing big. I plugged in using an ethernet cable so windows 8 would pull updates and figured everything was hunky-dory.

The problem arose when...

it started to actually install. How far do you think it got? 10%? 90%?... no, the X% didn't even pop up. Surely a professional piece of software like this should give a meaningful error message that will some hint as to what actually went wrong and/or how to fix it, right? Right? ... pleeease?

No, I received the error message:

"Windows 8 installation has failed"

...

... thats... helpful?

Nothing. After being presented with only an "OK" button, the installer exits. So much for being friendly to the end-user. So after googling it, I found where the find the error log.

It's in a hidden folder... "$Windows.~BR" ...in a sub-folder called ...Logs? Errors? WhatWentWrong? ...no..."Sources\Panther". At least the file is called "setuperr.log" (for those looking to copy/paste this it's c:\$WINDOWS.~BT\Sources\Panther\setuperr.log)

What's the error?

  1. User profile duplicate SID error. Aborting due to external request.[gle=0x000000cb]
  2. MigStartupOnline caught exception: Win32Exception: User profile duplicate SID error. Aborting due to external request.: The specified user does not have a valid profile. [0x000004E5] void __cdecl Mig::COnlineWinNTPlatform::ProcessUser(class Mig::CRegistryDataStore *,class Mig::CRegistryDataUnit *,class UnBCL::String *,class UnBCL::String *,int,int)
  3. pUpgLayerDoMainGather: Engine initialization failed with error: 0x00000004

After looking up the user profiles I find a profile I didn't create. "Updatus User"... So I google THAT now. What I find is that nVidia creates these dummy profiles for it's nVidia Updater. UNINSTALL! Then double check and make sure the dummy profiles were removed.

Windows 8 is now installing for me at about 67%. We'll see if it goes off without a hitch from here.

Well done nVidia, creating 2 user profiles with the same name... sure... That won't cause problems.

Well done Microsoft, way to error gracefully in a way that is actually helpful to the user.

For the most part both of these companies do good work. But this time? Epic fail.