I’m killing time. Right now I’m waiting for updates and downloads to complete on my office work computer, a machine that I went to great trouble to make bulletproof. For example, I run a top-end Intel SSD and have a disk image backup.
Today, my machine gave me a BSOD after uninstalling a troublesome program. Acronis Enterprise Server. So, just to help people who might have issues or are considering using this program, I though I’d write about it while I wait for the updates to complete, since Acronis forced me to install a fresh copy of Windows 7 Professional.
This is one of this cases where a program started out great, then as corporate weaslism takes hold due to the success, the program becomes more bloated, fragmented, dependent on more libraries, license tiered, and overall more difficult to manage and less rewarding in actual use.
At my office we used to love this program, because it had a great feature that allowed you to image your disk to a state where windows didn’t have anything except the generic/basic boot drivers installed, allowing you to image to another mobo/processor combination. This days are long gone and we’ve relegated Acronis to the scrap heap because it has become an enterprise level mess in more ways than one.
I still had Acronis on my main work machine, but this morning the background program for it started doing weird stuff, utilizing a lot of CPU space. My usual checks for malware/virus came up zero, and I had no explanation for why the Acronis background server program was using a lot of CPU cycles. So, I decided to uninstall it.
Big mistake, HUGE mistake.
After uninstalling Acronis, I found I was in a boot loop, and right after the Win7 animated logo, I’d get a BSOD. Safe mode – same thing, and attempts at OS repair (using Windows tools and third-party tools) came up with no success at all. I also thought it might be related to a recent bungled Microsoft patch which causes a BSOD boot loop after Windows update installs it and the user reboots for the first time, and downloaded the removal tool as a bootable ISO to burn to CD. No joy there either.
I’ve never had the de-installation of a program hose the operating system. Never.
It makes me wonder what sort of “tentacles” Acronis attached to the OS without telling me. So, needless to say, Acronis is now permanently off my list, especially since I had used it as a backup program to keep a disk image. My backup image included the Acronis program, so since trying to remove it caused the problem in the first place I was in a no choice situation – a fresh install of Windows 7 Pro was the only way forward.
I spent the entire morning on the mess Acronis created, and I’ve not got a single thing done today other than deal with that mess.
After a fresh install of Windows 7, which gets me back to the desktop, but of course I have a lot of work ahead putting programs and files back into place, along with 147 Windows updates, and likely more after that.
I know many of you will throw out the standard gloating snippets like:
- Get a Mac
- Run (pick your distro) Linux
- Run FreeBSD or CentOS or some other OS
…with tales of fantastic other-worldly levels of reliability, so let me just say in advance that until this incident, I have had wonderful reliability with Windows 7 and I have far too much invested in programs and systems to move. So, those aren’t options for me.
Thanks for killing time with me while I wait for the updates to download and install.
I have to reboot now to finish. See you in a few hours.