Steve Jones - SSC Editor wrote:
I'd completely disagree. I think their quality in many areas has gone up. Windows is better at patches than it used to be. Quality going up doesn't mean there aren't any issues. They have built a number of products that are patching very smoothly and well. Windows is a hard one because it runs on so many different types of devices and it has a wide range of options. Most of the other projects are smaller, as is most of our software.
Over the last few months the updates have been far more frequent that once a month, and a goodly proportion of them deliver damage - either altering settings to make the PC just about unusable or causing enough corruption that windows won't start up (and these happen with for example SSMS updates to SSMS 2016 and.or to SSMS 2017 that shouldn't be mutilating Windows as well as with Windows updates). Sometimes I can fix the problem myself; sometimes I can live with it for a few weeks until a new udate fixes it. Sometmes I have to get help - being retired I no longer have a decent collection of tools and computers at hand - to download from an alternative disc and reverse the update, download it again and work out what the problem is - and it seems that there is a fundamental problem that checking that the delivered update is not corrupt either does not take place or delivers "no error" incorrectly, so that junk is applied. This sort of stuff started happening more than a year ago, and has increased steadily in frequency since then. Then there are the updates that always fail - the compatability checks decide that they cannot be applied even though they appear to be correct. I had that happening with the latest SSMS 2016 security update, ended up running clear up tasks to sort out the muddle previous updates had created, and the upgrade was automtically applied on restart after that. For SSMS 2017 latest update the clear up tasks didn't fix the problem, I tried various other things (replacing some rather fundamental chunks) and ended up being able to install the update provided I downoaded it by hand and didn't let windows update download it. Of course it now appears that Windows Update is not aware that that update has been applied (two years ago Windows Update automatically discovered eveerything that had been downloaded and applied by hand, but apparently no longer) so I've no idea what will happen with the next SSMS 2017 update.
That to me is distinctly NOT a sign that Microsoft delivery qualityhas improved ove the last couple of years, it's a sign that it's got a lot worse and is still getting worse.