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Microsoft Engineer Installs Google Chrome During Presentation After Edge Freezes (softpedia.com) 174

A reader shares a report: We've seen lots of blunders on stage, and still happen occasionally, but this must be the best of all. A Microsoft engineer downloaded, installed, and started using Google Chrome during a live presentation after Microsoft Edge, the default Windows 10 browser, stopped responding in the middle of a demo. In just a few words, Microsoft Edge froze while the engineer was working with virtual machines in the browser, and judging from how fast he proceeded to downloading Google Chrome, this wasn't the first time it happened. Because, you know, sometimes reloading the page or restarting the browser does help, but you can't risk hitting the same error twice, right? "I love it when demos break," he said. "So while we're talking here, I'm gonna go install Chrome," he continued before he started laughing, with many people in the audience cheering. "And we're going to not make Google better," he added when unchecking the box to send usage statistics and crash reports to Google, as if this made things less worse. "We're going to do this again, I'm sorry about this. The age of these machines are [sic] wacked down a little bit, there are some things that just don't work."
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Microsoft Engineer Installs Google Chrome During Presentation After Edge Freezes

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  • by sirpwn4g3 ( 5069407 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:21AM (#55463529)
    Like Microsoft Edge.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IW7Rqwwth84
    with Bill Gates himself on stage to watch the BSOD

  • ... he's updating his CV right now....
    • Re:I guess... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by v1 ( 525388 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:38AM (#55463683) Homepage Journal

      he is sooo fired. and in the inevitable reference to windows 95 crashing on the live demo, at least in that case the presenter had Bill himself on stage to save him.. Presenter: "And watch as we plug in this.... (BSoD) whoa...." Bill: " and that's why we're not shipping it just yet..."

      • by barrywalker ( 1855110 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:05AM (#55463857)

        he is sooo fired. and in the inevitable reference to windows 95 crashing on the live demo, at least in that case the presenter had Bill himself on stage to save him.. Presenter: "And watch as we plug in this.... (BSoD) whoa...." Bill: " and that's why we're not shipping it just yet..."

        Not to be a pedantic prick, but it was Windows 98. Yea, yea, I know - there wasn't much difference at that point.

        • Re:I guess... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by haruchai ( 17472 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:52AM (#55464201)

          he is sooo fired. and in the inevitable reference to windows 95 crashing on the live demo, at least in that case the presenter had Bill himself on stage to save him.. Presenter: "And watch as we plug in this.... (BSoD) whoa...." Bill: " and that's why we're not shipping it just yet..."

          Not to be a pedantic prick, but it was Windows 98. Yea, yea, I know - there wasn't much difference at that point.

          Anyone who complains about Wn95 or Win98 has never tried to live with Windows Millennium which was so bad it made everyone think that Y2K was happening a few months late.

          • Anyone who complains about Wn95 or Win98 has never tried to live with Windows Millennium which was so bad it made everyone think that Y2K was happening a few months late.

            The only thing with the word "Millennium" in its name that didn't suck also had the word "Falcon" in it and even it had problems sometimes.

          • So bad, they scrapped the whole thing and started over with the windows 2000 base :p
            • To be - sort of - fair. Windows ME was supposed to be a consumer version of the NT Kernel where Windows 2000 was the business version based on the same kernel.

              At some point, Microsoft dropped the NT Kernel and went back to the 95/98 kernel with some of the tools from Windows 2000 due to time constraints. The rush decision and tight timeline did not work well.

        • by HiThere ( 15173 )

          There was a considerable difference between MSWind95 and MSWind98 for my use case. MSWind98 could not play music at a consistent tempo from the score editing programs that my wife was using. I had to reinstall MSWind95.

      • Re:I guess... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:48AM (#55464171)

        Hmm, idk. He's not on the Edge team, otherwise he would be fired. But this guy did what he had to do to get through his demo; persisting with Edge and hitting the same issue several times, which it seems like he expected, would not only have trashed his demo, but it would hardly make Edge look good either, so switching to Chrome at that point cut the losses and minimised the damage all round. If heads were going to roll from this, I think it would be on the Edge team.

      • by Junta ( 36770 )

        Additionally, in the infamous BSOD demo, they didn't whip out a Mac to finish the demo.

        • Because they didn't need to. If it were a recurring problem and the mac was able to demonstrate what you were trying to demonstrate then it wouldn't have been a problem either.

  • Sums it up (Score:5, Funny)

    by wbr1 ( 2538558 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:28AM (#55463579)
  • Not even MS can get Edge to work when they want it to work. That's why I don't use it. Maybe in the future when it's actually usable will I look into it.
    • Re:Seems about right (Score:4, Interesting)

      by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:32AM (#55463617) Journal

      I tried to use Edge last year. After a couple of hours I went back to Chrome. Visually, it's simply the shits, and it really doesn't work worth a damn. I'd rather use IE.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Maybe in the future when it's actually usable will I look into it.

      So, never then?

    • OTOH, in Firefox if I have over about 1000 tabs open and never restart the browser, it crashes about every 2 weeks. Of course, it successfully recovers all the tabs 100% of the time, and then works again for a couple weeks without issue.

  • Demonstration (Score:5, Informative)

    by Artem Tashkinov ( 764309 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:28AM (#55463589)
    The snafu begins at 36:46 [youtu.be].
    • by Anonymous Coward

      And later, when confronted with the default "use your smartcard+pin" for logging in he batted that aside and used his username/password, just like 99.999% of the rest of us.

      So much fake BS everywhere...

      • by Junta ( 36770 )

        His smartcad+pin probably would have been faster if he had the card on him, here it replaced the second factor with his phone, which presumably wouldn't happen the smartcard+pin way.

    • Re:Demonstration (Score:5, Informative)

      by RavenLrD20k ( 311488 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:14AM (#55463913) Journal
      Ok...the summary states he said "The age of these machines are [sic] wacked down a little bit..." when if you actually listen to the presentation on that link you can tell he said "The 'Edge' on these machines are locked down a little bit..." Which makes a hell of a lot more sense to convey that security functions are making certain necessary features unavailable for the demo. Bogdan Popa, who wrote the linked article on Softpedia, needs to get the earwax out of his ears.
    • The snafu begins at 36:46 [youtu.be].

      I beleive the worst thing he did, was to show Chrome could do this out of the box.

  • by TheRealMindChild ( 743925 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:28AM (#55463591) Homepage Journal
    A middle finger to Mozilla
    • Maybe not. Chrome just installs faster than Firefox and requires less permissions to do so. FF just started suspending tabs and the speed has improved vastly.
  • I have never seen anyone use or care about Edge. IE still has like 6x the users. Microsoft demos may be the biggest use case it has.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:33AM (#55463631)

    "The age of these machines are [sic] wacked down a little bit" is totally wrong. What was actually said is "The Edge on these machines are locked down a bit...".

    • Then where did the [sic] come from?

      Lazy "journalism"?
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Fake News!

      • [sic] because "age" is singular, hence the verb "are" is grammatically incorrect. The transcriber got the statement totally wrong, but did recognize the error in what he thought the presenter said.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      If Edge was locked down by group policies, or trust settings, he should have tested his demo before the presentation to get the right permissions set to allow it to work. If that is the case, I'm guessing this guy might be out of job.

      • I don't know. You can't really anticipate every situation. I've had training classes where machines refused to work for some unknown reason. They work for some people and not others. They work the week before, the hour before. etc. As such I didn't have time to troubleshoot the exact problem. I had students move to other machines. IT just re-imaged the faulty ones.
      • by PingSpike ( 947548 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:12AM (#55463909)

        Naw, he probably did a dry run last night, but then Windows auto updated at 3am to a new version of Edge that was broken. Rookie mistake not removing the ethernet cable and burning out the wifi with a soldering iron.

      • by Junta ( 36770 )

        It was a made up hand waving that is less embarrassing then the more likely explanation of them having a bug in javascript under edge.

      • If Edge was locked down by group policies, or trust settings, he should have tested his demo before the presentation to get the right permissions set to allow it to work. If that is the case, I'm guessing this guy might be out of job.

        Engineers have this unfortunate tendency to assume other people know their jobs. But the guy running the show was in Marketing and Sales, and he had the guys who drove the delivery truck set up the computer... 8-P

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Well Microsoft Cloud also uses Linux. So who does Microsoft fire for setting up that example?

  • by wbr1 ( 2538558 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @10:37AM (#55463673)
    Did this engineer not know that Windows 10 also has IE installed? It is just a simple start menu/cortana seach away. Not favoring MS productrs here.. IMHO Edge and IE both suck in very different ways. Edge sucks becuase it is immature and doen't know any better. IE sucks because it apparently has decided that sucking is its purpose in life.
    • I'm guessing IE would not work for the demo either is the reason he didn't use it or at least it would require downloading multiple addons like Silverlight, etc. The demo was using newer technologies and IE has been feature frozen for a few years now.
      • by wbr1 ( 2538558 )
        Silverlight does not run in chrome anymore, and would also require extra add-ons/extensions if it did. In fact just abou tanything I can think of as a web extension tech requires some sort of extra install - except javascript.
        Javascript sort of works in IE you know.
        This just shows that even MS engineers do not trust prefer MS software in certain circumstances.
        • by lucm ( 889690 )

          This just shows that even MS engineers do not trust prefer MS software in certain circumstances.

          no it doesn't. The guy clearly said that Edge was locked down on that machine, and Chrome is the easiest to use because it installs in the user profile and does not require breaking gpos.

          That's usually my first go-to when I deal with a locked down browser, next is getting a portable Firefox or Opera.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      IE's purpose is to install Chrome.

    • by leonbev ( 111395 )

      If Edge was locked down due to an overly restrictive Group Policy, you can be damned sure that IE would be locked down as well. There is a reason that Microsoft is getting away from IE... it's plugin system is a security minefield.

      • by wbr1 ( 2538558 )
        This is MS.. they cant put the engineer or device for the domo in a group with the appropriate GPOs set? come on
        • by lucm ( 889690 )

          You don't seem to understand how big companies work. The guy probably got a loaner or disposable vm for the demo. This wasn't a huge demo for the international press, it's just some guy showing new features in the azure console. Get real, there's no news here.

    • by guruevi ( 827432 )

      Most likely the software doesn't work with old-IE (IE6-10), only new-IE (Edge). There are only a few reasons IE10 is still included and it's not because its a good alternative.

    • > IE sucks because it apparently has decided that sucking is its purpose in life.
      IE's purpose in life is to download Chrome. Same as Edge's purpose now.
  • Opera FTW
  • by Anonymous Coward

    This is why I only do demos on a whiteboard. It will never freeze up or crash on me, especially in the middle of a presentation! This whole internet thing is a fad anyway, if you ask me...

    • by Megane ( 129182 )
      And that is when you find that all the marker pens in the room are dry, because the only other guy who doesn't use the projector is that mousy guy who doesn't put the caps back on tightly enough. Or someone put sharpie markers in instead of dry-erase markers.
      • by lucm ( 889690 )

        Or someone put sharpie markers in instead of dry-erase markers.

        Those are a hoot, especially on them fancy $3,000 smartboards

  • well (Score:4, Insightful)

    by c ( 8461 ) <beauregardcp@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:17AM (#55463937)

    In Microsoft's defence (and believe me, I don't defend them often), if they're eating their own dog food and running development versions of Edge (like they should be) and/or if the system they're demoing on is a development system, then it shouldn't come as a huge surprise to see something shit the bed like that.

    I don't doubt that Google folks have the occasional moment like that running Chrome or Android or whatnot...

    • by leonbev ( 111395 )

      There is a part of me that makes me think that this was some viral marketing attempt to get me to watch a demo video on Azure server migrations. If you watch the presentation, you'll see that he didn't exactly try all that hard to get it working with Edge before downloading Chrome.

      Azure is surprisingly open source friendly, and it wouldn't be totally surprised if this was was a (staged) attempt to demonstrate that.

      • by leonbev ( 111395 )

        And, YES, I know that Chrome isn't an open source browser. Please don't remind me of that. I should have said "multi platform friendly" instead.

    • I would think that when you're presenting as Microsoft (or Google, or Amazon...) and you're demonstrating, you must be ABSOLUTELY sure that if there is a problem, you can recover with your company's products.

      I would be very interested to know if the presenter still has a job - if Microsoft is serious about making Win10/Edge the number one platform/browser then this guy and anybody else involved with the debacle should be looking for work today.

      • by leonbev ( 111395 )

        If this was Apple, sure. His manager would have fired him just a few minutes after he walked off stage. Microsoft is more platform agnostic then they used to be, though.

        Besides, even if Microsoft did fired him right away, Google might hire him just for the PR value. He's become the cloud hosting equivalent of the old Verizon spokesperson working for Sprint.

      • by c ( 8461 )

        if Microsoft is serious about making Win10/Edge the number one platform/browser

        I'd say Microsoft has spent the better part of a decade repeatedly demonstrating that they're not serious about it.

      • by lucm ( 889690 )

        I would think that when you're presenting as Microsoft (or Google, or Amazon...) and you're demonstrating, you must be ABSOLUTELY sure that if there is a problem, you can recover with your company's products.

        Wrong. Microsoft has a culture of not preparing meetings or demos, the idea being that you should know your shit and be able to adapt to what happens. There's been epic incidents but overall it didn't really hurt them.

  • The thing that makes this news is the fact that the *biggest* competitor's browser was used, and thus the hat was tipped to them so to speak. Why wouldn't the presenter asked his/her self what the best way would be to diffuse the situation. At the least, hat should have been tipped to Mozilla Firefox. While it still would have received guffaws, at least having the day saved by 'open source' is better than having the day saved by Google. The more obscure open source in this case the better, but likely th
  • Maybe this guy and that Apple engineer they just fired can get together. Who know what they might come up with.

  • Edge did not freeze, it was configured to be more locked-down within the corporation. So in order to get around locked-down clients, he simply installed Chrome rather than reconfigure Edge.

    • Group Policy makes Microsoft Presenter Install Chrome.
    • by Junta ( 36770 )

      Or that's the least bad sounding explanation he could pull from his ass in the heat of the moment. It doesn't make much sense.

      The two more likely explanations:
      -They have a bug in the javascript under edge they hadn't ironed out
      -There was a bug in their javascript with respect to some dom storage or cookie that the edge browser had picked up along the way that could have also broken chrome, but chrome had a clean slate and had not accumulated crap. Particularly if their framework reacts to cookies, being u

    • So Microsoft is too stupid to know they needed to have edge work for their demo? You're suggesting this locked down browser was a surprise to the presenter? How could they have prevented this? By making Edge not locked down perhaps?

  • by smooth wombat ( 796938 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @11:28AM (#55464017) Journal

    he went from one piece of spyware to another.

  • ...downloading Chrome or Firefox!

  • by sootman ( 158191 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @12:25PM (#55464437) Homepage Journal

    "And we're going to not make Google better," he added when unchecking the box to send usage statistics and crash reports to Google

    I'll bet he unchecked that box in Edge, too. No wonder it crashed! ALWAYS tick the box that says "help make this product better." It makes the product better! :D

  • There are no policies of Microsoft that prevent it's employees from using other browsers. Even Chrome stops responding at times, happened with my Ubuntu a couple of times. It is similar to Priyanka Chopra needing to prove that she is still having an Indian touch [litlisted.com] , when it's not worthy!
  • by smithcl8 ( 738234 ) on Tuesday October 31, 2017 @02:02PM (#55465179)
    Having watched hours of more recent Microsoft demos....Azure, PowerShell, etc......within the past couple years, I can tell you that the surprising part is that he started with Edge. The demos Scott Hanselman, Jeffrey Snover, and Mark Russinovich and so on, do are typically run on Macs or Surfaces, running Google Chrome in either case. Actually, I think that doing so is by design, to show off how cross-platform they think at the "new" Microsoft.
  • I'm confused. Should I be installing "crime", "internet exploder", "sledge" or "firepox"?
  • I know whenever I've seen MS demos of ASP.Net MVC they had to use Chrome because the web pages would be buggy under Edge. They also explicitly state this as opposed to claiming they are showing cross-platform works. I think generally in MS there is a feeling they should fire the whole browser team.
  • windows software being unstable such a shocker.
  • I've set up about 100 custom Windows 10 PCs so far, all different and all manually, not imaged, and I would say that Edge freezes the first time you open it approximately 75% of the time and randomly surfing the web or trying to download a file it's 1 freeze up and crash per hour minimum. From random users' event logs it's around 5 crashes per day. I've gotten over a dozen support calls about just Edge freezing up.

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