Avisoft software has closed.

Sorry, all things come to an end.

I am no longer able to issue any more licences for any of my Windows based software such as Accentype or the French eBook Reader.

The Windows 10 update destroyed the firmware on my dual-boot (Windows 8 / Linux Mint) laptop computer in 2015, forcing me to buy another laptop with Windows 10 pre-installed. The Windows anniversary update released in August 2016 has now damaged that laptop too. I no longer have any Windows computers left and I have no intention of buying any more. Consequently I am unable to provide any updates for my Windows based software or to provide any new licences or to re-issue any licences that are sometimes damaged by the infamous Windows 10 automatic updates.

Now seems to be an appropriate time for me to retire as a Windows application developer. I have been growing increasingly disillusioned with Microsoft for some time, especially with their latest operating system, Windows 10, due to:

  1. Windows 10 updates can damage various files on computers, including the licence files & registry settings for Avisoft software; so please be warned, if you have paid for any licenced Avisoft applications it is quite likely that if you upgrade to Windows 10, or use Windows 10, it will damage the application or make it unusable at some point. Upgrade to, or use, Windows 10 at your own risk.

  2. The end user no longer has any control over which Windows updates are applied and an unwanted Windows 10 BIOS update not only destroyed the firmware on my dual-boot laptop computer but now my only other remaining Windows computer has been damaged by the anniversary update in August 2016, rendering it unable to start up.

  3. Microsoft have made no allowances for people with limited monthly (or daily) internet bandwidth quotas, sometimes unexpected massive automatic updates leave people without internet access due to all their allowance being taken without warning or permission. Not everyone is on an unlimited internet bandwidth quota and need to plan when to do such downloads without using up their entire remaining quota in one go or interfering with other internet users in the household.

  4. Microsoft has embedded spyware into Windows 10 that they euphemistically call "telemetry" putting spin on it saying that it is to "improve the user experience". Only some of the spyware can be disabled by end users by digging down into the privacy settings and elsewhere, then changing more than 30 default settings!

  5. Whose computer is it anyway? Microsoft are heading in a direction I don't like, stealing your personal data from your computer by default and selling it to advertisers. They are also experimenting with placing unwanted third-party applications (with in-app purchases, of which Microsoft take a percentage) and adverts directly onto your computer without your permission. There are no options to remove or block the installation of these unwanted applications on your computer. There are also rumours that Microsoft are heading towards a subscription model for Windows or for certain aspects of using it e.g. for their cloud services which they are heavily pushing and trying to get people dependent upon. So instead of the one time cost of buying a Windows computer there may be ongoing charges to keep using it.

  6. Microsoft are making it increasingly difficult and costly for small software developers like me to publish software on our own sites and they are trying to force us to use their app store (at a cost).

  7. Finally, I really dislike the mess the Windows menu system has become, the tiles and unwanted application bloat and the schizophrenic nature of the operating system with multiple confused interfaces.

I have used Linux Mint (Cinnamon)* for several years now as my preferred and primary operating system and am now switching to writing applications exclusively for Linux (Mint, Ubuntu etc) instead of Windows and will work on new versions of all my popular applications but for the Linux operating system only. I will make them available via regular Linux channels in due course.

I want to thank everyone for their support over the last twenty years, but sadly, all things come to an end.

I wish you all well with your language studies,

David Townsend.
August 2016.

* If you are interested in trying an alternative operating system to Windows, and taking control back of YOUR computer, I highly recommend Linux Mint (with the Cinnamon desktop). It is free of charge, free of spyware or any other dodgy features and easy to use. You can have a try/play around using it by making a bootable disk or USB stick on a Windows computer without needing to install it or overwriting Windows or any of your Windows files. It comes complete with the Firefox web browser, Thunderbird email, LibreOffice, VLC media player and lots of other popular (and free) open-source software. More software is only a click away.