Yesterday I was trying to install Visual Studios 2005 Professional on my work Laptop. I am running Windows Vista on my laptop and during the installation it told me that I needed run a special update. I chose to download Microsoft Vistual Studios SP1 update for Windows Vista.

When I tried to install the update it complained that I didn’t have the correct version of Visual Studios. After looking I discovered that I needed to install Visual Studios SP1 first… and that the “update for Windows Vista” was really an update to SP1. So I attempted to find what I needed.

During my search I came to this page:
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/Products.aspx?displaylang=en

Please, check it out.

I wanted to click “V” for Visual Studios, but V was not an option. I thought that was odd, so I hit CTRL+F and did a find for Visual Studios. Sure enough, I discovered that Visual Studios was under M… M for Microsoft Visual Studios. I soon discovered that almost all of Microsoft’s products (259 to be exact) are listed under “M” for Microsoft. Sounds useful doesn’t it?

The next largest category was W for Windows – 16 items in W, 15 of which are “Windows __XXX__.” To be honest there are a few other letters (apart from M and W that are available). A, B, C, D, G, L, O, P, & Z are categories that contain items… correction, they contain 1 item… each. S is also available and it contains 3 items. In my opinion, this is just bad design.

But I wasn’t going to let it stop here. I decided to send Microsoft some feedback regarding that page… maybe a little helping hand… or a sarcastic helping hand. This is what I wrote:

I think you’ve made a mistake on this page:
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/Products.aspx?displaylang=en

There are products listed under A, B, C, D, G, L, O, P, S, W, & Z. These should all be placed under M for “Microsoft” with the other 259 products listed under M for “Microsoft”. It was too confusing for me to look under W for Windows Vista, when I was looking under M for Microsoft Windows Vista. Luckily I did a Find and saw that you inadvertently placed it under W.

Thank you for your time.
Lew A

I know, I’m a jerk, but it doesn’t end here. Today I received an email from Microsoft, it reads:

Hello Lew,

Thank you for contacting Microsoft Customer Service.

I understand that you have confusing while searching for Windows Vista in download center.

Please note that, Windows Vista is a product so it was listed under “W” but Microsoft is name of the product manufactured like Windows Vista products. It won’t list under “M” some Microsoft products listed under “M” like Microsoft Windows XP and Microsoft Office XP.

I hope the above information is helpful.  If you have additional concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

<name removed>

Microsoft Customer Service Representative

Poor guy… Thanks Microsoft, it’s been fun, as always.