Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Toshiba Satellite L500 function keys no longer work after upgrading to Windows 8 Pro

One of the problems in upgrading the operating system in your computer is not knowing what will and what won't work after the upgrade.

It has been a couple of months since upgrading my Toshiba Satellite L500 notebook, but recently I noticed things not working on my notebook that worked under Windows 7. Initially I didn't think that much about it and thought perhaps I'd forgotten how to use the feature and then found a different way to do the same thing. In hindsight I realise that the function keys on my Toshiba Satellite no longer work.

For example I connected up my computer to a large screen. Normally I'd hit Function+F5 and switch between screens. It didn't work. Hmmm. Right click on the Desktop, select Personalise and then select the second screen. This wasn't working properly and the second screen wasn't being seen by the software. It did work in the end but certainly not as expected.

The next example is I went to do some testing with Bluetooth. Function+F8 allows me to turn Bluetooth and wireless networking on and off, or so I thought. That's also didn't work and neither does adjusting the screen brightness using the function keys.

The functions keys on the Toshiba Satellite L500 are no longer working and because of the age of the notebook, there doesn't appear to be any drivers for Windows 8. You can work around these problems but it does take some hunting to find the right functionality. Bluetooth required going into both setting areas of the Desktop mode and the Metro mode. Certainly took more effort than Function+F8.

Based on the number of glitches I've seen on installing Windows 8 I'd find it hard to recommend for others to upgrade their computer. As a consultant if a client requires me to upgrade their computer to Windows 8 and functionality they want doesn't work, they aren't going to blame Microsoft, they'll blame me and that can potentially damage a good client relationship. Over the years I've had a number of Microsoft updates seriously affect clients and until they fully understand the fault is with a Microsoft update they blame they computer support person.

The time taken to fix issues, to determine workarounds, and if required provide training to a client takes take and time is money for clients. If you add the cost of the upgrade plus the time to upgrade, there's a good chance that money could be a very good part payment for a new compute. Chances are a new computer will run much faster and have a greater capacity than the old computer.

When getting a computer consultant to upgrade your computer make sure you understand the cost involved and think about whether it is better to pay for the time to upgrade, or perhaps put the money towards a new computer. A good consultant will provide advice and guidance which assists you and is in your interests. Too often I see unprofessional consultants who are simply interested in making their fees and don't look after the client's interests first and foremost.

Kelvin Eldridge
Online Connections
Call 0415 910 703 for computer support.
Servicing Templestowe, Doncaster, Eltham and the surrounding area.

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