It’s No Longer the Same

My feelings for my phone have changed. It’s back from the dead but doesn’t quite feel the same.

It’s a sort of abusive relationship as I’d signed my Lumia 950 up to the Windows Insider Programme. Every now and then a new Operating System build comes along which I always fully expect the phone to accept without complaint. Which is does, when someone is doing their job properly.

On my birthday, Microsoft had a surprise for me:

A note about the unintentional release of builds today

Hello Windows Insiders!

Many of you discovered that earlier this afternoon, builds from some of our internal branches were accidentally released for PC and Mobile. This happened because an inadvertent deployment to the engineering system that controls which builds/which rings to push out to insiders. The team was quick to revert the deployment and put blocks in place to stop these builds from going out to more people. Our analysis shows only a small portion of folks got these builds.

If you received this build on Mobile: This build will *not* install on your device. If you installed this build, your device will be stuck in a reboot loop and the only way to recover is to use the Windows Device Recovery Tool and re-flash.

So overnight my phone turned from the key tool to make life at the UK Games Expo in Birmingham much easier to a slab of useless junk.

Before dashing off for the train, I grabbed my old HTC Radar (WP 7.8) so I could keep in contact with home while I was away. No texting or calling, though, as the phone SIM was now too small to put back in the Radar without a little frame which I couldn’t find. And a lot of web pages don’t like trying to display properly on the Radar’s IE9 browser. And the camera is rubbish. But a least it works, as does my faithful Zune.

The weekend passed and I came home. The Lumia remained as I’d left it. Days past as I avoided having to work out what data I could salvage. I hadn’t yet found the blog post above so didn’t know all was hopeless. Luckily, I had configured the phone to store files on a 128GB removal chip so I wouldn’t have to repopulate that when the device was flashed.

Eventually, nearly two weeks later, I cranked up the Windows Device Recovery Tool to turn junk back into high tech. Was pleasantly surprised to be prompted to restore a backup from before the broken update was released. Unfortunately, it didn’t work 100% although I don’t know what was not restored. Data definitely not lost was five months of text messages – initially it looked like it only backed up the last month’s worth but this was because the default was just to restore that much to the phone and I soon had it all back.

In the Store, all the 120+ applications I’d previously installed were queued up to download again. What I am missing, though, is the home screen tile layout that I was happy with. I’ve tried to recreate the tile arrangement but it’s just not right yet.

I’m confident we can patch things up together.

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