I had to delete my original 4th of July post because some hoser hosed it up. What a hoser, eh? And it forced me to add the funky image/text verification step to the comment submittal process. Whaddya' gonna' do, eh? Life's full of wrench throwing monkeys.
Speaking of spanner hurling primates.... A comment to the aforementioned hosed 4th of July post asked about the danger of Examsoft being hosed by Microsoft's auto update feature (not a bug, mind you). The source of the potential problem is the Windows Registry file. Most of you know that the Registry is the Rosetta Stone of the Windows operating system. When the laptop is started, the firmware in the BIOS throws the balls in the air, so to speak, and the operating system catches them and starts juggling. Some of the balls include the hard drive, the memory, the hardware and the software. And there's a lot of software to juggle with Windows, which is why it has a reputation as being somewhat unreliable (a feature, not a bug).
Every time a change is made to the Registry, Windows juggles the balls differently based on that change. It might be a minor change and it might be a not-so-minor change, or it might be a change made incorrectly or one that conflicts with another part of the registry. Think of involuntary manslaughter, a legal act done with criminal negligence. You'll know exactly what I'm talking about if this happens to you.
When Examsoft runs, it restarts the computer in secure mode, because the folks at the various State Bar Associations want very much to make sure that you/me/us aren't able to access the other files on our computer as we take the exam. Examsoft makes certain changes to the Registry to accomplish this goal. If any changes are made to the entries that Examsoft places in the Registry, the program detects this and assumes that you tried to circumvent the security of the process. It's a strict liability offense, and you're hosed.
Microsoft's auto update feature, (again, not a bug,) makes wholesale changes to the Registry. Installing/removing/modifying existing programs makes changes to the Registry. Many features (not bugs) of the Windows OS make changes to the Registry. If one of those changes inadvertently changes a critical Examsoft entry, you're hosed. It seems like a long shot, but it happens. People get to the Bar Exam and Examsoft won't start because something like this happened on their system. They're... well, you get the picture.
Bottom line, (and this is Examsoft's recommendation) until after the Bar exam, don't make any changes to your computer that are not absolutely, positively necessary. And that includes allowing Windows to auto update itself. You won't be missing any critical updates (not for long, anyway) and you'll avoid a big pothole that might force you off of the paved laptop superhighway and onto the rock-strewn dirt road of handwriting.
That's too much detail and I've taken too much time in explaining it but it might help someone. And you should restart Examsoft in secure mode every week or so before the exam just to be sure none of the stuff I just talked about has occurred.
This has been a public service announcement.