Microsoft announced this week that it is formerly launching an investigation into complaints that Windows 7 is adversely affecting laptop batteries in a variety of ways.

Oy! So let me count the ways (i.e. types of complaints):

- Some batteries are dying sooner than later (Windows 7 was actually supposed to sustain battery life longer and not shorten it).

- Some batteries are unable to hold a charge.

- Batteries are actually experiencing permanent damage. Some users claim their batteries no longer work properly when they switch to another operating system.

- The operating system indicates the battery is fully charged, when it's only been recharging for a few minutes and clearly not recharged.

- Even users with brand new laptops are reporting their batteries can't hold a charge.

- The problems are happening to a variety of different laptop brands, including the major names like Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Acer and Toshiba.

Microsoft says there's likely a problem in the firmware (i.e. somewhere in the guts of the BIOS - that black or blue screen of geeky programming prompts you see for just a flash before it boots up) and that it is working with its "hardware" partners.

Here's two things that I don't like about this response from Microsoft:

- Users have been complaining about this since June (when Windows 7 was still in beta). Here's a link on Microsoft's own tech forum. You'll notice the first comment was on June 5th of last year. Hello, it's February! Once again, Microsoft has knowingly rushed a faulty product out of beta and to market.

- Microsoft is clearly pointing a finger at "hardware partners". Perhaps, that's where the problem began. But, Microsoft's name is on the product. So, shouldn't the buck stop with Microsoft? (Steve Ballmer is no Harry Truman).