If you are using SCVMM 2012 R2 (the latest version as of this post) and open one of its many wizard dialogs, you will be confronted with this if you cancel a dialog:



I know what the product team was intending, but still this is clear as mud. Continue with what? Cancelling or filling out the dialog? It would not take much effort to rewrite this to remove the ambiguity. Simply change the last sentence to “Do you want to cancel and leave this wizard?”

I could launch into a diatribe about how the managers favor feature count over fit and finish (alliteration unintentional). However, applying Hanlon’s razor, this is likely just the result of laziness.

SCVMM is Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager. It is a data center virtualization management solution. Like much of the software produced by Microsoft, it is tremendously capable while being over-the-top complicated and completely unintuitive. There is an old computer programming expression that any problem can be solved by adding another layer of indirection. SCVMM has multiple layers of indirection/abstraction which requires that you understand all of it to use any of it. This completely violates one of the primary principles of software usability: progressive disclosure. You should be able to use basic features without having to dig into and understand the advanced features. You can’t do that with SCVMM. It is all or nothing. My colleagues call that “job security.” I call it poor design.