Thanks for your helpful reply, compadre ! Reading your comments about them, I had no idea that MS took no better care of their customers than they appear to have done. Again, I must stress my newbie naivete (see below) , but given the dearth of good PC combat sim games featuring WW2 scenarios and appropriate aircraft (including that bent wing bastard you love so much ! ), I am surprised that Microsofts CFS games are no better regarded than they are. Their first game certainly got me started about eight years ago, and apart from European Air Wars and Sturmovik I haven't yet found any other games of this type that are on a par with MS CFS. I am returning to combat sims now**, and had hoped that the intervening 4 year gap might have thrown up some new top notch games in the WW2 combat sim field, but that appears NOT to be the case !
** being prompted to do so mainly by the arrival of wireless joysticks, being able to use a suitable laptop and my building a house extension that'll take a plasma screen the size of a semi !