Windows 7 Users; Update Time is Nigh

Microsoft announce EoL 14/01/2020 for Win7

Monday 1st April 2019


It doesn't seem like long ago we finally waved goodbye to Windows XP. It was long overdue, and it is still suprising how many machines are out there in the wild in homes and businesses running XP whilst operating online. Anywho, we're under a year away from Windows 7 support being stopped. By 'support', I mean Microsoft will stop patching holes in the bouncy castle that is Win7, ergo it is time to update if you still use it. By January 14th 2020, no further security updates will be issued for Windows 7.

Usage of the operating system is still huge, estimates come in between 30-40% of web users are using Windows 7 as of the end of 2018. Things haven't gone swimmingly with previous Microsoft attempts to encourage users to upgrade to Windows 10, back in October 2018 Microsoft embarrasingly introduced a bug, where a proportion of updating users found their precious files had been deleted after update.

Users should rest assured now though, the bug seems to have been squashed and Microsoft have been transparent in their blog since October about how they are improving update rollout testing. (If you updated to Windows 10 back in October 2018, please make sure you check Settings > Update & Security > Check for Updates, as early adopters who got the half-baked update, potentially haven't received the patches!)

We highly reccomend getting off Windows 7, like now, now-now. If Windows 7 isn't nagging you already, assuming you have a legit version of Windows (with the key to hand), you can go here to download and run the Windows 10 update tool. Rest assured, if you have to remain on Windows 7 to run old legacy software, the pop-up isn't half as annoying as the first round of Windows 10 upgrade pops were. In fact there is a nice simple Do not remind me again checkbox on the reminder window. Microsoft refer to 14/01/2020 as the End of Life date, (EoL) - security updates are extremely important, you don't want to be using an OS that is no longer supported by the provider, or you will be much more vulnerable to malware and viruses. Aside from security, providers of software will likely also stop supporting Windows 7 come Jan 2020, meaning you won't be able to make use of the latest browsers, games, office applications etc. 

For some of you, it might be time for a new computer enitrely. If this is the case, don't feel you have to go down the Windows route, Google's Chromebook has come on leaps and bounds for the everyday user, and Linux is much more user friendly than it was 10 years ago which can breath new life into old hardware. Whatever you decide, and however annoying you find updates, secure operating systems are a must-have if you rely on the internet for work, education or even entertainment.

By the way, Windows 10 comes with a neat Program Compatability Troubleshooter utility, for those of you with old legacy software that you must have. This won't guarantee to fix everything, but can overcome graphical problems encountered. In absolute worse case scenarios, consider running a Virtual Machine with Windows 7 with no network connection.
 

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