back to article Sure, you can keep Grandpa Windows 7 snug in the old code home – for a price

The Bad News Bus has paid a visit to enterprises still prevaricating over what to do about their fleet of Windows 7 PCs as the end of support inches closer. Figures obtained by veteran Microsoft watcher Mary Jo Foley point to a price that escalates the longer a company holds off on making the jump to pastures new. As Microsoft …

  1. Waseem Alkurdi

    Don't worry 7,

    You'll be always alive, at least to us., in our hearts.

    (After XP and Linux, of course)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Don't worry 7,

      Windows XP is still running fine on several VMs and one physical computer I have. It's not Microsoft support that convinced me, it's Mozilla stopping the development of the Firefox browser that made me move to Windows 7 where I'll still be fine for the next four years to come.

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Don't worry 7,

        My old XP VM, suddenly decided it needed licence authentication every time I span it up for digging out old e-mails\documents & the like.

        Fortunately I have copies of the VM just in case.

        1. Pan_Handle

          Re: Don't worry 7,

          If you don't know how to export emails, and spell the word 'e-mail', you're clearly going to struggle.

          1. DavCrav Silver badge

            Re: Don't worry 7,

            "and spell the word 'e-mail', you're clearly going to struggle."

            I spell it 'e-mail' as well. I think this is more of an indication of your use of English than your use of technology.

        2. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: Don't worry 7,

          & boy was I glad I did keep copies of my old machines, when I needed to dig up a old e-mail tonight from 7 years ago.

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Linux

        Re: Don't worry 7,

        Tax software (updated every year) may make sticking with 7 hard to do, unless it runs OK under Wine. I have not tried this, however.

        Otherwise I have _ZERO_ need to leave windows 7. I don't use it for web surfing, just accounting, taxes, software development, and music production, and occasionally, e-mail, in plain text only, with thunderbird.

        I should, over the next year, do what I can to make a 100% "POSIX" transition possible, even if it means getting a Mac.

        1. W.S.Gosset Bronze badge

          Re: Don't worry 7,

          You're already POSIX: the Windows NT kernel is posix-compliant. That's how Cygwin etc can run.

          1. simpfeld

            Re: Don't worry 7,

            I don't think cygwin uses the POSIX in the NT kernel. They are like the opposite of Wine convert POSIX calls to Win32. The POSIX in most Windows releases is dreadful and not really used and barely worth talking about. Only recent developments with "Linux" on Windows 10 have improved matters.

      3. HelpfulJohn

        Re: Don't worry 7,

        You do know that you can turn off updates to Firefox? Then the WinXP versions will work on WinXP forever. They just won't do newer, clever stuff.

  2. AndrueC Silver badge
    Meh

    My mail server is running Windows 7. At one point several years ago Windows Update broke so I couldn't even keep it up to date. Last year I tried to upgrade it to Windows 10 but after working away for half an hour it failed at the last hurdle. As best I could tell from the log files it was unable to talk to the SSD. Considering at that point it had successfully copied hundreds of megabytes of files onto it and presumably written/updated various configuration files that seemed to make little sense.

    While troubleshooting I tried to update it (in case there was some aspect of Windows 7 it was relying on) and ran the Windows Update fixer. Rather to my surprise when it completed I discovered that the machine could get updates again. So I decided to leave it at that. Maybe some time this year I'll try again. Maybe :)

    I should point out (lest anyone think I'm mad) that this is a personal server :)

    1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

      Hillary Clinton, is that you?

      1. chivo243 Silver badge
        Paris Hilton

        I thought so... It's slick Willy.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge
    3. Mookster
      Paris Hilton

      Half an hour won't satisfy Paris, let-alone M$

      Half an hour won't satisfy Paris, let-alone M$

    4. Kimo

      Could be an incompatible BIOS. Had the same problem with an older laptop that couldn't read the storage after the reboot to first run Win 10. The Win 10 Upgrade Adviser does not check BIOS for compatibility.

  3. Kimo

    Bad news...

    "How much an enterprise actually pays will, of course, also depend on how good their deal makers are."

    Expect both the US and UK governments to end up paying at least twice the listed amount, then.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bad news...

      The way the US is lurching, I'd think threatening to pay the fee out of the general fund would be enough to win bigly.

      1. Waseem Alkurdi

        Re: Bad news...

        Is 'bigly' even a word?

        1. myithingwontcharge

          Re: Bad news...

          It's perfectly cromulent.

          1. Symon Silver badge
            Coat

            Re: Bad news...

            I believe 'bigly' is a proper word. It's embiggen that's cromulent!

            https://www.dictionary.com/browse/bigly

        2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: bigly

          of course it is a word. If El Trumpo says it, it is automatically included in Websters. The OED might take a little longer to bow down and pray to him. {visions of Emperor's new clothes for some reason}

    2. Flywheel Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: Bad news...

      And please add an extra 10% on top that for the poor old NHS.. *sigh*

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: Bad news...

        You think the NHS has actually upgraded to Win7? Pretty sure they run on OS/2 Warp.

  4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Lucky Brits

    How much Brits will pay will depend on numerous things including how big the deal is and the type of volume licensing contract they have

    Also worth noting that if the UK ever leaves the single market, it can't expect to get the same terms as the EU: probably keep the same for the foreseeable future but no guarantee and, sans customs union, huis clos, so to speak.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Lucky Brits

      "Also worth noting that if the UK ever leaves the single market, it can't expect to get the same terms as the EU:"

      The "EU" didn't get terms for XP. Each government or business either accepts the rates MS offer or, if big enough, negotiates a rate. If the "EU" got any kind of deal, it was for the "EU" itself and nothing to do with the various member national governments. The UK leaving the EU, with or without a deal, will have zero effect on the UK.gov negotiations with MS.

  5. JohnFen Silver badge

    Prevaricating?

    "The Bad News Bus has paid a visit to enterprises still prevaricating over what to do about their fleet"

    "Prevaricating" means "lying". Was that the intended meaning here?

    1. Alister Silver badge

      Re: Prevaricating?

      Prevaricating" means "lying"

      Is this a US / UK thing? I understand prevaricate to mean evade or dodge the issue, but not out-and-out lying. I see it used in this manner quite often in British news.

      Are you perhaps thinking that maybe procrastinate is a better fit?

    2. Excellentsword (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Prevaricating?

      "If you prevaricate, you avoid giving a direct answer or making a firm decision." Collins Dictionary.

      1. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: Prevaricating?

        Interesting. I'd never head it used to mean that. And after checking a number of dictionaries, that appears to be a rare use (although, as another commenter mentioned, perhaps this is a US/UK difference -- I'm in the US). Most definitions don't include it, and those that do don't include it as the primary definition. The primary definition is "lying".

        Regardless, thanks for the clarification. I was honestly confused about what that sentence was trying to say (and I had looked up the word before I commented in the first place!)

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Prevaricating?

          "Regardless, thanks for the clarification. I was honestly confused about what that sentence was trying to say (and I had looked up the word before I commented in the first place!)"

          Yes, the English language, as used by Americans started to properly deviate after that little kerfufle in 1776 so quite a number of quaint old fashioned words are still in use in the USA whereas in the UK, the language evolved :-)

      2. TheRealRoland

        Re: Prevaricating?

        Trying to come up with some actual examples. but "How are you doing? Oh, could be worse" is not one of those, i feel.

        R.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Prevaricating?

        You actually meant to say procrastinating, didn't you - and don't prevaricate!

      4. chivo243 Silver badge

        Re: Prevaricating?

        Avoision - Kent Brockman

        1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge

          Re: Prevaricating?

          It's a perfectly cromulent word.

    3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Prevaricating?

      Prevaricating means "beating around the bush" or "dodging the question", but usually with an implicit attempt to delay. I think in US demotic "temporising" is used instead.

      1. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: Prevaricating?

        " in US demotic "temporising" is used instead."

        Maybe. But I am a USian and I don't think I've ever heard the word "temporising".

        1. Waseem Alkurdi

          Re: Prevaricating?

          Temporizing?

          1. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: Prevaricating?

            Heh, that's how I instinctively spelled it when I made my comment, but I corrected it before submitting. Linguistic habits are sneaky.

      2. Fred Dibnah
        Happy

        Re: Prevaricating?

        Wallace, In The Wrong Trousers: "Ah, well, it's no use prevaricating about the bush"

        1. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Prevaricating?

          I thought that line was hilarious because I thought that by "prevaricating" he meant "lying"!

    4. Mookster
      Headmaster

      Re: Prevaricating?

      oh no. It means "putting off" (at least where I come from)

    5. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

      Re: Prevaricating?

      What we've got here is failure to communicate

    6. Grinning Bandicoot

      Re: Prevaricating?

      Its about Pols so lying , equivocating, prevaricating or talking are all the same. The mouth moves and the garden gets more soil amendment.

  6. Woodnag

    "Prevaricating" means "lying"

    No, it doesn't.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

      No, it doesn't.

      some sources would beg to differ.

      1. Mr Benny

        Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

        Thats american dialect, this site speaks proper English.

        1. Dan 55 Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

          Thats american dialect, site speaks proper English.

          Except when it equivocates.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Except when it equivocates

            perhaps you meant "equivalents"? :)

        2. Someone Else Silver badge
          Headmaster

          @ Mr. Benny -- Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

          Thats american dialect, this site speaks proper English.

          And I'm sure it also knows how to properly use the apostrophe and capitalization. Perhaps you could take notes?

          1. Les Matthew
            Joke

            Re: @ Mr. Benny -- "Prevaricating" means "lying"

            "And I'm sure it also knows how to properly use the apostrophe and capitalization. Perhaps you could take notes?"

            Oh ffs, another speling and grammer natsi.

            1. TheRealRoland

              Re: @ Mr. Benny -- "Prevaricating" means "lying"

              Just convert it to Fahrenheit, then it'll all make more sense.

            2. Eddy Ito Silver badge
              Coat

              Re: @ Mr. Benny -- "Prevaricating" means "lying"

              I think you mean "gnatsi".

              The one with the fly S.W.A.T.er in the pocket.

          2. Mr Benny

            Re: @ Mr. Benny -- "Prevaricating" means "lying"

            "And I'm sure it also knows how to properly use the apostrophe and capitalization. Perhaps you could take notes?"

            It probably also knows not to start sentences with conjunctions so perhaps sort out your own grammar before commenting on others writing abilities. Oh, and it's "capitaliSation" in proper English. Now run along, mummy probably has dinner ready for you.

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

        >some sources would beg to differ.

        When in doubt reach for the authoritative dictionaries:

        https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/prevaricate

        https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/prevaricate

        https://chambers.co.uk/search/?query=prevaricate&title=21st

        These agree with the paper (pre-1980) UK Engllish dictionaries on my shelf. I suspect some of the newer online dictionaries probably employed HH2G editors.

        Given the context in the article, it would seem the implication is that businesses with Win7 systems are not giving direct and honest answers to those with a vested interest in Mircosoft products. I suspect some are avoiding giving answers until they have decided which variant of Office they will go with.

    2. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

      Yes, it really does. Perhaps that's not the only meaning (although I was unaware of any other until now), and perhaps it's a regional thing, but where I live, if you say someone is prevaricating then everyone will think that you're calling them a liar.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

        > perhaps it's a regional thing

        Nope avoidance is the standard meaning in British English.

        For current examples, just type 'theresa may prevaricating' into Google.

        1. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

          "Nope avoidance is the standard meaning in British English."

          Yes, I understand that now. This is a meaning that I'd never heard before. My only point is that "prevaricate" does indeed mean "lying" as well -- perhaps only in the US, but it still has that meaning.

          I don't understand the downvotes I got, though. It's easy for me to recognize and and understand that a word I've heard and used to mean one thing my whole life has a different legitimate meaning somewhere else. Why is it so hard for Brits to understand that as well?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

            >Why is it so hard for Brits to understand that as well?

            General lashing out at Johnny Foreigner on the eve of our self-immolation I guess - but there was no down vote from me (the Theresa May quotation AC).

            1. Roland6 Silver badge
              Happy

              Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

              ">Why is it so hard for Brits to understand that as well?

              General lashing out at Johnny Foreigner

              Not at all, just the proud angry self-righteous (English)man speaking:

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_KmYefZRZo&list=PLlALiSDHoqe8O6e3-5uHgEYaQfwnLJzjc&index=40 Enjoy!

          2. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

            Nope. Even in American English.

            https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/prevaricate

            Though in the US, we tend to use idioms such as "dodging the question". The "lying" aspect perhaps comes because Americans get testy about prevarication and keep on until they get a straight answer, forcing the questioned to lie to create an out.

        2. Someone Else Silver badge

          Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

          For current examples, just type 'theresa may prevaricating' into Google.

          As a politician and the leader of a party that calls itself "conservative", I'm sure she lies quite a bit.

        3. earl grey Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

          For current examples, just type 'theresa may prevaricating' into Google.

          So she's lying. What's your point?

        4. david 12 Bronze badge

          Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

          I see that usage is going up again after a long decline. Perhaps the UK meaning reported here (but not in my London published old, small dictionaries) is newly popular?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "Prevaricating" means "lying"

            >Perhaps the UK meaning reported here (but not in my London published old, small dictionaries) is newly popular?

            praevaricator is latin for barrister - hence the nuance/distinction between outright lying and avoiding the truth - literally it means walking a crooked path.

  7. Howard Hanek Bronze badge
    Facepalm

    Redmond

    The ruins of Pompey will be nothing, nothing compared to Redmond soon be buried under several hundred feet of lava. No, I'm not worried about 'license' fees several years from now.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Redmond

      first we have failure or at least disagreement on word usage, and now we have a statement based on total ignorance of the geology of NW Washington, USA where Redmond is. Microsoft, if their campus is built in the right area, could be buried under hundreds of feet of mud if Mt Rainier erupts. Mt. Rainier is a stratocone, which usually erupts explosively, and would melt the giant glaciers on the 14000+ ft (4500+ meter) volcano.

      This melting would mix with the bits and pieces of the exploding volcano, as well as materials dredged up, into massive lahars (mudflows) that would follow channels that are currently river valleys, all the way to the Seattle area and into Puget Sound. While lava sounds more exciting, I think it perfectly fitting that MS be buried under hundreds of feet of nice soft mud (well not so soft since everything from chunks of mountain to trees and structures would be blended in).

      Not that I would wish this event on any area, but we are talking something that will happen sooner or later. However geological time frames can be rather larger than the average humans normally contemplate.

      1. Kimo

        Re: Redmond

        Pompeii itself was not buried under lava, it was a mix of dense ash and sulfuric clouds. Areas close in to Mt Saint Helens suffered a similar fate, except it was mostly trees instead of a city. Portland was covered in a thick layer of ash, which I as a lad was paid what seemed at the time good money to shovel off of parking lots (with minimal breathing protection, it was different times).

        So in short, Redmond could end up like Pompeii, or could end up under mud. Or a major quake from the offshore subduction zone could lead to a mega-tsunami, which is also a bit overdue.

        1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

          Re: Redmond

          Don't worry about the mud, when the Cascadia fault pops off, everything in Washington State will be scrubbed clean.

    2. The Nazz Silver badge

      Re: Redmond

      re the ruins of Pompey

      My word, what's happened to Portsmouth? Other than decades long decline.

      More importantly though, i knew/correctly guessed at what the poster actually meant.

      1. Ledswinger Silver badge

        Re: Redmond

        My word, what's happened to Portsmouth?

        I hear the Tricorn centre has been demolished.

        But as long as you can still get a decent pint in the Still & West, I couldn't care less what happens in the social housing badlands of North End and Hilsea.

    3. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Redmond

      Pompey? sunk into the sea is more likely than burried under volcanic lava.

      Pompey is an island for heavens sake...

      and I'm just a few miles away in Havant at the moment...

      Doh!

      1. Ian Emery Silver badge

        Re: Redmond

        What happened the the widely held belief that Redmond is built directly on top of the Hellmouth??

        1. Kimo

          Re: Redmond

          The Hellmouth is under Issaquah.

      2. error 13

        Re: Redmond

        Probably ought to rename it haven't to appease the grammar police

    4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Redmond

      "The ruins of Pompey will be nothing, nothing compared to Redmond soon be buried under several hundred feet of lava."

      I agree Portsmouth is a bit of a shithole, but comparing it to somewhere being under several hundred feet of lava is a bit much!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Updating to Windows 10

    Like many here, I resisted the forced update of my Win 7 box to Win 10, but realise that when support stops, I may have to (after I've archived anything valuable).

    Thing is, I wonder if Microsoft will re-open the free upgrade route again when Win 7 reaches end of life? Or will they simply say 'screw you suckers, you should have jumped when we pushed!'

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      "realise that when support stops, I may have to"

      Why?

      I can understand that you may want to because it's the path of least resistance, but I don't understand why you'd have to...

      1. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Updating to Windows 10

        Usually because you need to use software for which the only alternative - if it exists - runs on macOS.... for which you'll need new hardware as well.

        Remember an OS exists only to run applications.

        1. Nolveys Silver badge
          Windows

          Re: Updating to Windows 10

          Remember an OS exists only to run applications.

          I don't think Microsoft would agree with that statement.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      Unlikely because if they do then folks who have paid to upgrade since the free offer expired will get very shouty.

      1. morgz84

        Re: Updating to Windows 10

        Free upgrade was still working when I last sid it six months ago. I asaume it still is.

        1. revenant

          Re: Updating to Windows 10

          Ah, so we're still in danger, then.

        2. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: Updating to Windows 10

          It still works on those that have the Win 7 licence key burned into the BIOS on "branded" systems & the key is valid for Win 10 installs, OEM motherboards probably not so much.

          1. Waseem Alkurdi

            Re: Updating to Windows 10

            No, it's nothing to do with this at all.

            If it's a genuine Windows 7 or 8.1 key, whether retail or OEM, it'll upgrade and get a digital entitlement "a key".

            If it's activated using a SLIC table injector (Windows L0d3r, etc) it'll upgrade as well.

            1. Dan 55 Silver badge

              Re: Updating to Windows 10

              Wasn't it true that a key for Win 7 retail gets converted into a key for Win 10 OEM (i.e. locked to the device) though?

              1. Mark Manderson

                Re: Updating to Windows 10

                no.

                1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                  Re: Updating to Windows 10

                  Yes.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @AC - Re: Updating to Windows 10

      I would vote for "screw you suckers" since it is more Microsoft-like.

    4. Martin Summers Silver badge

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      If you use the Windows 10 media creation tool to upgrade your PC it is still working and will happily give you a new digital licence for it that will survive a reinstall from scratch.

    5. martinusher Silver badge

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      I did update one of my machines when the 'free' Windows 10 upgrade came out because I thought it would be useful to get some experience with the new version of Windows. Put simply the term 'upgrade' was a bit of a misnomer. I've struggled with the system, its a dog's breakfast that seriously degraded the performance of the system. Since I missed the window for reverting to Win7 I eventually just started using Linux on it -- obviously I can't use all the latest bells and whistles from Office and OneDrive but as I don't work in marketing I really don't miss them.

      1. Dr. Ellen
        Devil

        Re: Updating to Windows 10

        I have drive docks on my desktop PC. When the windows "update" was free, I cloned my hard drive onto another hard drive, then got Windows 10 on it. I can use either, without them screwing up the guts of the other. I keep them both up-to-date, but hardly ever *use* Win10. I don't know from dogs' breakfasts (I'm a cat person) but Win10 has some similarity to cat urp.

        1. Someone Else Silver badge
          Coffee/keyboard

          @ Dr. Ellen -- Re: Updating to Windows 10

          I don't know from dogs' breakfasts (I'm a cat person) but Win10 has some similarity to cat urp.

          See icon (because 1. that's what that comment made me do and 2. because of its resemblance to cat urp.)

    6. Jim-234

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      If you have your original Windows 7 licence key and are willing to do a fresh install of Win 10 (which is probably all for the best), you won't have any problems currently.

      1. Mookster

        Re: Updating to Windows 10

        Keys are nowadays, in the bios

        1. Waseem Alkurdi

          Re: Updating to Windows 10

          Keys are nowadays, in the bios the SLIC table in ACPI, exposed by the UEFI firmware.

          Fixed.

    7. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      For my uses nowadays I will probably just go over to Mint, it should do everything that I need.

    8. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      > I resisted the forced update of my Win 7 box to Win 10, but realise that when support stops, I may have to

      With the installaton of appropriate software (eg. EMET, non-MS browser eg. Firefox, security suite eg. Kaspersky) and the removal of non-essential packages, it should be good for a couple of years. I suspect come 2022 you will be wanting to replace that pre-2015 box, if it still running, with something a little snapper and quieter.

      Looking at what MS are doing with Win10, I suspect that they will again raise the bar on what processors are supported, so there is a good chance that a modern Win10 build will not install on systems with pre-2015 chipsets. Which is just another reason to go out and buy a shiny new system, and decide whether this is the year to whole heartedly embrace Linux on the desktop or chicken out and keep the workhorse system on Windows and Office...

    9. bissomarc

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      Little known fact, MS never turned off the upgrade servers! In their desperation they will literally accept any and all windows 7 keys both home and pro and activate even on completely different hardware turning into a perpetual "digital entitlement" for the new motherboard (if you were to reinstall on the new system you would not need to input serial again it will detect after reinstalling). Just use the media creation tool to crank out USB media, rip an old OEM sticker off some old junker, install without inputting a key and in the activation menu under "settings" input the serial wait two minutes and voila saved 100$+ on a pro license.

    10. Dave K Silver badge

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      No, they won't open free upgrades again (at least not intentionally). They only did that initially to get a quick boost of Windows 10 users so that their user-based testing would have a sufficient sample size to provide useful test data.

      Now that Windows 10 is the most used Windows version, no need to do this again. You want a new Windows (legally), you'll have to pay.

      Personally, I did use the upgrade option - just to get the license. I promptly restored my machine to Windows 7 once I'd done this. I'll be running Windows 7 until January next year, then will likely be putting an LTSC build of Windows 10 on after this time. OK it doesn't match the Win 10 Pro license I have, but I frankly don't care. I will not allow my machine to be mired in Microsoft's Windows-As-A-Disservice model.

    11. Anonymous Cowerd
      FAIL

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      Win 7 told me that my machine spec was suitable for a free upgrade to Win 10.

      Half an hour later I had to reinstall Win 7 as the Win 10 update bricked the PC.

    12. Mark Manderson

      Re: Updating to Windows 10

      the latter, that ship sailed almost 3 years ago into the sunset.

  9. Captain Scarlet Silver badge
    Linux

    Nans laptop

    Is hardly used these days, like most other users she is now on a cheaper android tablet.

  10. ma1010 Silver badge
    Alert

    It's a lose-lose situation

    On the one hand, you can keep Windows 7 and either keep it off the Internet or worry about no updates/patching, OR you can jump aboard the Windows X Titanic and worry about whether the next update will bork your computer or it it will decide it simply MUST update when you really need it. Thanks, MS, for giving us such sad choices. How about a choice for an OS that actually has been TESTED, you know, like you used to do back when you sold Win 7? I'd happily pay for it! No? Didn't think so.

    The best solution I've managed to come up with was to go to Linux for everything I can do there and keep Win 7 for those few "Windows Only" apps I need. I keep it on a laptop that's never plugged into the Internet, and on my main machine Windows 7 lives in a VM with no Internet access. I'm thinking of adding a Win X VM someday, but an isolated VM is the only place I'd ever want to run Win X.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's a lose-lose situation

      And it's not as if Windows 10 actually offers much that is worth upgrading for anyway. All pain and no gain, as far as I can see.

    2. Martin Howe
      Joke

      Re: It's a lose-lose situation

      "Windows X Titanic" ? Now that's a thought. Imagine Windows 10 running on IA64 ... about as close to the agony of Hell as is possible without actually going there :)

  11. HKmk23

    Happily

    running windows 7 pro on my offline network and expect to until windows 15 or 16 is stable (if ever) or Linux becomes more user friendly.

    1. Dwarf Silver badge

      Re: Happily

      Given that "user friendly" can mean so much to so many people, can you be a bit more precise on what you don't like on Linux and when was the last time you tried it ?

      Consider that there are several user interfaces you can choose between and different apps that provide similar functionality if you find there is one you specifically don't like.

      1. DropBear Silver badge

        Re: Happily

        While I'm not the OP, I fully endorse the sentiment. Linux desktop is absolutely fine for a non-Linux person - assuming they never want to touch anything other than Firefox and LibreOffice and whatever the photo viewer is called these days; one needs zero learning curve for that. For absolutely anything else though, as a non-kernel-developer, you hit a brick wall. And I'm not talking about having to use the CLI, as bas as that already makes things - I could live with that. No. It's just a matter of time until you stumble into something that most definitely doesn't work as it should, it cannot be configured to make it work, and the bug report(s) concerning the problem sit either unanswered for half a decade or straight-up wontfixed. That's assuming there is anyone still in charge of that piece of software at all of course.

        Yeah, Mate is nice - so how does one go about having a "systray" indicator of received mails that isn't either Thunderbird running all the time or a Gmail-only thing? Because "Mail Notification" is deader than dead, broken, and nothing else works. I never had that problem under Windows. Or - how does one enable direct feedback from mic in back to the headphones, a thing that used to be trivial in the Windows XP mixer, still fairly easily doable under Win7 if you know what checkbox to tick, and flat-out impossible under any GUI mixer in any version of Linux I've seen (and just barely doable in alsamixer text-mode, in a sort of semi-accidental glitchy way)...? The official stance seems to be "just listen to the sampled input played straight back into the output" conveniently glossing over the horrible line delay that doesn't exist with the hardware-based mixer loopback.

        And there are hundreds of these paper cuts - I _am_ trying to use Linux and I'm fighting them far, far more than I am actually getting on with what I came to _do_. Invariably, it turns out that the only way to get them to work would be to learn the ins and outs of the software package in question (and all the frameworks it relies on) and code a fix yourself. If you can't do that for whatever reason from "C++ is incompatible with my brain" to "my entire lifespan wouldn't be enough to get all of this working", tough shit. It just won't work. And these are all problems I never had under Windows,,,

      2. HKmk23

        Re: Happily

        It's not the interface so much as the software that will not run, please do not talk about Wine or any V software they are simply too much hassle. So when Linux can run Visio, Smart Diary, Vegas Pro, Supereyes, Drive pro to name just a few ( which I cannot see Ms#@te ever letting happen) I am stuck as I said happily with Win 7 pro. Just for the record Ubuntu seems to be the most user friendly interface although Mint is a close second.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Happily

          And let's not get started on serious gaming. Linux and mainstream PC gaming just don't mesh right now, not even with Valve trying to get developers to jump. Blizzard still uses Windows as the goto platform for its headliners WoW and Overwatch, and Epic's Fortnite is officially supported for Windows only if you stick to PCs.

    2. RLWatkins

      Re: Happily

      Linux running KDE isn't bad. I took a KDE netbook and a big screen on vacation a few years back. Mom, 80, who had Win7 at the time, sat down in front of the screen and just started doing what she needed to do. Not much of a learning curve there.

  12. jelabarre59 Silver badge

    Obligatory silly suggestion

    For all that money they'd be dumping into extended MSWin7 support, they could instead send it to the ReactOS and Wine projects, and get the added benefit of not being chained to the Microsoft upgrade-treadmill.

    Of course, these are the same sorts of enterprises who should have dome that when MSWin XP was nearing it's expiration date, and they were all too cowardly to do it then as well. So presuming they'll continue to open their wallets and bend over for the next round of "installations".

  13. martinusher Silver badge

    Why is Windows monolithic?

    Microsoft have really got their customer base by the balls. Everyone believes that the entire system needs to be 'upgraded' and 'maintained' because they've been trained to think of the system as a monolith. Microsoft has always encouraged this and lots of ostensible computer professionals buy into this even though we all know that an operating environment consists of well defined layers and applications. Its quite possible that Microsoft itself has lost the thread when it comes to structuring code since it would explain why they don't seem to be able to fix one bug without creating another two but in real life all this compatibility stuff is a nonsense. its just poor software design, a design that evolved from kludge to kludge rather than being systematically thought through.

    If I seem a little harsh then its because I've been using MSFT's products since the earliest days so I've been able to track how the code evolved and how early decisions -- or rather, missed opportunities -- have blighted their software design. Obviously nobody gets a design right first time -- you look back over your work and see all the screwups and missteps -- but most of us try to rectify our mistakes as we learn. Microsoft's attitude of sheer arrogance precludes it from learning so anyone who uses it is stuck in a 'maze of twisty passages, all alike'. Fortunately this system is rapidly becoming obsolete -- sure, its got an entrenched base, but then its not the first computer company to prosper off obsolescence even as its business gradually fades away.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

      They make their money from selling licenses.

      To idiots... who don’t care about security.

      They also sell support.

      If the stuff worked, nobody would buy the support.

      Any other questions?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

      I had a conversation with an old friend the other day. We go back 40 odd years. We concluded that prior to MS Windows (3.1?) it would have been inconceivable that one may need to switch off or restart a device to get it working properly again. But as you say, we have been accustomed to continuous updates/upgrades/patches/restarts of just about everything, much due to sloppy coding and poor testing. Now this mentality is starting to infest real hardware devices, like cars too. And soon our Smart Fridges, heating systems and toasters.

      I'm not saying products used to be built better, or solidly, or properly, because there were plenty of crap and poor products throughout history, but in an age where the build quality and inherent reliability of products has never been greater, we are now just trained to acccept poor software and throw away products that never get properly tested/developed before release.

      1. LDS Silver badge

        "it would have been inconceivable that one may need to switch off or restart a device"

        It was a common practice far before Windows.... remember doing that with my first console to play Pong, when it went "crazy", and the reset lever didn't work. Same for my Commodore. My grandfather did it with his electro-mechanical calculator. And probably many people did if well before for a variety of devices. IIRC some airplane manuals have emergency procedures for some system that start by shutting a system off and then trying to restart it.

        When system were not updateable nor upgradable, when they had issue you kept them with the issue, or you had to send them to a repair centre, if the issue was fixable.

        1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

          Re: "it would have been inconceivable that one may need to switch off or restart a device"

          I run a Windows 95 system for compatibility testing and maintenance - it's notable that it boots up as fast as the W10 system but shuts down cleanly way faster. And in general operation, running applications, the 486DX system is not much slower than the W10 i5 boxes.

      2. Persona

        Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

        40 years ago computers normally had reset buttons on the front panel. CP/M and DOS and all the "home" computers that preceded them lacked an O/S capable of pulling execution away from a looping bit of code. Even a PDP 8 had a halt switch.

        1. paulll

          Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

          The Apollo Guidance Computer had a,"master reset," switch...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

      Windows is less monolithic than you think - read a book like "Windows Internals" and you'll understand it, but yes, its subsystems are far better integrated than in Windows, just like macOS is.

      The many recent SNAFUs hint more to lack of proper skills and bad release management than to design issues.

      On the other hand lack of coherence in Linux ensures that developing desktop applications is much more difficult because of distro and GUI fragmentation - hence the 4% market share.

      However, in the Windows market, especially the enterprise one, backward compatibility is an essential feature. Big companies aren't going to upgrade thousands of applications each time they need to upgrade the OS. Another reason probably why Linux is mostly used to run web servers and some databases, and RedHat updates the OS at a glacial pace.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @AC - Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

        To you Windows might not be monolithic but as long as I can't uninstall Windows App store or Cortana or IE etc. (on my own risks and perils) to me it is, no matter what the Windows internals manual says.

        RedHat updates OS at a glacial pace because enterprises are actually requesting it. Fedora is being updated at lightning-fast pace and Gentoo is rolling update so nothing stops them from deploying one of these. You have my down vote.

      2. gerryg

        Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

        "On the other hand lack of coherence in Linux ensures that developing desktop applications is much more difficult because of distro and GUI fragmentation - hence the 4% market share."

        What is this "lack of coherence" you speak of? Hands up anyone who has an application that doesn't run on all flavours. SUSE (so I assume "everyone one else too") have some tool or other that installs applications packaged for e.g., Debian, can be installed without conversion.

        And then there is Steam

        My other half cannot not use Windows because it's the only client that can access her school systems.

        If you are as old as me you will remember not being able to book flights on BA or buy groceries from Tesco unless you were using Internet Explorer on Windows.

        I'm sure the 4% (as much as that?) can be partially explained by that and partially explained by no-one gets paid to offer you alternatives and so on.

        Been on SUSE since 6.3 and KDE since 1.something. All seems fine to me

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

          "And then there is Steam" ……

          It might help to elaborate what you mean with that cryptic comment.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

            Especially since the Linux library on Steam is a pale shadow compared to the Windows library, with almost no headliners.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

              Agreed. It's about 12000 titles to 56000 and a substantially lower percentage of the good ones. I also see from that stats that the Linux user base is prominently Ubuntu. Is this supporting the "lack of coherence" argument?

              1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

                That may have to do with the fact SteamOS (the failed Steam Linux build Valve tried to promote with their Steam Machines) was Ubuntu-based.

      3. paulll

        Re: Why is Windows monolithic?

        In terms of a kernel archicture paradigm Windows is, indeed, not *very*,"monolithic."

        Little while back I had a failed update bork my kde install. I was able to uninstall and reinstall the desktop environment leaving the entire rest of the OS untouched. I would not have been able to do this with Windows; Windows is monolithic.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    WTF?

    So they have replaced W7 with products widely recognised to be inferior and data-slurping (ok the former may be a matter of opinion but surely not the latter); and they can apparently support W7 if we get it under Azure but cannot isue the same patches if we have W7 as standalone? Am I alone in thinking we are being taken for mugs? Why the hell should I buy from a vendor like this?

  15. sdfox7

    No updates for me, or maybe Windows Embedded POSReady7

    I intend to either forgo updates, or use the Windows Embedded POSReady7 updates, much like the Windows XP method that Microsoft "doesn't recommend".

  16. RichardMitnick

    Win 10 is such a disaster that I would rather go bare than go from Win 7 to Win 10.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Meaning if you had no choice but to go to Win10, you'd go, "Stop the computer! I wanna get off!" and give up computing altogether?

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not funny caption

    Unnecessary and cheap joke to use elderly people in the title, caption and picture as a metaphor for earlier Windows operating systems. In particular, the incontinence theme. Rather insensitive, ageist and degrading.

    I'm sure I'll get down votes for this. But those who do downvote should think properly about the content of this article.

    1. Waseem Alkurdi

      Re: Not funny caption

      It was intended as satire, not to ridicule older people. And there's the whole "machinification of man" thing.

      I'm in two hearts on this.

      It, er, feels wrong to me, but at the same time, well, dunno.

      1. Rob Davis

        Re: Not funny caption

        Yes I know it's satire.

        Icon for "you don't say" ?

        But cheap satire.

        Not OK to be racist, sexist. But the elderly - yea that's alright. No - no it's not! It's ageism. A form of discrimination, like racism and sexism.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not funny caption

      As someone who is currently moving an elderly relative to care (today in fact).

      I must admit the caption was a tad amusing.

      But then, I have a black sense of humour.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Not funny caption

        >As someone who is currently moving an elderly relative to care

        That reminds me [ie. I'm going off on a tangent.] there is a real issue with the elderly and IT here.

        I know several elderly people (ie. in their 90's) who continue to use computers but are increasingly adverse to or challenged by change, in part because their short-term recent memory is failing. So maintaining or upgrading these systems becomes problematic. Currently, I'm keeping my elderly relatives on Win7, as based on my experience with XP, it is likely the system will still be able to send and receive email after they lose the ability to use the computer.

        1. Saigua

          Re: Not funny caption

          So what's the plan for nicotinamide riboside and WINE 6.1 then? First sign of missing a nickname 4 times in a row, clinical doses (2800mg, in fruit) then 200 mg a day (early in meals?) and when it releases? Quarterly dose adjustment dependent on whether they've installed AROS or VMS?

          >after they lose the ability to use the computer.

          Shilelagh.device is missing; reinstall?

    3. Flatpackhamster

      Re: Not funny caption

      Any chance of a 'Snowflake' icon for just this sort of post?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fleet

    Just like to point out that you're unlikely to ever come across a 'fleet' of PCs - unless perhaps your put wheels on them or maybe add a sail and float them off somewhere. You can have a PC estate though!

    1. M.V. Lipvig

      Re: Fleet

      A PC station wagon?

  19. BGatez

    Win 10- no thanks

    If I must I will get Enterprise LTSB (about $300 US from MS resellers. No Cortana, No games, No xbox, No ads, No forced machine killing updates, No store, NO BS and 10 years of security patches.

    1. Waseem Alkurdi

      Re: Win 10- no thanks

      And still a heavier footprint than 7.

      I'd go with a Windows 7 PE, with Explorer added, and its WIM applied to a disk for persistence.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Win 10- no thanks

        surprisingly, W10 LTSB ran quite snappy when I installed it on a 10 year old lenovo laptop with 4GB ram. Actually, it opens almost twice as fast as my W7 (tuned) lenovo x220. But then, I heard it's an MS "cheat", some sort of semi-hybrid-sleep mode, which makes it open up that much faster. Well, anyway, I erased it after a couple of days, because I have absolutely no use for W10, the only reason to use it over W7 would be for internet access, safely. Oh well, I can take it offline, and all other W7 computers in my home, and use my linux box for www-orld facing front :)

  20. BGatez

    There is the hope ReactOS will move along (any billionaire angels out there?)

    1. LateAgain

      Just get a virtual network driver going so we can test it as a VM!

      Please.

      1. Waseem Alkurdi

        AFAIK the AMD PCnet chip works natively, out of the box.

        (Source: https://reactos.org/wiki/VirtualBox)

  21. Boohoo4u

    My suggestion

    Update Win7 - > Win10

    After Microsoft kills off the browser Edge, and replaces it with Chromium.

    - Sorry. I’m just trying to light a fire under Microsoft, so they don’t procrastinate.

    - Sorry #2. “Prevaricating" means "lying"

    Used in a sentence: Our politicians are always caught prevaricating. (Works for both sides of the pond.)

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: My suggestion

      "“Prevaricating" means "lying""

      Not necessarily. Don't believe me? Check the sources:

      https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/prevaricate : "Speak or act in an evasive way."

      https://www.vocabulary.com/dictionary/prevaricate : "be deliberately ambiguous or unclear in order to mislead or withhold information"

      To flat out lie means to intentionally speak something false. Prevarication still allows for speaking a truth: just one of no value. It also allows for saying things that are subject to a truth/lie evaluation because they are essentially meaningless. Think half-truths.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Prevaricating; being evasive or lying or both?

    Someone ring Her Maj, it's her language after all !!

    I think her phone number is: +44 - CORGI - 1

  23. arctic_haze Silver badge

    I'm a grandpa and I'm writing the comment on unpatched Win 7

    The chaos caused by unready patches are a much more real problem than the hacker threat.

  24. MJI Silver badge

    Best OS with good WIN32 support?

    Always been a tossup between XP and 7.

    With MS End of Lining Windows and WINE is not quite good enough, where can we go?

    Me staying on 7 as it is the last Windows OS

  25. Ian Emery Silver badge

    My 2 cents worth.

    Cold dead hands etc.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    patches should be free

    If it's a patch, it's to fix a bug that previously existed, therefore goods were not in a reasonable state at point of sale.

    A patch corrects this failing, and isn't an upgrade, therefore it should be free, for everyone. None of this "we've got a patch, but you must pay us bollocks"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: patches should be free

      They could get around that by saying it was fit for purpose at the time of purchase, but things change beyond their control. How do you get around that line of reasoning without them turning it around and challenging you to apply it to everything else and throwing the world into chaos?

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

        Re: patches should be free

        Any patch that offers some sort of upgrade, yeah, but if it's a patch to fix a bug, or even worse, a security patch, I struggle to see how they can claim that without the fix, the original is "fit for purpose". Or to quote the actual legalese:

        From: https://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/regulation/consumer-rights-act

        The rules also include digital content in this definition. So all products - whether physical or digital - must meet the following standards:

        Satisfactory quality Goods shouldn't be faulty or damaged when you receive them. You should ask what a reasonable person would consider satisfactory for the goods in question. For example, bargain-bucket products won’t be held to as high standards as luxury goods.

        Fit for purpose The goods should be fit for the purpose they are supplied for, as well as any specific purpose you made known to the retailer before you agreed to buy the goods.

        As described The goods supplied must match any description given to you, or any models or samples shown to you at the time of purchase.

        I'd say that if there is a bug or security fix, that would mean "good are faulty or damaged when you receive them". You'd probably be able to argue the software wasn't "as described" too, but IANAL etc.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: patches should be free

          They can claim the bug was the result of the outside environment changing, meaning they can claim it was fit for purpose at the time but expectations changed, and no one can be expected to be psychic.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh great, that's a lot of chip foundry gear stuffed.

    On a personal note its several machines that can't be win10'd stuffed, but professionally a lot of the kit in chip manufacturers clean rooms is running on win7, and the equipment manufacturers won't even try to make it win10 compatible...

  28. Grinning Bandicoot

    A possible shot at MS

    Roland 7 comments about the difficulty with the elderly of failing memory having to learn new operating system; hence, it might be argued that if a US court can rule the non usability by a blind person is a violation of disability laws and regulation. Then a conclusion that such removal of support is discrimination against elderly can be made and constitutes ageism; also it appears to discriminate against the poor - more discrimination. OK legal types here's a chance for a broadside at MS.

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