By some accounts, Windows 10, launched 29 July 2015, still has a modest user base relative to the potential capacity. As you can guess, Microsoft has done everything imaginable to get you to switch to Windows 10, say from Windows 7; but apparently this has not worked, based on the number of Windows users that still work from Windows 7. Now, however, Microsoft is saying that the Windows 7 operating system (OS) is outdated, and that, even with patches, it’s not secure enough. That is, you ought to switch to Windows 10.
Of course, Windows 7, the practical predecessor to Windows 10, was launched in 2009, offering much-needed break from the nightmare of Vista. Windows 7 is cleaner than Vista and runs better on the then popular low-power netbooks. In a sense, Windows 7 is reminiscent of the situation with Windows XP, whose support could only end in 2014, almost 13 years after it was launched; because users refused to upgrade to Windows 8, the intended replacement for XP. Windows XP required several support extensions to ensure Microsoft wasn’t leaving too many users behind. Customers didn’t just want to leave XP. As of now, only businesses that have purchased the expensive Customer Support contract for XP from Microsoft still receive support for the OS.
What is the current situation with Windows 7? Well, Windows 7 has Extended Support guaranteed through January 13, 2020 for everyone, after which no more public patches would be developed. However, according to Microsoft, the public patches might not be sufficient to keep Windows 7 safe from hackers.
The assessment of Microsoft is that Windows 7 does not meet the requirements of modern technology or the security requirements of IT departments; with a security model that is deemed to be too dated to handle today’s threats. Waiting for the 2020 official end of support for Windows 7 to move to Windows 10 might result in added costs to you from malware management.
According to Microsoft, Windows 10 is the most secure OS it has ever released, with security features that include biometric login support, application sandboxing, and advanced threat protection via Windows Defender. These features make Windows 10 capable of handling some threats it hasn’t even been specifically patched for yet. To avoid having Windows 7 become XP v2.0 - if this is not already too late - you can imagine Microsoft will be hitting you hard with the narrative that Windows 7 isn’t good anymore.
Cortana, Windows personal digital assistant, is more intelligent in Windows 10. For example, you can launch applications with your voice. Windows Hello greets you by your name and has the capability for barometric authentication, so you can log into your PC without a password. Microsoft Edge, Microsoft’s new browser that replaces Internet Explorer, has been built from the ground up in Windows 10. One interesting feature of Edge is the ability to annotate web pages directly. Thus, you can draw and type notes on web pages, as well as clip sections that interest you into OneNote. Edge is easier to use and has been developed to better support mobile devices, when compared with earlier versions of Windows. It also supports the new Internet standard HTML 5 (Hyper Text Markup Language 5).
Should you heed Microsoft’s suggestion that you move to Windows 10? I would say absolutely, and the sooner the better. Thus, you shouldn’t wait till the 2020 deadline. Oftentimes, disasters don’t warn you before they arrive. So, as they say, Better Safe than Sorry.
Should you update from a previous Windows OS, or get a new machine with Windows 10 preloaded in it? I’ll advise that you get a new desktop or laptop rather than updating in an old computer. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, your device has seen a few years if it not using Windows 10. Second, somehow things always seem to go wrong with major updates. Full backward compatibility, even though promised, is always an issue. There are other issues: inadequate memory to install Windows 10 on your old computer, freeze-ups, incompatible hardware components in your machine, and scores of other error messages during installation that tell you the updating process isn’t working. So, just get a new PC!
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