Windows 10 was introduced three years ago and Microsoft has been heavily promoting the product ever since. Yet more people with Windows PCs are using Windows 7 (47.3 percent) than Windows 10 (39.3 percent). In fact, Windows 7 actually gained market share in March and April of 2018!
Why can’t people quit Windows 7? Some might still be haunted by the disappointment of Windows 8 and are hesitant to upgrade. Others genuinely like Windows 7 or just prefer to deal with the known quantity rather than learn Windows 10.
Unfortunately, Windows 7 users will soon have no choice but to let go, unless they’re willing to live with the high risk that comes with using an unsupported operating system. Security updates for most, but not all, Windows 7 machines will continue through January 14, 2020. For example, Microsoft has already stopped supporting Windows PCs with older Intel processors.
Since 2012, streaming single instructions multiple data extensions 2 (SSE2) has been a required feature for Intel processors running Windows operating systems. SSE2 makes it possible for computer chipsets to process multimedia in parallel, which boosts performance. However, many users still using PCs with older processors that don’t support SSE2 have been dealing with errors. Microsoft had been working on a fix, but recently announced that these users would have two choices – upgrade to a machine with a processor that supports SSE2 or virtualize those machines.
Also, Microsoft support teams are no longer answering questions about Windows 7 in Microsoft Community forums, and Windows 7 networking updates and security patches have become heavy and cumbersome. Since October 2016, all new patches have included patches from previous months, which has resulted in large, complex updates in the 300MB to 500MB range. That’s a lot of bandwidth.
These developments, combined with the final countdown for Windows 7 support, are a clear indication that Microsoft wants users to move to Windows 10. Now that the writing is on the wall, organizations should be preparing an upgrade strategy.
Microsoft designed Windows 10 with robust security, and software developers have had three years to work out the kinks and address security-related issues. As a result, Windows 10 is superior to Windows 7 in terms of security. Remember the WannaCry ransomware attack that victimized the users of more than 200,000 PCs around the world? Windows 10 PCs weren’t affected. Most victims were Windows 7 users. Also, a recent Webroot study revealed that 63 percent of known malware files in 2017 were found on Windows 7 PCs, compared to just 15 percent for Windows 10 PCs.
Security improvements, along with better performance and the ability to recognize substantially more RAM, should be enough to overcome resistance to change and motivate you to upgrade to Windows 10. And don’t let ghosts of Windows 8 scare you. Windows 10 more closely resembles the Windows 7 experience you know and like.
If you haven’t yet upgraded to Windows 10 or started working on your upgrade strategy, the clock is ticking. As a Microsoft Partner, Verteks has the experience to help you seamlessly upgrade with minimal risk of business disruption. It’s time to make the move to a fully supported, highly secure operating system.