From speaking with our users, Windows 7 seems to be a fan favourite when it comes to Windows’ operating systems. Many of our Windows users have either Windows 10 or 7, with Windows 8 and 8.1 being the least popular.
If you are not sure which version of Windows you are currently using, check out our post here to find out.
Recently, a reader left a comment on our article asking, “…once Microsoft is not doing Windows updates how safe is my computer going to be? Yes, I still have Windows 7.” Since many of our customers are in this boat we want to address the question – Will Windows 7 continue to be a safe choice?
FixMeTip: Your FixMeStick will continue to work on Windows 7 computers, even when Microsoft stops supporting it!
When does support stop?
Microsoft already ended mainstream support for Windows 7 on January 13, 2015. However, they recently announced that on January 14, 2020, they will “no longer provide security updates or support for PCs running Windows 7.”
This means even if any security issues are found in the Windows 7 software, Microsoft will not fix these security issues for individual users. Large companies, however, can still receive security fixes but at higher prices.
Can I still use my computer?
Yes, your computer will still turn on and you’ll still be able to use your programs and surf the Internet. However, applications such as Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox will eventually also stop supporting Windows 7. Microsoft Edge already doesn’t work on Windows 7.
Additionally, you might experience hardware issues, such as wireless keyboards and mice not pairing properly with your Windows 7 computer. Or new drivers to connect speakers or printers might not work properly. Other programs like your antivirus will likely stop support Windows 7 too.
What steps should I take?
Without the latest browsers such as Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome, you will be exposed to many threats while surfing online. In fact, Internet Explorer is one of the worst browsers when it comes to online security. Your antivirus might also stop supporting Windows 7. So what do you do?
Try StartMeStick! The StartMeStick turns any computer into a fast, secure, and private one. Simply plug it in and reboot your computer to an operating system on the stick and you will be private and secure!
Everything you do online you can do with the StartMeStick, e.g. social networks, search, email, video, music, games, business apps, etc. Pull it out and your computer goes back to the way it was. It is like brand new every time you use it. Learn more here.
Also make sure to up your FixMeStick usage on those Windows 7’s for an extra layer of protection. Try running it weekly instead of just once a month. This way even if your antivirus and operating system aren’t protected you’ll have peace-of-mind knowing your computer is clean of viruses. Want to try it? Click here.
Should I Upgrade to Windows 10?
Obviously, one of your options is to upgrade to a later version of Windows that is still supported like 8, 8.1 or 10. Microsoft offered their customers a free Windows 10 upgrade back in 2016, but this offer is no longer available.
Today, the cost to get the full version of the Windows 10 software is over $100 for a single computer license. You can also purchase a brand new computer that comes with the Windows 10 software. But keep in mind this will cost at least $500 or more and is less environmentally friendly.
Researchers at the United Nations University report that since 2000, e-waste amounts have grown from 20 million to 50 million tonnes per year in 2019. They forecast the amount of e-waste will more than double by 2050, to reach approximately 111 million tonnes per year. Use a StartMeStick to eliminate the need to replace computers when they slow down or stop receiving security updates.
Does this happen with Apple?
Windows is actually more transparent in this process, they let consumers know end-of-support dates well in advance of phasing out software.
However, with Apple, it’s more of a guessing game. Remember when they used to name it’s operating systems after big cats? Well, you didn’t receive a notification but security updates for Version 10.8 Mountain Lion are far gone.
Now, Apple names newer operating system versions after California’s scenic landscapes. The pattern Mac watchers have noticed is that Apple supports security updates for three operating systems at a time– which now means Sierra, High Sierra, and Mojave.
Most recently Apple has stopped releasing security updates for El Capitan. On the Apple Security Release page, the only place Apple publishes their security updates, you can see El Capitan was last patched in June 2018.
Again, this is where it becomes super important to run regular FixMeStick scans — even if you think your computer is clean. Do you really want to risk it?
Know someone with Windows 7? Share this article with them to keep them informed! Upgraded to Windows 10? Check out these Windows 10 tips.