It’s been a big week for Microsoft this week. Windows 7 reached its end of life, and the NSA discovered a major flaw in Windows 10, which thankfully has been fixed as part of the software giant’s Patch Tuesday.
Not as exciting, but always interesting, Microsoft has also now released a new Windows 10 build for Insiders on the Fast ring.
It can hardly have escaped your attention that yesterday was the day Microsoft stopped supporting Windows 7.
To make sure anyone who was unaware is alerted to the fact that no more security updates will be available, full-screen warnings are now being displayed. Microsoft had previously advised Windows 7 users that this message would appear, and as of today the company is making good on its promise.
Today, as you’ll know, marks the end of support for Windows 7, and Microsoft is -- predictably -- keen to get as many people as possible to switch to its new operating system.
However, on a day when the software giant has had to issue a fix for a flaw in Windows 10 that the NSA says threatens the foundations on which the Internet operates, there’s something more than a little embarrassing about Microsoft boasting how its new OS "makes you and your organization more productive and secure than ever".
Earlier today we wrote about a major vulnerability affecting Windows 10 and Server 2016 which was uncovered by the NSA who duly reported it to Microsoft.
At the time details on the vulnerability were scarce, but now that Microsoft has issued a fix for it as part of its Patch Tuesday updates, the NSA has revealed its worrying findings.
The US National Security Agency (NSA) has discovered a major flaw in Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016 that could potentially expose users to "significant breaches or surveillance", according to the Washington Post.
In the past, the NSA might have simply weaponized the vulnerability, as it did by creating hacking tool EternalBlue, but this time around the organization instead chose to report the flaw to Microsoft, and a fix is expected to be issued as part of today’s Patch Tuesday updates.
After a decade of service, Windows 7 is, effectively no more. Microsoft no longer supports the operating system for those unwilling to pay for extended service leaving millions of machines vulnerable. Now that Windows 7 is dead, Microsoft may prefer you to invest in a new Surface, but it is cheaper -- much cheaper -- to upgrade to Windows 10.
Microsoft initially made quite a fuss about that fact that while it was possible to upgrade to Windows 10 for free, it was a time-limited offer. Many people rushed to upgrade because they felt the deadline was hanging over them like the sword of Damocles… but it seems that the deadline was not as pressing as Microsoft made out. You might be surprised to learn that more than five years after the launch of Windows 10, it is still possible to upgrade for free. Here's what you need to know.
It may feel as though this date has been a very long time coming, but Windows 7 end of life is finally here. Unless you're a business or enterprise customer willing to pay, there will be no more updates and no more support.
Enterprise content delivery network firm Kollective held a funeral for the elderly operating system. Its research shows that in the US 40 percent of business are still using Windows 7, while in the UK the figure stands at 66 percent. Kollective warns that sticking with Windows 7 is dangerous, and outlines what the hold-outs need to consider.
Which computer is right for you? How much RAM is enough? What ports do you need? Buying a new laptop or desktop can be a hellish series of self-questioning, dilemmas, doubt and confusion. But now Microsoft has a new tool that will help you to home in on the perfect computer.
With the new online tool, Microsoft promises to "help you find a computer that meets your needs". All you need to do is answer a number of questions describing your requirements and intended usage, and you'll be provided with a series of suggestions.
Windows 10 is a very good operating system, but despite Microsoft initially offering it as a free upgrade, many users were reluctant to switch from Windows 7, and it’s easy to understand why. A lot of Windows 10’s big changes -- the Microsoft Store, bundled third-party apps, live tiles in the Start menu, Cortana, Bing integration, and so on -- simply weren't that appealing to users of previous versions of Windows.
Windows 7 still offers everything that most people would want from an OS, but over a decade on from its debut it now looks and feels quite dated compared to its successor, and of course tomorrow it reaches its end of life as well, leaving people little option but to switch. However, if the aging OS had a modern makeover, could it win back many of those people who have moved on to Windows 10 or a Linux alternative? I suspect so. Take a look at this superb modern re-imagining of Windows 7 and make up your own mind.
The end of Microsoft's support for Windows 7 is now just hours away. It should not come as any sort of surprise, as coverage of the end of life for the operating system has been widespread, but there are still plenty of people and businesses using the decade-old OS.
Some are put off by the hassle of upgrading (although it's easy), while others are discouraged by cost (although you can still upgrade to Windows 10 for free). But the ramifications of sticking with Windows 7 could be serious -- so much so that the UK's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has issued a stark warning not to use the operating system for email or banking.
Windows 7 is a great operating system -- there is a reason so many computer users have clung to it. Well, we can also thank the terrible Windows 8 for scaring people from upgrading, I suppose. Windows 8.1 was better, and Windows 10 is actually pretty good, but neither are loved like Windows 7 is.
Sadly, Microsoft is killing Windows 7 for most users -- it reaches end of life status in just two days, on January 14th. After that date, Windows 7 will be unsupported (except for businesses that choose to pay for extended support) -- you'd have to be a fool to continue using that operating system. You should upgrade to Windows 10 ASAP or switch to a Linux-based OS.
Acknowledging 'poor' drivers can break Windows 10, Microsoft tweaks update schedule and gives partners new powers
Updates for Windows 10 proved more than a little problematic last year, but it wasn't just Microsoft's own updates for the operating system that caused issues -- driver updates were often a headache for users too.
A confidential company document has now been published that details how Microsoft plans to deal with the problem. There are two key lines of attack: changing the release schedule for drivers that require Microsoft approval so they do not coincide with Windows updates, and giving hardware partners the option of requesting a block on feature upgrades that cause problems.
Three-hundred-and-sixty-eight in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 on the Microsoft Store in the past seven days.
Microsoft released the first new build of the year 2020 to the Fast Ring channel. Since it is the first build after the Holiday period, it includes mostly bug fixes.
The new Chromium-based Microsoft Edge web browser will be released on January 15, 2020 (a day after support ends for Microsoft's Windows 7 operating system) and Microsoft plans to provide it as an upgrade that will replace the classic version of Edge.
Since the new Edge is based on Chromium, it is clear that some things have changed. You can follow development of the new Edge here on BetaNews or on the official Edge Development blog.