August 2019 Windows 7 End of Support

This newsletter is particularly aimed at those of you running Windows 7 on your PC’s, though sooner or later those of you running Windows 8 will find themselves in the same boat, so it’s probably worth thinking about it sooner than later, not least because like most people I know, I think getting off of Windows 8 is just a nice thing to do! If you are running Windows Vista, XP or even older versions then you should seriously consider your reasons for doing so – feel free to call me for advice.
If you don’t know which version of Windows you are running, then whilst holding down the Windows key (usually front row on left side) tap the letter E. A window should then come up and in its left panel you should see either This PC or Computer (you might need to scroll down a bit in the left panel to see it). If you right click whichever one that you see and then select Properties from the wee menu you’ll get, then you should see another window with the Windows Edition near the top.

Windows 7 End of Support is coming!

So, to those of you running Windows 7. Some of you may have already noticed the odd message coming up on your screens warning you about the end of support for Windows 7. Some of you will have ignored this message, but you really should be clear as to the implications of this message. What it means is that if you continue to run a Windows 7 PC, connected to the internet, after January the 14th 2020, then there is a good chance that fairly soon after that date you might regret having done so. This is be because security holes are always being found in Windows, and until “End of Support” Microsoft works hard to fill in these holes by constantly releasing updates that should prevent malware from exploiting your PC. When Microsoft stop doing this, then any subsequently found security holes are left there to be exploited. Now, if I was a nasty malware writer, (I’m not!) I would be considering banking any security holes I was aware of and not exploiting them until after this date, knowing that after this point Microsoft will not be working hard to stop me from doing so.

So, what should you do?

Well you could buy a new PC – this might be the excuse you have been looking for. Before you run out and spend though, consider for a moment though what you would do with your current one. Would you give it away to family or friends? Then they would have the problem. Selling it to someone might work but you might well get less than it is worth due it running Windows 7. Or I suppose you could just take what might be a perfectly usable PC (if upgraded to Windows 10) to the tip? If you do think about buying a new one, then factor in whether or not you might need some help in setting it up and transferring stuff from the old one. I’m always happy to help 😊

If your PC is of a suitable specification, then you could consider upgrading to Windows 10. If it is running Windows 7 then there is a good chance that it will cope. This is usually the most cost-effective thing to do. If you want to discuss with me whether or not yours will cope, then feel free to contact me.

You could decide to simply disconnect your computer from the internet – permanently! That will work! If you don’t need to access the internet for anything, then you are very unlikely to catch something from it. I don’t just mean don’t use a browser here. I mean turn of Wireless and/or Disconnect that wire. Oh, and probably best not put in any USB drives that have been connected to other PCs either.

You could choose to ignore warnings like these and keep your fingers crossed whilst keeping a very close eye on your accounts and investments and constantly check your Credit Score to see if there are any worrying unexpected changes. But above all keep those fingers crossed – you may be lucky!

OK that’s it for now, thanks for your time, I am sorry I am always a bit long-winded. Feel free to forward this on to others if you want to and make sure you do those backups folks!
As usual if your PC / Network / Internet / Email / Backup or whatever isn’t running smoothly, my number is below. If you want to ask the odd question or have any suggestions for a topic for another Newsletter or you are finding something particularly frustrating / problematic on the computer front, why not send me an email. I’d be happy to pop over to setup your backup process for you too if you think that might be a good idea.