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Tech News Why Windows 7 Has A New Monthly Charge

TheHarperdragon

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Gordon Kelly, Senior Contributor @ Consumer Tech
Using Windows 7 was meant to be free, but shortly after announcing new monthly charges for Windows 10, Microsoft confirmed it would also be introducing monthly fees for Windows 7 and “the price will increase each year”. Understandably, there has been a lot of anger so let’s look at why has Microsoft done this, who it affects and what the future looks like for Windows 7 users...

News of the monthly fees was quietly announced near the bottom of a September 6th Microsoft blog post called “Helping customers shift to a modern desktop”. While the title may grate, look closely and there is actually one crumb of comfort.

The Bad News

Let’s get this out the way first: the blog post confirmed Microsoft is ending all support for Windows 7 on January 14th, 2020. Yes, that’s just 15 months away and it includes security updates, therefore opening the floodgates to hackers and rendering the operating system effectively useless.

Unless you pay.

As Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President for Office and Windows Marketing, explained: “[T]oday we are announcing that we will offer paid Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU) through January 2023. The Windows 7 ESU will be sold on a per-device basis and the price will increase each year.”

No pricing details were revealed (I suspect it’s a lot) and Spataro confirmed these would only be offered to customers running Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Enterprise in Volume Licensing - aka large businesses. Consequently this excludes the vast majority of Windows 7 users, as the operating system still runs on almost 40% of computers worldwide (source).

For comparison, Microsoft supported Windows XP for 13 years (2001 to 2014) while Windows 7 will have been supported for just over 10 years (October 2009 to January 2020).

The Good News

In a word: transparency.

With Windows XP, Microsoft backtracked and pushed out updates after support officially ended. It also allowed users to perform a simple hack to continue updates until April 2019. Meanwhile, Microsoft offered bespoke deals behind closed doors to major companies for ongoing support.

But with Windows 7, there’s a hard line. Microsoft has been clear companies who are large enough to be part of its Volume Licensing program can pay for ongoing support, and it has been clear everyday users will have to look elsewhere. In other words: Windows 10.

It may be tough love (you’d think it was good business to keep such a popular OS going given hundreds of millions of Windows 7 users will run other Microsoft programs), but at least Microsoft isn’t drawing a line in the sand and then continually redrawing it as it did with Windows XP. There’s nothing worse than false hope.

New Microsoft, New Windows

Understandably, many Windows 7 users will be reluctant to jump to Windows 10. After all, they declined the opportunity when Windows 10 was free and there’s a lot less control on that platform than previous editions. So it seems unlikely the current starting price of $139 for an online download will appeal.

Note: free upgrades ended July 29th 2016. Some users have told me they have still been able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free with their Windows 7 keys, but this has not worked for me. The official stance from Microsoft is no more free upgrades.

For those steadfastly against Windows 10, a smart sideways move could be to Windows 8. The platform improved greatly with age and although Microsoft stopped sales in 2016, new copies can still be found online for minimal outlay and support runs until January 10th, 2023.

But ultimately, this is just another temporary escape and we have to accept Microsoft is a very different company now to the one which launched Windows XP, 7 and 8. It no longer describes Windows as a platform, but rather “as a service” and services come with fees.

Something Microsoft is now showing will apply to every version of Windows, new and old…
 

anthony131374

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I'M NOT WORRIED OR CONCERNED ABOUT THIS CAUSE I KNOW "TEAMOS" WILL COME UP WITH A SOLUTION TO WORK AROUND / THROUGH THE ADVERSITY MICROSOFT IS GOING TO IMPLEMENT. I WILL FAITHFULLY BE ON STANDBY WITH YOURS GUY'S RESOLVE...THANK YOU TEAMOS FOR ALL YOU DO!
 

The_Fighter

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IMHO - it is not a big deal - one can still use windows 7 without new updates - just use newest antimalware and antivirus software - you should be ok.
WinXP would be still OK but it isn't because many software firms are using new (technologies-software) which aren't compatible with XP.
The problem is - most of the people from so called third world countries can't afford new machines.... Linux is the answer - but people wanna play - use windows.
Older people don't know anything about Windows or Linux - they have ancient "RIG-s" - I install Linux and they are satisfied - they only need browser, (skype), solitaire... etc. - nothing special

I'm sorry - i can't edit - stick with your favorite OS until you can't do things you were doing before. Just use older (working) versions of software - you don't have to have Photoshop 2019 - you can do your magic with version 2018...
- If you are making some money out of the software you are using - it would be ok to pay for it - IMHO - only if you have earned enough to cover your costs and then pay for the soft!
 

Dark Wolf

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I don't see this as a very big deal. It's only natural that Microsoft does this, after all.... you don't want to be running an old OS forever, do you?
Both of my laptops are running the latest windows 10, and only my file/media server is running Windows 7. That's as far as it can be upgraded, unfortunately.
Before the year is out, I guess I'll look into another Linux distro for it. :)
 

xterminator21

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for that matter.. i am giving my big thanks to nthis forum. and team os.. beacause they giving us any kind of solutions...
 

MikMag

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I'm using Linux and I'm not worried what greedy microsoft is going to charge. Hehe.
 
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