Windows 7 Mainstream Support Ends - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Comments
Windows 7 Mainstream Support Ends
Threaded  |  Newest First  |  Oldest First
Curt Franklin
50%
50%
Curt Franklin,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 4:49:28 PM
Out With the Old?
After Windows XP seemed to hang on for ever (and, it must be said, is still visible in many corporate environments), it seems that Microsoft is eager to rush Windows 7 off the stage much more quickly. I suppose it makes sense: The experience the company had with XP indicates that they'll pretty much have to pry enterprise fingers off the Windows 7 keyboards if they ever want to move the entire user community to the Aero interface.

I think it will be interesting to see whether, in the long run, Windows 8 and 8.1 have the sort of longevity that XP and Win 7 have enjoyed, or suffer the fate of Vista and are seldom spoken of after Windows 10 comes to market. I highly suspect that the answer will be closer to the latter than the former.
sferguson10001
50%
50%
sferguson10001,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 4:58:06 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
Curt: I agree with you in every sense. After XP, Windows 7 turned out to be a pretty good OS to work with, especially in my daily routine. I have two machines that run in and it works pretty well. I'm interested to see if Windows 10 offers that same sort of longevity. 
Curt Franklin
100%
0%
Curt Franklin,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 5:22:10 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
I've often said that Windows 7 was what happened when you let Vista bake until fully done. The kernal is superb and stable, the interface usable for anyone who's ever laid hands on any version of Windows, and the security as good as anything on a desktop. All of these turn out to be reasons Microsoft needs for it to go away so they can transition the entire user base to "the next big thing."

As I said, though, I still see Windows XP desktops everywhere. The most recent sighting was on Major Airline gate workstations at LaGuardia. I'm not sure that the entire world will have transitioned to Aero by the time I retire!
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 6:09:16 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Curt- In addition to Windows XP, I think airlines must also be one of the last users of dot matrix printers and paper with those strips down the side with holes ever quarter inch that you have to tear off. Seriously, why in the world, can't airlines invest in printers from the 21st century? I'm not even askign them to go paper free.
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Ninja
1/13/2015 | 8:19:25 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W,

Because they still "work". A shame but the truth in man industries, not just airlines.
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 10:55:52 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W,

Because they still "work". A shame but the truth in man industries, not just airlines.


@pcharles09- I buy that with XP. Not sure I buy it with the dot matrix printer over modern printers. That said, I get what you're saying. Just seems crazy to waste all of that silly paper on the fringes. 
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Ninja
1/22/2015 | 11:49:42 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W,

I agree with the printers, but also XP. I mean not that much changed between XP & Win 7 from a Power User's level. A lot of things are easier. It's MUCH better from an admin standpoint too!
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 10:55:55 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W,

Because they still "work". A shame but the truth in man industries, not just airlines.


@pcharles09- I buy that with XP. Not sure I buy it with the dot matrix printer over modern printers. That said, I get what you're saying. Just seems crazy to waste all of that silly paper on the fringes. 
jastroff
50%
50%
jastroff,
User Rank: Ninja
1/13/2015 | 6:53:42 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Curt -- yes, Windows 7 is Vista fully baked. I still use it, and like it, and will stick with it a while longer. I have enugh other devices running other OSs in this house. Transitioning large IT clients is another story, however.
Brian.Dean
50%
50%
Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
1/14/2015 | 6:11:05 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Curt, as long as business owners and users are fearful of the cost that will be required to upgrade an OS and the surrounding software environment -- older operating systems will continue to be seen. It is sad because often times the businesses or users are losing out on features that can enhance productivity and the software environment might also cost less to replace rather than, risk being trapped in an obsolete system.
Curt Franklin
50%
50%
Curt Franklin,
User Rank: Strategist
1/15/2015 | 3:05:03 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Brian, you're absolutely right about the features businesses are missing by sticking with old operating systems. The things that worry me even more, though, are the security advances that they can't take advantage of. I know that there are companies that have come out with rather kludgy work-arounds for network security involving WIndows XP (and even older systems), but they are inefficient and brittle, at best.
Brian.Dean
50%
50%
Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
1/15/2015 | 4:05:56 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
Great point about security @Curt, I feel that often times it is the small business segment that finds it difficult to appraise the benefits of an upgrade and since, small businesses don't have a specialized security team, this can create great problems because a security lapse can bring a business to a complete stand-still. 
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 5:24:03 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Curt- I would assume this is a mobile play. The sooner Microsoft gets everyone used to working with the new interface, the more likely they'll look at Windows phones. Personally, I've always loved the Windows 8 interface and would buy a Windows phone if there was a better app environment and more powerful phones. I think the quicker they get more people used to it, the more people will feel my way and the rest of the problems will be easier to solve with a bigger user base. 
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Ninja
1/13/2015 | 8:21:28 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W,

Maybe I'm just an old-school IT guy but I can't stand the metro UI. I disable it every chance I get. For me & the people I set it up for. They usually thank me so I guess the metro interface isn't doing it for everybody.
Susan_Nunziata
50%
50%
Susan_Nunziata,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 10:06:54 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@pcharles09: Dave's defnitely in the minority on this one, I think most folks prefer Windows 7. LIke Curt, I'm consistently amazed at how many places are still using XP--it's easy to underestimate how long it takes for new operating systems to become ubiquitious in any enterprise. why do you think it takes so long for enterprises to upgrade?
TerryB
50%
50%
TerryB,
User Rank: Ninja
1/14/2015 | 12:49:07 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Susan, this may add some insight for you. Believe it or not, we just had to install a copy of XP running on some VM software on a Win 7 machine. The engineer needed to use Rockwell software which works with PLC controllers on some of our mfg machines. These PLC's are decades old, so not surprising the software to interface with them has not really been fitted to newer o/s like Win 7. The cost of upgrading these PLC's is in the hundreds of thousands. The machines themselves are 40+ years old.

Life in heavy mfg. Here is another XP use case here. We have HR software called Abra from Best Software (now owned by Sage). It will not install on Win 7. Sage has upgraded version which uses SQL Server and really not that expensive ($5K range). But functionally, it does nothing new to version we have and, even worse, one of modules we use no longer exists. So HR really did not want to change. So I implemented a couple of XP virtual desktops on our TS server to run Abra only. User RDP from their Win 7 desktops to use. No internet or email is done on these virtual XP desktops, so not much of an attack vector.

Other than things like this, there is no reason to still be running XP. If your business so bad you can't upgrade desktops to Win 7, you likely won't be around that long anyway. And if your people are using internet browsing and email on XP, you have a death wish.
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Ninja
1/22/2015 | 11:47:06 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Susan_Nunziata,

1. Fear of change/Having to learn new things

2. $$$
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/13/2015 | 10:48:08 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@pcharles09- Well, that's fine. I'm certainly not going to force people to like what I like. But my general contention is that when you get used to it, it is better. And most people never gave it a chance. I like the live updates of the news and social. I really like the bigger tiles rather than tiny icons. I finding it very intuitive and very good for multitasking and keeping an eye on stuff at work. But to each their own.
Kelly22
50%
50%
Kelly22,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 10:36:51 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
I may also be in the minority here, but I really don't think Windows 8 is that bad if you take the time to get used to it. That said, Microsoft may have jumped the gun by implementing such drastic changes and I don't think Windows 8 provides enough of benefit to justify an enterprise upgrade from Windows 7. It'll be interesting to see the changes that come in Windows 10.
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 11:05:13 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@kelly22- Welcome to the club. :)

Seriously, I really do think 90% of this is resistance to change. Microsoft is making a huge gamble that we need it in whatever form it wants to provide it to us than we need to switch. It is a big gamble but one that I think could pay off in the end.
Kelly22
50%
50%
Kelly22,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 12:20:25 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W, absolutely! The initial resistance to Windows 8 makes me very curious about what's coming in Windows 10... will Microsoft continue to build off the changes in Windows 8 or backtrack to include some older features. Either way, hopefully the new system will be appealing enough to encourage faster adoption.
David Wagner
100%
0%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 12:36:19 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
I'm going to guess some sort of flexible choice concept, but that the "choice" is not as much of a choice as people would like so they have to get used to the thing. But I'd love it if Microsoft burned the ships and said, "this is what Windows looks like now. You'll love it if you give it some time." Complaining about Windows is everyone's favorite passtime unless they are complaining about Facebook. People don't stop using either. 
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 11:06:43 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@kelly22- Welcome to the club. :)

Seriously, I really do think 90% of this is resistance to change. Microsoft is making a huge gamble that we need it in whatever form it wants to provide it to us than we need to switch. It is a big gamble but one that I think could pay off in the end.
Whoopty
50%
50%
Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
1/14/2015 | 12:18:09 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
It did exactly the same thing with Vista though, so it's pretty par for the course. Vista and Windows 7 aren't that different really, but the world was ready for 7 by the time it rolled around. Hardware was more powerful and more capable of dealing with its much higher requirements on resources. Likewise, more people are used to using apps and tabs now than they were when Windows 8 was released. 

I imagine that the number of Xp users that are still around shows how long it will likely be till everyone moves on from 7, but if Microsoft's past is anything to go by, the next OS should be a lot better and may tempt a good number of them to move on. 
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Ninja
1/22/2015 | 11:48:29 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@David W,

The "getting used to it" part is the hardest. Most people just keep telling themselves "Why did they have to change this, now I can't find it...". Then they give up in frustration.
Curt Franklin
50%
50%
Curt Franklin,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 6:23:02 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Dave, you could be entirely right about the mobility play. I agree that the Metro interface is pretty good on a touch-screen device: It's just that it's pretty awful on a machine that uses the traditional mouse and keyboard to navigate.

This is, by the way, one of those areas that shows the vast difference between the customer base of Microsoft and that of Apple: Microsoft knows what enterprise training costs are like and wants a single user experience across every device of any size that is based on the Windows User Interface. Hence, the giant boatload of compromises and contradictions that makes up the Windows 8 experience across different devices.

Apple knows that its users might have only one of their devices. They also know that users owning more than one of their devices are able to devote the time and effort to learning the differences between iOS and MacOS X: What they really care about is back-end data transport and seamless compatibility between the devices. That allows Apple to better optimize the experience for the device display -- something that could vastly increase the cost of ownership for the enterprise that has to bear the total training burden for a workforce using multiple Apple devices.
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/15/2015 | 1:02:29 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Curt- I actually assumed that the reason for the different experiences on iOS were because Apple was never able to make the clunky iOS interface work on MacOS. When iOS first came out it was amazing. Now, to me at least, it looks so out of date and illogical. I keep expecting Apple to come out with a cross platform interface any day now, but it is possible the design team there is plum out of ideas.
Curt Franklin
50%
50%
Curt Franklin,
User Rank: Strategist
1/15/2015 | 3:22:29 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Dave, I think the iOS interface won't work on the desktop systems because they're designed for very different things. The user interface debates remind me a lot of some of the "integrated systems/best of breed components" arguments that have rocked networking, systems engineering, and other tech areas for years. In most ways, it's just a question of where the customer's priorities lie.

I'm one of the people who's entirely happy with two different (but related interfaces). As long as the back-end integration is seamless, let each type of device have the interface that works best. So far, it's a strategy that seems to be working for the folks in Cupertino.
David Wagner
50%
50%
David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
1/15/2015 | 3:24:39 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Curt- I'm tempted to say something silly like "If Steve Jobs were still alive" he'd have solved this. :) I guess what i really need is for someone to hurry up and give me my brain implant computer so I can interact directly with it. I'll probably still complain about the "thought interface." :)
Gary_EL
50%
50%
Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
1/13/2015 | 11:14:06 PM
Re: Out With the Old?
I wonder if, by 2020, there will be a real alternative available for Microsoft operating systems? I do a good portion of my work with Google Docs, and am using my ancient edition of Microsoft Office less and less all the time.
jrehg337
50%
50%
jrehg337,
User Rank: Strategist
1/14/2015 | 9:30:03 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Gary_EL,

I'm with you - I've moved several home systems to Linux and LibreOffice and am planning on doing the same with my Win7 laptop. I can still boot back to Win if I absolutely must use it, but at least at home I have found it almost entirely unnecessary. (And if I change a few habits, I won't need Windows at all.)

But in the work environment, I understand the cost of moving forward is often offset by other company considerations. So far, the Win8 upgrade brings little to the table to justify deploying in an office environment (on the pc platform).

It will be interesting to see what the landscape looks like in 5 years.
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Ninja
1/22/2015 | 11:51:34 AM
Re: Out With the Old?
@Gary_EL,

Google's trying with the Chromebook. The real issue is that many large organizations continue dealing with Microsoft because that's the standard. If any rival can truly make an OS that supports the long list of business applications and satisfies their users, it may work. I honestly don't see it happening. Also, don't forget about those lengthy maintenance contracts as well.
DDURBIN1
50%
50%
DDURBIN1,
User Rank: Ninja
1/14/2015 | 9:44:20 AM
Here's the thing
The problem with Windows 8/8.1, its Microsoft's effort to provide a "consumer" grade OS to complete with iOS and Android but completely missing the mark while disenfranchising the corporate community.  Here's the thing, Windows 7 was the answer all along.  All Win7 needed was some tweaking on the touch function side but Microsoft decided they needed to through the baby out with the bath water.  And now they're making the same mistake with Win7 support.  Unless Windows 10 gives the corporate community some real advantage over Win 7, I see third party Win7 support doing very well.  Here's another thing, if a company abandons the best product they ever made, why should customers stick with such a company?
Gary_EL
50%
50%
Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
1/14/2015 | 12:47:04 PM
Re: Here's the thing
Yes, my backup machine at home is Ubuntu, also. I feel I have to maintain a Windows machine, for now at least. because every once in a while I need to do something that requires it. It will be interesting, as you say, to see what the future brings. Resentment is rising, but I wouldn't call it a groundswell as yet.
Li Tan
50%
50%
Li Tan,
User Rank: Ninja
1/15/2015 | 9:32:54 AM
Re: Here's the thing
For pure development and technical work, you may not need Windows. But for office things, you need to have Windows at lease for the moment. MS Office is available on Mac but many users still feel that Windows is easier to use.
mak63
50%
50%
mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
1/14/2015 | 11:25:33 PM
Windows 10: The Next Chapter
For those of us not invited to the event, there will be a live webcast. The info about it is not disclosed yet. There will more details nearer to the date of the event.

Is anyone exited about this?


2020 State of DevOps Report
2020 State of DevOps Report
Download this report today to learn more about the key tools and technologies being utilized, and how organizations deal with the cultural and process changes that DevOps brings. The report also examines the barriers organizations face, as well as the rewards from DevOps including faster application delivery, higher quality products, and quicker recovery from errors in production.
News
The State of Chatbots: Pandemic Edition
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  9/10/2020
Commentary
Deloitte on Cloud, the Edge, and Enterprise Expectations
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  9/14/2020
Slideshows
Data Science: How the Pandemic Has Affected 10 Popular Jobs
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  9/9/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
IT Automation Transforms Network Management
In this special report we will examine the layers of automation and orchestration in IT operations, and how they can provide high availability and greater scale for modern applications and business demands.
White Papers
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll