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What are your plans when Windows 7 support ends?

How about a discussion on what to do ahead of the Windows 7 end-of-life that is coming next year? What are readers doing or suggesting to get ready or to make changes in their systems? I have 2 Win 7 Home computers that I would love to keep and have been looking for safe ways to do that - along with other alternatives if I need to think about replacing them such as Linux, Apple, or even not using an administrator account - just a regular account - so that a possible hacker or malware can't install anything without permission.

I've searched the forums but haven't found a discussion on that topic, so it would be great to get one started now - while there is still a lot of time to plan. Thank you.

--Submitted by Irene

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What difference does it make where the money is coming from?

Whether it comes from the end users themselves or from advertising and spying, it is still money. They are there to make money, and that is the bottom line. And by the way, Windows 10 is not available for free anymore unless you are intellectually disabled. I don't even know that the one exception is even available anymore.

The truth is that Microsoft is playing games with us because they believe they can. Those "updates" and "upgrades" are not just security-based. I can guarantee that they contain a lot of "features" that the end user never sees, like ways to get into your personal files and see what is there and more ways to push ads on us.

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The money always matters because it is ultimately the "consumer" who pays for it all. Even if you don't look at advertisements, the consumer pays for it when they buy the products, even in a brick and mortar store. And, yes, MS has gone the business model way of Google and everyone else making money while appearing to give away a service for free. It's just people need to "connect the dots". Updates are documented on the Microsoft Update catalog website. We know that the two semi-annual updates are feature updates because they have replaced new versions of Windows.. The "free" upgrade to Win 10 was obviously not really free. It was just a change to an advertising model that, as I said, is ultimately paid for by the consumer, both in terms of privacy and actual money when they go off and buy anything. Just like old broadcast TV. Even if you ran off to the bathroom during commercial break, the money you pay for goods includes payment towards the commercials you didn't even watch.

I go into this when there was a proposal to use Google Docs for a project at work and, me being the security guy, looked at Googles policies (similar to MS policies now) and found they were not suitable for governed data like CJIS and HIPAA (criminal and medical records). But I followed the Google policy changes when they first said that "your data is owned by us". Wasn't too long after that when they changed to "we don't own your data, but you have to give us a license to do anything we want with it". So, now every website or product that has anything to do with advertising is that way. My view: all about the money. Even if you think it is all "FREE"; it's not really. So, you are correct in saying that it doesn't matter where the money comes from. It comes from all of us in the end anyway.

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