Windows VistaWindows Vista was the Marmite of the Windows OS family, it introduced many features that carried on in to Windows 7 which became the adopted and the OS of choice. The quirky features of Vista tried to make it a fun tool with some practical elements. However, it quickly got replaced and in fact it is now three generations old being replaced by Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10. This article explains why it is essential to say goodbye to Windows Vista and move on to Windows 10.

As I write this article, I have received in one week several calls from customers asking “why am I getting, no longer supported messages for Google Chrome and Internet Explorer?” Well the answer is simple, the chances are you are using Windows Vista and software manufacturers are keen to move away from it. As you read consider this, “why am I hanging on to Vista ?” Vista is slow, sluggish a beast sent in to test man’s metal to see if he (or she) could handle the change and with a blink of an eye we were given Windows 7, the most stable and loved OS to date.

To boot, hardware manufacturers will be following suit and ending support for Vista, this means if your printer, scanner, camera, sat-nav, etc. fails and you need to buy a new one, you would have to check that it is supported for use with Vista.

So what are your options?

  • One thing you can do is go back to your original purchase and check to see if you were given a dual load for both Windows Vista and Windows 7, some manufacturers gave away both, which means your PC, laptop or netbook is already compatible to run Windows 7 if you haven’t got a dual load system, you could purchase a Windows 7 upgrade (IF you can find one). However, you are only making a single jump up and will still be two generations behind.
  • Buy a new PC system, this is by far the most sensible option, it saves time and money trying to get a square peg to fit a round hole  struggling to find replacement parts for your old system. There is one caveat, when you upgrade your PC you might have to upgrade your other tech, mainly this would be your printer as the jump from old to new is so significant because of WIFI compatibility and the need to print from iPad’s and other mobile devices.

I know what you are thinking, “Why don’t I just download Windows 10, it’s FREE?“. Well the answer is this, Microsoft have only provided the free upgrade for users of Windows 7 SP3 and upwards, this is because Windows 7 was the more stable release, with the right hardware requirements to take the upgrade. Again I hear those cogs working away and thinking, “OK so if I upgrade my PC to Windows 7, I can get the FREE upgrade to 10?“. Well although we haven’t tried this (to date), I can only go by my previous experience and say unlikely, this is because Microsoft leave a trace to the previous OS version meaning it knows the origins of the source OS making it almost unlikely that this would work, however it has not been tried and tested.

I said this before and so I am going to say it again, “the computing market is like no other (except maybe the car industry); it is constantly growing, changing and evolving. Last time I checked a burger was just a burger and a washing machine was just a washing machine. However the PC market changes and when it does we can embrace and move on, or simply sit back and let it pass us by.”

The key point is Microsoft are ending support Windows Vista SP2 in 11 April 2017 and therefore it makes it difficult for us in the industry to support something that software houses no longer support themselves.

We can supply a new PC, laptop or tablet loaded with Windows 10 and a subscription to Office 365 for home or business, also complete all your data transfers, safely and responsibly wipe and scrap your old unit.

For more on the life cycle of Microsoft Windows please visit http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows/lifecycle

Rob Lucas MSc MBCS

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