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DeepHour
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10 Jan 2023, 6:46 am

I know from past experience that the subject matter of this thread is not likely to elicit much or indeed any response, but here goes anyway:

Microsoft's excellent Windows 8.1 operating system goes out of support today, and I regard that as a sad development. It's probably the most controversial and misunderstood of systems, largely due to people confusing it with the original Windows 8, which was indeed pretty poor and was withdrawn after just one year.

Win 8.1 was released without a proper 'cascading' type start menu, and this was its undoing. Once users installed the brilliant 'Classic Shell' start system though, everything was transformed, and the system became as straightforward to use as Windows 7, and a good deal more reliable and straightforward than the Windows 10 system that Microsoft rushed into production in 2015, in what was a bit of a panic move, I think.

Anyway, Windows 8.1 has been absolutely superb for me, and for most others who have stuck with it, I believe. I'm going to switch to MX Linux now as my main laptop OS, but run it in a dual booting system with Windows 8.1, the latter with its wifi driver disabled and to be used just for gaming and any other purposes for which Windows utilities are required.

I'm going to give Windows 10 another go on my downstairs desktop machine. I've tried it in the past and could never warm to it, but hopefully it will be able to do a reasonable job.


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10 Jan 2023, 7:03 am

What puzzles me is why oldef systems like windows 95 and 98 are no longer supported? I mean... Can't we use them on the internet? I thought that the internet was supposed to be an universal systrem?
(Maybe I am wrong in what I say and they can be used? I do not know. What does "Supported" mean?)


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DeepHour
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10 Jan 2023, 7:35 am

The 'support' refers to Microsoft's commitment to supplying updates for the system, and also to the commitment of third-party companies to maintaining support for a particular operating system in the development of their products, eg browsers.

Windows 95 and 98 cannot run the modern internet, and browsers like Firefox, Chrome and even Windows Explorer would not run on them. Even on Windows XP most websites won't now run properly or at all, and I suspect Windows 7 is now entering on a similar path of decline.


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11 Jan 2023, 5:00 pm

win8.1 going kinda sucks since it was last decent windows for booting off HDD. I would install it on older laptops and use classic/open shell on it since I didn't like the start menu.
I am using windows 10 ltsc iot for my computer now since i am using VR and modded games so linux isn't really that good for it currently sadly. maybe I'll try WSL again.



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17 Jan 2023, 1:10 pm

I haven't used 8.1 in a loooong time (I upgraded to 10 the second it released back in...2015 I believe?) but I don't remember liking it very much. That said, it's always sad to see an OS being sunset.



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17 Jan 2023, 6:25 pm

Other than Windows 11, Windows 8.1 (and 8 ) are the only modern NT-based versions of Windows I have no experience with. I went from XP to Vista to 7 and then finally to 10.

Wonder how easy it is to set up a VM with 8.1 on it...so I can at least mess around with it a bit to see what it was like.



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17 Jan 2023, 6:32 pm

DeepHour wrote:

I'm going to give Windows 10 another go on my downstairs desktop machine. I've tried it in the past and could never warm to it, but hopefully it will be able to do a reasonable job.


It took me a while to warm up to it. I now have it set to a reasonable excuse for an OS as I tweaked it with OOSU10 which I highly recommend if you have older hardware like me.

Quote:
What is O&O ShutUp10?
O&O ShutUp10 is a free privacy tool that gives you full control over which functions in Windows 10 & 11 you choose to use and how far data gets shared. The power of privacy is right at your fingertips - choose which unwanted functions you wish to deactivate.


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DeepHour
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17 Jan 2023, 9:20 pm

Princess Viola wrote:

Wonder how easy it is to set up a VM with 8.1 on it...so I can at least mess around with it a bit to see what it was like.



It's very straightforward, at least with Virtualbox, provided you can obtain the ISO. I don't know about other virtualization platforms. If you do set up a Win 8.1 system, I'd recommend using Classic Shell on it, otherwise the OS will not do itself justice.


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18 Jan 2023, 3:43 am

DeepHour wrote:
The 'support' refers to Microsoft's commitment to supplying updates for the system, and also to the commitment of third-party companies to maintaining support for a particular operating system in the development of their products, eg browsers.

Windows 95 and 98 cannot run the modern internet, and browsers like Firefox, Chrome and even Windows Explorer would not run on them. Even on Windows XP most websites won't now run properly or at all, and I suspect Windows 7 is now entering on a similar path of decline.


One has to ask where the sales talk went with those who were told their first PC would last ages with its system! That is my gripe about these things and DCC is almost going down a similar route. (Not quite but almost).

I recall a passenger on a train saying back then some 20 years ago how he had paid out £11,000 to get the ultimate computer so he did not need to ever get another... (£11k back then was more like about 18k in dollars in those days). Yet he probably finds it overtaken by some of todays budget end computerized devices.

It does puzzle me why no sooner as they make what they believe to be the next ultimate operating system and they perfect any issues with it, they then go onto start making another! Why? One would be forgiven to think that there was money involved somewhere!

This I think is the main issue because most of the improvements they make the majority of people never need. They just want a simple easy to use system that works.


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15 Feb 2023, 6:48 pm

DeepHour wrote:
The 'support' refers to Microsoft's commitment to supplying updates for the system, and also to the commitment of third-party companies to maintaining support for a particular operating system in the development of their products, eg browsers.

Windows 95 and 98 cannot run the modern internet, and browsers like Firefox, Chrome and even Windows Explorer would not run on them. Even on Windows XP most websites won't now run properly or at all, and I suspect Windows 7 is now entering on a similar path of decline.

I'm still on Win7, no great trouble with the Web yet, but I gather the writing's on the wall. One of the main browsers is dropping support for it. Of course it's always possible to stick to the last browser version that does support it, which will keep working for a while longer, but not forever. And naturally security will get worse and worse. Still, I've often been very late in accepting Firefox updates, and no functionality issues yet, though maybe I've just been lucky. As for security, as long as you keep your data backed up elsewhere, do a regular 3rd-party full system restore, and take a few other precautions I doubt there's much to worry about. Online banking has a ton of tedious security steps.

I suppose I'll get a 2nd-hand Win10 computer fairly soon and whack it into submission. As far as I'm concerned Win7 and the kind of hardware it runs on will probably turn out to be the peak of no-nonsense functionality, and in some ways XP and even Win2000 was more straightforward. But I guess it depends what the user wants to do. I don't like the learning curves of new versions or the expense. Wouldn't be so bad if I was interested in new features, but it goes against the grain when I have to "upgrade" just to keep doing what I was doing quite happily before. No wonder we've got global warming with all that unnecessary waste. Still, old computers still work OK offline with old programs, though when bits of hardware fail it can be hard to replace them.



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16 Feb 2023, 3:55 am

Funnily enough I'm still getting security updates from Microsoft for this operating system, five weeks after the 'end of support' date. One is being installed as I write this post.

I think the large monthly 500 MB updates have gone for good though.


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23 Mar 2023, 11:48 am

So ReactOS probably isn't the best Free option to Windows, but wondering if anyone's tried some of the Windows alternatives like BoxedWine or WineBox. They're using the Wine Windows emulator on Linux or Android x86. I guess any Linux or BSD operating system that can run Wine could be a somewhat decent Windows alternative. Saw a couple of projects that try to keep older versions of Windows going like KernelEx too. It's a nuisance when operating systems go out of support because the newer ones tend to require more resources and don't run as efficiently.



blitzkrieg
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27 Feb 2024, 4:32 pm

Windows 10 isn't so bad with software for a start menu.

I used Start10 from software company Stardock.



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27 Feb 2024, 4:39 pm

I still get updates for 7.


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blitzkrieg
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27 Feb 2024, 4:53 pm

funeralxempire wrote:
I still get updates for 7.


That's weird. Windows 7 updates were supposed to officially end in 2020:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-7-support-ended-on-january-14-2020-b75d4580-2cc7-895a-2c9c-1466d9a53962



funeralxempire
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27 Feb 2024, 5:14 pm

blitzkrieg wrote:
funeralxempire wrote:
I still get updates for 7.


That's weird. Windows 7 updates were supposed to officially end in 2020:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-7-support-ended-on-january-14-2020-b75d4580-2cc7-895a-2c9c-1466d9a53962


Continuing to provide security updates benefits Microsoft so I don't see them ending the security updates.


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