23% of Windows in Use is Old, Insecure Win7 or XP

Windows 7 and XP are obsolete, but that hasn’t stopped almost a quarter of Windows users using them. It’s a security nightmare waiting to happen.

Friends don’t let friends use insecure Windows. Microsoft’s stopped issuing security patches for those ancient versions, so it’s a bit of a worry.

It’s not 2015 any more, let alone 1605. But it is 11/05. In today’s SB Blogwatch, we’re a vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villain.

Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment. Not to mention: vichyssoise of verbiage.


Remember, Remember

What’s the craic? Mark Anthony Ramirez reports—“It’s time to upgrade Nana’s computer”:

 Although Windows 10’s market share has grown to 64.04% … the 11-year-old Windows 7 operating system still retains a market share of 20.41%. … It is still good enough for second place in overall operating system market share followed by Mac OS X 10.15.

This is a problem, because Microsoft stopped supporting Windows 7, which means the OS will no longer receive crucial security updates. … Fortunately, users can still upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 for free by simply using Microsoft Media Creation Tool.

Windows XP still holds a 0.87% market share. Windows XP is … old enough to vote, having been released on October 25, 2001.

Yikes. Bogdan Popa cuts to the chase—“Windows 10 Sets New Personal Record as Adoption Skyrockets”:

 Windows 7 is now considered an unsupported platform, and it only receives security patches as part of the ESU program released by Microsoft for paying enterprises. Consumers whose devices are still running Windows 7 aren’t getting any new updates.

Where are the numbers from? Surur says simply—“Netmarketshare”:

Netmarketshare has released its market share report for October 2020. The report shows a significant increase in market share of Windows 10 [and] Linux.

This will be the last report from Netmarketshare’s numbers, as the company says they have been struggling with battling bots, which distort the stats, and that changes to browser user agent strings will make it impossible to get accurate data in the future.

O RLY? The company wrings its metaphorical corporate hands—“Important Notice”:

 After 14 years of service and being used as a primary source in tens of thousands of articles and publications, we are retiring NetMarketShare. … October 2020 is the last month of data.

An upcoming change in browsers [to defeat user-agent fingerprinting] will break our device detection technology and will cause inaccuracies for a long period of time. In addition, we have focused on bot detection and removal as a key part of the quality control process.

As time has gone on, it has become increasingly difficult to manage this process. So, instead of accepting increasing levels of inaccuracy, we thought it would be a good time to call it a day.

Just who are these people running Win7? FuegoFuerte is just one of them:

 It was the last version of Windows with a decent UI that didn’t **** me off every time I turned around with stupid notifications I don’t care about (no matter how many times I try to turn them off) and other rubbish.

And Nginx487 is another:

 Windows 7 is objectively the best operating system MS has ever done, the most stable, secure and having the most comfortable user experience. … Windows 10 leaves a rotten smell for every technically educated user.

But what’s the next shoe to drop? Athanasius looks ahead:

 It doesn’t matter if Windows 7 use drops to literally zero. We’ll still have people on now-unsupported releases of Windows 10. … In the end it just means they’re users with unpatched Windows … running against known security issues, and have a high probability of their machine becoming part of a botnet at some point.

Some of the holdouts won’t use Win10 because of “spy telemetry.” But WorldMaker says that’s daft:

 Most of the same telemetry is in Windows 7. … A lot of the telemetry systems were added in Vista or XP. The biggest change was Windows 10 turned on a lot more of it on by default rather than nagging people to join the various “Customer Experience Improvement Programs” and consolidating all those opt-in/opt-out “improvement programs” from a half-dozen different nag dialogs to a single privacy settings panel.

I think it’s very similar what macOS collects and what Windows does these days. … There’s a ton of documentation at this point on everything Windows collects.

Meanwhile, everyone agrees which Windows version was the real enemy—including Camel Pilot:

 Win8 on the other hand was a confusing mess. … I wonder if all those UI designers were micro-dosing something back in those dark days?

And Finally:

It’s November 5th, and V is just this Guy

Previously in And Finally


You have been reading SB Blogwatch by Richi Jennings. Richi curates the best bloggy bits, finest forums, and weirdest websites … so you don’t have to. Hate mail may be directed to @RiCHi or sbbw@richi.uk. Ask your doctor before reading. Your mileage may vary. E&OE. 30.

Image sauce: Cristiano Sabbatini (cc:by-nd)

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Richi Jennings

Richi is a foolish independent industry analyst, editor, writer, and fan of the Oxford comma. He’s previously written or edited for Computerworld, Petri, Microsoft, HP, Cyren, Webroot, Micro Focus, Osterman Research, Ferris Research, NetApp on Forbes and CIO.com. His work has won awards from the American Society of Business Publication Editors, ABM/Jesse H. Neal, and B2B Magazine.

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