Question How to keep computer secure when Win7 updates stop

1992xx

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Sep 17, 2016
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I really like Windows 7 and despite trying Windows 10 and various Linux distributions, I keep coming back to it. However, with Windows 7 security updates due to stop next year, I'm beginning to plan.

What I would like is Windows 7 not connected to the internet (apart from temporarily to update software, etc.), but be able to use the internet on the same computer. For example, I could have another OS on an HD partition / USB, and I've come across people mentioning Virtual Box and Whonix. I ideally would like to isolate the partition with Windows 7 on to keep it secure. Please could you let me know any ideas for achieving this goal. Thanks.
 
Granted, WIn10 has a quick search bar area (hardly a negative, since you can quickly find/launch almost anything from it!), and a different Start icon, and the layout of start is a tad different, but, as most folks have shortcuts for the things they like (either on desktop or on taskbar), I just don't understand a die-hard preference to Win7 anymore....(I thought WIn10 sucked the first few months, but, that was in earlier Beta, at bit over 3 years ago..)

Once you get the desktop and shortcuts setup, once can barely tell WIn7 from WIn10, other than the latter's search bar....(it's Win8 that completely sucked!)
 

1992xx

Commendable
Sep 17, 2016
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Hey guys, thanks for the replies. I have indeed wondered if I may just risk it as I don't access shady websites (and have never had a virus), but I'd quite like a more secure, permanent solution, and multiple OS's would seem to fit the bill.

Windows 10 is okay (and I've been using it for three years), but I don't like, for example, multiple points of admin (rather than the simple Control Panel), telemetry, Cortana, lots of Windows software that installs automatically during updates, updates shutting down computer unexpectedly, Start menu without pinned programs and no links to libraries, the photos app using huge CPU.
 
Mar 14, 2019
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Don't click shady links or visit shady sites.
Even with proper security training and proper lock down system and little to no internet search you still deal with problems that is that old computers will die. You cannot get a new computer in a computer store or on the internet with windows 7. Even refurbished computers and used computers are drying up now.

What the OP may be should do, if he does not like Linux is use windows 10 for Photoshop, Adobe software , playing games and software and such and just use Linux for internet and email. And windows 10 not hooked up to the internet.

If he is some one that likes playing games and must use proprietary software and such like Adobe software or so on, use windows 10 and use Linux or Mac for email or internet use only.
 
You can pay MS for updates to windows 7 - but it costs a lot of money. They just aren't supporting it for FREE anymore - that's all.
So what made you go from XP to 7? Surely XP was better than 7 :)

But if you don't game you don't need 10 I guess, but also if you have old hardware, windows 7 will work - just not with new hardware as it isn't supported.
Also in win 10 you can do everything you said by just playing around with settings and can turn all the stuff off what you don't like with other programs, such as ANTISPY by Ashampoo as an example.
To make windows 7 secure, just don't use the internet - as you said you only need it to update programs, but what programs do you need to update? There isn't much that needs updating.

Personally, I was a bit reluctant to use windows 10 at the start, so I used a dual boot system, then I realised I spent more time in windows 10 because it was just better than windows 7.
 

Jack Skell

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Sep 14, 2016
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I am keeping my Windows 7 system for gaming. I have already moved everything else to my MacBook.

Even before security updates end, I am tightening up my network security. For instance, the machine is on its own subnet, so it cannot see any other devices on my LAN. I am in the process of putting my lan behind a pi-hole. I plan on imaging a clean install/fully patched machine so I restore it in the event I get torched.
 
Is there a game that works on Win 7 that will not work for Win 10?

Everything Intel beyond 6th gen was/is officially unsupported in Win7. so, if you are fine with a 6700K forever (admittedly it does fine now), that might be an option. But, eventually Battlefield VI and VII will arrive, need 8 cores and/or 16 threads, etc....

I liked WIn7 too, and, admittedly, did not like 'change'...

But, other than the nice searchbar right beside the slightly different Start button....what's the difference?? (Even if you knew exactly how to get to Device Manager before, or Admin/storage, etc, you can type a few characters in search and get to it quickly, or, pin it right to the taskbar anyway (I have "This PC", i.e., Win10's version of "My computer", Device Mngr, Cmd Prompt, and HyperV Mngr on taskbar....with all commonly used things having shortcuts on desktop.....)

I just don't understand the attraction to keeping Win7....at all; beyond being resistant to any desktop appearance changes at all, I mean....but, 10 minutes of setting up shortcuts, and, you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference...other than the wallpaper. And even that can be 'retro' if so inclined...(I used/preferred medium Aqua blue/green since the WIndows 2000 Professional days!)
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
I just don't understand the attraction to keeping Win7....at all; beyond being resistant to any desktop appearance changes at all, I mean....but, 10 minutes of setting up shortcuts, and, you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference...other than the wallpaper. And even that can be 'retro' if so inclined...(I used/preferred medium Aqua blue/green since the WIndows 2000 Professional days!)
Exactly.
I don't use the OS. I use applications. And they all look pretty much the same.

"Oh no! A certain OS configuration setting is in a different place! Whatever shall I do?"
Just like you spend 10 minutes in learning the controls for a new game or application, Win 10 is no different. The same stuff exists...it may just be a different clicky to get there.
 

remixislandmusic

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Jan 1, 2018
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Well, I actually have been using windows 10 for a long time after upgrading from a windows 8 machine and it isn't half bad. I would actually rather run windows 10 over 7 since I have grown accustomed to Windows 10.
Here is a good program I like to use on all of my windows installs:
https://github.com/Sycnex/Windows10Debloater
I also run Classic Shell on my pc. This software can replace your start menu and start button to bring back the functionality of Windows 7.

Windows 10 debloater has options for completely removing Cortona, disabling one drive, Removing telemetry, unpin all start menu tiles, and remove a lot of useless apps like "Bing Weather" that nobody uses. This uses PowerShell, but it has an optional GUI.

I have a low-end Celeron notebook and quick use of that program and killing windows defender from the registry, my idle CPU usage was under 20% down from 60-80% continuous spikes, and windows felt a little quicker. That laptop only has 2gb of ram so it still has 60% idle ram usage which a downgrade to windows 7 or vista wouldn't fix, even if they actually ran on that laptop.

You won't see as much change on a nicer system where the windows processes don't use many resources, but I did see an idle CPU usage drop by about 5-10% with my Ryzen 3 and ram usage dropped a bit. Using this and a few registry hacks to remove all windows antivirus, windows boots installed on my ssd boots a few seconds faster. This also fixes some security issues caused by Microsofts telemetry spyware.
 
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