/ What to do about Windows 7

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HB1 09 Jan 2020

I know little about such things. Do I just buy a new laptop (any suggestions as to what would be a good buy around the £500 mark) and is it simple (for a simpleton like me it has to be) to transfer data? All advice welcomed!

Post edited at 17:16
Angrypenguin 09 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

You may be able to upgrade your old one but it may well be a bit slow - some things have moved on substantially (fast SSD hard disks particularly) in the last 5 years. It depends on what your old one is but likely yes - a new laptop is a good simple way to do it.

£500 is a reasonable budget. If you are not a keen computer person I would recommend buying from a high street shop as returns/repair/support are easier that way in case it is needed. PCWorld/Currys are good, but shop around, John Lewis tend a little more expensive but have good warranties, you may have a local PC shop etc.

Yes - moving the data is mostly pretty easy. A USB drive of some description is an easy way. 

To provide more specific advice we would need to know a little more about your usage case/requirements but something like this: https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/computing/laptops/laptops/hp-pavilion-14-ce3501sa-14-laptop-intel-core-i5-512-gb-ssd-silver-10198859-pdt.html would be a good all rounder.

Post edited at 17:26
wercat 09 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

Our Dell optiplex 780 has had windows 7 replaced by Ubuntu 18.0.4

Spreadsheets from it seem to function perfectly well and print properly from Libre Office and it is pretty lively compared to its Windows persona.  Even tiny Asus eeepc 701 netbooks from many years ago (2007) are good enough on Debian to use for Bayern 1 for my wife to listen to or the Hack Green WebSDR.

One less dependency on Microsoft and TRUMPUS.  The initial installation of Ubunto 16 and following upgrade of the Dell  to 18 took only an hour or two, unlike the win 7 to win 10 which took 12 hours on one of our machines.  You can see the events happening on the console unlike Microsoft just sitting there and hanging apparently dead

Post edited at 17:47
1
Jack B 09 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

I've moved a couple of older (2010 and 2011, but high spec at the time) laptops over from Windows 7 to Windows 10 successfully. Took several hours per machine, but didn't cost anything.  Both machines run fine for day-to-day browsing, emailing, word processing and watching films at the resolution of the internal screen. No good for high resolution video or for gaming though.

Post edited at 17:43
Jack B 09 Jan 2020
In reply to Jack B:

I should probably add that both laptops also had upgrades to SSDs (about £40 these days) some time previously, they'd be usable but annoying if they hadn't.

Lankyman 09 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

I'm not a tech savvy person - a lot of the advice in the responses so far is incomprehensible to me. I bought a second hand laptop from Cex in Lancaster for about £200. It's an Acer something or other and has Windows 10 and it's black. Seems to be OK.

2
profitofdoom 09 Jan 2020
In reply to Jack B:

> I've moved a couple of older (2010 and 2011, but high spec at the time) laptops over from Windows 7 to Windows 10 successfully. Took several hours per machine, but didn't cost anything....

I took my oldish* Dell Inspiron 3520 laptop to a computer repair store. They moved it over from Windows 7 to Windows 10 perfectly. They charged me 40 quid (and that included a full 'health check' whatever that is)

8 years old

Post edited at 20:05
captain paranoia 09 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

One option is to do nothing. Windows 7 won't suddenly stop working.

You will have to assess the risk that some future vulnerability will go unpatched.

1
MJAngry 09 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

You can still upgrade to win 10 from win 7 for free. 

The licence key is valid. 

kaiser 09 Jan 2020
In reply to MJAngry:

> You can still upgrade to win 10 from win 7 for free. 

> The licence key is valid. 

^ this.  And you may find your machine is a bit faster using W10.  

The Lemming 09 Jan 2020
In reply to MJAngry:

> You can still upgrade to win 10 from win 7 for free. 

> The licence key is valid. 


Yep. I helped somebody do it this weekend. Still works, so why not give it a try.

If it fails then install Linux. You may get another year or two out of your laptop.

Sadly my 11 year old laptop is now only good for surfing the web. its had a very productive life starting out with Vista, then Window's 7, then Window's 10. Sadly there were a few Driver problems so I ditched Windows 10 for Linux. I've maxed it out on RAM and put in an SSD but its simply not powerful enough for anything productive beyond writing documents and surfing porn.

Darren Jackson 09 Jan 2020
nikoid 10 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

I'm like you in terms of limited computer knowledge. My wife was getting in a flap about windows 7 support ending so because our computer was quite old we decided to get a new one. (Anything for a quiet life!). I got a computer man round to set it up and I'm glad I did as there were a few things that would have flummoxed me. I'm sure I could have sorted things out eventually but it would have done me nut in. Incidentally one of my friends still uses XP without problems but how wise this is I don't know.

Post edited at 08:21
HB1 10 Jan 2020
In reply to Lankyman:

Thanks. You're about at the stage I am in understanding tech! In fact I'm such a numptie that I gave you 2 dislikes by mistake. Sorry!

HB1 10 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

Many thanks for all your replies and helpful advice. I'm thinking that I might go for an upgrade to W10 and an SSD Cheaper than a new laptop that just sits on the desk anyway!

Darron 10 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

You’re depressing me now Rich😟. I used to be on 10 but found it too much hassle (particular probs with updates) so moved back to simple, reliable, no whistle and bangs 7 about 2 years ago. Please someone tell me I don’t have to go back to 10! Why do you need a new pc/laptop just for a software change anyways? Clearly I’m missing something?

Jamie Wakeham 10 Jan 2020
In reply to Darron:

You probably don't need a new laptop/PC. See my recent thread: I've just put Windows 10 on a really quite underpowered (1.3GHz dual core) 10-year-old laptop, and it's doing ok.  Sure it's slow compared to my big PC but it's capable enough for simple tasks, which will do the job for 90% of users.

You do need enough RAM - 4GB is probably a sensible minimum. Upgrading the HDD to SSD will make an enormous difference, and these days costs very little. 

Try renovating the old one before you commit to buying a new one! Might be worth trying a fresh 'clean' install of Win10 rather than following the 7->10 upgrade path?

Post edited at 12:22
cb294 10 Jan 2020
In reply to wercat:

Bayern 1, WHY OH WHY?  *

CB

* apart, of course, the football program on Saturday afternoon? Heute im Stadion, ta da da da da...

wercat 10 Jan 2020
In reply to cb294:

de gustibus non disputandum? - she likes the 80s music and perhaps I'm complicit.

She is from Franconia so its a taste of home?

Post edited at 12:54
wercat 10 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

I wasn't assuming you were techie enough to install Linux without a bit of reading up - but it's quite fun if you had to use computers back in the day - something a bit different from the omnisameness of Windows and the associate Microsoft dependency.

Of course if you have an unavoidable reason for needing windows then this is useless to you.

you could use the old machine to play with Linux and the applications it provides, considering that they will not cost you a penny

cb294 10 Jan 2020
In reply to wercat:

I am only joking! I am from Franconia, too, and listen to Bavarian radio as well, even though I am just living in neighbouring Hessen...

CB

Post edited at 13:02
HB1 10 Jan 2020
In reply to Darron:

 Clearly I’m missing something?

Well - if you are, then you're not alone! There's good advice, albeit confusing (to me), in this thread. I'm deliberating as we speak. A Happy New Year to you and Marion!   Richard

Lankyman 10 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

> In fact I'm such a numptie that I gave you 2 dislikes by mistake. Sorry!

Really? I'm such a tech-moron I hadn't even noticed. Not being on social media (and caring even less) can be such a blessing.

Angrypenguin 11 Jan 2020
In reply to HB1:

Well it depends on how much you are willing to pay vs how much hassle you are willing to put up with, all above options are valid but will have varying pros/cons.

Ignore problem and stick with Windows 7: Cost £0

  • Pros: It's easy
  • Cons: Programs stop supporting Win 7 eventually, vulnerable to security problems, possible hacking etc.

New laptop: Cost £500

  • Pros: little hassle, just have to install programs/copy data.
  • Cons: The most expensive option.

Upgrading to Windows 10: Cost £0

  • Pros: Don't have to reinstall much or move data.
  • Cons: PC may be slow (old style hdd in particular), upgrading doesn't always work as well as a clean install.

Clean install of Windows 10: Cost £0

  • Pros: Clean slate works well, especially if you have had it for years.
  • Cons: A bit harder than an upgrade, have to move data/install programs.

Clean install of Windows 10 on SSD: Cost £40.

  • Pros: Clean slate works well, especially if you have had it for years. SSD is fast.
  • Cons: A bit harder than an upgrade, have to move data/install programs.

Upgrade to Windows 10 and then move to SSD: Cost £40.

  • Cons: Too much hassle - just reinstall win 10 from clean at this point.

Get a computer person to install windows 10/upgrade to SSD: Cost £50 to £200 depending on competence

  • Pros: They sort it, you don't worry.
  • Cons: Like picking a random belayer at the wall, probably fine but slim chance they may be incompetent and leave you in a worse situation than you started.

Abandon it all and install Ubuntu: Cost £0

  • Pros: It's free. Satisfaction of not using Microsoft.
  • Cons: It's the most technical of all of these options, will require learning a lot of new things. May be frustration along the way. Will likely require you to find and use new programs since at least some of the things you use won't be compatible.

PCs are my job/hobby so I am happy to spend 10 hours trying to work out how to fix the registry settings for the gyroscope that means my tablet is always in portrait mode (even I got annoyed at that) but if you want to spend your spare time doing other things it is worth spending some money. 


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