Goodbye Windows 2008 R2 and 7


In my line of work I’ve been having a ton of conversations with clients over the last year about retiring, replacing, or upgrading Windows 2008 R2 machines. Forgotten to me in this fray was Windows 7, which had its extended support terminated at the same time back in January.

I’m not sorry in the slightest to see Windows 2008 R2 go; it was responsible for more late nights, missed family events, and unpaid overtime than anything else in my career. But Windows 7 really was the last tolerable desktop version of Windows. At least to me; I stopped using Windows as a daily driver in the early 2000s and, aside from games, I haven’t looked back.

Given my bias against these systems, perhaps by reviewing this positive article on Pocket-Lint we can arrive at something closer to the middle.

Everybody is using Windows 10, aren’t they? Actually, no.

This is common knowledge. Windows 10 has serious privacy and usability problems. Just because the popular press has stopped talking about them doesn’t mean they don’t persist.

The issue is that Windows 7 still works just fine and there are a huge amount of people haven’t upgraded their PCs.


While Windows 10 has a bunch of new and different features and is a smoother experience than Windows 7…

Smoother experience! All these complaints about Windows 10 being less intuitive were probably written by people who prefer crunchy peanut butter. Like me, because I’m not a monster.

The acquired taste of Windows 8 and 8.1 are on around 6 percent combined, showing that many people didn’t choose go from 7 to 8 and therefore didn’t upgrade to Windows 10. There is no Windows 9, simply because Microsoft felt that Windows 10 represented the big step on from what had gone before.

Acquired taste is one of the more euphemistic phrases I’ve read to describe Windows 8.x. It wasn’t difficult to use damn it, you had to suck it up and develop a tolerance for it!

Even though, In reality, Windows 10 wasn’t a big step on, backtracking from the tablet-centric Windows 8 and distilling the best bits from Windows 7 and 8.

The best bits? Like Candy Crush installed by default on the Start Menu? Advertisements in Solitaire? Telemetry? Nah this is too easy.

From talking to people who actually use Windows, Windows 8 was unpopular precisely because it removed the best bits what worked. Windows 10 partly reversed this, but it’s still compromised.

One thing is for sure – to keep running a Windows 7 PC instead of upgrading to Windows 10 must have taken a bit of nerve though, Microsoft has bombarded users with messages about upgrading it in the past and has again been sending out messages about the end of support. That kind of think takes some effort to ignore.

With a little introspection, that author would have noticed empathy, financial pressures, and the need people have for Windows 7 would have taken equal effort to ignore.

How was that for a balanced farewell? Don’t answer that!

Windows 7 came out when my folks and I were briefly living in Malaysia. I’d see all the new laptops being shown with it when my dad and I would wander to Mutiara Damansara for IKEA and groceries. I remember thinking how tacky the UI still was from Vista, but figured at least people were getting something different from XP. Clara and I went back there last year; those electronic stores were long gone.

I wrote eighteen posts about Windows 7 since 2008, but this one from a decade ago is still the best.

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Ruben Schade is a technical writer and infrastructure architect in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person. Hi!

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