The pressure just keeps coming for you to waste your data on Microsoft's garbage.

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Here are some examples from the shills at ZDnet, some of which are getting just plain offensive:

http://www.zdnet.com/article/stop-disabling-automatic-updates-people/

http://www.zdnet.com/article/if-youre-still-using-windows-xp-youre-a-menace-to-society/

http://www.zdnet.com/article/why-windows-must-die-for-the-third-time/


Then, there is Microsoft actually creating a brand new update for Windows XP:

http://www.zdnet.com/article/wannacrypt-ransomware-microsoft-issues-patch-for-windows-xp-and-other-o...

...which is in Microsoft's update catalog at:

http://www.catalog.update.microsoft.com/search.aspx?q=4012598

...meaning that Microsoft could have maintained Windows XP all along but simply doesn't want to do so.
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xode0000, Champion

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Posted 1 year ago

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Gwalk900, Champion

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I have to say that after many years that I have surrendered when it come to Microsoft.

I have tried (and rejected) Win10 several times.

I refuse to share 'telemetry' with Microsoft and whomever they choose to declare as a 'partner'. Yes I know that methods are available to limit this behavior but it is not limited to just Win10. A rather lengthy list of updates would cause Win10's intrusive actions to be emulated in Win7 and 8.1

It became a nearly full time job researching which updates had far reaching actions. In addition the QA at Microsoft became a thing of the past. A poorly tested update was as likely to trash your machine(s) as the vulnerabilities that they were supposed to correct. It became a real burden making sure that multiple copies of system images were available prior to playing 'Update Roulette'.  

I decided that I was no longer going to be a QA beta tester for Microsoft. I dropped Win10 completely and turned off all MS updates over a year ago. I choose to go the path of being careful of the sites I visit, maintain browser updates as well as anti-virus and anti-malware software. Windows7 will be my last Microsoft operating system unless there is a reversal of Microsoft approach to software as a service to say nothing of a return to control of what my systems are doing, be it updates or the 'sharing' of my data.

My personal computer is rather unusual in the respect that it contains 10 internal hard drives. Five of those drives have operating systems ranging from Win98SE through Win7. Each drive is selected for boot-up by an electronic switch. The older OS's are used in support of some clients off-line machines. Three of the five drives have been pulled aside and replaced with Linux distros.

In my case Microsoft has lost me as a customer ... one who purchased multiple copies of the full retail versions of Windows ... but no more .... I surrender.



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LorrieL, Champion

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You clearly know so much more than I do about the potential far reaching aspects of updates.  I admire everything you have done over the years to be informed and make the best choices about changes in IOS and accepting (or not) all the updates.  But regarding your choice of words here...sounds to me like you didn't surrender at all--you are "giving up" on microsoft because you refuse to surrender.  
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xode0000, Champion

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I'll second LorrieL here: you didn't "surrender" at all to Microsoft.  Instead, you are working your way to dumping Microsoft completely and meanwhile are keeping out the worst aspects of their nonsense.

Based on what you have said here, I get the impression that you could really like the results of getting one linux distribution for your computer, installing VMWare Workstation under that linux distribution and then creating a virtual machine under VMWare for each of your Windows images.  VMWare Workstation Player 12.5 is free for home use.

For example, I have openSUSE linux on my computer and then I have Win95, Win98SE, WinME, WinXP and Win7 virtual machines under VMWare on that computer.  You can also have linux distributions in virtual machines as well side by side with the Windows virtual machines.

The advantages of virtual machines under VMWare are many, a few being:
  1. VMware is about the best sandbox out there and has by far the best record for patching any vulnerabilities that come up as well as the number of total vulnerabilities that actually exist.  The sandbox barrier becomes much stronger if the host OS is linux and the guest OS is Windows, due to the internal differences between the two OSes.  Personally, I am actively looking for an OS other than Windows that is unlike linux yet can run all the Windows programs that Win7 can.  So far, ReactOS is the best candidate but it isn't quite competent yet.  As soon as such an alternative becomes available, I'll dump Microsoft completely.
  2. You can limit the speed of your virtual network adapter for each virtual machine in VMWare and therefore the speed of your internet connection.  With VMWare 10 and later, you can also change the speed of that network adapter while the virtual machine is running.  Besides helping to prevent streaming garbage from burning up your data, it is also one more obstacle that incoming malware would have to overcome as malware these days tends to be large.
  3. Having Windows in a virtual machine greatly eases the pain of maintaining system images.  For example, with updates, you could simply make a copy of the virtual machine, apply the updates to the copy and, if the updates don't work, delete the copy and you are right back to where you were without the updates applied.
Like you, I am: careful of the sites I visit, and update my browser as well as my anti-virus and anti-malware software.  However, in addition I also have the VMWare sandbox barrier and my speed limited internet connection between my computer and the internet.
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LorrieL, Champion

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I have no opinion about your main point, but think it IS important for the public in general to be "extra aware" right now that their WIN XP is not  (unless they apply the patch) protected against the current worldwide "wannacry" cyberattack.  
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xode0000, Champion

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Even more important in a situation like this than being "fully patched" is how your ISP connects you to the internet, how visible you are to unsolicited probes (i.e. hackers and their viruses and/or worms that are seeking out computers to target) and how you handle email and website browsing.  If malware can't find your computer, it can't infect your computer, patched or not.  There will come a time when malware like "wannacry" will be using a zero day exploit to spread and then even "fully patched" computers will still be vulnerable and there will be no way to patch the vulnerability.  Being invisible to unsolicited probes and careful handling of email and web browsing will then be even more important.

Exede connects their customers to the internet in such a manner that all TCP ports are "stealth" (i.e. all unsolicited probes are ignored) and such that there is no reverse DNS for the IP address your computer has on the internet.  Further, at least for residential customers, your IP address, which is unique to you on the internet for the duration of an internet session, changes from one session to the next.  In other words, no hacker, virus or worm can find your computer just by scanning the internet for it and you are a moving target from one internet session to the next.  This is a huge security plus that Exede has and that most other ISPs don't have.

However, it is still up to you to be careful with your email and with the web sites you visit.
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xode0000, Champion

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xode0000, Champion

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Another shill: http://www.techrepublic.com/article/dont-be-the-weak-link-that-destroys-us-all-keep-your-os-patched-...

The only claimed reason they cite over and over again for people not wanting to break (oops "patch") their systems is "I don't have the time."  They continue to completely ignore all of the valid points that Gwalk900 stated above, and that are shared no doubt by many many other people.

Here's an interesting statistic: 98% of wannacry hits were windows 7 and not XP: http://www.techrepublic.com/article/98-of-wannacry-victims-were-running-windows-7-not-xp/

That couldn't possibly be due to the fact that Microsoft has many more of its backdoors built into windows 7 as opposed to XP, those backdoors are much harder to shut with windows 7 than with XP and hackers have found ways to exploit those backdoors?  I'm all but certain that was what caused this ransomware spread.