*Microsoft is patching Windows XP … again

TechViews News   …..

Microsoft stopped support for Windows XP three years ago. It has ceased to release security updates to help secure the operating system … until last month. The WannaCry ransomware was devastating to computer networks that still use the popular OS. Most individual computer users either upgraded their machines, or simply unplugged their XP box from the Internet.

I have a buddy that has a large storehouse of personal photos on an XP unit. He still uses it as a place to work at home, and build his personal/family library of photos and diaries. For that machine, he has no use for the Internet. All his other computers that need Internet access use a more recent operating system.

And there are many more like him still having a need for an XP box that is still very productive.

But last month Microsoft released a security update for Windows XP to help protect against the WannaCry ransomware, and its potential variants.

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*Microsoft threatened by class-action lawsuit for blocking Security Updates

TechViews News …..

Why is Microsoft blocking newer PCs running Windows 7 and 8.1 from receiving legitimate Security Updates?

The consensus is that Microsoft is trying to force users – once again – to upgrade to Windows 10 whether they want to or not.

The update block has even prompted some users and businesses to call for a class-action lawsuit against Microsoft, for cutting off updates to Windows 8.1 “eight months before the end of mainstream support”.

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*Microsoft now warns users not to install its own Win-10 Creators Update

TechViews News   …..

Windows 10 has been from the very beginning an operating system (OS) totally unready for use. One of the reasons it was given away for free last year was to get a large number of users to upgrade and become unwilling beta-testers of the OS.

When that didn’t happen Microsoft began tricking users into installing the OS without it even being ready for distribution. And when even that didn’t create the user base that Microsoft wanted they start forcing the upgrade on user’s computers without their permission.

These unprepared and underhanded practices by Microsoft did not go over well with those who didn’t want to be unwilling beta-testers for someone else’s company. Eventually Microsoft took notice when the upgrade process faltered once again.

Their answer … was to force broken patches on a broken operating system in the hope that the patches would fix all the problems inherent in Windows 10. And we’re not even talking about all the data and telemetry collection that Win-10 does. Many of the new, so-called ‘Security and Quality Rollup’ patches actually caused harm to user’s computers.

When the broken patches were discovered, Microsoft claimed that users didn’t understand the new Windows Update process. Now imagine any other industry that forces you to use a product you don’t want, and then breaks it, and blames you for it. That company would be out of business immediately.

But the God’s of Microsoft must be smiling because they are getting away with it.

Now, here we go again.

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*Windows 10 is Really an Advertising Platform, Not Just an Operating System

TechViews News   …..

After Microsoft’s ethically questionable rollout of Windows 10, and it’s pushed data collection from users, we are now learning that Windows 10 will become its primary platform for advertising.

Except the ads are being called, “suggestions”.  Ahhh, Semantics…..

They are beginning to appear in the Start menu, in the taskbar, in the Action Center, in Explorer, in the Ink Workspace, on the Lock Screen, in the Share tool, in the Windows Store and even in File Explorer.

This is not the first time Microsoft has crammed ads into the Windows UI — there are the lock screen ads disguised as backgrounds, notification ads for Edge, and a strange pop-up ad for Microsoft’s personal shopping assistant in Chrome. But as more and more ads have gradually crept into Windows 10, the implications of using Windows 10 become ever clearer.

Microsoft has lost its grip on what is acceptable, and even goes as far as pretending that these ads serve users more than the company. But if we’re honest, the company is doing nothing more than abusing its position, using Windows 10 to promote its own tools and services, or those with which it has marketing arrangements.

Does Microsoft think we’re stupid?

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*Older versions of popular programs available for free

TechViews News   …..

Many times over the past year when Windows users were pushed to upgrade their operating system to Windows-10 they felt the need to upgrade their existing programs as well. But that is totally unnecessary.

Or maybe you have upgraded to the latest version of one of your favorite programs and regretted it? Maybe the new version is buggy or you just prefer the old design. No matter what your reasoning is, I bet you wish you could downgrade back to old software that you loved.

If you have upgraded your applications but want to go back, you may not be able to find your previous installation disks, or downloaded executables. So you scramble through search engine results looking for a few applications only to realize your searching may take all day, or even several days. You may not even find what you are looking for.

Wouldn’t it be nice of most of the currently popular applications were collected in one, single location? Well, here you are.

OldVersion has a huge catalog of old software you can choose from. The long list of choices includes everything from media players to word processors to graphic editors, and more.

The downloads are separated by category so you can easily find what you’re looking for. There’s also tabs for Mac, Android, and Games located near the top of the page.

http://www.oldversion.com/

Note: Downloading old software doesn’t come without risks. Often, previous software doesn’t include later updates that include patches that take care of security flaws that could leave your computer vulnerable to hackers and malware.

Be Safe – Backup Your Data Regularly!

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*Microsoft to end support for Windows Live Mail 2012

Declan Dunn, TechViews News   …..

Users of the popular Windows Live Mail 2012 who use it to connect to Microsoft’s Outlook email service are beginning to receive emails from Microsoft stating that they won’t be able to use WLM to connect to Outlook.com after June 30th, 2016.

Windows Live Mail is a free email client by Microsoft that Microsoft made available as part of the Windows Essentials 2012 suite of programs.

It is supported by Windows 7 and newer versions of Windows, and still available for download on the Windows Essentials website.

Microsoft explains, “Windows Live Mail 2012 will not support the synchronization technologies used by the new Outl‍ook‍.‍com. When account upgrades begin at the end of June, you will no longer be able to receive email sent to your Out‍look‍.‍com account in Windows Live Mail 2012”.

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* Windows Essentials Support Ends This January 10, 2017

Declan Dunn, TechViews.org   …..

Microsoft has just announced that it will end support for Windows Essentials on January 10, 2017, and without viable replacements for its most still-valuable tools.

While this has been rumored for quite some time, it seems to be true since a simple visit to “get.live.com” was redirected to a completely new support page instead of the regular Windows Essentials download page.

You can still download Essentials from this support page, but now I’m wondering if that is temporary. Will the download disappear once January 10 has come and gone? I suppose it will.

And that’s not good, not good at all. Mostly because Microsoft has not issued new tools that satisfactorily replace the ones found in this long-neglected suite of desktop applications.

Consider what is/was available and what Microsoft now offers in Windows 10 as replacements:

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