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Why and how to replace Windows 7 with Linux Mint


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For those still on Windows 7 refusing to go to Windows 10, there may be an alternative with Linux. I can vouch that the Cinnamon desktop is much like Windows 7. Here one of my favorite Linux writers shares some food advice. I say do 10 or Linux. Don't run an unpatched OS.


" Windows 7 is down to its last days. If you don't care for Windows 10, it's time to consider running Linux Mint instead.

On Jan. 14, 2020, Windows 7's free support ride ends. According to the Federal Digital Analytics Program (DAP), 20% of you are still running Windows 7. I get it. Windows 7 works. But Windows 7 is close to dead. It's time for a change. Linux Mint, an exceptional open-source desktop, might be right for you. 

Here are your other choices: If you want to stick with Windows, you can either keep running Windows 7 without vital security patches, which would be stupid, or you can pay a lot for Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESUs) on a per-device basis. 

How much is a lot? ESUs for Windows Enterprise users start at  $25 per device in year one to $100 per device for year three. For Pro users, ESU pricing goes from $50 per device in year one and jumps to $200 per device in year three. Windows 7 Home? So sorry, you're not supported at all. I might also add that, if you're a small-to-medium business owner, you're going to have a lot of trouble finding a VAR or MSP who's willing to sell you ESU. 

Or, you can migrate to Windows 10. And, yes, for now, you can still update to Windows 10 for free from Windows 7. But, since Windows 10 came out in July 2015, if you haven't upgraded by now, it's pretty clear you don't want any part of Windows 10.

So, why not consider Linux Mint instead? "

Indeed. And the answers to that question is in the article here: https://www.zdnet.com/article/why-and-how-to-replace-windows-7-with-linux-mint/?ftag=TREc64629f&bhid=22078230483476385315599228605251

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I stopped "patching" my Windows 7 two years ago becomes every new update broke the computer. I have no plans to ditch my windows 7 until this computer dies. There are plenty of 3rd part options out there to keep your computer safe in the mean time. There are no truly safe computers or connected devices. Once this one dies I will look at all options including linux and yes, even Apple. BTW, I have friends that are still running XP with no issues. Chuck

Edited by chuckbear
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I was in that hole. I tried to update the old Leveno 7pro to W10. But it failed to take. Black Friday brought me a new, top of the line HP for less than 1/2 price. The purchase was complicated and HP made it difficult to close the deal. But I persevered.  Now I get to learn all the things w10 does to piss me off. But it does it much faster than the old chip set.

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Hang in there and you'll love it. Much will be familiar. Being the OS on ~ 90% of computers and Windows tablets worldwide you can find answers to any new user questions rather quickly online or in person at campgrounds with a helpful person like I was when we were fulltime for seven years. I no longer work on any computers but ours, but do answer some questions here. YouTube videos when you've a fast connection can be found for just about anything. I have tried Linux and used a Mac for my industrial technology/engineering BS with SIU in 1987. I'd already owned an IBM clone since the early 80s using MSDOS, and several Commodore 64/DX64 by then and the mouse on that early Mac was weird for me, a DOS guy with a preference for command line and keyboard commands for all the old DOS programs. I was glad to stop having to use a Mac and happily went back to DOS using DR DOS from Gary Kildall's Intergalactic Digital Research, later shortened to just Digital Research, the DR in DR DOS. I used Linux several times for fun, since it was free. I had to laugh at myself because in the early 90s we had Windows for Workgroups 3.1 forced on us in the Air Force along with mice which I detested but also HP Laserjet printers and those noisy tractor feed dot matrix impact printers with ribbons went away. Anyway, at first, all the way to Windows 95 I refused to use my mouse, avoiding Word in Office 95 also forced on us. I was still using Wordstar on my system but my younger assistant NCOIC helped me transition in 1995. I became very good at Windows systems at the time we were providing English satellite receivers and systems in Bitburg Germany while assigned there. My wife, partner, and German employees, ran the office with the NOC (Network Operating Center) for our Internet dial up biz, our computer store, and my original English language satellite cards and hardware sales store. A lot was happening mid 90s. So I switched to mouse and Windows and forgot DOS except for command line use and had to look up then, then retired from the USAF moving into a used 36 foot HitchHiker in 1997 when relieved of duty. We already had our Ram Diesel 1ton dually club cab long bed. By then I was fully a Windows expert user, and we had one of the giant Brother MFC machines I built into the RV. Pics of that built_-in are in my website below.

I was one of the first buyers of the original Raspberry Pi in 2012 using a variance of Debian Linux made for it. I thought the old DOS master was still alive in me. I could use Linux but was into my Windows programs and Windows 7. My love of command line UI was gone! So I sold the Raspberry Pi in 2013. I was fixing Windows computers as a hobby biz, cleaning out infections and restoring corrupt systems without deleting the hard drive. in 2016 I decided to try Linux again, even ordered the two CDs for then new Linux Mint/Cinnamon 18, just to see if it would run on a thirteen year old Dell XP system that ran fine with XP. I'd been told by Stan and several others here that Linux ran well on systems that can't run modern Windows versions. I was told it was most like the Windows desktop and it was until I had to use the command line when something went awry. Well Mint barely loaded and literally ran so slow it was unusable. I'm sure a ten year old version of Linux would have run, but then no support, Windows Long term support has traditionally been ten years. For this edition of Linux Mint support is three more years:

"Linux Mint 19.3 is a long term support release which will be supported until 2023. It comes with updated software and brings refinements and many new features to make your desktop even more comfortable to use." https://blog.linuxmint.com/?p=3832

So Linux really does not really revive ancient hardware, and currently won't run most of the Windows software without a third party interface, software I use and like. When I went to some Linux help sites I was told that the Ten Cinnamon 18 was a modern OS requiring modern hardware to run well.

For me to become as good at either Mac or Linux as I am with Windows would take years of learning curve.

Windows desktops and tablets both use the same Intel Pentium, i3, i5, and i7 Intel chipsets that Windows desktops use.  Macs switched to "Evil Wintel" chipsets developed for Windows in 2005. iPads use cell phone derivative chipsets not compatible with OSX.

In other words, Apple switched to Windows chipsets in 2005, Linus Torvald wrote Linux to work on MSDOS hardware. 



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Thank you for the response. Your story brought back my memories of past computer adventures. I dropped out while studying Assembly Level on Tandy TRS-80 desk computers. GE engineers moonlighting as Professors would steal the students best ideas.  Then on IBM, I found myself spending hours programming to save a nanosecond processing time. I was always in trouble using too much main frame memory. Memory being the limiting factor. My argument was;  time was the limit, add another stack of disks.

I'm using a Pentium I7, 10th Gen. It is fast. I couldn't get by without MS Office. I earn a few bucks with Excel every couple of months. 

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You were way ahead of me. I'm 67 now and didn't get my first computer until I was just over my 30th year! I'm just a user now. Boy do I remember the trash (TRS) 80s. We had a similar all in one case computer issued as our first USAF desktops in 1986. They were Zenith Z100s with green screens. Worse, they were CP/M with PCDOS or MSDOS cards installed! Since I'd had my own Commodore and MSDOS computers since 1983 or so, and there were no Air Force IT yet, we in the squadron with experience had to set up the BBS' and do user maintenance for a bit. If one could write .bat files to automate tasks people thought we were programmers writing in machine/assembly! lol It seems like yesterday I was testing Windows 8 developer versions on my laptop testing my first 64GB Crucial M4 SSD at the same time with a 600GB hard drive in the DVD slot in an adapter tray. That was 2011 just nine years ago! 

I've decided to do my upgrades all at the same time instead of dragging them out years apart. I was waiting for tenth Gen then threw in the Go because of the sale. Now the setups, and configuring starts for the desktop, and to finish the Surfaces that are already in Service for a few weeks.

I'm answering you on my 30 day old: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Microsoft-QWW-00001-Surface-Pro-7-12-3-Touch-Intel-i7-1065G7-16GB-256GB-Bundle/323993280526?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

It was $1325.00 last month. Comments: This replaces my Surface Pro 4 dual core i7, 8GB, 256 with type cover Which I still have. It screams with the 10th gen quad core. I've added a tempered glass screen protector, and this cover comes in Tuesday - https://www.ebay.com/itm/For-Microsoft-Surface-Pro-7-6-5-4-Shockproof-Protective-Cover-Hand-Strap-Case/303342469506?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=602445613398&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

I bought the same cover for the Surface Go and love it.

I just received and powered this up yesterday: https://www.dell.com/en-us/shop/dell-desktop-computers/inspiron-27-touch-7000-all-in-one/spd/inspiron-27-7790-aio/na7790dqwws

It was $850.00 last month, shipment was delayed almost a month as they ran out. Comments. It replaces a $2500.00 six year old Dell 2720  i7, 32GB SSD, 2GB rust drive and quad HD resolution. I use my desktop very little so a 10th gen i5 quad 4.4 GHz, 16GB fast RAM, is fast, but adding a 256GB SSD boot drive, and 1TB storage rust drive makes it a screamer. The built in speakers sound excellent too! It's truly an all in one. I'm selling the Companion® 3 Series II system I used to use.

I also received and set up this for bedroom reading and throne reading: https://www.staples.com/microsoft-surface-go-mcz00001-10-tablet-128gb-ssd-windows-10-s-silver/product_24357485

It was $399.00 last month for the actual 128GB SSD I bought, the cheaper one is a 64GB eMMC. It has 1800 x 1200 resolution and handles the Surface Pen as well as the Pro7. I added a like new open box typecover for $39.99, a tempered glass screen protector, and https://www.amazon.com/MoKo-Microsoft-Protective-Compatible-Keyboard/dp/B07JR8NMQ4/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=MoKo+Case+for+Microsoft+Surface+Go+10%2C+All-in-One+Protective+Rugged+Cover+Case+with+Pen+Holder%2C+Hand+Strap%2C+Compatible+with+Type+Cover+Keyboard+for+Surface+Go+10+Inch+2018+Release+Tablet+-+Black&qid=1578863871&s=electronics&sr=1-1

All are 10th gen i5 and i7 except the Surface Go. It has the Intel Pentium Gold 4415Y Entry-Level Laptop Processor, which is much faster than the 8.9" Fire HDX tablet that was my bedside tablet. But it's got great graphics and resolution for movies and books in bed.

I'm really impressed with Microsoft and Dell this year.


Edited by RV_
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