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Windows 7 holdouts: Why diehard users refuse to move to Windows 10

Ian Paul | July 30, 2015
Rejoice, Windows fans. Windows 10 is finally here and it's chock full of fancy new features like Cortana, Task View, windowed modern UI apps, and the return of the Start menu. But despite the excitement--and the free upgrade for Windows 7 and 8.1 users--not everyone is willing to make the jump to Microsoft's latest and greatest operating system.

"Windows 7 is simply beautiful. I love to look at it every day, and I know where everything is in Windows 7," says Paul Citro, a library specialist from Florida. "Windows 7 meets my needs. I see no reason to stop using it."

It's not just Windows 7, either. Some people are sticking with Windows 8.1 despite the advantages of windowed modern UI apps and the return of the Start menu. Ironically, Start menu replacements such as Classic Shell and Start8 are often cited by these folks as the reason for passing on the upgrade. Matt James, a Northern California-based retired middle school teacher and self-described hardcore gamer sums up the sentiments of Windows 8.1 holdouts: "I love Windows 8.1 now that I added a program that returns my Start menu and got rid of the Metro junk. It now works like Windows 7 and has the good things that are part of Windows 8."

The death of the HTPC

A lot of people out there are not willing to give up on Windows 7 because of Windows Media Center--Microsoft's entertainment PC software. Microsoft released an updated version of WMC with Windows 7, but only kept the old version for Windows 8 and 8.1. Then in May, Microsoft gave WMC its marching papers, saying the aging software would not be compatible with Windows 10.

"Windows Media Center is vital to my home theater experience on my four TV-attached PCs," says Gayle Snedecor, a chemical engineer based in Houston, Texas. "They all cooperatively record all I ask them to on four network attached ATSC tuners and four satellite boxes, then share what they've recorded to the other ones. I can stream Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, etc. through add-ins. I have screensavers of all my family photos, and have my 30,000 tune library immediately available on either one. I have access to all my movies through ripped DVDs and Windows Home Server."

Eric Dunn of Stafford, Virginia offers a similar set-up.

"I use [WMC] with a six tuner card and a cable card from my provider of choice," he says. "I can then stream directly (even locked programs, like HBO) to any Xbox in my house. I effectively have four HD set top boxes in my house without having to pay the $15-$20 for each of them. I can expand how much I want to record by simply adding external terabyte drives to my set up. That doesn't even get into the portability of the shows, the ability to get add-ons that will edit out commercials if you wish, how you can modify the fast forward/instant rewind times, and how intelligent WMC is in recording shows you may have missed at the next opportunity."


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