Like Windows 7? Then you’ll love this!

Earlier this year Windows 7 reached its end of life, meaning that Microsoft no longer offers support, updates and patches as standard.

Whilst Windows 7 continues to work, if you use it you are more likely to be the target of cybercriminals, malware, and ransomware. If you are the victim of cybercrime Microsoft is under no obligation to support you. To read more about the dangers of continuing to use unsupported operating systems like Windows 7 go to the blog here.

With a large proportion of the workforce in the UK now working from home, you need to consider whether continuing to use Windows 7 is worth the risk to you, your company and your online security.

You may not think now is the right time to upgrade but the longer you leave it, the more at risk your system is. However, Windows 10, the natural upgrade to Windows 7 requires a 1 GHz processor, 1 GB for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit RAM, 16 GB for 32-bit OS or 20 GB for 64-bit OS, and an 800 x 600 resolution display. Some older machines do not have these minimum requirements and therefore Windows 10 would not be an option without replacing the hardware.

But never fear there are other options which have a lower memory requirement.

Linux Systems

One of these options is using a Linux operating system which requires less ram and is resistant to most viruses. It is available for free and is supported and regularly updated.

Linux is an open-source operating system and therefore has the benefit of multiple developers updating code to ensure it runs efficiently and, in some cases, Linux will run quicker than Windows on the same machine.

There are numerous computer software distribution packages (distros) which run using the Linux OS, and it is important to do your research before choosing the one that is right for your business. 

Many of them such as Ubuntu and Solus offer a ‘live’ trial where you can upload it to your hardware using a USB stick to see how it works with your machine in particular. You are even able to install it alongside Windows 7 to make the transition from one to the other easier.

Or you can run them parallel to each other on your machine, known as a dual-boot configuration, meaning on start-up you can choose which system you would like to run for the specific tasks you have to carry out.

Zorin OS 15 Lite

One of the newest distros, is Zorin OS 15 Lite which was introduced in 2019 and runs from a Linux operating system. It is a lite version of their Gnome desktop environment.

This is an operating system which is designed specifically for working on machines which are up to 15 years old or are particularly low-spec and can’t take Windows 10. Through using Zorin OS 15 Lite you can expand the life of your hardware for many years, saving you money in the short-term.

So, what features can you expect from Zorin OS 15 Lite?

  • It is powered by Linux Kernal version 5.0 which is compatible with more hardware and has regular security and performance updates.
  • It uses the XFCE desktop environment giving it the overall feel of their fuller desktop version.
  • It’s easy to install and set up with the option to try it first using a CD.
  • Firefox, Files, GIMP, Rhythmbox, To Do, Libre Office and Deja Dup all come as standard.
  • There is capability for remote access and screen sharing through Virtual Networking Computing (VNC).
  • It has a user-friendly interface where content is key.
  • There is an auto-theme capability which changes to dark mode at sunset which is believed to reduce eye strain.
  • Flatpak support is built into the operating system which allows you to install apps easily and quickly.
  • The ‘Do not Disturb’ feature silences all notifications allowing you to concentrate on the things that are important to you.

Zorin OS 15 Lite also offers support in order to connect to popular third-party platforms like Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Microsoft Exchange, Flickr and Foursquare.

With this operating system you can do everything you could generally do on Windows 7 such as play music and videos, edit text, all office suite applications, and task management meaning there will be minimum, if any, disruption to your working day.

If you would like some further advice on upgrading from Windows 7 and aren’t sure what the best options for you are why not give the team here at Supportwise a call.