(Tried) Installing Windows 7 for the last time

A friend of mine came to me with his broken gaming computer. He does not know much about computers, but had surely invested in good hardware (some store configured and built it).

Why did it break? Well, a 90GB SSD + 1TB HD, Windows 7, is a guaranteed disaster for someone not an expert. Paging is on the SSD and it can be hard to get out of there. Everything installs on C: and it can be hard even for en export to not put stuff there. Eventually, the C drive will be full, fragmented, thrashing, and the SSD drive will break down.

We put a brand new 250GB SSD drive in place of his old broken down, and started installing Windows 7. I decided to try a Windows 7 with SP1 DVD – that worked fine with his original product key. That was the end of the good news.

First thing to do is Windows update… millions up critical updates I expected… except the only thing it updated was Windows update itself. After that, it got “stuck”. I tried numerous things like:

  • Waiting…
  • Someone suggested a proxy reset, or other network related problems.
  • Windows Update Troubleshooter (found 4 problems, fixed 3 of them). This is possibly the most retarded Windows tool I have seen. How would “working in the first place” be?
  • Some command line command to search for corrupted system files (there were none on this 1h young system and brand new hard drive).

After about two hours I thought enough is enough. Microsoft offers a free upgrade from 7 to 10, but not for my friend who had a legitimate Windows 7 key, with no way of getting to the point where upgrade to 10 is possible.

I believe Windows 7 (even with SP1) is just “too old and outdated” to successfully communicate with the Microsoft upgrade servers, and without some special knowledge it is impossible to get through.

Why is this Microsoft?

  • Are MS incapable of keeping old (but still supported) versions working?
  • Are MS intentionally breaking fresh Windows 7 installations to enforce Windows 10 migration?

In any way, it

  • Wastes peoples time.
  • Drives people to hacks and cracks to install software they already paid for.
  • Drives people to pay for something (Windows 10) that they should be able to upgrade to for free.

Anyway, while I spent several hours trying to install Windows 7 on his desktop, without much assistance he installed Xubuntu on his (Virus-sick Windows 8) laptop. And he was very happy with it.

In the end we installed Windows 10 on the desktop, and I think it is the only version of Windows currently worth installing (unless you have a server). That was, admittedly, a quite positive experience and it worked quite fine.

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