Windows 10 To Be The Only Supported OS On Modern Microsoft CPUs

Posted by Neil
May 16, 2016

Windows_10_Logo.svgThe last couple of years have made us forget what it was like to fret over CPU / OS incompatibilities. In fact, the only time most people had to contend with the issue was an innocent shift from x86 to x64, i.e. people under thirty!  Now that people are finally getting comfortable with Windows 7, and it has just stepped into its extended support phase, Microsoft has again decided to drop the bombshell with the news that the modern Microsoft CPUs will only support Windows 10. Seems like Microsoft is fond of surprises!

Windows 10

The company has already educated users about the criteria needed to upgrade their systems to Windows 10, and is quite happy with the speedy adaptation of the Windows 10 OS.  The award-winning American economist Roger Myerson has reported that almost 76% of all the enterprise customers are piloting Windows 10, while more than twenty two million devices are running the Windows 10 operating system. This shows how fast corporates are jumping on the bandwagon to keep up before they themselves are deemed obsolete!

Myerson continues on to say that the need for driver vendors to “keep up” is posing a big challenge in pushing forward with enhancements and improvement on the more tech-savvy modern Windows 8.1 and 10. Microsoft says that it is still committed to providing support for Windows 7 and 8.1, but it is concerned that Windows 7 was designed at a time when processors looked and behaved very differently than what they do today. In order for Windows 7 to operate on any modern silicon, all firmware and device drivers need to mimic Window 7’s expectations for power states, bus support, and interrupt processing, which is challenging for security, graphics, and WiFi.

Default Operting System

The renewed zest of Microsoft to promote Windows 10 isn’t something that is going to bother home users purchasing new PCs, as they would already have Windows 10 as their default operating system. The major problem is for business and  large enterprises that would be bombarded with a flood of issues including the in-house software compatibility, driver support, and user rights when upgrading to Windows 10. A chilling example is that of Windows XP, which some users couldn’t seem to make the switch from even after the support was withdrawn. Change is hard and it only gets harder the more you grow!

For those important business and enterprise customers of Microsoft, who often lag behind on software and hardware upgrades for stability and compliance, Microsoft will maintain a list of approved Skylake systems which will have Windows 7 and 8.1 support for the next 18 months, i.e. through to July 17, 2017.

This grace period of 18 months should be sufficient time for these organisations to acquire modern hardware for employees before they can implement upgrades to Windows 10.  The tactics of Microsoft has raised a very serious issue; if enterprises are not able to install new hardware due to OS compatibility issues, what effect would it have on the organization down the road. How technology obsolete is it likely to become?  The argument for renting your hardware just keeps getting stronger.

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