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taos

Update Win 7, or Not ?

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Posted (edited)

@bphlpt

I've been very busy so haven't been able to respond quickly. However, something you said lead me to curing a very recent problem that surfaced when trying to play some recently released videos on a Vimeo 'channel' that I follow.

The 'channel' has the title "Common Weal". I could play every video in that 'channel' in Firefox without issues with the exception of the two most recently released videos. The videos that I couldn't get to play were:

An Investment-Led Economic Development Framework For An Independent Scotland

Know Your Growth Commission: Financial Regulations

At the time I puzzled over this and thought that Common Weal and/or Vimeo changed something and made the videos no longer playable in my Firefox browser (I also checked this with a portable Opera browser that I keep for trying to troubleshoot any internet related problems. I got the same results using Opera - and because of that I thought it possible to discount notion of an issue with Firefox itself.) I contacted Common Weal about the problem but the woman I was communicating with was clueless, said no one else was having the problem, but that she'd pass the information to their web developers. So I waited for a couple of weeks and further response never came. Then I read your comment:

On 4/27/2019 at 2:28 AM, bphlpt said:

Like you, I avoid IE completely, but since I think other parts of the OS might use aspects of IE behind the scene, I choose to keep it updated, but NEVER use it on purpose.

When I read that an intuitive bulb lit up concerning the Vimeo videos and I thought to test the intuition out.

So, cutting a long story short, to update my IE 8 (which I never use) to IE 11 (which I never will use) I had to install some prerequisite KBs into my Windows 7 SP1. The prerequisites were listed here (along with 3 Optional KBs):

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/2847882/prerequisite-updates-for-internet-explorer-11

So, I started to install the KBs as listed in that table, working from the top of the table down.  (On trying to install KB2533623 I got an error message saying "This update is not applicable to your computer." On doing some research on that it turned out that that KB was actually for a Windows Vista computer; so Microsoft goofed in listing it as a Windows 7 SP1 prerequisite. So this update got skipped.)

For each update that installed I rebooted the computer and then tried to see if I the two Vimeo videos that wouldn't play started to play with the following results:

KB2729094 - No change, videos still would not play
KB2731771 - No change, videos still would not play
KB2533623 - Wouldn't install - intended for Windows Vista
KB2670838 - Success! Once this was installed the two videos that wouldn't play started to play in Firefox.
(So the installation of one, two or three of these KBs, or some combination thereof, was what was required to get the Vimeo videos to play.)

I then installed the other 2 prerequisite KBs in order:

KB2786081
KB2834140

Then I updated my IE 8 to IE 11 and then installed the 3 Optional KBs.

So your comment on the advisability of keeping IE up to date because it might have a background effect on the OS turned out to be the solution to recent Vimeo videos in as much I had to install some prerequisite KBs to get them play.

So as far as KBs go I have now increased my count of 'essential' KBs installed by an additional 5 now (discounting the Vista one, of course). Or you could say by 8 if counting in the 3 Optional ones - but those probably don't full under the 'essential' label.

So thanks very much for your comment, @bphlpt. That off the cuff remark enabled me to sort a very recent problem that I encountered and that was niggling me for a couple of weeks.

One question though. When you say you chose to keep IE up to date what do you mean precisely? Like you just install security patches for it? Or something else?

Also I think I read elsewhere on this forum that MS were planning to ditch IE in favour of Microsoft Edge. So what would be your thoughts on that? Is that about to become a critical matter for folks trying to avoid, as much as possible, updating Windows 7 SP1?

 

Hope the above helps someone else sometime.

Edited by Radish
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On 5/6/2019 at 3:20 PM, Tripredacus said:

So one casualty of trying to keep a computer under your control or secure, is that it can't be easily used in the real world.

I'm thinking it depends what the 'real world' means - would mean different things for different people. My own computer use is nowadays fairly limited, write documents, deal with email, play a movie and audio files, and surf the internet covers most of what I do. I find that for most things my system, with only (seemingly) essential updates, works just fine. Until I hit slight issues, rare, and things get generally interesting and not too difficult to solve - so far, so good.

That said, and though it definitely doesn't qualify as an essential update (but it damn well should) I wouldn't be on Windows 7 at all if it wasn't for Classic Shell. Without that I'd be either on Windows 8.1 with Classic Shell, or off to Linux Mint which I used for a couple of years. Mint was fine but always felt a bit lacking just because of software developed for Windows systems that I really liked and missed, which in the end drove me back to Windows. However, as far as Windows goes, if it ever got to the bit where my only option was Windows 10 then I'd migrate to Mint and never look back. Windows 10 - no way!!! To that extent that is my 'real world' and that Windows 10 line draws an absolute limit on it.

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9 hours ago, Radish said:

So thanks very much for your comment, @bphlpt. That off the cuff remark enabled me to sort a very recent problem that I encountered and that was niggling me for a couple of weeks.

One question though. When you say you chose to keep IE up to date what do you mean precisely? Like you just install security patches for it? Or something else?

@Radish,  Very glad the comment helped.  I think a similar situation was part of the solution to the old MU/WU problem where it took hours to display the available updates each month.  I'm hoping that @dencorso will chime in to remind us of what the full solution for that problem was found to be.

For the IE updates I choose to install, first off I usually wait a month or two after ANY update is released before I even think about installing it. Then, unless it has been flagged either here or at Woody's that the update has a problem, if it is specified for IE11 then I install it. But I NEVER use IE on purpose.

I've never installed or used MS Edge. and unless it becomes required for some other part of the OS to function, such as MU/WU, I don't intend to. If that changes, I'll probably treat Edge like I'm currently treating IE. I'll keep it fully updated and never purposely use it.

If you choose to use certain software products (such as MS Office products or a particular VPN) you might need additional MS updates, even if they are not specified for those products' use, because of what might be going on in the background, like you discovered trying to play certain videos with Firefox.

Cheers and Regards

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Posted (edited)
On 11/6/2018 at 3:40 PM, Tripredacus said:

End of support means absolutely nothing to people who don't install updates in the first place. :whistle:

And funny that the author of that doesn't know the product history of Windows Defender. Perhaps not, considering they think Windows 7 will become unusable after January 2020.

And I still wonder why MS hasn't been brought to task by the antitrust folks regarding the fact that Windows has antivirus built-in.

Becoming unusable is what many of my customers assume after receiving the update warning that the time is nigh.....Still amazes me how many of them just don't listen to a word I have told them...?! What I like about the update is Microsoft offering to help with backing up files etc....bloody nerver of this company!!

 

bookie32

 

Edited by bookie32

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February/March 2015 is the cutoff point for me personally. For some reason I noted that installing security (or any) updates past that point on a stock SP1 install (no NTLite) causes a lot of resource usage spikes, possibly a deliberate manipulation to try to force people onto the 10 upgrade - much like how MS Update completely crashes on Vista SP2 when checking since, conveniently, 29th July 2015 without manual intervention (which was probably because Vista was dropped from the upgrade path, so MS wanted to make people buy a new PC with 10).

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Posted (edited)
On 5/17/2019 at 9:31 AM, Radish said:

KB2533623 - Wouldn't install - intended for Windows Vista
 

Radish, there are Win7 versions of that KB2533623 update from MS download center but it is not applicable because newer Win7 SP1 updates like KB2758857 supersede/replace it and it's an obsolete update; even KB2533623 for Vista will also say "not applicable" if the KB2758857 or higher update for Vista is installed

Edited by erpdude8

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We had all this sort of stuff: dire warnings of instant infection by multiple unspecified security risks with Windows XP. IT magazines were running multiple articles for month's beforehand stoking up fear about what was going to happen and how your 'old' WinXP PC would suddenly become redundant and have to be put out to pasture like some senile OAP. 

The fact was/is WinXP remained and still remains usable online, with care. I was using it, protected by a good AV and other security software, for over 3 years after support ended. The only reason I stopped using it was because the 14 year old laptop it was on suddenly died (serious component failure - probably the dedicated GPU).  

It is generally only the other software, particularly browsers, being updated to include features/functions that WinXP did not support that was the problem. But old browser versions still worked and many other software creators supported WinXP long after MS dumped it, some still do.

I expect the same will be true for Win7 as well.  

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, WalksInSilence said:

We had all this sort of stuff: dire warnings of instant infection by multiple unspecified security risks with Windows XP. IT magazines were running multiple articles for month's beforehand stoking up fear about what was going to happen and how your 'old' WinXP PC would suddenly become redundant and have to be put out to pasture like some senile OAP. 

The fact was/is WinXP remained and still remains usable online, with care. I was using it, protected by a good AV and other security software, for over 3 years after support ended. The only reason I stopped using it was because the 14 year old laptop it was on suddenly died (serious component failure - probably the dedicated GPU).  

It is generally only the other software, particularly browsers, being updated to include features/functions that WinXP did not support that was the problem. But old browser versions still worked and many other software creators supported WinXP long after MS dumped it, some still do.

I expect the same will be true for Win7 as well.  

 

Yeah, the press seem to be very exaggerating about things - personally I feel like a clean OS install, fully updated and maintained in any case is good to go online if it can do so reasonably. I was mostly poking at how we ended up going from needing a small amount of resources for the OS itself, to needing at least a quad core from the 2010s to run the currently available OS. Even if I like Vista SP2 more than any other OS... it was too much of a jump in resource needs and it’s ended up for the worse nowadays where developers simply assume you can run it at maximum settings.

Unfortunately Google’s road to becoming a monopoly is winning out against web standards and I wouldn’t be surprised if HTTP sites or such stop working at all soon...

Edited by hydro2duo

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Well, the news are that the good MS guys are sneakingly introducing telemetry to Windows 7 via a security update :w00t: :ph34r::

https://www.ghacks.net/2019/07/11/did-microsoft-just-drop-the-telemetry-bomb-on-windows-7-users-without-telling-anyone/

while the good google guys were busy listening to conversations ;):

https://techerati.com/news-hub/google-admits-listening-to-some-smart-speaker-recordings/

 

jaclaz

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Is there a way to repackage KB4507456 so it never installs the telemetry parts in the first place? What options we do we have to modify this package?

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Just now, medowe said:

Is there a way to repackage KB4507456 so it never installs the telemetry parts in the first place? What options we do we have to modify this package?

I don't know if you can modify the .msu package to remove the telemetry package without tampering up the integrity and the signing. Since the security-only patches aren't cumulative at best you shouldn't expect microsoft to do this s*** again next patch tuesday, so you might avoid the update.

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Posted (edited)

The July updates I was offered and I installed yesterday were MS .NET Framework and Server update (KB4507004) and the Security update (KB4507449) plus the usual Malicious Software Removal Tool.

In Installed Updates it shows three new entries: MS .NET Framework Update - KB4506997 , Security Update for Windows - KB4507449 and Update for Microsoft Windows - KB4507004. I'm assuming the latter was a combined package because it was only listed as three 'important' updates and that included the MSRT.

I noted from the report that the unwanted telemetry gathering update if present creates a scheduled task. I checked and I do have such a task but it is Disabled and Never run. It is the one I disabled myself in June 2017 when they last tried to foist a telemetry gathering task on my system despite specifically opting out of the 'Customer Experience' program.

I am glad this possibility of MS having tried to do that again as part of the July monthly roll out has been bought to my attention. I'll be watching that disabled scheduled task very closely and if it even twitches I'll hit it with big hammer. :)

EDIT

I don't bloody believe it. A scheduled MS Windows telemetry gathering task has literally just run as I checked back here for any replies.

Edited by WalksInSilence

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7 hours ago, WalksInSilence said:

I don't bloody believe it. A scheduled MS Windows telemetry gathering task has literally just run as I checked back here for any replies.

Hmmm. :dubbio:

Surprisingly they actually start the crap that they included.

Maybe - after all - they are still (not everywhere, but in spots)  good at writing software. ;)

jaclaz

 

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Hell that made me angry - I've been waiting, expecting a MS update to try to sneak install another unwanted telemetry gathering update for two years since the last one. I was suspicious too that originally was a hidden rather than a standalone optional update. Now we have the proof - MS are clearly ignoring the Customer Experience program opt out. 

I've usually waited before installing any monthly updates to allow anything like this to be reported and therefore avoided. The one time I do not wait and they sneak it in.

Its easy enough to deal with, you just disable or delete the task using Control Panel > System and Security > Administrative Tools > Task Scheduler and find the cuckoo as described elsewhere here in: Task Scheduler Library  > Microsoft > Windows > Application Experience.  It showed this time as a "Compatibility Appraiser" task. The previous one was listed as an AitAgent (Application Impact Agent).

I'll be watching more closely for it or something else to reappear from now on. 

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