Windows 7 End of Life: what should you do?

So, if you still use Windows 7, what should you do? There are a number of things we’d recommend you do in preparation for Windows 7 End of Life, and the first is to consider upgrading to a newer operating system.

While you have a number of choices when moving operating systems, for many people, the obvious and simplest option is to upgrade to Windows 10.

Windows 7 End of Life: upgrading to Windows 10

Upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10 has a number of benefits. For a start, because both operating systems are made by Microsoft the upgrade process is relatively easy, and in many cases you can keep your files on your PC.

This means you’ll experience the minimum of disruption when upgrading to Windows 10. Most programs you use will have been updated to work on Windows 10 as well, and the layout and interface are similar to Windows 7, so you shouldn’t find it too hard to adjust.

If you want to upgrade to Windows 10, then you can buy a copy, download the installation file and run it to start the process.

It’s nice and easy, and you’ll be asked if you want to keep your files. However, we’d recommend that you still back up all your files and folders just in case.

While upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10 is the easiest solution, there are reasons why it won’t be right for some people. For a start, you’ll need to buy a Windows 10 license, and these can be quite expensive – if you were hoping to manage Windows 7’s End of Life without spending any money, this isn’t the way to do it.

Also, while Microsoft has done an admirable job of making Windows 10 able to run on older hardware, it’s still a modern operating system that might struggle to work well on your old Windows 7 machine.

Here’s the minimum specification for Windows 10:

  • Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster processor or SoC.
  • RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit.
  • Hard disk space: 16 GB for 32-bit OS 20 GB for 64-bit OS.
  • Graphics card: DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver.
  • Display: 800 x 600 resolution

If your Windows 7 machine doesn’t meet these specifications you won’t be able to run Windows 10 – and even if your machine just meets the requirements, Windows 10 won’t run that well. We’d recommend at least a 2GHz dual-core processor, 4GB of RAM (8GB ideally) and a 160GB hard drive for Windows 10 to run well.

If you don’t have the required hardware, but still want to upgrade to Windows 10, then you could upgrade your PC. This is a cost-effective approach, as you may only need to upgrade a few components on your computer to enable it to run Windows 10. Of course, upgrading your PC can be rather fiddly, and there’s only so much you can upgrade before it becomes easier (and more cost-effective) to buy a new PC.

Buying a new machine is another option, and Windows 7’s End of Life could be a good excuse to spoil yourself with a new and more powerful PC, with Windows 10 installed. You can quite easily move your files and folders to your new machine using an external hard drive.

One last thing – don’t be tempted to save a bit of money and upgrade to Windows 8. Although it’s more recent than Windows 7, it’s not going to be too long before that version too enters its End of Life stage, so you’re better off saving further hassle down the line by getting the newer (and let’s be fair, better) Windows 10.

Fixing “No DKIM keys saved for this domain” in Office365

Sometimes a newly added domain in Microsoft EOP will not let you enable DKIM from the web user interface. The only workaround I know of is to prepare the domain using PowerShell.

To connect a PS session to O365, I use the following script, ripped straight from Microsoft’s documentation:

 

$UserCredential = Get-Credential

$Session = New-PSSession -ConfigurationName Microsoft.Exchange -ConnectionUri https://outlook.office365.com/powershell-liveid/ -Credential $UserCredential -Authentication Basic -AllowRedirection

Import-PSSession $Session -DisableNameChecking

After waiting for an eternity for the necessary stuff to load, run the following command – and wait another eternity for it to finish:

New-DkimSigningConfig -DomainName “yourdomain.com” -Enabled $true

selector1._domainkey.yourdomain.com. CNAME selector1-###._domainkey.###.onmicrosoft.com selector2._domainkey.yourdomain.com. CNAME selector1-###._domainkey.###.onmicrosoft.com

How to change the listening port for Remote Desktop

To change the port that Remote Desktop listens on, follow these steps.

Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

322756 How to back up and restore the registry in Windows
  1. Start Registry Editor.
  2. Locate and then click the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\WinStations\RDP-Tcp\PortNumber
  3. On the Edit menu, click Modify, and then click Decimal.
  4. Type the new port number, and then click OK.
  5. Quit Registry Editor.
  6. Restart the computer.

Note When you try to connect to this computer by using the Remote Desktop connection, you must type the new port. Maybe you have to set the firewall to allow the new port number before you connect to this computer by using the Remote Desktop connection.

How to prevent remote users from shutting down/rebooting the Windows

Open secpol.msc from the Run menu to open “Local Security Policy”, from there navigate to Security Settings -> Local Policies -> User Rights Assignment. In that subfolder find the option for Shut down the system and add the group named Console Logon to the list then remove the other groups from the list.

Local Users and Groups Manager

 

 

When you first set up your new Windows 8 computer, you’ll be guided through the process of creating your own user account. While this certainly is enough to get you started, most computers will require additional accounts to cover all of its users. In Windows 7 you’d head to the Control Panel to create new users, but Windows 8 changes things up a bit. Before you get started, make sure you know the difference between Local and Microsoft accounts and which you want to use.

To start program (Local Users and Groups Manager) at Windows 8, please start “RUN” via shortcut key combination [Win-Logo] + [R] and enter in the Edit-Box the cmd (command): lusrmgr.msc

This run command will open “Local Users and Groups Manager” Program.Here is very easily to add more Windows 8 users, remove, disable, manage.

Screenshot_1

FIX : Unable To Use “Local Users & Groups Snap-in”

1. First of all make sure that others snap-ins like Group Policy, Security Policy etc. are working. Then press  Win+ R and put mmc.exe in Run dialog box, hit Enter.

2. This will take you to Management Console window. Click File -> Add/Remove Snap-in.
Screenshot_23. Moving on, in the following window, from the Available snap-ins section, select Local Users & Groups and click Add

4. Finally in the Choose Target Machine window, click Finish.

This will add the Local Users & Groups Snap-in to Windows functionality and you can use it. You may close theManagement Console window now and verify the results.

Installing Dropbox as a service on Windows

This is an updated post for some things have changed as of Windows Server 2008 R2. This solution is currently installed on Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1.
What you need: The file srvany.exe from the Windows Server Rresource Kit.

1. Install Dropbox (I used version 1.0.10)
2. Choose preferences and uncheck “Show desktop notifications” and “Start Dropbox on system startup”
3. Exit Dropbox by clicking exit in the context menu that shows when right clicking icon in task bar
4. Copy the file srvany.exe to a folder under “C:\Program Files\Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit”
5. Execute at command prompt (you might need to run command prompt as administrator):

sc create Dropbox binPath= "C:\Program Files\Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit\srvany.exe" DisplayName= "Dropbox Service"

If the service was created successfully, you will recieve message:
[SC] CreateService SUCCESS

Next is to change the user for witch the newly added service “Dropbox Service” runs under. Change this to Administrator.
6. Choose properties on Dropbox service.
7. Click on tab “Log On”
8. Click “This account”, and select Admimistrator. Set appropriate password.
9. Set startup type to “Automatic”
10. Click Apply and OK

If this is the first time you have done this procedure for the administrator user, you will get an notification saying that the “Administrator user has been granted log on as service rights”. DO NOT START SERVICE AT THIS TIME.

Next is to setup some registry settings for the service
11. Start > Run > regedit
12. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Dropbox
13. Create a new key “Parameters”
14. Add a new string value “Application”, (type REG_SZ). Set the value to the path to the dropbox.exe binary. Find the location by right clicking on the Dropbox icon on the desktop. Simply copy the path from there.
15. Close Registry Editor
16. Go back to Services, and start the Dropbox service

Window XP support has End

As of April 8, 2014, support and updates for Windows XP are no longer available.

What is Windows XP end of support?
Microsoft provided support for Windows XP for the past 12 years. But the time came for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources toward supporting more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences. As a result, technical assistance for Windows XP is no longer available, including automatic updates that help protect your PC.

Microsoft has also stopped providing Microsoft Security Essentials for download on Windows XP. If you already have Microsoft Security Essentials installed, you’ll continue to receive antimalware signature updates for a limited time. However, please note that Microsoft Security Essentials (or any other antivirus software) will have limited effectiveness on PCs that do not have the latest security updates. This means that PCs running Windows XP will not be secure and will still be at risk for infection.

What happens if I continue to use Windows XP?
If you continue to use Windows XP now that support has ended, your computer will still work but it might become more vulnerable to security risks and viruses. Internet Explorer 8 is also no longer supported, so if your Windows XP PC is connected to the Internet and you use Internet Explorer 8 to surf the web, you might be exposing your PC to additional threats. Also, as more software and hardware manufacturers continue to optimize for more recent versions of Windows, you can expect to encounter more apps and devices that do not work with Windows XP.