Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday

Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday
In this Jan. 11, 2010 file photo, a display for Microsoft's Windows 7 is shown at the National Retail Federation's convention in New York. (AP)
Short Url
Updated 14 January 2020

Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday

Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday
  • Microsoft is ending support Tuesday for Windows Server 2008 or 2008 R2 operating systems

NEW YORK: If you’re still using Microsoft’s Windows 7, your computer might soon be at risk.
Microsoft will stop providing free security updates for the system on Tuesday, meaning computers using it will be more vulnerable to malware and hacking.
Users who want to protect their computers need to upgrade to Windows 10. They may also need to buy new computers because older machines might not be compatible with Windows 10.
Tech companies typically phase out older systems after a number of years and focus efforts on updating current versions of software. Windows 7 came out in 2009. Windows 8, which came out in 2012, will have free support end in 2023.
Windows 10 starts at $139 for a basic, “Home” version. Microsoft charges $200 for a “Pro” version meant for businesses and individuals who need its advance features. Windows 10 comes with regular free updates for security and additional features. Although Windows 10 isn’t likely to be phased out anytime soon, older versions will require those updates to keep working.
Microsoft is also ending support Tuesday for Windows Server 2008 or 2008 R2 operating systems.
Those who run Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Enterprise can buy extended protection for up to three years. But it might be worthwhile to just to buy new PCs or get Windows 10.
Microsoft will also be ending support on Oct. 13 for Office 2010 a package that includes word processing and spreadsheet software. Owners need to explore newer versions of Office, including a subscription offering called Office 365.


Asteroid samples leave Japan scientists ‘speechless’

Asteroid samples leave Japan scientists ‘speechless’
Updated 15 December 2020

Asteroid samples leave Japan scientists ‘speechless’

Asteroid samples leave Japan scientists ‘speechless’
  • The Japanese probe collected surface dust and pristine material last year from the asteroid Ryugu
  • ‘It was more than we expected and there was so much that I was truly impressed’

TOKYO: Scientists in Japan said Tuesday they were left “speechless” when they saw how much asteroid dust was inside a capsule delivered by the Hayabusa-2 space probe in an unprecedented mission.
The Japanese probe collected surface dust and pristine material last year from the asteroid Ryugu, around 300 million kilometers away, during two daring phases of its six-year mission.
This month it dropped off a capsule containing the samples, which created a fireball as it entered the Earth’s atmosphere, and landed in the Australian desert before being transported to Japan.
Scientists at the Japanese space agency JAXA on Tuesday removed the screws to the capsule’s inner container, having already found a small amount of asteroid dust in the outer shell.
“When we actually opened it, I was speechless. It was more than we expected and there was so much that I was truly impressed,” said JAXA scientist Hirotaka Sawada.
“It wasn’t fine particles like powder, but there were plenty of samples that measured several millimeters across.”
Scientists hope the material will shed light on the formation of the universe and perhaps offer clues about how life began on Earth.
The scientists have not yet revealed if the material inside is equal to, or perhaps even more, than the 0.1 grams they had said they hoped to discover.
Seiichiro Watanabe, a Hayabusa project scientist and professor at Nagoya University, said he was nonetheless thrilled.
“There are a lot (of samples) and it seems they contain plenty of organic matter,” he said.
“So I hope we can find out many things about how organic substances have developed on the parent body of Ryugu.”
Half of Hayabusa-2’s samples will be shared between JAXA, US space agency NASA and other international organizations.
The rest will be kept for future study as advances are made in analytic technology.
But work is not over for the probe, which will now begin an extended mission targeting two new asteroids.