Home Home Tech Microsoft unveils latest bid to force Windows 10 upgrades

Microsoft unveils latest bid to force Windows 10 upgrades

Microsoft has unveiled its latest method to make users of Windows 7 and 8/8.1 upgrade to Windows 10, by making updates unavailable if users of these versions of Windows are running on systems which use the latest processors.

Included are Intel seventh generation processors (Kaby Lake), AMD Bristol Ridge (Zen/Ryzen) and Qualcomm 8996.

Users who see this message: "Unsupported Hardware. Your PC uses a processor that isn’t supported on this version of Windows  and you won’t receive updates", or this one: "Windows could not search for new updates. An error occurred while checking for new updates for your computer. Error(s) found: Code 80240037 Windows Update encountered an unknown error", were told that they needed to upgrade to Windows 10.

Microsoft said on its support forum: "This error occurs because new processor generations require the latest Windows version for support. For example, Windows 10 is the only Windows version that is supported on the following processor generations: Intel seventh (7th)-generation processors, AMD 'Bristol Ridge' and Qualcomm '8996'."

And it added: "Because of how this support policy is implemented, Windows 8.1 and Windows 7 devices that have a seventh generation or a later generation processor may no longer be able to scan or download updates through Windows Update or Microsoft Update."

Microsoft said the issue could be resolved by upgrading to Windows 10.

"We recommend that you upgrade Windows 8.1-based and Window 7-based computers to Windows 10 if those computers have a processor that is from any of the following generations:

  • Intel seventh (7th)-generation "Intel Core" processor or a later generation;
  • AMD seventh (7th)-generation ('Bristol Ridge') processor or a later generation;
  • Qualcomm '8996' processor or a later generation."

Last year, Microsoft tried several times, using methods that can only be described as devious, to force Windows users to upgrade to Windows 10 ahead of a 29 July 2016 deadline that it had set.

In at least two cases, the company was forced to pay damages to users who went to court after they were forced into upgrades which they did not want.

Reports say that take-up of Windows 10 has stalled after the 29 July 2016 deadline, with only about 400 million of an estimated 1.5 billion Windows users having upgraded.


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Sam Varghese

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A professional journalist with decades of experience, Sam for nine years used DOS and then Windows, which led him to start experimenting with GNU/Linux in 1998. Since then he has written widely about the use of both free and open source software, and the people behind the code. His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.