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  • Microsoft Security Essentials warning about end-of-support for Vista

    Posted on January 10th, 2017 at 17:57 woody 33 comments

    Support for Vista will end on April 11 – three months from now. Apparently Microsoft Security Essentials is getting a little pushy about it. This from EB:

    This morning MSE ( greeted me with a popup warning on my fully updated Vista SP2 X64 system with a questionable warning about operating system end of support, fixed itself in “Potentially Unprotected” status and provided a link to a Kb article that thinks I’m running XP!

    Following is a screen shot of the MSE interface.


    And clicking the link takes me to a completely irrelevant https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/14223/windows-xp-end-of-support

    I also updated MSE to the latest version (in a virtual machine) and received the same results.

    Sometimes it seems to me that MS documentation is handled by poorly programmed bots and the accuracy of information is not checked before it is released to the public.

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    33 Responses to “Microsoft Security Essentials warning about end-of-support for Vista”

    1. Anonymous says:

      MSE sent me a 175MB definition update about 2 hours ago. I do not know why, MSE was up to date at noon today after I logged on.

      Definition updates are never that big.

      • EP says:

        The MSE definition updates that I downloaded manually for 32bit MSE is 120Mb and for 64bit MSE is 121Mb – I just downloaded them on Jan. 11 around 1pm Pacific time from Microsoft Support KB article 971606. Not sure why the MSE definition update you got on Jan. 10 was 175Mb.

        • Anonymous says:

          I got this update automatically. It looks to me as though it was the entire MSE database and not the definition update that was specified in the download (.80). If 170MB is larger that the MSE database that you found manually, then it is even more confusing.

          I do not understand why they would need to auto send the entire database at anytime unless they found some form of corruption and could not apply the latest definition update. If that is what happened I should have received an error message in the event log and some warning from the program itself in real time.

      • SH says:

        I have another problem, ever since the 10th my mse has been updating with every defenition, normally I would manually update once and it would be done but now every 2 hours it updates. I’m running win7 and I would like to know if anyone else is suffering from this

    2. Erik says:

      Woody – what is the best way to upgrade a Vista system to Windows 7? Clean install of Windows 7 or is there still a way to directly upgrade?

      • woody says:

        Clean install. Even if there were a way to upgrade in place, you would still want to clean install.

      • ch100 says:

        There is a way to do in place upgrade, because the 2 systems are very similar, especially if Vista is at SP2.
        But to avoid any issues, it is highly recommended to do a clean install.

        • ch100 says:

          And DO NOT install Windows 7 32-bit if you do it clean.
          It is exactly the same licence key for 32-bit and 64-bit systems.

          • Jim4 says:

            Why would he not want to install W7 32-bit? His computer might not have enough memory, etc., to run well with 64-bit.

            If his computer will support 64-bit, then that is definitely the way to go.

            • Canadian Tech says:

              A couple years ago, I had two brand new computers on my desk. They were identical in every way except that one had a 64 bit install and the other 32. I was able to do some measurements. The difference was about 15%

              • ch100 says:

                I suppose the 32-bit was faster, but my advice is based on practical considerations, see the other reply.

                • Canadian Tech says:

                  Sorry, I did not state it more explicitly. the 64 bit machine was FASTER than the 32 bit one by 15%

                  My practice is to install 32 bit only in the case where the system is not capable of supporting 64. I would always try to increase memory to 4G.

            • ch100 says:

              Maybe it is the wrong assumption, but installing 64-bit version allows for effectively using extra memory added in the future without a need for reinstalling the OS. RAM is not so expensive and even second hand RAM can be used for those old machines.

      • Jim4 says:

        I almost always recommend a clean install over an upgrade. But there is one instance where I would recommend an upgrade rather than a clean install — if you have software that you can’t reinstall, because you lost the install key, the install disk, etc. By doing an upgrade rather than a clean install, you will likely still have that software installed and ready to use.

        A clean install erases all of the Windows problems and debris that have built up over time. It also erases all of the programs you have installed. So if you aren’t able to reinstall a must-have program, then you will have to do an in-place upgrade.

    3. fp says:

      What exactly is the incentive for Ms – excluding serving their users, which is not one – to have anything other than bots? They make more money w bots and users accept it.

    4. Eric says:

      Le Boule wrote “Indeed it does appear that MS is shutting down support for MSE on Vista a few months early!”

      This is speculation. MS’ pathetically inaccurate documentation merely warns about the impending end of life for Vista. IMHO, at this juncture the above comment just adds more fuel to the FUD fire.

    5. abbodi86 says:

      At least it did not recieve a nagware update like Windows 7 RTM and Windows 8, promoting upgrade to Windows 10
      or it may come next month 😀

    6. AlexEiffel says:

      I will say it again, Microsoft should have given the free 10 update to Vista users too since those poor beta testers early adopters have been unjustifiably burnt so much already by using Vista. The low market share of Vista made some companies like Adobe drop support of Reader earlier than XP, which is unacceptable since it was an officially supported OS by Microsoft. They should have at least given a free update to 7.

      A machine running Vista can certainly run Win 10, since not much has changed between the OSes in terms of real world requirements.

      • ch100 says:

        There is one major difference between the machine load on Windows 7 and Windows 10 which was discussed here and I provided details and a solution on one of the Microsoft sites about 1 year ago.
        Windows 10 does not park CPUs, while Windows 7 does if using the Balanced Power Plan, which is default.
        This can cause overheating on older machines upgraded to Windows 10, but they feel more responsive too.
        There is a Registry key which would change that behaviour, but while I used to implement it during my previous experience with Windows 10, now that I am running older laptops which were officially due to be replaced many years ago, I use the default configuration, while running the CPU and motherboard a little bit hotter. A cooler without the fan running but to keep the laptop further from the desk surface helps a lot.

    7. Canadian Tech says:

      You are going to have to be out of pocket for a replacement AV product.

      This is a controversial topic. I suggest you visit this web site to get a sense of which AV software does the best job, depending on what kind of user you are: http://www.av-comparatives.org/ This is a non-profit that has been around for a long time and I trust their results. Download and read the 2016 summary report. Their latest report: https://www.av-comparatives.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/avc_prot_2016b_en.pdf

      When you interpret these results, keep in mind the difference between a product that detects 95% and another 99% of infections, is actually 5 times more likely to allow an infection.

    8. Geo says:

      I get warnings all the time. Just do the quick scan and it goes backs to green.

      • Eric says:

        Now that MSE has started to badger Vista users about impending end of support scanning no longer resets the icon in the notification area or the UI display. It is perpetually stuck in the amber “potentially unprotected” status.

        And to add insult to injury MSE also added an annoying warning window that appears above the notification area icon at every system startup.


    9. Don says:

      I am running Vista and have a copy of 10 complete. Should i do a clean install. I am not a computer geek and will need help backing up my files and other programs.

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