Windows 7 has been around for quite a while and is a welcome upgrade to Windows Vista. Since its release in 2009, Windows 7 has earned plaudits for its simplicity and performance. However, Windows 10 has firmly established itself as a powerhouse operating system (OS) with its modern appearance and advanced features, but despite Windows 10’s undoubted performance, is it more complicated than Windows 7?
Windows 10 is slightly more complicated than Windows 7 in that it requires more frequent updates and has more advanced features, which some users may find difficult to use. However, Windows 10 addresses the many issues users had with Windows 7, making it faster, more secure, and much more efficient.
If you’re a Windows 7 user worried about the inevitable transition to an updated OS, more specifically Windows 10, then you’ll find this article useful. Read on as we compare Windows 7 and 10, discussing their pros and cons to determine which is easier to use.
Differences between Windows 7 and Windows 10
Despite being released years apart, Windows 7 and Windows 10 come with their unique strengths and weaknesses. To determine which OS is more complicated, here’s a brief discussion of some of the main differences.
Windows 7 gained massive popularity due to its simplistic user interface (UI). The OS undoubtedly stood out due to its understandable and relatively consistent user experience (UX). The ease of using Windows 7 explains why its immediate successor, Windows 8, struggled to win admirers upon its release.
By hitting the Start button, users can quickly locate their desired programs. The simplicity, coupled with the contemporary Aero Glass look, made Windows 7 stand out from its predecessors.
The changes in the user interface aren’t massively overboard with Windows 10, as it comes with the popular start button that Windows 8 lacked. However, users have to get used to some new features, including live tiles, designed to enhance the menu’s aesthetics and can be modified to suit a user’s preferences.
Windows 10 users will also love the ease of accessing folders and files in Windows 10. In terms of compatibility with modern technology, it stands out from all the previous operating systems launched by Microsoft. Windows 10 works significantly better for users with hybrid devices like laptops that convert to tablets.
Which is best?
While there aren’t significant differences in UI, adjusting to Windows 10 from 7 might take some time. However, Windows 8 users are less likely to feel the difference when upgrading to Windows 10 since the two operating systems have many similarities. Either way, you’ll soon get the hang of Windows 10 and enjoy using its simplistic interface.
Support and security features
Unfortunately, Microsoft officially ended its support for Windows 7. This means that while Windows 7 users will still use the OS on their PCs, they’ll no longer receive protection from viruses and malware.
Therefore, to have your device protected, you’ll need to purchase a separate antivirus, which might lack the advanced protection that comes with regular Windows updates. Eventually, the need to purchase antiviruses and/or upgrade regularly contributes to making Windows 7 more complicated than Windows 10.
Windows 10 is the way to go if you want uncompromised protection for your device. The Windows OS has received rave reviews for its impressive security features, with it largely expected that more security updates would be made in the future.
When it comes to user support, no Microsoft OS quite compares to Windows 10. However, users can benefit from a wide range of features that come with it, such as the ability to pin websites to the device’s taskbar and increased flexibility regarding password management.
Which is best?
Understanding the changes that come with each Windows 10 update can prove challenging for some users. This is especially the case for Windows 7 users who aren’t used to receiving as many updates as Windows 10. Therefore, new users might need some time to learn more about changes that come with updates and how to make the most of them.
However, since Windows 7 is no longer supported by Microsoft, the clear choice here is Windows 10. Though users can purchase additional security programs, there’s no guarantee they will continue to work without frequent updates.
As mentioned earlier, Windows 7 can’t compare to Windows 10 when it comes to integrating advanced features. One great example is the lack of a voice assistant in Windows 7. In the now outdated OS, users could only search by typing keyboard commands.
In contrast, Windows 10 comes with Cortana, a voice assistant that makes browsing and overall usage a lot easier. Cortana compares to IOS’s Siri and is designed to help users create calendar entries, perform internet searches, and even create new emails without typing manually.
Which is best?
The voice assistant is a fairly easy-to-use feature (even for first-time users) and doesn’t contribute to Windows 10’s complexities. With the rise in such devices, from Alexa to Google Hubs, this technology is becoming a staple for most users, making Windows 7 almost obsolete without it.
However, learning the best way to use the feature might take some users more time than others. Trial and error and learning the correct way to phrase things are important, but the overall use is similar to other voice-commanded devices.
Power Button and Taskbar customization
Windows 7 was well-received due to its ability to balance both simplicity and efficiency. Unlike its predecessors, Windows 7 allows users to customize the taskbar with ease. By right-clicking on an app or program, all you’ll need to do is click on the pin to taskbar button to make it easily accessible.
While Windows 10 comes with similar features, it has made access to programs easier overall by allowing users to drag and remove apps from the taskbar. Another great feature is the easy-to-locate nature of the Windows 10 power button.
In Windows 7, one has to click on the start button and click the arrow on the log-off button. With Windows 10, however, the power button is located immediately below the settings on the menu page.
Which is best?
In terms of ease-of-shutting down and customizing the taskbar, it’s safe to conclude that Windows 10 takes the day. Not only can you drag items directly to the taskbar and unpin with a single click, but you can also turn off the device without pressing too many buttons. This makes Windows 10 a lot easier to use than its predecessors.
Microsoft Account integration
Although Windows 7 was well ahead of its time in terms of ease of use, speed, and functionality, it still lacked when it came to account integration. Its features did not promote the creation and use of Microsoft Accounts., making syncing between devices a problem. In fact, most Windows 7 users still experience to date.
Windows 8 tried to address the problem but didn’t do too well due to its focus on tablet and hybrid users instead of the desktop and PC users who’d become used to operating Windows 7. However, with Windows 10, users can benefit from a significantly improved overall connectivity that allows for easy syncing across devices.
In Windows 10, you’ll need a Microsoft account to access some new features like the Windows Store. While it isn’t mandatory to have a Microsoft account, having one will ensure you make the most of Windows 10. This feature slightly enhances Windows 10’s complexity, especially since logging in to the Microsoft account might be required to access some features.
Which is best?
Given that Windows 7 users were never able to sync their accounts properly, it’s clear that Windows 10 is the better option for users with multiple devices. This will include tablets, phones, email accounts, and more.
Windows 7 came with the well-known Windows Explorer, which was a bit rigid to use. While Windows Explorer made life a lot easier in Windows 7, it still needed some improvements. For instance, My Computer is called This PC in Windows 10 and doesn’t appear on the desktop by default. Moreover, Libraries also won’t show up in the new explorer unless the user wants them to.
Windows 10 sought to make PC usage a lot easier than before, and the File Explorer now comes with a host of new additions, top of the list being OneDrive and Quick access. The Quick access button allows users to access recently used files and frequently used folders to make the folder or file retrieval process a lot easier.
Which is best?
Again, Windows 10 appears to be a lot less complicated than Windows 7 due to File Explorer. The File Explorer makes life a lot easier, especially when looking to access frequently used files and folders. In addition, the inclusion of additional features such as OneDrive Help increases Windows 10’s usability.
The Action Center in Windows 7 is pretty basic and geared towards giving users control over system notifications. Although the Action Center helped declutter Windows by limiting OS notifications popping from the taskbar, it still required considerable improvements, especially in the overall function.
In Windows 10, Microsoft redefined the entire Action Center concept, giving the feature a complete transformation to make life a lot easier. In addition to giving users full access to OS-based notifications, Windows 10’s Action Center also comes with various settings that allow you to modify your PC.
Which is best?
The Action Center in Windows 10 is, without doubt, more user-friendly than its previous version in Windows 7.
Besides providing basic system notifications, the new Action Center allows you to tweak your device by clicking on some of the shortcuts that include airplane mode, Bluetooth, Nearby sharing, location, and tablet mode, among other settings.
Windows Store and Microsoft Edge
At the time of its release, the world was yet to make immense strides in terms of internet and social media integration. Unfortunately, this means that although Windows 7 has a lot of great features, you won’t be able to download apps from Microsoft’s Windows Store.
Moreover, Windows 7 still uses Internet Explorer as the default browser, which can’t be compared to a host of other top-performing independent browsers. This means that you’ll need to be extra careful when using Internet Explorer since it is in the process of being abandoned for the feature-rich Microsoft Edge.
Windows 10 is designed for the globalized, internet-intensive world. The modernized OS gives users quick access to a host of applications, courtesy of the Windows Store.
And while understanding how the Windows Store works might take some time, the wait will be totally worth it, especially once you learn to make the most of the apps.
Moreover, Windows 10 features the advanced browser, Microsoft Edge, which, besides being safer than Internet Explorer, comes packed with many advanced features that make browsing easier.
With Microsoft Edge, you can benefit from integrated Cortana support, faster browsing speeds, and a reading view that helps declutter content.
Which is best?
Granted, learning how to make the most of new additions like the Windows Store and Microsoft Edge might come off as hard, especially for Windows 7 users. However, these features will make great additions and simplify the entire browsing process once you get used to them.
Windows 7’s task manager wasn’t easy to understand. Most users encountered difficulties when looking to end tasks, and others just struggled to understand the application.
In addition, the static graphs in Windows 7 don’t reveal much apart from memory usage, making the task manager hard to understand.
The task manager is significantly improved in Windows 10, more specifically due to a performance tab. You can access graphs covering Memory, Disk Usage, Network, and CPU through the performance tab.
You can also shrink the Task Manager and display the graph you need instead of focusing on too many resources simultaneously.
The compact view in Windows 10’s task manager allows you to select specific apps and click on More details to see relevant data.
This makes it easy to terminate apps without having to conduct extensive searches. Therefore, in terms of usability of the Task Manager, Windows 10 carries the day due to its improved and easy-to-use task manager.
Which is best?
As seen throughout this section, Windows 10 is not too complicated and only requires some getting used to. It might take you a bit of time to adjust to Windows 10, especially when linking to online accounts and using downloaded apps. However, over time, you’ll find Windows 10 easy to use and highly reliable.
Reasons to switch to Windows 10
Despite being launched a while back, Windows 7 still has a great following, with most users citing its simplicity and minimalist UI as some of the best features.
However, since Microsoft decided to stop supporting Windows 7, most users must consider switching to a more advanced OS.
Below are reasons why Windows 10 is truly an upgrade worth making:
Windows 10 is, without a doubt, the safest Microsoft OS to date, picking up right where Windows 8 left and including newer security features. You can take advantage of features like Device Guard, Windows Hello, and Microsoft Passport to enhance your security.
Moreover, the regular updates mean chances of viruses or hackers getting access to your device remain at an all-time low.
In addition to increasing the frequency of updates, Microsoft elected to make some system updates automatic in Windows 10. This feature enhances overall security, ensuring that your PC is regularly updated. In Windows 10, all you can choose is when you’re comfortable receiving the updates and allow the OS to do the rest.
Apps, movies, and games
Windows 10 ushers you into the new world of interconnectivity. For example, you can find different software on Windows 10 and download them through the Windows Store, a feature that’s impossible with Windows 7.
In addition, the ability to download games, movies, and apps on Windows 10 make the OS a true powerhouse, especially for gaming and professional tasks.
Windows 10 apps are more secure than previous Windows apps and are designed to integrate with the system by providing timely notifications in the Action Center. In addition, media and productivity apps like photos, music, videos, people maps, and calendars are also more advanced and feature-rich in Windows 10.
One major advantage of Windows 10 is its improved overall speed. Not only does Windows 10 come with an ultra-modern appearance, but it is also faster and more efficient than previous operating systems.
In addition, the increased efficiency of the OS means your PC will require less processing power, thus prolonging the useful life of your PC’s hardware.
Windows 10 also has a much shorter startup time than its predecessors, loading a lot faster and consuming less charge than previous installments.
This means that you can do a lot more with Windows 10 (browsing, typing, streaming, and downloading) without draining your computer’s hardware.
Windows 10 was designed with flexibility in mind, as can be seen from its updated Control Center. The improvements in the Control Center allow users to easily switch between applications, unlike when using older operating systems. Put simply, you can choose the programs you want to start automatically upon startup and switch off the programs that you don’t fancy using.
The debate on which OS between Windows 10 and 7 is more complicated is unlikely to end any time soon. Luckily, users transitioning from Windows 8 are likely to find Windows 10 easier to use than those accustomed to Windows 7.
While Windows 10 might appear more difficult to use due to its abundance of new features, it’s not too different from Windows 7. And with Microsoft no longer supporting Windows 7, you will need to transition to Windows 8 or 10 to receive regular program updates.