Windows 7

What's a good antivirus for Windows 7?

Episode 1324

David from Burbank, CA

David is trying to find an antivirus for Windows 7. Leo says that Microsoft's own Security Essentials (or Defender, depending on the version) is sufficient, and it's free. The problem is that viruses are usually coming out so fast (called zero day exploits) that you can get infected before the AntiVirus finds it and removes it. Then the viruses are often attached to a system file and it renders the computer unusable. Even security experts put antivirus low on the list of things to do to prevent infection.

How can I dual boot with Windows 10 and Windows 7?

Windows 10 Start Menu

Episode 1306

Tony from Woodland Hills, CA

Tony has a Windows 7 laptop and he wants to replace the hard drive with an SSD and then dual boot with Windows 10. Leo says it's completely doable. Leo recommends backing up his data and then replacing the drive. Then he can do a clean install of Windows 7, and then do the Windows 10 upgrade. Then he can also choose a dual boot option.

There are a few pitfalls doing this, though. Leo recommends Googling "Windows 10 dual boot" for tips.

Why do I get an error message when I turn on my computer?

Episode 1305

Gloria from North Hollywood, CA

Gloria's Acer Windows 7 computer has an error code which pops up when she turns it on. Leo says that is a known error with Acer computers that points to an issue with the BIOS. The BIOS is a chip with a small program in it that runs immediately after turning it on. If there's an error message, it sounds like it could be corrupted or damaged. It could also be causing Gloria's inability to install Windows 10.

Can I install both Windows 7 and Windows 10?

Episode 1304

Glen from Winnetka, CA

Glen wants to dual boot with Windows 7 and 10. Leo says it can be done. He can do the download and it should ask him if he wants to install Windows side by side. Will he be able to update both? Leo says absolutely. It'll be free, too, since the license is associated with the hardware and not the user. He'll have to update within the version he's using, though.

Glen should create his partition first. Then go into the Windows installer and choose the dual boot side by side option.

Why does it take so long to get Windows 7 updates?

Episode 1302

Warren from Haymarket, Virginia

Warren is a Windows 7 user who doesn't want to upgrade to 10, and he's frustrated that it takes so long to get updates. Leo says that they're supposed to have fixed that by now. Warren says that in theory they did fix it, but in reality it isn't fixed. It requires installing a service pack that doesn't really address the issue and several other things. Is Microsoft trying to frustrate us into upgrading? Leo says that's a conspiracy theory. He'll need the rolled up service pack update.

Why does my computer keep losing access to my hard drives?

Episode 1285

Bill from Glendora, CA

Bill's hard drives keep disappearing from his computer. After he reboots, it'll say "fixing disk," and will be there for about 10 minutes before it disappears again. His SSD boot drive works fine, though. Leo says there are a lot of things it could be including hardware and cabling. He should go and look to see how its setup in BIOS. It should be something wrong with AHCI or a driver issue. Since he built the computer himself, there's no one he can call for help. Then again, the support from the major companies isn't helpful anyway.

How can I stop Microsoft from updating me to Windows 10?

Windows 10 Start Menu

Episode 1275

Cathy from Santa Cruz, CA

Cathy has Windows 7 and does not want to move to Windows 10. Leo says that she can turn off recommended updates, but keep critical updates. Critical updates are vital to keeping the OS healthy and secure. But she can definitely choose to disable recommended updates, which is where the Windows 10 update files will be offered.

But there's a better option from Steve Gibson. It's called Never10. She can download it, install it, run it, and then can delete it. And she'll never be bothered by it again.