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Author Topic: Electrum still safe on Windows 7 OS, after Microsoft support ends?  (Read 86 times)
Kakmakr
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January 28, 2020, 08:03:28 AM
 #1

I have a lot of friends and family running Windows 7 and as we all know, Microsoft stopped supporting Windows 7 from the 14th of January 2020. I get questioned a lot, if their Electrum wallet would still be safe after the support ends.

I refer these people to this article to explain things a bit further :
https://askleo.com/how-to-keep-using-windows-7-safely-after-support-ends/

It is not recommended to keep running Windows 7, because you might be at risk if some critical vulnerability is exploited and not patched by Microsoft.

In all likelihood Microsoft might still patch critical security updates for Windows 7, even if it is not supported anymore. Example : https://www.theverge.com/2020/1/27/21082228/microsoft-windows-7-black-wallpaper-fix-update-support-patch

As long as Electrum supports Windows 7 and earlier Operating systems and they beef up the security for their wallet, you can be sure that it would be protected for a while.  Wink

** I still recommend people to upgrade to Windows 10, if their hardware meet the minimum requirements for Windows 10.
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4028142/windows-10-system-requirements

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January 28, 2020, 08:27:45 AM
Merited by ETFbitcoin (1), o_e_l_e_o (1)
 #2

Electrum itself will not have any problem, unless sometime in the future some newer libraries may be required.

But Windows 7 vulnerabilities may be patched a little bit slower, if at all.
If they do use the computer more than only for Electrum, but I think that they should think seriously to alternatives in max one year.

For Electrum only, booting from an USB stick with Tails can provide a safer environment (just the user may have to enter the seed at each and every boot).

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January 28, 2020, 08:32:57 AM
 #3

It is not recommended to keep running Windows 7, because you might be at risk if some critical vulnerability is exploited and not patched by Microsoft.
I think you already have the answer hete.

However if I elaborate my understanding then it's like:
As long as you will use the latest version of Electrum you should be fine from Electrum side. But if your windows gets infected and if that targets your electrum file then it's easier for hackers or such people to steal your information. Hance you are risking your money by using an older version of OS.

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Lucius
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January 28, 2020, 12:11:19 PM
Merited by o_e_l_e_o (1)
 #4

Anyone with a significant amount of coins should not use a desktop wallet, because regardless of the OS and all the security measures, it is in the end still a great risk. It's definitely an increased risk with an OS that no longer has support, and I think this should definitely be avoided by updating to new OS, or by investing in a hardware wallet (some $50).

I think W7 is something which is definitely becoming the past, and that those using desktop wallets should try to upgrade the OS to W10 which is still free, or maybe switch to Linux which is definitely a safer option, not to mention how much better on privacy side.

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January 28, 2020, 12:57:17 PM
 #5

Electrum itself will not have any problem, unless sometime in the future some newer libraries may be required.

But Windows 7 vulnerabilities may be patched a little bit slower, if at all.
If they do use the computer more than only for Electrum, but I think that they should think seriously to alternatives in max one year.

For Electrum only, booting from an USB stick with Tails can provide a safer environment (just the user may have to enter the seed at each and every boot).

You do not have to "enter the seed" every time you reboot Tails from a memory stick.  Grin  If you start Tails from a USB stick, you can create a persistent volume in the free space left on the USB stick and then when you boot, your wallet will be configured from the persistent volume.

Also, Tails has an old version of Electrum being launched from the default ISO, so you will have to upgrade to the latest version on the persistent volume to avoid all the exploits in the older version.  Tongue

Tails will still boot with a fresh Operating system, but the Electrum version will store your seed and the upgraded version of the wallet on your persistent volume.  Wink

See this for more details : https://tails.boum.org/doc/first_steps/persistence/index.en.html

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January 28, 2020, 01:20:12 PM
 #6

You do not have to "enter the seed" every time you reboot Tails from a memory stick.  Grin  If you start Tails from a USB stick, you can create a persistent volume in the free space left on the USB stick and then when you boot, your wallet will be configured from the persistent volume.

It's up to user preference and knowledge. I prefer to re-enter the seed since I don't use Tails often enough and I tend to overwrite the USB stick.
I know about persistent volume from the days I had to install newer Electrum.

Also, Tails has an old version of Electrum being launched from the default ISO, so you will have to upgrade to the latest version on the persistent volume to avoid all the exploits in the older version.  Tongue

Tails 4.0 already came with newer Electrum 3.3.8 in October. 3.3.8 is still the latest Electrum.
I didn't use the newest Tails (4.2.2), but I doubt that they've returned to older Electrum. Do you have any newer information?

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January 28, 2020, 01:43:55 PM
 #7

Windows 7 no longer being updated might make it a bit more secure.

A lot of the time windows 10 "patches" aren't tested well (it's as if they don't have a testing department anymore) and cause many systems to face a large amount of issues when they update the OS (every Windows update does the same).

Provided people keep using Windows 7, stuff should be compatible and it was one of the best microsoft operating systems.

I'd suggest getting an AV if you're ever going to use windows and this should mitigate a lot of the problems the OS has (as long as you're not stupid and keep your firewall activated if you don't know what you're doing).



I think windows 9 is quite a lot like windows 7 on the inside (obviously haven't decompiled it but I have used it and it works quite well) - it was an OS for microcontrollers and signage systems. Any critical vulnerabilities will probably be patched until windows 9 stops being supported.



If you want total security and can't afford a hardware wallet, buy two kingston usb drives (the good ones) and put your wallet on there with ubuntu/debian installed on both.


Honestly if you've been relying on Windows' security this long you really ought to consider if you should be connected to the internet at all on the computer with crypto on it. You're the sort of person that would go: "well it had the federal mark on it it looked legit".

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January 28, 2020, 02:10:52 PM
 #8

Windows 7 no longer being updated might make it a bit more secure.
A lot of the time windows 10 "patches" aren't tested well (it's as if they don't have a testing department anymore) and cause many systems to face a large amount of issues when they update the OS (every Windows update does the same).

An ingenious statement that certainly deserves to be remembered. Do you really think that a system that has lost official support is better than one that has one? If it is true that Microsoft is not testing files before making them public, it's a really idiotic move.

I'd suggest getting an AV if you're ever going to use windows and this should mitigate a lot of the problems the OS has (as long as you're not stupid and keep your firewall activated if you don't know what you're doing).

How antivirus software or firewall "should mitigate a lot of the problems" with any OS? They are not designed to patch holes in the operating system. And how is stupid to keep firewall ON all time, my is always activated and I have zero problems.

I think windows 9 is quite a lot like windows 7 on the inside (obviously haven't decompiled it but I have used it and it works quite well) - it was an OS for microcontrollers and signage systems. Any critical vulnerabilities will probably be patched until windows 9 stops being supported.

I've never heard of the W9, but some people call W10 like that - because they follow the logic that 9 logically comes after 8. To me, this is just unnecessary confusion. I don't agree that any Windows OS can be 100% patched, and I'm sure that won't be the case with the W10.

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January 28, 2020, 02:18:04 PM
 #9

Anyway, according to TheVerge (and many other sites), you still can upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10, for free if you want.
You just need to use the media creation tool available on Microsoft website.

More info there : https://www.theverge.com/2020/1/14/21065140/how-to-upgrade-microsoft-windows-7-10-free-os
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January 28, 2020, 02:18:10 PM
 #10

An ingenious statement that certainly deserves to be remembered. Do you really think that a system that has lost official support is better than one that has one? If it is true that Microsoft is not testing files before making them public, it's a really idiotic move.
They left the vulnerability wannacry utilised just from government sponsorhip... Nevermind that they're bieng paid to make an OS.

I'd suggest getting an AV if you're ever going to use windows and this should mitigate a lot of the problems the OS has (as long as you're not stupid and keep your firewall activated if you don't know what you're doing).

How antivirus software or firewall "should mitigate a lot of the problems" with any OS? They are not designed to patch holes in the operating system. And how is stupid to keep firewall ON all time, my is always activated and I have zero problems.
Yeah, I was a little ambigious and don't think a comman should be there but am not sure on the best way to add the pause.
As in
If you're not stupid and don't try to change your firewall without knowing what you're doing.
I've known too many people that try to change their company's firewall and do something they've read up on just to introduce another stupid vulnerability elsewhere that makes them much easier to be taken down... And this doesn't include people that have taken their own networks down because of their own stupidity in trying to forward traffic to a different server that just gets DDoS'd from the inside.

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January 28, 2020, 02:21:42 PM
 #11

Anyway, according to TheVerge (and many other sites), you still can upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10, for free if you want.

Windows 10 works very good even if it's not registered for years. It was said many many times. Microsoft can't wait to see everybody ditch the old versions.
On the other hand, OP has already recommended upgrade and stated that one good reason for not upgrading is outdated hardware which doesn't meet the minimum requirements for Windows 10.

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