It's time to bow to the inevitable: PC OEMs will cease selling machines pre-loaded with Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 at the end of this month. The only PCs for sale after that will be leftover inventory, and once they are gone, it's an all-Windows 10 world.
Microsoft does this with every operating system, and given that Windows 7 is now 7 years old, it was certainly time. It had pushed off its end of life by two years after the Windows 8 disaster, just like it had to extend Windows XP following Vista.
Business users will still have the option of downgrading your Windows 10 machine to Windows 7, of course, and Microsoft is committed to supporting Windows 7 until 2020. You need installation media for Windows 7, and you’ll have to activate the system manually, but you probably already knew that.
Corporate customers with volume licenses also still have the right to install Windows 7 on their new machines. That does not change. System builders won't get any more OEM CDs for fresh installs, but the inventory should last a while.
It’s hard to believe it's been seven years since Windows 7 hit the market. I remember using the beta throughout most of 2009, and it was rock solid. It's a shame Microsoft ruined all of the momentum and goodwill with Windows 8. As for Windows 10, I don't use it for compatibility reasons—not the spyware reasons so many people cite. Maybe in another year all of the bugs will be worked out.