Last week I obtained an e-mail discover from Microsoft informing me that, as of January 14, 2020, they are going to now not help Windows 7, which I nonetheless have on one in all my desktop computer systems. Why? Because I’ve some legacy software program that’s incompatible with Windows 8 and 10: dBase III+, Paint Shop Pro 7, PageMaker, a number of graphics packages and plugins—one is the primary model of Andromeda, which gives some superb graphic results—and some different purposes that had been initially DOS-based.

We’re not alone

I do know I’m not alone in clinging to an historical software program program that’s precisely what I want. Allen Bonde, VP and analysis director at Forrester, advised me that, “Where SaaS (Software as a Service) applications don’t have a foothold, we often still see customers sticking with older tools because they see a risk in switching to a newer system, or there just isn’t a compelling alternative.” It’s not simply random people, both, however complete corporations: “There are pockets of this behavior in smaller firms,” Bonde famous, “but also in sectors such as healthcare and government, where we see less digitally mature companies.”

I requested dozens of pals and colleagues, posted inquiries on Twitter and Facebook, and queried a number of dozen earlier purchasers and firms that I’ve labored with up to now: Does anyone nonetheless use legacy software program? Those who did had been usually embarrassed to confess it, however agreed to debate it “off the record.”

If upgrading to Windows 10 out of the blue disadvantaged you of your legacy favorites, search on-line utilizing a phrase similar to, “is Windows 10 compatible with [name of your legacy program],” e.g., “Is Windows 10 compatible with dBase III+.” You’ll uncover there are a lot of websites that specify how one can use your legacy software program with the present variations of Windows.

Here are six packages I discovered that folks simply gained’t give up.

Productivity suite: Office 2003

The greatest, most generally used legacy software program nonetheless in circulation is Microsoft Office 2003. There are complete corporations on the market nonetheless utilizing this model of Office. Why? Because this was the final .doc model that used the Classic menus versus the Ribbon menus (.docx variations).

The Classic menus had been a product of the CUA (Common User Access) Standards developed by IBM in 1987, which decided the person interface for all Windows, OS/2, MVS/ESA, VM/CMS, and OS/400 software program purposes. Equivalent instructions similar to File, Save, Exit, Print, Cut, Copy, Paste, Edit, View, Help, and a whole lot extra needed to comply with the identical design for each program whatever the style.

JD Sartain / IDG Worldwide

Classic Microsoft menus Add-In packages

The CUA requirements made it simpler for customers to study new Windows and OS/2 packages as a result of all of them had related menus, dialog containers, keyboard shortcuts, and so forth. Thanks to this normal, for example, the important thing combos of Ctrl+X, Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V —Cut, Copy, Paste— had been the identical in Word, Excel, Photoshop, Corel Paint, Quicken, and a whole lot of different packages.

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