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The days of requesting read receipts are long behind us. If you’ve been on the Internet for quite a while, you may remember email pop-ups asking for your consent to inform the sender that you’ve opened the email. These still exist at some capacity today, but other, more sneaky tracking methods have since taken over.

One of the first things that many people do when they get a new phone and begin texting is to turn off read receipts. No ones like having someone else believe that they’re ignoring them, and that “R” has gone as far as to end relationships. Most people want their messages responded to immediately after they’re read.

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You may have never realized it, but this same effect exists in email—except it’s much more difficult for the average user to “turn it off.”

In this article, let’s talk about the invasive ways that people have been tracking when you’ve opened their emails and how you can protect yourself against this.

What is an Email Tracking Pixel?

Your average email reader isn’t aware of just how powerful an invisible image actually is. Just by loading a single-pixel, 1×1 image, you’re giving away so much information about your machine.

When you load this image, the server it’s hosted on can place all sorts of information about your device in a database, like your IP address, location, browser, and more.

Other variables can be passed as well, like the email address you’re reading from (based on the address it was sent to) and the time when the email was viewed.

Email senders can embed a transparent image in the body of an email that they send to you, and you’ll never even know this is happening. Not fair, right? The good news is that you don’t have to be a victim of this breach of privacy.

How Can I Prevent Someone from Knowing When I’ve Opened Their Email?

There are options that make it easy for anyone to track the opening of their emails, such as MailTracker, but large companies will often use a corporate or in-house solution. If this wasn’t the case, it’d be easy to simply add certain domains to your internet privacy settings so that images from them are never loaded.

However, a more wide-reaching solution does exist: disabling the display of images across all emails. This option is available in practically every modern email client, except Windows 10 Mail, including Gmail’s web and mobile interfaces.

This will take you into your Gmail’s settings. Under the default General tab, you should see an Images option label. Here, be sure that Ask before displaying the page.

Now, any time you view an email, the images will be blocked by default. This will prevent tracking pixels from being able to collect any information from you. You’ll be surprised how many “text” only emails have small little images inside them.

An added plus is that you can still display images within an email on a one-time basis or by completely whitelisting a sender’s address, as shown in the two links below the “Images are not displayed,” line. This helps with the annoyance of constantly confirming to display images from senders you trust.

If you’re an iPhone or iPad user and are using the Gmail app, you’re out of luck. As of now, all images will appear and there is no option to turn it off. Android users of the Gmail app do have the option, however, so hopefully it makes it way to Apple devices eventually.

You may build up some confidence and begin allowing images from senders that you aren’t as familiar with and find that when you do, no visible images appear. Weird, right? You’re probably being tracked!

One of the many shortcomings of the Windows 10 Mail app is that it doesn’t support this feature. It seems like Windows has gone with a “less is more” approach in their latest email client, shifting away from Outlook.

Even if you set up your Gmail in Windows 10 Mail, with images blocked through the Gmail web app, this still won’t do the trick. Windows 10 Mail also doesn’t support requesting read receipts for your sent emails.

No matter what email client you choose to block images in, you’ll be a safer and more private email reader. Many advertisers use tracking pixels to gather statistics about their ad campaigns, but they can be used for much more nefarious purposes. You’re better off not opening yourself up to this possibility from untrusted senders.

Always deny read receipts and block images from email senders that you don’t trust. Following these two rules will allow you to be the most stealthy email reader you can be!

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Are Companies Accountable When Consumers Misuse Their Products?

Making sure that customers may safely use what they buy is one of the main duties of businesses. It also entails creating goods that are free of flaws and can be employed safely as intended, as well as carrying out thorough testing to uncover any possible hazards.

Sustainability is an additional crucial component of product responsibility. Businesses have an obligation to use goods and processes that have little detrimental effect on the environment when designing and producing products that have been deemed environmentally friendly. This entails decreasing waste and supporting the use of essential components that are sourced sustainably, as well as creating goods that are recyclable or can be recycled at the end of their useful lives.

A company’s legal responsibility to guarantee the excellence and protection of its products goes beyond its legal and ethical responsibilities. The production and sale of goods are governed by strict rules and laws in many nations, and businesses that don’t comply with these requirements may be held legally liable.

Are Companies Accountable When their Products are Misused?

Businesses are typically not liable for consumer misuse of their products. There happen to be a few alternatives to this rule, though.

In the event that a customer is hurt while using a product that was sold by a firm without proper warnings or directions for safe use, the business in question might have to be held accountable. In these situations, irrespective of whether the customer was abusing the device, the corporation may be considered responsible for failing to give enough caution or directions.

Organizations may also be held accountable if they promote their goods in an approach that encourages improper or unlawful use. For instance, if a business promotes an item as a method to become wasted or high.

However, in broad terms, firms are not liable for the exploitation of their goods; instead, users have responsibility for utilizing items properly and safely. The correct use of the goods produced by a business, as well as any potential risks or hazards linked with the goods, must be clearly and accurately communicated by the company. Reducing the chance of customer misuse can serve to safeguard both the client and the business.

What businesses may do if customers abuse their products

There are numerous steps a business can take if a customer misuses its product −

Give precise and straightforward information − Businesses should give precise and straightforward details about how their products should be used in addition to any potential dangers that might be involved. This can reduce the possibility of customer abuse.

Publish warnings − If a business learns that a customer is abusing one of its products, it may publish cautions informing customers of the risks associated with using it incorrectly. Injuries or property damage may be reduced as a result.

Product modification − Businesses may change their products for the purpose of making them safer or to deter misuse. For instance, a business might modify the appearance of an item or include security safeguards to make it harder to use it incorrectly.

Products recall − A corporation may recall a product if it is discovered to be harmful in order to take it off the marketplace and stop any additional damage.

Compensation − If a customer suffers harm as a result of a customer’s misuse of a product, an organization may compensate the customer. This can entail covering penalties or other costs associated with the damage.

Businesses should, in general, take precautions to prevent product misuse and guarantee that its components are utilized properly and safely. If misuse does occur, businesses should respond appropriately to lessen the damage to consumers and safeguard their brand.

Ways in which consumers can misuse the products

Hacking − Hacking entails gaining unauthorized access to networked computer systems, or equipment. In an effort to access private data or harm the system, users may try to breach computer networks or systems.

Malware − The term “malware” refers to harmful software, such as spyware, worms, or trojan horses, that is intended to harm IT systems or acquire personal data. By browsing dubious links, accessing corrupted files, or accepting corrupted file attachments, users run the risk of unintentionally installing spyware on their computers.

Consumer Legal Rights if False Allegation Made

Consumers have a number of legal rights and alternatives for solutions if businesses make false accusations against them. They might consist of −

Defamation lawsuit − If the untrue statements are made in public and damage the buyer’s reputation, the consumer may be able to pursue legal action for defamation. Spreading false claims that damage the image of somebody is referred to as defamation. The client may file a claim for damages against the business under such circumstances.

Consumer protection laws − The majority of nations have consumer protection laws that forbid companies from presenting erroneous or deceptive claims about their offerings. The customer can complain to the appropriate safeguarding authority if the organization’s untrue claims pertain to a service or product in question.

Unfair commercial practices − False or deceptive statements about rival companies or clients are illegal in several nations under unfair commercial practices legislation. Consumers can complain to the proper regulatory agency if the business’ false claims are a component of an ongoing sequence of unfair business practices.


Organizations are typically not held liable when customers exploit their items since individuals, not the provider or manufacturer, are typically to blame for product misuse. Nonetheless, there are some circumstances in which businesses might be considered accountable for damage or harm brought on by the customer misusing their goods, such as if the item in question was built or designed with a fault or if the business neglected to give customers enough precautions or instructions. It is crucial for businesses to make sure their products are secure and that clients are given the appropriate instructions or precautions in order to lower the chance of harm. In the end, it is the obligation of the user to utilize items as designed and to heed all directions and cautions in order to prevent any potential injury.

How Much Can You Save When You Trade

Robert Triggs / Android Authority

The Google Pixel 7 and the Pixel 7 Pro are undeniably attractive devices. Google has a record of producing high-end hardware at relatively affordable prices, and the latest smartphone flagships from the tech giant are among the best Android phones on the market. But why would you pay full price if you can get a considerable discount with a Pixel 7 trade-in deal?

We’ll look at how much you can save by swapping out the old device (that you probably won’t need anymore) and how you’d go about it.


Depending on the retailer and the device you have to switch up, you can get the Pixel 7 for free with a trade-in, although it may also involve committing to a service contract. Find out your options below.


This is how much you can save when you trade in your old phone for a Pixel 7

How to trade in your old device for a Pixel 7

This is how much you can save when you trade in your old phone for a Pixel 7

Rita El Khoury / Android Authority

There are a number of network operators and retail outlets that offer savings when you trade in your old device for the Pixel 7. The discount you can earn almost always depends on the make and model of the phone you’re trading in and its condition, so we can’t outline every permutation here. The table below summarizes the maximum trade-in values for which you can qualify and any other requirements.

In the case of both Amazon and Best Buy, the trade-in values don’t relate specifically to the Pixel 7. These are the amounts you can get in the form of a gift card for trading in your old device. It’s essentially selling your old phone for store credit, which you can then put towards the Pixel 7 if you’re so inclined.

If you’re adding a new line of service with Verizon, you can get a free Pixel 7 without even trading in your old device. But you will need to commit to a lengthy service contract. The same is true of AT&T, although the Pixel 7 is a reduced cost of $10 per month on their network rather than being free.

How to trade in your old device for a Pixel 7

Robert Triggs / Android Authority

Pixel 7

The trade-in process for every retailer will be a little different, but they all tend to follow the same steps.

All retailers recognize the inherent problem with swapping an old phone for a new one is that you are likely to want to transfer over your data to the new phone, so they have to send it to you first. For this reason, you’ll get an estimate of your old phone’s value, and you won’t receive any payment or bill credit until the retailer has received your old device and assessed it.

Here is the general process to trade in your old device for a Pixel 7:

Find the Pixel 7 at your retailer of choice.

When prompted, select the option to trade in a device.

Provide the details of the device you wish to trade in. This will usually include manufacturer, model, storage capacity, and condition. You will then be given an estimated trade-in value for your old handset.

 Complete the purchase. This may involve agreeing to a service contract if buying from a network operator like Verizon or T-Mobile.

When you receive your Pixel 7, transfer any data you wish to retain from the old device to the new one. We have a guide on how to transfer data to a new phone.

Remove your SIM card from the old phone and perform a factory reset.

Send your old device to the retailer as instructed. You’re usually given 14 or 30 days from receiving your new phone to send your old one.

Await the verdict of the retailer and subsequent discount or gift card.

7 Ways To Know If Your Email Has Been Hacked

These days, we not only use Email to send messages or letters but also link bank accounts, store sensitive data, and sign up on various platforms. Hence, attackers may try hacking your account to access vital information or send/receive phishing e-mails.

You won’t get a message like, “Your account has been hacked!” after your account is compromised. Instead, there are some simple methods to know if your email has been hacked, and that’s exactly what we have covered in this article.

You’ve probably shared your email address with several people and companies until now. However, if an attacker gets your details, it doesn’t become hard for them to hack your account unless it is fully secured. They may use phishing, brute force attack, session hijacking, and other techniques to compromise your account.

Once your Email is hacked, you, along with your contacts, are at potential risk. These attackers may steal your credit card details, post weird things on social media, or even blackmail you!

Therefore, you should always avoid phishing links, sign out if you’ve logged in on an untrusted device, and regularly run a malware scan. This can help prevent your email from being hacked.

A hacker may change your password

One of the common issues you may face as a victim is that the hacker doesn’t just access your account but even changes the login credentials. In such a case, no matter how often you use the old passwords, you simply can’t log in. 

Some hackers even throw you out of all the connected devices, ensuring the recovery process becomes much more difficult. Moreover, these attackers may even change your recovery phone number and other credentials.

Your e-mail address has been changed

The account password has been changed

Hacker has changed the recovery phone number or other settings

Your account has been permanently deleted

After your account is hacked, the following could be some of the reasons you’re unable to log in to your email account:

In such a scenario, the only possible solution is to get to the email provider’s account recovery page and answer all the questions. The process may take a few days, depending on the provider.

The best way to determine if your email has been hacked is by checking all the devices accessing your account. Most providers include this feature to help improve security.

For demonstration, we will use Gmail to check and manage the devices. Other services (Yahoo, Outlook, iCloud, etc.) also have a similar feature. Kindly follow the below instructions on how to do it:

Log in to your Google account and navigate to the My Account page.

Next, select Security from the left pane.

Once you’ve identified the hacker, you can remove your email connection from their device. Go through the following instruction on how you can do so on Gmail:

Now, the hacker won’t be able to access your account unless they reenter the login credentials. To prevent this, we recommend changing your email password as soon as possible.

You’ll receive a password reset mail if a hacker tries changing its password

Some attackers hack your email to gain access to other connected services, like social media, online banking, and more. During the process, the hacker may try changing the account’s password, which is why you keep getting password reset emails.

In such a case, we recommend resetting both the application and email password as fast as possible. Also, you can sign out of the suspicious device to ensure that they do not re-access your email account.

The attacker doesn’t have access to the service. So, they’re trying to reset the password to gain access.

The attacker has already hacked the service but wants to reset the login credentials, so you don’t regain access.

The attacker has already crossed the limit of login attempts. So, the service triggers the reset password message on the email to notify you about suspicious activity.

Strange messages in the Sent Folder is an indication that your email is hacked

Most hackers compromise users’ accounts to send fraudulent emails to others. They take control of your mailing address, and you won’t even notice that they’re sending inappropriate messages to your contacts.

Gain access to their login credentials to hack them as well

Install malware on their devices

Hoping to get banking or credit card details

Trying to defame you

Here are the possible reasons a hacker is trying to send emails to your contacts:

Nonetheless, you can keep track of the Sent folder to know whether your email has been hacked. If you find strange messages you do not remember forwarding, it’s a definite sign that your account is already compromised.

Therefore, it’s a good idea to keep changing your email password regularly. Also, we discourage using the same passcode for every account, as doing so might make the hacker aware, and they will likely compromise all the other services too. For your comfort, we have prepared a detailed guide on what makes a good and strong password.

One thing that makes it difficult is that the attacker can delete all the emails at once. If that’s the case, we recommend checking the Bin folder that might still have those fraudulent emails.

Tech-savvy users can easily differentiate between legitimate and fraudulent emails. If you have such people in the contacts, they’ll likely communicate with you regarding these messages. Indeed, if you receive multiple complaints, it’s a clear indication that your email has been hacked.

Likewise, you can also check your alternative email to see if the primary account has been sending any spam messages. If you notice any, you should immediately make your friends and families aware of the issue.

You’ll notice suspicious activities on your account after it has been hacked

Some hackers do not just compromise your email and send fraudulent messages; they even change your account settings or view your personal data.

Weird posts on social media

Important emails are deleted

Unread emails are read

Changes to your critical security settings (recovery phone number, email address, login credentials, etc.)

Unfamiliar changes in other products

Likewise, some hackers may access and delete your important emails. This could be one of the reasons your Gmail messages are missing. They do not just gain access to your personal information but even tend to modify them.

If you notice that your name, phone number, or other settings are tweaked, there’s no doubt that your email has been hacked. In this scenario, an attacker is probably trying to become a legitimate user of that account.

Lastly, some email providers, like Google, lets users connect to several of their products (Google Drive, YouTube, Blogger, etc.) with the same mailing address. So, if you notice any changes on them, it’s a possible sign that your email has been compromised.

You can even check if your email data has been breached using third-party resources, like Have I Been Pwned?, Firefox Monitor, etc. These tools scan your account and identify if your private information has been leaked or compromised.

All you have to do is input your email address, and they provide results within a minute or so. Here’s a quick demonstration of how you can do this on Firefox Monitor:

Firstly, visit the official Firefox Monitor website.

In the Enter Email Address field, input your valid email.

New Gmail Tabs – What Email Marketers Need To Know And Do

A briefing and ressearch on the impact of Google’s new Tabbed Inbox

December 2013 update: Return Path have released a comprehensive study evaluating the impact of Gmail’s tabbed inbox. We have added it to the end of Tim’s post to enable readers to compare their open and delivery rates in Gmail.

In August 2013, Google made two important changes to the Gmail inbox that all email marketers need to understand.

What has changed?

The two changes that Google have made are distinct, but have been introduced together.

1. Tabs added to the inbox separating promotional, social updates and other email

2. Ads that look like emails may be placed at the top of the promotional tab

These changes are being automatically rolled out to all Gmail users.

As Gmail users access their inbox they will see this popup to inform them about the inbox change:

Then the Gmail web interface looks like this with the tabs

And on mobile like this

Should an Ad be targeted this is how it appears

Is Google trying to stop commercial email?

I do not think Google is trying to stop promotional email, rather they are wanting a cut of the action. The fact that Google has put its new email like Ads in the promotional tab means they want, intend and indeed need users to go to the promotional tab.

If users don’t go to the promotions tab then Google won’t get revenue from their Ads and thus Google will change the interface again. Right now Google has a strong incentive to ensure users do review their promotions tab.

What impact will this have?

The real question is not about how inbox functionality has changed but rather will it alter the way that users perceive, think and interact with email?

Will users just not go to the promotions tab? This would seem an odd behaviour. If someone has proactively signed up and given permission for emails, why would they then totally ignore them? Surely they wouldn’t sign-up in the first place?

Why is Google doing this?

Officially Google are doing this to help Gmail users saying that it “puts you back in control” of your email.

In fact, this is a big acknowledgement from Google about the power of email and the huge revenues email marketers are driving from their lists. Google is clearly looking at the revenue and working out how they can piggy back off of the success of email marketing.

What should I check?

Check your database to see how many Gmail users you have. If you are strongly B2B its likely to be small and the change will have minimal material impact.

MailChimp ran analysis last week to see if this change has impacted open rates and the first signs are there is a small impact, a drop of 1% from 13% to 12% on open rates.

Open rates provide a view of campaign impact. However, open rates are not a strong indicator of commercial success and don’t map to conversion at all accurately. To really understand if your activity has been impacted check your conversion and revenue metrics, look at whether the revenue per Gmail subscriber per month changes.

The rollout has been happening in June, so look at trend changes in the three months before June and compare against August onwards.

What action should I take?

This example spotted by Alchemy Worx from the Outnet.

In short ask customers to do one of:

Star your emails*

Move one of your emails to the Primary tab

Drag and drop one of your emails to the Primary tab

*Default behaviour for starred emails is to go to the Primary tab. However this can be controlled by the tab settings dialog that looks like this

One brand marketer reported they had a 21% read rate from such a message, which they were happy with.

 What about the future?

The truth is that right now we don’t know for sure what the final impact will be. When Google added the priority inbox there was a mass of concern and gloom. After the dust settled there weren’t reports that it had made a material difference to email effectiveness.

This isn’t the first and neither will it be the last change to way the inbox works.

Email sits at the core of the online world, everyone person online has an email address and checks their inbox. There are no signs that this is going to change, the need for personal electronic messaging remains and should Google stop the inbox working in the way customers want it to work then they will leave and use a different inbox solution.

For commercial email to stop working requires customers to stop wanting commercial email. Technology can’t change customer desire for offers, deals, information and all the other reasons they sign-up in the first place.

The basics of email marketing are truer than ever. Get opt-in permission and provide email content that on balance is of sufficient value to you customer that you remain wanted and welcome in the inbox on a regular basis.

New December 2013 research on the impact of Gmail’s tabbed inbox

This new research from Return Path is based on a decent sample – they analyzed data from its panel of email users—approximately 3 million people who agree to anonymously share their aggregated inbox experience. This includes 400,000 distinct Gmail inbox configurations.

The main findings of the research relevant to email marketers are that:

90% of commercial email is delivered to the Promotions tab

Consumers continued to engage with Promotions emails as shown by the Gmail Before / After open, delivery and complaint rate data below.

Efforts to persuade consumers to add their messages to the Primary tab made little difference

Mailchimp also has a detailed analysis on the impact of Gmail’s tabbed inbox on opens . It shows the percentage changes in opens are significant when compared to other email services included for comparison.

5 Dead Operating Systems, And What Their Ghosts Can Tell Us

Tremble, mortals! Halloween is upon us. Ghosts, ghouls, and other undesirable creatures are prepared to slink out of their domains and into ours—it’s said that even the dead can rise on Halloween.

In that spirit, let us light some candles, cover the mirrors, and conduct a séance of sorts to call forth the souls of operating systems past. Not so we can gaze upon their ghastly interfaces, but to see if we can learn anything from their digital carcasses and signs of a life well-lived—or not. Who knows, perhaps they bring secrets from beyond the grave.

Windows XP

Windows XP proved to be a hit since its inception. Sure, it took Service Pack 2 to create the operating system we call XP today, but at the operating system’s launch in 2001 the basics were already there. It’s a good thing too, as Windows XP was destined to live long past its shelf life.

Windows XP’s extended life started with Microsoft’s Sisyphean effort on project ‘Longhorn,’ which included ambitious hopes for new features. As due date after due date slipped for Longhorn, more people became invested in the familiar and near-universal XP, and to disdain change of any kind.

Windows XP’s iconic Bliss wallpaper.

When Longhorn finally emerged from its 5.5 year development in 2007 as Windows Vista, users were shocked and appalled by Microsoft’s proposed XP replacement. It took another two years of development and the release of Windows 7 before Windows XP would finally begin to lose ground. Yet it was another four to five years (depending on whom you ask) before Windows 7 would replace XP as the most widely used operating system in the world.

Today, four iterations of Windows after XP, the 14 year-old OS still claims more than 12 percent of online PC usage worldwide, according to Net Applications. This is despite the fact that Microsoft ceased delivering security updates for XP in April 2014—a year and a half ago.

Lesson learned: Don’t let your software live on too long, or it will grow up to be a dangerous zombie.

Windows RT

When Microsoft announced Windows RT, originally known as Windows on ARM, people were excited about the possibility. Finally, the energy-efficient ARM processor architecture—ubiquitous on mobile devices—would earn its own version of Windows.

What became Windows RT, however, was a terrible joke of an OS. Like Windows 8, RT offered a dual-identity desktop interface and modern UI. The desktop was hobbled, because it couldn’t run any other traditional Windows software—just Internet Explorer and Microsoft Office. Windows RT users didn’t have much to do on the touch-friendly side of Windows either, due to Microsoft’s poor efforts to convince developers to build Modern apps for the Windows Store.

Windows RT running on Microsoft’s Surface RT.

Toward the end of its life, RT was no better than a glorified web browser with a smattering of ho-hum apps. Meanwhile, Intel’s Atom chips quickly closed the gap with ARM’s energy efficiency, leaving little reason to opt for Windows on ARM.

Microsoft was never clear enough on what it wanted to do with Windows RT. The result was a poorly thought-out ecosystem that led to death by indifference. Windows RT tablets aren’t being upgraded to Windows 10, and even Microsoft’s own budget Surface line ditched Windows RT for Windows proper in its third iteration.

Lesson learned: Ghosts of Windows RT linger on in Windows 10’s universal apps and Windows Phone compatibility, but Windows RT was nothing short of a disaster with consumers—understandably so, given its radical new interface and limited software capabilities. Even if you’re trying to move an ecosystem forward, don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater.

Mac OS


Mac OS in all its graphical interface glory.

One of Apple’s founding principles is that PCs—and technology in general—should be a delightful, even magical, experience. That vision came to the fore with the original Macintosh operating system. The first Mac OS was a revelation that popularized the visual PC interface and mouse navigation for home users.

The downside, however, is that a lot of what made Mac OS so magical required technological trickery and clever solutions to help a constrained system perform beyond what was expected. Original Macintosh users were forced to constantly swap out disks constantly because of RAM restrictions.

It was a pain to do—sometimes literally—but many people didn’t mind because the user experience on the screen was simply so much better than anything else out there.

Lesson learned: Even problematic software can be loved if the user experience is superior to the competition’s.


During the early days of computing, IBM was a dominating force with its line of personal computers. When the company began producing the operating system OS/2 with Microsoft, the plan was to use the new OS to push even more sales of IBM hardware. That worked for a while, but the end of the line for OS/2 took shape once Microsoft produced Windows 3.0. After that, Microsoft ceased co-development of OS/2 to focus on Windows, and IBM was chasing Microsoft ever after. Pundits still argue over whether early Windows or OS/2 was better.

Regardless, OS/2’s undoing was that Microsoft outflanked IBM at every turn.

Microsoft bundled Windows with all kinds of hardware, as it does today, while OS/2 was sold separately and designed to push IBM machines. That approach just didn’t work when faced with the juggernaut that was Microsoft—it also didn’t help that Microsoft cheated. Once Windows 95 came out, OS/2 was all but done. IBM’s operating system faded out by 2000, but just like with Windows XP, you can probably find the odd ATM or small business inventory system still running on OS/2.

Lesson learned: Even juggernauts can fall. Adapt—which is exactly what Microsoft’s trying to do with Windows 8 and 10—or die.

The ghosts of Linux past

In 2023, we officially bid goodbye to Mandriva, a once-popular Linux distribution. This version of Linux started out life as Mandrake until the company running the distro merged with Conectiva in 2005 to become Mandriva. Many veteran Linux users cut their teeth on Mandrake or Mandriva, including PCWorld’s own Linux watcher, Chris Hoffman.

Mandriva lost its spot as the “easy Linux” distro after Canonical’s Ubuntu appeared in 2004. Seven years later, development ceased. Mandriva is just one of the many Linux distributions that have faded into oblivion—CrunchBang, supported by a single developer, is another one we recently covered.

Linux may be a force in the server world, but it has never succeeded at winning over masses of desktop users. Its openness encourages many developers to create their own Linux distributions and then fight with the hundreds of other distros for a slice of a tiny user base. Unsurprisingly, there’s a healthy amount of churn among distributions, even the popular ones.

Lesson learned: Like your Linux distro, but don’t fall in love. You may wind up leaving the party sooner than you think.

That’s the end of our ghoulish walk through the graves of operating systems past. Now we close the PC crypt for yet another year…until the ghouls of dead PCs past rise again.

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