FWIW: I'm not prone to "conspiracy theories"...but I think that one thing should be clear from Microsoft's handling of Win 7 from the beginning....it was not intended to be anything other than a stepping stone to later versions pushed by Microsoft. 8.0 and 8.1 were nothing but trial balloons until it was decided that Win 10 would be the "one size fits all" O/S that Microsoft would bank on...until it comes up with another stepchild to replace Win 10.
The warning bells should have been heard...when those first illegal links of Win 7 popped up everywhere...and MS did nothing to shut them down...until it was ready to push its chosen product.
The fact that both XP and Win 7 have proven to be immensely popular for users...doesn't seem to have been anticipated. Which means that they must be, inevitably, killed off. I believe we are in the midst of that process. The appearance of update issues...is just part of that process...make Win 7 such a can of worms for users that Win 10 can ride in as the O/S "of choice" by anyone capable of striking keys on a keyboard...or knowing/wanting to use touchscreens.
That's how I see it...