I had not realized that this topic was also started in the NVDA Developer's Group, and actually answered it there, but I feel the answer I made there needs to be repeated here. The very beginning is a snippet of what one of the NVDA developers said.
On Tue, Jan 11, 2022 at 08:52 AM, Lukasz Golonka wrote:
therefore we would do whatever we reasonably can to provide you with an up-to-date AT.-
The key word here being "reasonable."
It is no longer reasonable, by anyone's estimation that I've seen speaking, to continue to support XP. There are multiple versions of NVDA, up to and including 2021.3.1, that still continue to support Windows 7. But Windows 7 is out of support, and it is not unreasonable to expect, in fact, I'd say it's entirely reasonable to expect, that Windows 7 will be "left in the dust" eventually just like XP was. It is the natural progression.
I have been in the computer support business for home and (very) small businesses for over a decade now and in all that time have had one, and only one, laptop that could not upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10. I also had one, and only one, machine, a Dell Inspiron 1720, where a driver for its Elon mousepad could not be sourced that would work with Windows 10 (which, of course, would be irrelevant to most screen reader users). Every other machine, whether it was a laptop or desktop, that started life with Windows 7 upgraded just fine to Windows 10 and has had no issue running with it. And almost none of those was "officially blessed" by either Microsoft or it's original manufacturer to be Windows 10 compabible.
We, as a community, need to stop this pretense that Windows 7 users cannot, and should not be expected to, upgrade to Windows 10. The process is simple, remains free, and is entirely accessible (after a certain point is reached very early on in the process) using Narrator during the upgrade.
We don't support XP, and over the longer term, we absolutely should not expect support for Windows 7. People should not be using Windows 7, it is unsafe to do so, and that's not just for them, but for the entire ecosystem of cyberspace. Security patches ceased, the OS is out of support, Microsoft has retired it. That has always been "the end of the story" when it comes to Windows versions. I have no earthly idea why there is a contingent that thinks that Windows 7 should receive some "special dispensation" from a process that has been ongoing for as long as I've been in computing.
Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H2, Build 19044
The instinctive need to be the member of a closely-knit group fighting for common ideals may grow so strong that it becomes inessential what these ideals are.
~ Konrad Lorenz (1903-1989)