Why bother with older versions?
Ideally, one would be on the cutting edge of the technology at all times, it is obviously not possible from a practical sense. It would be impossible to have the latest technology on hand at all times. Computer users don’t instantly upgrade their systems when a new update is available. This also holds true for operating systems. However, newer versions have critical features that should ideally be present for older systems as well. As a result, features are often backported to older versions by various delivery systems, by virtue of dependencies like that from an api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll download. As an example, this hypothesis holds true for the mobile phone space as well, most consumers do not instantly switch their phones out for new ones at the drop of a hat.
The primary reason for this is of course financial, dropping bags of money for incremental upgrades would not be financially prudent. It would not actually make sense for the average consumer to keep on churning out money for product upgrades. Another factor here would be the actual learning curve of getting to grips with a new piece of software or hardware and learning all its ins and outs in a reasonable time frame. Such delays and lapses due to regular upgrade cycles could also hamper productivity, and as a result, upset corporate clients for companies like Microsoft and Apple. There have been cases where phone and Operating System upgrades change the very basic functioning of a system, thereby causing confusion for the end-user who may not be as technically competent as the developer who designed the system. The vision of the developer may not align with the actual end-user use case, and create disruption from a practical, work fulfilment point of view.
Practical Reasons other than Financial
Often, these updates are from a security point of view. As discussed, regular upgrades are not feasible on the scale of months and weeks. Hence, security updates are often released, even for older operating systems like Windows 7 and 8. Companies may have developed proprietary software and systems on those versions that may not be compatible with newer systems or may break certain features. For example, Windows XP, a relic of the 2000s, had technical support and the aforementioned security patches released by Microsoft till April 8, 2014! This implies a total service life of about 14 years.
How is compatibility ensured?
However, a lot of legacy proprietary software exists that would break if updates were made mandatory. But, as is the case with big corporations and teams, not everyone would have the same system. It is possible that the software or patches or any dependency for these old files were made in a more “updated” version of Windows, such as Windows 10, in such a scenario, the output from Windows 10 may not be compatible with the ones in the older systems. As a result, Microsoft has designed a Universal C runtime, consisting of Dynamic-link library files, which can be retrieved by initializing an api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-1-0.dll download, which allows older Windows to be compatible with work done on more “advanced” versions of Windows. The procedure to get these is the same as any other file, get the DLL and drop it in your system. The destination for your downloaded Dynamic Link Library file may differ depending on the architecture of your system. It may be 32-bit or 64-bit, which necessitates a different System folder where the file is to be inserted. Once this is done, all compatibility issues will be addressed.