Microsoft Rolls Out Windows 7 End of Support Notifications
Windows 7 support ends on January 14, 2020
The big picture: According to StatCounter, Windows 7 is still used on 33.89 percent of desktop Windows machines worldwide. That figure is expected to drop considerably as the OS reaches the end of support and users upgrade to Windows 10 which has a current Windows market share of 54.78 percent. The end of the Windows 7 lifecycle is set for January 2020. “End of life” means Microsoft will discontinue all support, including paid support; and all updates, including security updates.
Microsoft earlier this month said that beginning in April, it would start informing Windows 7 users about the impending end of support date. The update that’ll enable these friendly notifications has already started rolling out according to Microsoft.
The aforementioned notification, set to start making its presence known on April 18, informs users that after 10 years, Microsoft is ending support for Windows 7.
Why Is the Windows 7 Lifecycle Ending?
The Windows 7 “end of life” cycle is similar to that of previous Microsoft operating systems. Microsoft states, “Every Windows product has a lifecycle. The lifecycle begins when a product is released and ends when it’s no longer supported. Knowing key dates in this lifecycle helps you make informed decisions about when to update, upgrade or make other changes to your software.”
What Does “End of Life” Mean?
“End of life” is the date after which an application is no longer supported by the company that makes it. After Windows 7 “end of life,” you can continue to use the OS, but at your own risk. New computer viruses and other malware are developed all the time and, without the security updates to fight them off, your data and your system are vulnerable.
The official end-of-life date is January 14, 2020, so you’ve still got some time to back up your files and plan your move to Windows 10, macOS or whichever platform you aim to adopt in the future. For many, the route forward will indeed be Windows 10 and in all likelihood, updated hardware will also be in order.
Learning from previous missteps, Microsoft’s reminder will arrive with the ability to silence future notifications. The tech giant, if you recall, went a bit overboard with its Windows 10 upgrade campaign, with some classifying its nagging approach as borderline malware-like.