Microsoft is ending support for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 today. The company ended security updates and technical support for Windows 7 three years ago on January 14, 2020, but today marks the end of the Extended Security Update program for Windows 7 Professional and Enterprise editions.
Starting today, companies can no longer pay Microsoft to receive security updates for their fleet of PCs still running Windows 7. Support for Windows 8.1 is also discontinued, which means users won’t get any security updates or technical support starting today
According to Statcounter, 11.2% of Windows PCs were still running Windows 7 as of December 2022, while Windows 8.1 had a 2.6% market share. Even though Windows 7 was released back in 2009, it has remained quite popular to this day. However, now is the time to finally move on.
Microsoft recommends Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users either buy a new PC that supports Windows 11 or upgrade their PC to Windows 10 or Windows 11. However, the latter has strict minimum requirements and all PCs released during the Windows 8.1 era won’t be eligible.
While Microsoft says that it doesn’t offer free upgrades from Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 to Windows 10, it’s actually still possible to install Windows 10 with a valid Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 license. Windows 10 will be supported until October 2025, which isn’t that far off.
This week, Microsoft Edge 109 and Google Chrome 109 will be also released and they will be the last versions to support Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Again, you’ll be really putting yourself at risk if you keep using these two unsupported operating systems going forward.