Microsoft has quietly updated its Windows 10 product pages on the web to indicate that it will no longer sell downloadable versions of the OS to the public.
“January 31, 2023 will be the last day this Windows 10 download is offered for sale,” a note on the product pages for Windows 10 Home and Windows 10 Pro reads. “Windows 10 will remain supported with security updates that help protect your PC from viruses, spyware, and other malware until October 14, 2025.”
When purchased directly from Microsoft, Windows 10 Home currently retails for $139, while Windows 10 Pro is $199. What you’re really buying, of course, is a Windows 10 license; the Windows 10 Home and Pro downloads will remain available for the duration, and you can, of course, create Windows 10 installation media, as always, from the Microsoft Support website. Indeed, it’s still possible to obtain Windows 8.1 installation media as well if you’re worried about the future.
Microsoft isn’t the only source for Windows 10 downloads/licenses, of course: Retailers like Amazon (Windows 10 Home for system builders and Windows 10 Pro for system builders; those are affiliate links) and Newegg continue to sell this product and will do so while their digital stock remains. Likewise, you can find Windows 10 in retail stores, assuming that you can still find such a place nearby.
Also, while there isn’t too much of this floating around anymore, anyone with a Windows 7 or 8.x retail product key can still use that key to clean install Windows 10 or Windows 11 using the downloadable installation media, and while Microsoft will never admit it, I don’t expect that capability to ever go away.
Thanks to PC World for the tip on the expiration date.