When Is the End of the Windows 7 Lifecycle?

As of January 2020, you'll no longer have support

The end of the Windows 7 lifecycle, otherwise known as end of life, is set for January 2020. This means Microsoft will discontinue all support, including paid support, and all updates, including security updates.

Until then, the operating system (OS) is in an in-between phase known as extended support. During this phase, Microsoft is offering paid support, though not the complimentary support that comes with the license. In addition, Microsoft continues to provide security updates but not design and feature ones.

Windows 7
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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.

Why Is the Windows 7 Lifecycle Ending?

The Windows 7 lifecycle 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.” 

Upgrading to Windows 10

If you're still using Windows 7, you should immediately upgrade to Windows 10, which is the current Windows version. Released in 2015, Windows 10 supports apps that can be used across multiple devices, including PCs, tablets, and smartphones. It also supports touchscreen, keyboard, and mouse input methods. Additionally, Windows 10 is faster than Windows 7 and provides a number of other useful benefits.

There are differences between the two interfaces but there are enough similarities that, as a Windows user, you'll be able to get up to speed quickly. The Windows 10 download process is straightforward for intermediate to advanced computer users; others may want to enlist the help of a computer-savvy friend.

It's unlikely that you'll have to upgrade again once you migrate to Windows 10. This operating system was designed to be an as-a-service application, meaning it's periodically updated automatically with new features and security enhancements.