Microsoft has announced that they will be ceasing to provide security updates for Windows 7 by 2020. This decision was made to encourage people to move away from the Operating System to the new Windows 10 platform. Businesses will have to pay Microsoft for Windows 7 Security Updates by 2020.
For businesses that cannot feasibly transition from Windows 7 due to compatibility concerns, Microsoft has mentioned that they will offer extended support packages on a per-device basis, with the price increasing for each year the package is owned. This is aimed to give businesses an extension of 3 years to allow them time to transition and remediate any compatibility issues that may arise during this process. In a recent article, Microsoft said “we understand that everyone is at a different point in the upgrade process.”. Upgrading numerous devices can sometimes prove to be an expensive and difficult task and offering this extended support will provide much-needed breathing room for those businesses.
According to Net Market share, Windows 7 still holds a very strong presence in the current technology market, with 40% of Desktop PCs running on Windows 7 while 38% are using the latest Operating System Windows 10. We have previous seen the methodology of staggering support end dates by offering extended packages with Windows XP – many businesses become well-acquainted with using older technology and often rely on this as part of their core infrastructure.
While the offer of extended support can be extremely beneficial to businesses needing the extra upgrade time, it is also important that those businesses are aware that they are running out of date systems. The extended support updates are not designed to be a permanent solution and will only offer critical updates to these systems. These systems are often more vulnerable than their newer counterparts and will need extra care when catering towards Cyber Security.