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Windows 7 Mainstream supports to end in early 2015
Microsoft have confirmed that on 13 January 2015 ‘Mainstream’ support will end for Windows 7, but will still continue to offer security updates for a further 5 years.
The end of Mainstream support means Windows 7 will not get any more new features or tools. There will also be no further updates past Service Pack 1, which was released on 22nd February 2011.
As of January, Windows 7 enters into its ‘Extended’ support phase, only receiving free security updates, on 14th January 2020, Windows 7 will enter into their ‘end of support’ period, in which no more security updates will be released and Microsoft will not offer any online technical help.
Windows XP entered this critical phase back in April of this year, but Microsoft did release an emergency fix after it ended its support.
Microsoft has posted a list of support dates on their ‘Windows Lifecycle Fact Sheet’. It states that Extended supports for Windows 8 will end by January 2023.
The end of Mainstream support has come relatively early in Windows 7 life cycle, only 5 years 7 months after it was launched.
Windows XP survived 7 and ½ years before Microsoft ended Mainstream support.
Microsoft has also confirmed Mainstream support for Office 2010 Service Pack 1 will end on 14th October 2014. See what other services are going to end soon.
End of Mainstream Support – what should you do?
Does this mean you should upgrade?
No not at all. The end of Mainstream support just means Windows 7 will stop receiving new features but will still continue to work fine. You just have to accept windows 7 will not get any better and will remain the same till you decide to upgrade (which you should do before January 2020).
If you want to upgrade what should you do?
That’s a good question, as recent rumours have hinted that Microsoft is ready to abandon Windows 8, so you might want to wait a few months to see if Microsoft announces Windows 9, if they don’t go with windows 8.1 or you could always try Linux.
Can you still buy PCs with Windows 7 on?
Yes you can but only till 31st October for Home versions of Windows 7. Microsoft has not said when manufactures will stop selling there PCs with Professional editions on.