As of 14th January 2020, Microsoft has dropped all technical support and software system updates for the Windows 7 operating system.
Users will still be able to use Windows 7 as normal but will no longer receive fixes for any possible security vulnerabilities that may arise or get any technical assistance from Microsoft if they have any issues.
Since its launch 10 years, 2 months and 23 days ago Windows 7 has proved to be one of the most popular versions of Windows, and is still used by many people around the world, especially in enterprise and business, But with Windows 10 now powering over half of all Windows computers globally, Microsoft will concentrate their resources on their latest release.
What To Expect.
If you, like many others, are still using Windows 7 then don’t panic.
You can still carry on using your computer with no issues or loss of any files or data. Your computer will start up and run as normal. The only differences you may notice, apart from the on-screen message announcing the end of support, is that you will no longer receive any software or security updates from Windows Update.
Should I Be Worried?
No, you shouldn’t worry about it, but you should be planning to update to Windows 10 whenever you can.
Simply put, Windows 10 is more secure and more up to date than the ancient Windows 7. The minimum hardware specs needed to run Windows 7 & Windows 10 are the same so chances are that if you are running Windows 7 now, Windows 10 will also run just fine. From an accessibility point of view, after an admittedly shaky initial release, there are no major accessibility problems in switching to Windows 10. Basically, if you are still using Windows 7 today then nothing will really change for you, but it’s a fact that you are at more risk when it comes to possible malware, ransomware, virus, phishing and any other future security attacks.
How Do I Get Windows 10?
Officially, the free update to Windows 10 for Windows 7 users has ended. But currently it does seem that if you do upgrade from Windows 7 then your Windows 10 will still activate for free.
Also, as of right now, you can install Windows 10 and still use all the features etc. with almost no limitations or problems without activating it. The only difference is that you will have a ‘Not Activated’ watermark on your desktop and you are unable to change any of the personalization options such as themes. Now, how long this stays the case is anyone’s guess. Microsoft can change this at any time so be aware that results may vary.
If you are unable to get Windows 10 for free, pricing starts at around £120 for the Home version in the Windows Store, but be sure to check your usual retails sites and stores for possible better prices.
If you are unsure how to upgrade or install Windows 10, don’t worry; we’ll have a guide on how to install Windows 10 here on Double Tap soon.
Co-host & audio producer on the Double Tap Canada radio show. Occasional contributor to Double Tap TV, full time shed resident.