Life Windows 7 has officially reached the end of its life on January 14, 2020. Surprisingly, there are still millions of computers that continue to run the iconic Windows OS. I am sure they have their reasons for wanting to stay with Windows 7, but what happens now that Windows 7 has reached the end of its life’s circle?
Let’s understand what it means, what options Windows 7 users have, and the correct path moving forward in detail below. Here is the short version. It’s time to bid adieu.
WHAT MICROSOFT SAYS
Microsoft made the official announcement back in early 2019, giving Windows 7 users enough time to migrate to newer OS, namely Windows 10. For large companies with hundreds of computers and apps, that meant a daunting task. That’s one possible reason why they were reluctant to jump the ships.
Microsoft clearly states that after January 14, 2020, it will ‘no longer provide security updates or support’ for Windows 7 PCs. That is how most software works. They are either updated continuously to work with the latest developments in the field or are left for new and better systems and tech. In this case, it was Windows 10, which has won many hearts since its launch in July 2015.
Looking at the launch date of Windows 10 and end of life date for Windows 7, Microsoft gave users sufficient time to test drive the new OS and migrate to it. You can’t put this one on Microsoft.
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WHAT MICROSOFT REALLY MEANS TO TELL YOU
The keywords here are ‘will no longer provide security updates or support for PCs with Windows 7’. The first thing it tells me is that computers running on Windows 7 will continue to do so in the future. You will simply stop receiving security updates and patches for bugs and other issues. That’s all.
Microsoft pushes updates to its popular OS from time to time to make sure that everything is functioning as it should. These updates are critical and one of the primary reasons why everyone should stop using pirated copies of any OS or app.
Those updates include features, critical bugs, vulnerabilities, patches backdoors that were recently discovered, protect you from all kinds of viruses, trojans, ransomware, and other threats that you don’t even know exist on the web.
Sure, new issues and threats keep popping up, but that’s exactly why you need these updates. It’s an on-going war between ethical and non-ethical hackers, and all the technological breakthroughs and advancements that happen in-between.
Windows 7 users will now be on the hit list of these hackers. They will exploit these vulnerabilities to extort money/bitcoin, steal data, and wreak havoc on your business and personal life. You don’t want any of that.
WHAT MICROSOFT WANTS YOU TO DO
That’s obvious. Microsoft wants you to upgrade to Windows 10 but for all the rights reasons. Microsoft made it easy to do that. Windows 7 and 8.1 users were allowed to upgrade to Windows 10 for free for some time. But the offer was valid for personal users only. Manufacturers and businesses using enterprise solutions were left out. That’s another reason why so many businesses never upgraded to Windows 10.
Nonetheless, Microsoft wants you to upgrade to Windows 10, but the upgrade offer is not free anymore. You will have to buy a license (more on that later) to upgrade. If you have missed the bandwagon, you can still upgrade using the Windows 10 Media Creation tool but will have to buy a license.
You can use Windows 10 without an active license, but we don’t recommend that unless you can’t afford it for the time being. I recommend getting a license at the earliest.