Windows 7 has the last month of its life. What this means for users

There’s not much time left to organize your computer if you want to keep it up-to-date and ready to withstand new cyber attacks. Microsoft will discontinue support for Windows 7 on January 14. There are a few simple solutions to upgrade to a newer system. Some are free.

Windows 7 Microsoft released exactly ten years ago. Older Windows XP was followed by not very successful Windows Vista. Users have already become skeptical. However, Microsoft released Windows 7 in October 2009 and became one of the most popular systems in history. According to StatCounter, more than 21 percent of people and almost 27 percent of companies are still using it today. No wonder, it was a modern system. After the release of Service Pack 1 six months later, a very stable support for both professionals and laymen.

Because of its popularity, it is very likely that many of you have a PC with seven in your home or office. It is important to realize what it means that his support will end in exactly one month and how to solve it.

Windows 7 will work, but less reliable

First, an important warning that still haunts someone. Your Windows 7 computer will continue to function normally after January 14, 2020. Security updates are now over. So if a new way of attacking Windows 7 computers appears, they theoretically easily become victims of cyber attackers. Technical support for such computers and other customer services will also be discontinued.

Third-party software may still be supported. For example, Eset Smart Security or Google Chrome, but without warranty for how long. It will also be more complicated for third parties to take care of the security of their products on a system without security updates. The situation with hardware manufacturers will be similar. It is very questionable whether and how long they will test their upcoming printers, graphics cards or external drives for Windows 7.

With the end of Windows 7 support, Internet Explorer 11 is no longer supported. His successor, Microsoft Edge, no longer works on Windows 7.

Incidentally, support for Windows 7 ended officially in January 2015. Since then, Microsoft has not developed any new features of this system, only continued to develop security patches.

Solution 1 – fast, practical and most expensive

If you’re using a Windows 7 computer, it’s very likely that it’s an older device. The latest Windows 7 computers stopped selling about five years ago. If your computer was ever purchased around this date and was a powerful device, replacement might not be such a rational solution. Just update your operating system. However, if you are using a 6 or 8 year old mid-range machine, buying a new one might pay off.

Suitable Windows 10 laptops or desktops are priced at around € 600 to € 700, and models for € 300 to € 400 are quite sufficient for normal home or office use. All of these new computers include, of course, Windows 10.

And then there’s Mac OS. But if you would like to switch to this platform, the only way is to get an Apple computer. MacBook or desktop iMac or Mac Pro would be an investment of $ 800 or more.

Solution 2 – unusual, legal and free, but with a hook

If you do not need a new computer and are not due to any specific applications or drivers for old hardware bound to old windows, it is best to simply upgrade your computer to Windows 10. flies resolved. You can upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 by purchasing a new license.

Officially, it costs € 145 or € 125 for an electronic license (Windows 10 Home). When you buy or fold an OEM version of Windows 10 for about 110 euros. In various more or less trustworthy e-shops can be bought for half or third.

Until the end of July 2016, everybody could switch from Windows 7 or 8 to Windows 10 for free. However, it was intended only for users with some health restrictions who use technology for ease of use.

The catch was that it was enough to declare that you were using them. Microsoft did not check in any way whether it was a true statement. Practically he was not allowed to interfere with the privacy of users in this way. So he closed his eyes from the possible abuse of a completely legal, albeit unusual, free upgrade to Windows 10.

Even so, it has long been the philosophy of the company to generate revenue from cloud and software solutions and not so much from the Windows operating system. More Windows 10 users, more hypothetical customers for Office 365 or OneDrive, and more.

This method no longer works. But Microsoft offers another way. Totally legal and free again. You need to download the Media Creation Tool. Then just run it and follow the instructions. You do not need to enter a license key. Officially, this tool should only work as a tool for administrators to install the system on older computers, but anyone can use it.

Then you only need to know what version of Windows 7 you are using. All except Windows 7 Pro and Ultimate upgrading to Windows 10 Pro can be upgraded to Windows 10 Home. Please note that this free license acts as an OEM license and is activated on a specific computer. Basically, it just means that you can replace the hard disk or processor with a newer one, you can change the motherboard no longer.

We asked the representation of Microsoft whether it is still a legal option to switch to Windows 10. But they say the opposite. Microsoft’s official position is that for any form of upgrade to Windows 10, it is necessary to have a license from a previous version of Windows, or to enter a license key.

Solution 3 – for professionals and businesses

Microsoft offers one more option, which is to extend support until January 2023. However, it is a paid service and only for Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Enterprise. Businesses can order this service from December 1. This is a minority issue only for companies that use specific or custom software that only works on Windows 7 and have not yet managed to migrate to a newer system with the software.

It’s not a cheap affair. Pay per year for each computer. A machine running Windows 7 Enterprise $ 25 for the first year (until the end of January 2021), or $ 50 extended support until the end of January 2022 and a hundred dollars for a computer with support until the end of January 2023. to $ 175.

For Windows 7 Professional computers, the price is double: $ 50 for the first year, $ 100 for the second year, and $ 200 for the 12 months ending in January 2023. Such a computer will then cost the company $ 350. For companies with hundreds of such computers, this can be a very significant cost. Microsoft explains all the details of this offer on its website.

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