Special Offer: All students, parents, & educators get 50% off tech support for the entire school year. Select the Support - Annual plan and enter code “EdTech50” during checkout.

You Got a Windows 7 Out of Support Notice, Now What?

Authored by:
Support.com Tech Pro Team
This Guided Path® was written and reviewed by Support.com’s Tech Pro team. With decades of experience, our Tech Pros are passionate about making technology work for you. We love feedback! Let us know what you think about this Guided Path® by rating it at the end.

Introduction

On January 14, 2020, Microsoft abandoned support for Windows 7. This article will help you to understand what is changing, and what your options are going forward.
Windows 7 End-of-Support

Microsoft released Windows 7 on October 22, 2009, over 10 years ago. That's about the same time as the 3rd generation iPhone was released, Up and Avatar were in theaters, and House M.D. was in it's 6th season on television.

At that time, Microsoft promised a decade of updates and support for Windows 7, and that decade has come to an end. Going forward, Microsoft will not update or patch Windows 7 for any existing problems, nor any new problems found.

Windows 7 is the Operating System on your computer. That's the piece of software that lets you run all the other software on your computer, such as your browser, video players, and document editors, as well as provides tools to organize your files, schedule tasks, manage your connection to the Internet, and even start up and shut down your computer.

Microsoft LogoWindows Lifecycle Fact Sheet
Microsoft's details the various versions of Windows, and when they will end support.

1 Windows 7 End of Support Popup

Windows 7 Pop UpMicrosoft has setup Windows 7 to show a full-screen pop up starting on the 15th, informing you of the end of support, and reminding you that it can and will become more susceptible to viruses and other problems.
This message does not indicate any harm has come to your computer, but it is a not-so-gentle reminder of the end-of-support of Windows 7, so you don't forget and are not surprised when you can't get help for problems you may run into, or when your software stops working because it's not supporting Windows 7 any longer.
Microsoft LogoWindows 7 Support Ended
Microsoft's details about the end of support for Windows 7.
Example Pop-up
Example of Windows 7 out of support pop-up

2 What Issues Can This Cause?

Windows 7 Virus

Going forward, Windows 7 will become less and less secure because any new bugs or problems found won't be fixed. On top of that, Microsoft themselves won't offer any help with problems with Windows 7. Along with this, other software companies, such as Google, Adobe, Mozilla, and others will stop supporting the use of their software on Windows 7, making it fall further and further behind.

You may continue to use Windows 7, but understand in doing so, you will be more and more vulnerable as time goes on, and nothing can help protect you any longer; the problems and bugs will continue to be found, and malicious people will take advantage of these problems because they will no longer be fixed.

3 What Options Are Available?

With Windows 7 no longer receiving support, and especially if you intend to upgrade, it is highly recommended you back up the files on your computer to a cloud backup service or external hard drive, so you don't lose your important documents, images, videos and other files in case something happens.
As stated before; you are able to continue to use Windows 7 if you so choose, but it is not recommended. It's an older Operating System, and at this time no longer supported. You will encounter problems going forward with only yourself to support and fix them.
You can choose to upgrade to Windows 10, provided your computer supports it. Microsoft offers information on the system requirements necessary to run Windows 10.
In some cases, you may still be able to upgrade to Windows 10 for no cost.

We're here to help!

chat
Connect to a Tech Pro

Call or chat with a Tech Pro 24/7.

On January 14, 2020, Microsoft abandoned support for Windows 7. This article will help you to understand what is changing, and what your options are going forward.
Windows 7 End-of-Support

Microsoft released Windows 7 on October 22, 2009, over 10 years ago. That's about the same time as the 3rd generation iPhone was released, Up and Avatar were in theaters, and House M.D. was in it's 6th season on television.

At that time, Microsoft promised a decade of updates and support for Windows 7, and that decade has come to an end. Going forward, Microsoft will not update or patch Windows 7 for any existing problems, nor any new problems found.

Windows 7 is the Operating System on your computer. That's the piece of software that lets you run all the other software on your computer, such as your browser, video players, and document editors, as well as provides tools to organize your files, schedule tasks, manage your connection to the Internet, and even start up and shut down your computer.

Microsoft LogoWindows Lifecycle Fact Sheet
Microsoft's details the various versions of Windows, and when they will end support.
Windows 7 Pop UpMicrosoft has setup Windows 7 to show a full-screen pop up starting on the 15th, informing you of the end of support, and reminding you that it can and will become more susceptible to viruses and other problems.
This message does not indicate any harm has come to your computer, but it is a not-so-gentle reminder of the end-of-support of Windows 7, so you don't forget and are not surprised when you can't get help for problems you may run into, or when your software stops working because it's not supporting Windows 7 any longer.
Microsoft LogoWindows 7 Support Ended
Microsoft's details about the end of support for Windows 7.
Example Pop-up
Example of Windows 7 out of support pop-up
Windows 7 Virus

Going forward, Windows 7 will become less and less secure because any new bugs or problems found won't be fixed. On top of that, Microsoft themselves won't offer any help with problems with Windows 7. Along with this, other software companies, such as Google, Adobe, Mozilla, and others will stop supporting the use of their software on Windows 7, making it fall further and further behind.

You may continue to use Windows 7, but understand in doing so, you will be more and more vulnerable as time goes on, and nothing can help protect you any longer; the problems and bugs will continue to be found, and malicious people will take advantage of these problems because they will no longer be fixed.

With Windows 7 no longer receiving support, and especially if you intend to upgrade, it is highly recommended you back up the files on your computer to a cloud backup service or external hard drive, so you don't lose your important documents, images, videos and other files in case something happens.
As stated before; you are able to continue to use Windows 7 if you so choose, but it is not recommended. It's an older Operating System, and at this time no longer supported. You will encounter problems going forward with only yourself to support and fix them.
You can choose to upgrade to Windows 10, provided your computer supports it. Microsoft offers information on the system requirements necessary to run Windows 10.
In some cases, you may still be able to upgrade to Windows 10 for no cost.