the winxnet blog Blog Header Image

Windows 7 End of Life: 3 Things to Do Right Now

Posted on 2/11/2019 4:05:11 PM by Jeff Young
Category: Managed Services & Outsourcing



Microsoft Windows 7 is going end of life (EOL) on January 14, 2020. In short, this means that Microsoft will no longer provide patches or security updates for this operating system (OS) after this date.It will also not support resolving any issues with machines on Windows 7.  This in turn means other software vendors will not support versions of their applications running on Windows 7.

Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows 7 on January 13, 2015. This means that they only been providing critical security updates. They have not been making functional improvements or offering complementary support for Windows 7. Microsoft will discontinue all support for Windows 7 as of January 14, 2020.

This date is important because it gives businesses that are still running Windows 7 a firm date to aim for upgrading or replacing these devices. Windows 10 is the recommended upgrade since this is Microsoft’s latest operating system and is still within its initial 5-year mainstream support period.

The risk of not upgrading once extended support ends is that systems running Windows 7 on any of their computers will become vulnerable to un-patched security risks within the OS and the applications it runs. Machines running Windows 7 will also cause any security audits to register an automatic failure in their scans and place security compliance and certifications at risk. 

Here are three things you can do to prepare for Windows 7 going EOL:

  1. Identify all devices that will need to be upgraded, replaced or decommissioned: Take inventory of all computer hardware and other devices and identify their current operating system. For each Windows 7 device identified, develop a plan to either upgrade, replace or decommission. Windows 10 is the recommended upgrade since this is Microsoft’s latest operating system and is still within its initial 5-year mainstream support period.
  2. Create budgets and timelines for upgrades or replacements: When creating your budget and timeline for upgrading or replacing your Windows 7 devices, you need to consider OS license, hardware, and labor costs. Windows 10 is a much more robust operating system that requires more CPU power to run efficiently.  It’s important to note that Windows 10 and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise operating systems have specific minimum hardware requirements. Hardware and devices that do not meet these requirements can’t be upgraded to Windows 10.
  3. Install all security updates released during Windows 7 EOL support: Microsoft will be releasing critical security updates and patches until January 14, 2020. You need to stay informed of all security updates and patches once released to ensure your devices are secure.

There are a lot of considerations concerning Windows 7 end of life. Here is some helpful information from Microsoft. If you have questions or concerns regarding next steps for your EOL devices, Winxnet is here to help. Schedule a call with an expert today.