Microsoft will stop supporting the Windows 7 operating system from January 14, meaning it will no longer release any software updates to millions of computers, including software patches that prevent cyberattacks. “While PCs running Windows 7 systems can continue to be used, without ongoing software and security updates, PCs are at greater risk of viruses and malware.” “
Microsoft said on its website. “In addition, Microsoft Customer Service will no longer provide technical support for Windows 7. “
Microsoft says Windows 7 users have two options. If a user hasn’t upgraded to Windows 10, users with a PC less than three years can pay for the upgrade, starting at $139 each. Microsoft initially offered a free upgrade until July 29, 2016. Alternatively, Microsoft recommends buying a new PC running Windows 10 if the user has been using a PC for more than three years.
According to Net Applications data in December, 32.74 percent of laptops and desktops are still running Windows 7, behind Windows 10, which already runs on more than 900 million devices.
PCs running Windows 10 have made improvements in processors and other hardware to help computers run faster. Sometimes upgrading to a new operating system for an old PC may slow down or fail to support new features. For example, Windows 10 has new security options, such as facial recognition or fingerprint recognition logins, that require new hardware to use.
Microsoft ended its so-called “mainstream support” for Windows 7 in 2015, but has so far provided security updates to users running the operating system, such as doctor’s offices, banks and other institutions that hold sensitive customer information. According to Microsoft, “mainstream support” includes warranty services and help at other events, as well as “the ability to request non-security updates.”