If you are a Windows 7 user, be aware that there is almost a countdown to the end: the system will no longer receive official Microsoft support from this Tuesday (14). Therefore, it is most recommended to upgrade your machine to Windows 10.
Understand as end of support the fact that Windows 7 or Office 2010 will no longer receive updates, including security updates. If you are a consumer, there is really no other option but to upgrade to Windows 10. And the same goes for the corporate version of the platform: if your PC is part of a Windows 10 Professional or Enterprise group license, associated with a In this domain, your company may be willing to pay Microsoft one device per device fee to maintain support for 2020. But this is an option only for business devices, not for ordinary users.
What to do when Windows 7 support ends
At this point you have several options:
- Ignore the deadline, including the pop-up warnings you have probably received;
- Purchase a new copy of Windows 10 from the Microsoft website;
- Expect new free updates (spoiler: none);
- Buy a new Windows 10 PC and migrate existing files to the new machine.
Note that these options also apply to Windows 8.1, which support ends in 2023.
Option 1: Risk Your PC Security
We do not recommend the first option: completely ignore the deadline for the end of support. Essentially, at least as far as Microsoft is concerned, your PC simply ceases to exist. Antivirus software, applications, utilities, games, and other third party software will still work. But Microsoft does not update any browser software, and if a vulnerability is discovered for Windows 7 it will not be fixed. There will be no technical support for Windows 7. You are on your own.
An exception? The office. If you sign up for Office 365 and run Windows 7, you will still receive Office 365 security updates for the next three years until January 2023. But you will not receive any new Office 365 features, which is one of the reasons for purchasing Office 365. Application package. Office 2010 and the new standalone Office suites will also be "supported", but only if the problem is specific to Office and not with the interaction between Office and Windows 7. In this case, there's nothing much to do but get updated.
Option 2: Buy a new Windows 10 license
Second, you can upgrade your existing PC with a new Windows 10 license.
At one point, upgrading to Windows 10 was as simple as clicking a button and signing up for the free upgrade. Unfortunately, this window has been closed. That means paying $ 1,099 for Windows 10 Pro or 330 for Windows 10 Home. This will buy a USB key with Windows 10 software installed that you can insert into your PC and perform the necessary upgrade.
Option 3: Upgrade to Windows 10 for free
There may be a third option. Microsoft gave Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users a full year after the release of Windows 10 (until July 31, 2016) to upgrade to Windows 10 for free and, by the end of 2017, to use a support loophole. get access. However, Microsoft apparently never shut down the Windows 10 update servers. So, you might get lucky: you can upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 for free.
If you have a Windows 7 PC, simply visit the Windows 10 download page and download the upgrade tool for your PC (you need to accept the license terms). Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, and Home Premium will be upgraded to Windows 10 Home, while other editions of Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate will be replaced by Windows 10 Pro.
You can perform an in-place upgrade to upgrade to Windows 10 directly from your PC or download the tool from a separate USB key (with at least 8 GB of free space) or a rewritable CD-R or DVD. The last option will allow you to upgrade multiple PCs.
Note that you still need a valid Windows 7 license for the tool to work. If for some reason Windows does not detect the license on the machine, you may need to manually enter it and dig up the old Windows 7 license key. You may also have the license key hidden on a sticker on your laptop or desktop . The product key must contain five letter and number sets, formatted as follows: xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx.
Be sure to back up everything you wouldn't want to miss: documents and photos, at a minimum. This means copying these files to a backup hard disk, DVD, or cloud. This is a ?better safe than sorry? scenario, as by default Windows preserves applications, settings, and files when you upgrade your system to Windows 10. You can also back up your files in Windows 7 and restore them. later on Windows 10.
We cannot say how long the process takes. By downloading the necessary tool and files, updating, and possibly downloading other patches, it is a good idea to set aside at least an hour or more. The process will also be complicated by the speed with which your broadband connection is made and whether your PC uses a common hard disk or SSD.
After the process is complete, time to check the status of your files: have your photos been preserved? And your documents? At this point, you may want to copy the files you have backed up if they are not there. Check applications, including antivirus programs, to ensure license keys are still intact. Also a good time to familiarize yourself with setting up a new Windows 10 computer and how to customize your PC, just to make sure you're getting the most out of Windows 10.
If you are upgrading to older hardware, Windows 10 may run slower than Windows 7, just because of the increased processor and hard disk load. Resetting your PC can help: Click the taskbar search box at the bottom of the screen and type reset or reset my PC. This will take you to the Recovery menu in Settings where you can reinstall Windows again. This can help improve performance but also take even longer to complete.
Option four: buy a new PC
The fourth option is simply to buy a new PC with fully updated hardware. Chances are you'll be buying a much faster CPU, a better graphics processor, and an extremely fast SSD storage drive.
If none of the above is to your liking, when Windows 7 officially exits support on January 14, 2020, your machine will be at risk for malware attacks that Microsoft simply won't fix. The company's attitude toward the transition ranged from kindly reminders to scarier warnings. However, with the free time we expect you to have during the holidays and the deadline, it's time to migrate from Windows 7 to Windows 10 now.