What happens after Windows 7’s retirement?
The Redmond doctor came into the room, huffed a chair into place, but wouldn’t meet Windows 7’s eyes, just stared at the desk. “I’m afraid it’s bad news,” the physician said.
Windows 7 let out a long sigh.
“It’s terminal,” the M.D. said. As if Windows 7 hadn’t known it was on borrowed time since July 2015. That scare in the fall of 2012 had been irksome, nothing more. But then three years later, the end was clearly in sight. And here it was.
“Ten weeks,” the doctor said, gazing out the window at the fall leaves. “Maybe eleven. But then….”
What happens to Windows 7 then?
The operating system will continue to work or not, as it did or didn’t, for each user the day before support retirement. That’s important to remember, if only because some still don’t — assuming that after midnight on Jan. 14, 2020, the OS screeches to a stop.
Even Microsoft reminds customers that Windows 7 will continue to run post-retirement, although it could move those reminders closer to the top of its to-do list. In this FAQ about the end of support, Microsoft waited until the fifth item before making note of the operating system’s resilience. “If you continue to use Windows 7 after support has ended, your PC will still work,” Microsoft pledged, also noting, “Your PC will continue to start and run.”
Good to know, thanks.
But customer support comes to a halt — theoretically, Microsoft’s phone- and chat-based support won’t answer questions — as do security updates. Yet unless Microsoft issues an emergency update in the four weeks after Jan. 14, the first fixes Windows 7 users will miss arrive Feb. 11. Until then, an out-of-date Windows 7 system will be as patched as if support had continued.
What happens to Office when Windows 7 drops from support?
That depends on the type of Office. Office 365, the version paid by subscription — whether for one, as in Office 365 Personal, or for thousands, as in Office 365 Enterprise E5 — will continue to receive security updates on unsupported copies of Windows 7 until January 2023.
That’s the good news….