This week, after more than a decade since the release has stopped official support for Windows 7. For a long time it was the most popular OS in the world, and still it is a lot of fans. Talk about important nuances further use of «seven», the risks and opportunities of a free upgrade to Windows 10 modern.
What are the consequences of continuing to use Windows 7?
According to the service StatCounter, the share of Windows 7 as of the end of 2019 on the market for operating systems was was 26.79%. According to other sources, the user base of this operating system consisted of about 20%. Anyway, there are tens of millions of computers, who lost on 14 January 2020 official support from Microsoft. What does this mean in practice?
Starting from January 15, 2020, will appear full-screen notice that describes the risk of continuing to use Windows 7 service pack 1 (SP1) after end of support on 14 January 2020. This notice will stay on screen until you make over him some action.
The termination of official support means that desktops running Windows 7 will no longer receive system updates with bug fixes and new features and security patches. That is, such a system automatically becomes vulnerable to all new viruses, the attackers can attack was found in her vulnerability. And since the legacy OS is often used in state institutions and enterprises, new WannaCry or You can make a lot of troubles in the future.
As officially extend support for Windows 7?
Many companies and firms are simply not able to organize the transition from Win7 to the new version. This may be due to the use of outdated equipment that does not meet the requirements of Windows 10, or specific software. For those customers, Microsoft offers a program of extended support (ESU). It allows you to continue to receive security updates even after 14 Jan. However, this service is expensive and only available for Windows 7 service pack 1 (SP1).
Now advanced updates for Windows 7 Enterprise are $ 25 for one computer, in 2021, the price tag will rise to 50 dollars, and in 2022-m — to 100. In the case of Windows 7 Pro these numbers are to be multiplied by two is $50, 100 and 200, respectively.
However, it is worth considering that extended support is a temporary measure, because it will operate only till January, 2023.
As a free upgrade to Windows 10?
After the release of Windows 10, the Redmond company gave free upgrades to all owners of licensed versions of Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. Officially this offer ended a few years ago, but in practice, the legal transition is still possible.
This method is as simple as possible. It is to use the official app of the Media Creation Tool available for download from the Microsoft website. After launching it, select «Update this computer now» and wait for the installation to complete. Once the process is complete and the PC is installed Windows 10, you need to go to menu «Settings» — «Update & security» — «Activation» and enter the CD key the original version of Windows.
An important caveat
When upgrading it is better to backup all valuable data, because sometimes they are lost after update. In addition, when using specific or old software, make sure it is working on Windows 10, reading the reviews from other users.
How to safely continue to use Windows 7?
System requirements for Windows 10 themselves are not high, the OS will run even on old computers. To check the compatibility of your hardware is easy using free tools Windows 10 Preparation Tool for Windows 7. The only real drawback may be the lack of drivers for specific peripheral devices.
If you decide to continue to use «the seven» without registration of extended support, it is important to take care of their security. Microsoft has announced that the built-in defender, Microsoft Security Essentials will get the latest virus database and after January 14, 2020. But many people are skeptical regarding its effectiveness.
Good alternatives are integrated into Windows defender, a great many, including free. Among the most popular are Avast, AVG, Avira, Bitdefender, Comodo, Dr. Web, Panda, NOD32 ESET, «Kaspersky», 360 Total Security. They have a huge fan base, its advantages and disadvantages, as well as a number of additional functions. So everyone can choose the best option.