Windows 7 mainstream support ends in January 2015, but it's not time to freak out yet

HP previously ran a promotion for Windows 7 during the 2013 holiday shopping season

Microsoft's Windows 7 operating system is casually referred to as the next 'Windows XP' as many corporations have adopted the OS after the end of support for XP earlier this year. So when the headlines read that mainstream support is coming to an end for Windows 7, there is reason to be alarmed.

The good news here is that for users of Windows 7, you don't have much to worry about. The end of mainstream support indicates that the company will no longer build out features or deliver enhancements other than security updates. The mainstream support is typically a window of 5 years post launch, following this there is a period of extended support that lasts for an additional 5 years. In January, Windows 7 will transition into the extended support state, so your machine will be safe.

This transition typically only affects corporate entities who may need custom features built for their installations of Windows but for the consumer, there is not much to worry about.

In short, Windows 7 users don't have much to worry about from a consumer perspective. Your system will still get software patches and will be protected from zero-day vulnerabilities for at least another 5 years. 

For those of you who were XP holdouts, you will remember that Microsoft extended the support for the platform and many think Microsoft might do the same with Windows 7. The company isn't commenting on if it will extend support as the platform is only now reaching mid-life. As with any software, it's best to go by the posted life-cycle support schedules and not hedge that they may be extended.

Source: Microsoft | Via: ZDnet

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