Windows 7 – End of life, are you prepared?

Windows 7 – End of life, are you prepared?

What is happening?

Microsoft are retiring a number of operating systems to End of Life to focus their efforts on supporting new technologies. Microsoft actually ended mainstream support for Windows 7 on January 13, 2015, which meant new features stopped being added, and warranty claims were no longer valid.

However, during the extended support phase, which Windows 7 entered after the end of its mainstream support, the operating system has still been patched and updated to make sure security issues and bugs are fixed.

This is not just limited to Windows 7 though but includes the following platforms:

Windows 7

Server 2008 

Exchange Server 2010

When?

14th January 2020.

Can I still continue to use Windows 7?

Yes, you can continue using Windows 7 even after January 14, 2020. Windows 7 will start and run just like it’s doing today. But we advise you upgrade to Windows 10 before 2020 as Microsoft won’t provide technical support, software updates, security updates, and fixes after January 14, 2020.

Windows 7 – End of life, are you prepared?

What is the risk?

At cyberlab, we have seen a number of security incidents caused by outdated operating systems and unpatched vulnerabilities. We believe there will be a significant increase in the number of security threats identified which specifically target these operating systems listed above.

According to Kaspersky research, “40% of very small businesses (VSBs) and 48% of small, medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and enterprises still rely on unsupported or approaching EOS operating systems for their security needs.”

Can I still continue to use Windows 7?

Yes you can continue to use Windows 7 for as long as you wish but that doesn’t mean you should.

What should my organisation do?

There are a number of things cyberlab would recommend you do in preparation for Windows 7 End of Life, the first is to complete a review of your network to identify all computers and their operating systems.

Any computers running Windows 7 we would urgently recommend upgrading to Windows 10. This is a straightforward process but (depending on how your organisation license Microsoft products) is likely to involve purchasing a Windows 10 license for every computer.

Alternatively, this may be a good idea to review the hardware specification of any machines running Windows 7. The chances are they have been in place a number of years and whist Windows 10 will likely run on older hardware perfectly fine it may make more sense to replace the computer for one with Windows 10 pre-installed.

 

For any advice surrounding Windows 7 and best practice recommendations please contact one of our experts.

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