Microsoft’s cutting off Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 from security updates and technical support on January 10th. That’s just one week from today and also marks the launch of Microsoft Edge 109 — the last version to support the aged operating systems.
But Edge isn’t the only major browser ditching Windows 7 and 8.1. In October, Google announced that Chrome will end support for Windows 7 and 8.1 on February 7th. Although both browsers will continue to work on these devices, they won’t receive any critical security updates or new features. Support for WebView2, the tool that allows developers to embed web-based content into their apps, is going away on January 10th, too.
Next week’s deadline leaves little time for the owners of machines still running Windows 7 — estimated at around 100 million as recently as 2021 — to upgrade their devices or else face the security risks that come along with using an outdated operating system and browser. A Lansweeper survey of 27 million Windows devices performed last October found more PCs running either XP, 7, or 8 than the number running Windows 11.
Microsoft gave users plenty of notice, though, and first announced the end of support for Windows 7 in 2020. The only users still receiving updates are those who paid for an extra three years of extended security patches.
If you own a device running Windows 7 and 8.1, it might be a good time to download Windows 10 or 11 on your PC. But if that’s not possible, Microsoft recommends replacing the device with a newer one before January 10th to avoid any potential security issues.