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On January 14, 2020, Microsoft announced the end of its commitment to provide 10 full years of product support for Windows 7. This officially ends the life of Windows 7, making way for Windows 10, which is the current flagship operating system of Microsoft. This means, those who continue to use Windows 7 will no longer receive vital updates or technical assistance, which may pose problems as time goes on. For most people, this means migrating to Windows 10 as the easiest and best option that ensures the integrity of their systems.

If for some reason you wish to continue using Windows 7, you still may do so – but there are some things to consider. Electronic Security Updates (ESU) will be made available by Microsoft, but they will cost money and will last a maximum of three years after January 14, 2020. If you don’t mind spending a little extra, then this is good news for you and anyone interested in keeping their Win7 alive.

In order to receive future security patches for Windows 7, follow the 3 simple steps below:

  • Download and install the following prerequisite updates:
    • KB4474419 – Users of Windows 7 SP1 and Windows Server R2 SP1 will receive SHA-2 code sign support
    • KB4480628 – Resolves hash algorithm issues and users will receive SHA-2 signed Windows Updates
    • KB4484071 – Fixes all issues Windows Server Update Services 3.0 SP2 (WSUS 3.0 SP2)
  • You’re all set and ready to download Windows Updates beyond July 2019.

Microsoft has made it clear that WSUS updates will not work without the SHA-2 updates, so these three steps above are necessary for anybody running on WSUS 3.0 SP2.

https://support.microsoft.com/en-ph/help/4472027/2019-sha-2-code-signing-support-requirement-for-windows-and-wsus

That said, even if you are able to extend the life of your Windows 7 operating system temporarily, it will not promise support beyond the three-year time frame mentioned above. Eventually, you will encounter new software that is no longer compatible with an obsolete OS. So while you may enjoy a couple more years of your Windows 7 comfort zone, the best advice would still be to start planning the move to Windows 10 along with the rest of us.

In need of assistance and/or considering more than just a few program compatibility? Give us a call now. The qualified technicians and engineers at ICTechnology are happy to explain further and help you every step of the way.

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Written by Ibrahim Massri
Ibrahim Massri is General Manager at ICTechnology, an IT services provider based in NSW. He has more than 9 years of rich experience in IT management services. Working since 2010, he has expertise in project management, business strategy, business development, Microsoft Office solution selling, and software related projects. He loves to pen down new industry insights and his experience in this field to help solve challenges related to IT issues.
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