Extended support for Windows 8.1 will end soon


Briefly: Microsoft is set to release another of its legacy operating systems in the near future. Anyone still using an old operating system needs to seriously start migrating to a current version within the service.

Windows 8.1 launched in late 2013 — just a year after Microsoft released Windows 8 — in an effort to correct some of the early issues with the flagship operating system. Most found that it offered a better experience than the original, but even so, Microsoft wasted little time preparing and rolling out its successor – Windows 10 – in the summer of 2015.

Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows 8.1 on January 9, 2018, and plans to suspend extended support on January 10, 2023. Once this happens, Microsoft will no longer provide software updates and technical assistance for the operating system. There will not be an Extended Security Update Program for Windows 8.1 which means that anyone running it after the closing date will be exposed to security risks in the future.

according to StatCounterWindows 8.1 desktop market share worldwide is only 2.45 percent as of October 2022. For comparison, Windows 7 is still used in 9.61 percent of desktop computers. Windows 11 is adopted by 15.44% of desktops, while Windows 10 leads the way with 71.29% market share.

Microsoft recommends that devices running Windows 8.1 be upgraded to a newer in-service version of Windows such as Windows 10 or Windows 11. Windows 10 Home and Pro are still available and will be supported through October 14, 2025. This path might buy you a few years more if Windows isn’t 11 options due to technical limitations.

In the event that your device does not meet the minimum requirements for the latest operating system, Microsoft suggests that you replace it with something a little more recent. In that case (and assuming you want to stick with Windows), you’d be better off upgrading to something that supports Windows 11 so you don’t have to worry about switching operating systems again for a while.

Image credit: Nothing aheadAnd the Pedro SantosAnd the Bram van Ost



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