Microsoft will offer 3 years of extra Windows 10 security updates — for a price

Microsoft will continue to offer optional security updates for Windows 10 three years after its official end-of-support (EOS) date in October 2025, but these will not be free.

In a blog post on Monday, the software giant confirmed it was following a similar approach as it did with Windows 7 by offering an extended security update (ESU) programme for its older operating system.

“Like the Windows 7 ESU programme, your organisation will be able to purchase a yearly subscription to security updates,” Microsoft Windows Servicing and Delivery principal product manager Jason Leznek explained.

“The yearly commitment is renewable for three years.”

This time around, the programme will be available to individual users in addition to Enterprise customers and businesses.

It will only provide critical and important security updates to keep Windows 10 devices as secure as possible from attack after EOS on 14 October 2023.

It will not serve any new features or design changes to the operating system.

No specific details on costs

Leznek did not share pricing for the Windows 10 ESU programme.

For reference, the Windows 7 programme charged users $25–$50 (R473 to R946) per machine for the first year of extended updates, $100 (R1,891) for the second year, and $200 (R3,782) for the third and final year.

The programme came to an end on 10 January 2023.

Leznek spent most of the blog post encouraging users to switch to Windows 11.

“With the EOS for Windows 10 coming in less than two years, now is the time to migrate to a modern OS,” Leznek said.

“For devices that aren’t eligible for Windows 11, or older devices due for a refresh, now is the time to transition to new PCs running Windows 11.”

Leznek also advised organisations with Windows 10 PCs to migrate to Windows 11 in the cloud as they worked to modernise their equipment.

Some of Windows 11’s stringent system requirements have been criticised by users with older generations of high-performance processors and motherboards that are not supported on the new OS, despite being far more capable than some of the entry-level systems that meet the requirements.

The main sticking point is Windows 11’s minimum requirement of a Trusted Platform Module 2.0 chip.

According to data tracked by Statcounter GlobalStats, roughly 68.02% of the world’s Windows PCs were running Windows 10 in November 2023, about eight years after its launch.

Windows 11 had managed to onboard a not-too-shabby 26.63% of users in the roughly two years since its launch.

The graph below shows the most popular versions of Windows, according to Statcounter.

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Microsoft will offer 3 years of extra Windows 10 security updates — for a price