Are You Ready for the End of Life for Windows 10?

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by Nick Abbott 
| 13 May 2024

Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system has been a staple in computing since its launch in 2015. It’s hard to believe the sun is setting on this familiar platform. So why is Windows 10’s end-of-life (EOL) significant, and what do you need to know? 

Understanding Windows 10’s End of Life

What Does “End of Life” Mean?

When a Microsoft product reaches its “end of life,” it means that Microsoft will no longer provide technical support, security patches, or software updates. This can leave users vulnerable to security risks, as emerging threats and vulnerabilities will not be addressed. For Windows 10, the EOL will occur on the 14th of October, 2025. 

 

Timeline Leading Up to Windows 10’s EOL 

  • 29th of July, 2015, Windows 10 launched with a promise of ongoing feature updates and improvements. 
  • July 2017: Microsoft announces “Windows as a Service,” committing to regular feature updates twice a year. 
  • 20th of October 2020: Windows 10 version 20H2 (October 2020 Update) is released. 
  • 24th of June, 2021, Microsoft revealed that Windows 11 was the successor to Windows 10. 
  • 5th of October, 2021, Windows 11 becomes generally available. 
  • 14th of October 2025, Windows 10 will have reached its end of life. 

Why Windows 10’s EOL Matters 

Security Implications

Windows 10 will no longer receive security updates after the 14th of October 2025. Any vulnerabilities discovered after that date will remain unpatched, putting users at risk of cyberattacks. 

Software Compatibility

As software developers focus on the latest operating systems, new software releases may become incompatible with Windows 10. This will limit the functionality and access to new features for users of the old Operating Systems. 

 

Compliance Risks

Businesses relying on Windows 10 could face compliance issues after the EOL. Regulatory requirements often include using supported software and continuing with Windows 10 could mean failing to meet these standards. 

Preparing for the Transition 

  1. Upgrade to Windows 11

Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 11, is the natural successor to Windows 10.  It is important to plan now to ensure your systems are read; if Microsoft Auto Updated would you be ready?

Here’s how to ensure a smooth transition: 

  • Check Compatibility: Windows 11 has specific system requirements. You can use Microsoft’s System Readiness Tool to see if your device is compatible, or we can audit your entire network to check compatability.
  • Backup Data: Ensure all your data is backed up starting to roll out Windows 11.  
  • Plan the Upgrade: We are happy to help businesses implement this upgrade to ensure minimal downtime and ensure the backup of all data.  

 

  1. Consider New Hardware

It is possible that your older devices may not meet the requirements for Windows 11. In such cases, businesses will need to consider purchasing new hardware to take full advantage of the latest features of Windows 11.  

 

  1. Evaluate Alternative Operating Systems

Whilst upgrading to Windows 11 is the most logical choice for most users, some users might consider switching to alternatives like Linux or macOS, depending on their needs. 

  1. Develop a Transition Plan for Businesses

The team at PLC IT Services are here to help you plan a comprehensive strategic migration strategy for the EOL of Windows 10, including: 

  • Inventory Audit: Identify devices running Windows 10. 
  • Hardware Audit: Identify devices that cannot run Windows 11 optimally 
  • Pilot Testing: Test Windows 11 on a small group of devices. 
  • Employee Training: Educate employees about new features and changes. 
  • Upgrade Timeline: Create a phased timeline for upgrading devices. 

What Now?

Discovering the need to transition to Windows 11? Whether you’re just starting or facing challenges due to limited resources and time, our friendly and knowledgeable team is here to assist you. Get in touch today to find the support you need!

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