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Microsoft to offer extended Windows 10 security updates to businesses, individual users


Microsoft plans to offer extended security updates to both business and individual Windows 10 users for the first time when the operating system reaches end-of-life in late 2025.

Microsoft encouraged Windows 10 customers to begin plans to migrate to the latest version of the operating system — Windows 11 — last April with the announcement that Windows 10 22H2 would be the final version.

Windows 10 is still the most widely used version of the OS, accounting for 64% of US desktop market share, according to StatCounter’s figures; that compared to 30% for Windows 11.

End of support is set for Oct. 14, 2025. At that point, Microsoft will no longer provide bug fixes, security fixes, time zone updates, or technical support. That means users would need to upgrade existing devices to Windows 11, purchase new hardware running the latest OS, or move to the cloud-based Window 365.

For those that don’t update, Microsoft will provide Extended Security Updates (ESUs), the company said in a blog post Tuesday. These can be purchased on a yearly basis, and can be renewed for up to three years. Microsoft doesn’t always provide this option: extended support was offered for Windows 7, but not for Windows 8.

The ESU program provides monthly “critical and/or important security updates,” Microsoft said. There are, however, no new features, design change requests, or technical support services provided past the October 2025 deadline.

ESU pricing will be provided “at a later date,” a Microsoft spokesperson said.

Microsoft notes that customers on Windows 10 IoT Enterprise Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise plans “will continue to receive updates based on their specific lifecycles.”

Copyright © 2023 IDG Communications, Inc.



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