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Yesterday on 13 January 2015, Microsoft ended free support for Windows 7.

This means Microsoft will no longer offer free help and support if you have problems with your Windows 7 software from this point on and no new features will be added either.

Windows 7, which was released in 2009 sold over 100 million copies in six months and remains hugely popular.

It was more stable than its predecessor Windows Vista and more familiar than its radically redesigned successor Windows 8, version 7 is still estimated to be running half of the world’s PCs.

To extended support, Microsoft will charge for help with the software. That will end in 2020, when Microsoft turns out the light on Windows 7 for good.

Concerning security, Microsoft will continue to patch security issues, so if you do stick with Windows 7 your computer shouldn’t suddenly become vulnerable to hackers targeting the software.

The next generation of Microsoft’s venerable operating system is Windows 10. Microsoft is set to make an announcement about Windows 10 a week from now on 21 January.