Microsoft is bidding farewell to Windows Vista, more than 10 years after it first debuted. Support for Windows Vista ends today, meaning users will have to move to a more recent version of Windows to remain secure. It’s the end of an era for an operating system that arrived late to the market with widespread criticisms.
Codenamed Longhorn, Windows Vista was originally supposed to revolutionize Windows with a new file system and user interface. Microsoft’s development of Longhorn spiraled out of control, and the company was forced to reset its plans and focus on shipping a stable version of Windows in the middle of its development phase. Microsoft had ambitious ideas for Windows Vista in the years leading up to its release, including a new Windows Future Storage (WinFS) file system.
What is Windows Vista end of support?
As of April 11, 2017, Windows Vista customers are no longer receiving new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options, or online technical content updates from Microsoft. Microsoft has provided support for Windows Vista for the past 10 years, but the time has come for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources towards more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences.
What happens if I continue to use Windows Vista?
If you continue to use Windows Vista now that support has ended, your computer will still work but it might become more vulnerable to security risks and viruses. Internet Explorer 9 is no longer supported, so if your Windows Vista PC is connected to the Internet and you use Internet Explorer 9 to surf the web, you might be exposing your PC to additional threats. Also, as more software and hardware manufacturers continue to optimize for more recent versions of Windows, you can expect to encounter more apps and devices that do not work with Windows Vista.
Microsoft has also stopped providing Microsoft Security Essentials for download on Windows Vista. If you already have Microsoft Security Essentials installed, you'll continue to receive antimalware signature updates for a limited time. However, please note that Microsoft Security Essentials (or any other antivirus software) will have limited effectiveness on PCs that do not have the latest security updates. This means that PCs running Windows Vista will not be secure and will still be at risk for virus and malware.
How do I know if I'm running Windows Vista?
To find out if you're running Windows Vista, follow these steps:
Click the Start Start button icon button, and then type winver in the search box.
Double-click winver in the list of results to open the About Windows dialog box, where you'll see the version of Windows that your PC is running.
Do I need to get Windows 10 to stay protected?
Yes, the best way to stay protected is to get Windows 10, which is the latest version of Windows. You have two ways to get Windows 10:
Upgrade your current PC
You can purchase a full version of Windows 10, but you should first make sure that your computer can run it. Very few older computers are able to run Windows 10. We recommend that you check out the Windows 10 specifications page to find out if your PC meets the system requirements for Windows 10. For more detailed information, read the FAQ.
Get a new PC
If your current PC can't run Windows 10, it might be time to consider shopping for a new one. Be sure to explore our great selection of new PCs. They're more powerful, lightweight, and stylish than ever before—and with an average price that's considerably less expensive than the average PC was 10 years ago.
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