Less than two weeks before Windows Vista officially reaches ‘end of life’.
On April 11, 2017, more than 10 years after Microsoft officially launched Windows Vista, the much-maligned operating system that no one ever seemed to really like, will cease to receive any further technical support by Microsoft.
Haven’t I heard this before?
Kind of… Microsoft stopped mainstream support for Vista back in 2012 but continued to provide extended support for paying customers, mostly business users. But now regardless of how much money anyone has, there will be no more security or technical help forthcoming. Microsoft has warned anyone still using Vista that going forward, their systems will be more open to being compromised by attackers in the future, and that Microsoft’s own Security Essentials support will also no longer receive updates.
A statement from Microsoft said: “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.”
So will my Vista work on April 12th?
That’s funny. No one uses Vista, right? But, yes, it will still work. That said, it is important to remember that Microsoft isn’t killing Vista come the 11th April, though that would probably be a blessed release. Vista will no longer receive critical updates but PCs and laptops running Vista will still work. Up-to-date security software will still run and protect users from most viruses and malware, but any new weaknesses discovered in the operating system code itself, will not be fixed and remain wide open for hackers to exploit.
There’s also the fact that “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,” the company added.
Unsurprisingly, Microsoft is urging users to update to newer OS versions, pushing customers to upgrade to Windows 10, though whether Vista era hardware will run Windows 10 smoothly is another question.
Vista came in for a lot of criticism from both the media and users alike when it was launched to the point where Microsoft eventually offered users the opportunity to ‘downgrade’ to Windows XP if they wanted.
According to Stat Counter, Vista currently has a 1.12% market share among all Windows users. Windows XP, the OS it was supposed to replace still has a user base of 5.53%.