Microsoft Extends Vista Extended Support Cycle To 2017

Martin Brinkmann
Feb 20, 2012
Updated • Feb 20, 2012
Microsoft, Windows, Windows Vista, Windows XP

Microsoft initially planned to end support for some Windows Vista versions, Windows Home Basic and Ultimate for example, in April 2012. The effect would have been devastating for customers running those editions of the operating systems, as they would not receive patches, both normal and security related, anymore after that date. It would also mean that Windows XP would outlive these Vista editions thanks to its extended support end date.

Only Vista Home Premium, Business and Enterprise were known to receive extended support until April 2017. Microsoft recently has made changes to Vista's product life cycle, and published those changes on the Microsoft Support website.

Mainstream support for all Vista editions will still end on April 10, 2012. The change affects the extended support end date, which has now been set to April 11, 2017 for all Windows Vista versions.

This means that all Vista users will receive free security updates for their system until April 2017. The Lifepolicy FAQ over at Microsoft highlights the differences between mainstream and extended support phases. Extended support includes:

  • Paid support (per-incident, per hour, and others)
  • Security update support
  • Non-security hotfix support: Requires extended hotfix agreement, purchased within 90 days of mainstream support ending.
  • Product-specific information that is available by using the online Microsoft Knowledge Base
  • Product-specific information that is available by using the Support site at Microsoft Help and Support to find answers to technical questions

Provided support excludes the following:

  • No-charge incident support
  • Warranty claims
  • Design changes and feature requests

Windows XP in comparison will reach the end of its extended support period on April 8, 2014.

Including Home and Ultimate editions of Vista in the extended support phase is the right move, especially since the Ultimate edition back then was advertised by Microsoft as, uhm, the ultimate edition of the operating system. It did not make a lot of sense to exclude the priciest version of Windows Vista from the extended support lifecycle of the operating system. (via Winfuture)


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  1. Allen said on February 21, 2012 at 10:48 am

    @jenita :yup its true only.

  2. RG said on February 20, 2012 at 10:39 pm

    Sorry, couldn’t resist laughing at The Walking Dead reference here.
    As far as Microsoft go, good thing they are rich, otherwise all these extensions and related man hours and subsequent downloads would make 95 out of 100 companies go bankrupt.

  3. Paul(us) said on February 20, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Oh no please AMC not a third season of The walking dead. Maybe we can start a petition, Robert Palmer.

  4. ilev said on February 20, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    Windows 7 has been extended to 2020.

    1. Jenita said on February 21, 2012 at 6:31 am


  5. Robert Palmar said on February 20, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    AMC announced the renewal of The Walking Dead for a third season too.

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