Microsoft to shut down Windows 7 Games Servers on January 22, 2020

Martin Brinkmann
Jul 9, 2019
Updated • Jul 9, 2019
Windows, Windows 7

Microsoft revealed in a forum post on the official Microsoft Answers forum that it plans to shut down games servers for games that require Internet connectivity for its Windows 7, Windows XP, and Windows ME operating systems.

Windows 7 has just a few months of support left under its belt. Microsoft will end support for the operating system on January 14, 2020 after a last Tuesday Patch Day for the operating system in January 2020.

Notifications about the upcoming end of support are already pushed to customer devices.

Enterprise and Education customers may extend support by up to three years but everyone else is out of luck. Windows 7 systems will continue to work for the most part but some features may become unavailable.

Microsoft Internet Games that are part of Windows 7 won't be playable anymore starting January 22, 2020.

internet games windows 7 error 0x80041004

Microsoft will shut down game servers on that day for Windows 7 games. Game servers for Windows XP or ME games will be shut down on July 31, 2019 so that the games won't work anymore on these systems.

  • Microsoft Internet Games services on Windows XP and ME will end on July 31, 2019.
  • Microsoft Internet Games services on Windows 7 will end on January 22, 2020.

Here is the list of affected games and the operating systems the games are available on.

  • Internet Backgammon (XP/ME, 7)
  • Internet Checkers (XP/ME, 7)
  • Internet Spades (XP/ME, 7)
  • Internet Hearts (XP/ME)
  • Internet Reversi (XP/ME)
  • MSN Go (7)

Microsoft notes that players will be able to play these games until the server shutdown date.

Current players may enjoy the games until the dates above, when game services will cease, and the games listed will no longer be playable.

It is unclear at this point whether the games will show an error message on start that informs players that game servers are no longer available, or if they will simply show connection errors (which they did in the past when game servers were not available).

Microsoft removed many of the classic games in Windows 8. Windows 8 users have options to install games from the Windows Store.

Closing Words

Microsoft shutting down game servers quickly after Windows 7 support end may not sit well with gamers on these machines as Microsoft kept game servers for Windows XP and even Windows ME up for years after support end.

It is Microsoft's decision in the end and there is little that customers may do in this regard. If you ask me, I'd loved to have seen Microsoft open sourcing the games and game servers so that they could live on as independent products.

Now You: What is your take on the decision? (via Windows Latest)

Microsoft to shut down Windows 7 Games Servers on January 22, 2020
Article Name
Microsoft to shut down Windows 7 Games Servers on January 22, 2020
Microsoft will shut down games servers for games that require Internet connectivity for its Windows 7, Windows XP, and Windows ME operating systems.
Ghacks Technology News

Tutorials & Tips

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. Paul said on February 19, 2020 at 6:45 pm

    I was playing these games on a Windows 10 system. Hard to accept MS shutting down the servers is a Windows 7 issue.

  2. Mickey said on February 10, 2020 at 4:18 pm

    I played MS Spades for years and for the last two the players were as bad as the people that wrote the code for it. Since I retired it was something to do when I had no plans but I won’t miss it much.

  3. Jezzer said on January 20, 2020 at 11:38 am

    WHAT ! I’ve played my last game o’ msn Bkgmn. It was absolutely crap the way their algorithms manipulated the die rolls but it was still the perfect time filler for when you had to be at the computer but between personal work loads for a few minutes. Once my Win7Ultimate becomes truly unusable it’ll be Mac time for me. Sad days ahead.

  4. Dierdre said on January 18, 2020 at 4:29 am

    Will someone come up with a way (hack?) to keep them going? I need my internet backgammon!!!

  5. mikef90000 said on July 11, 2019 at 10:31 pm

    Microsoft’s action reminds me again of the Harry Nilsson song:
    “You’re breakin’ my heart, you’re tearin’ it apart so F**K You!”

  6. Jeff said on July 10, 2019 at 4:10 pm

    It’s 2019 and Microsoft still couldn’t build or care to build a P2P matchmaking game solution that bypasses a central server that they don’t have to maintain. Such a mediocre company.

  7. John Fenderson said on July 9, 2019 at 6:29 pm

    “What is your take on the decision?”

    I have two thoughts.

    First, anyone who plays games that depend on a remote server has to be aware of, and OK with, the fact that it can vanish at any time. It’s just the nature of the beast. That’s why I don’t bother playing games that depend on a server somewhere.

    Second, how popular are those games? I don’t think I was even aware that they existed.

  8. Dave said on July 9, 2019 at 5:24 pm

    I wonder is M$ has considered how many people play windows 7 games on windows 10?

    I’ve never played any of the online games but I prefer the old solitaire because…

    #1 it doesn’t cheat to let me win more often like the new version does.

    #2 It doesn’t require an internet connection (it’s not sending data back to M$ or constantly throwing ads in my face).

    1. Kevin said on July 10, 2019 at 7:28 pm

      That is not a “supported configuration”. And more importantly, those old games don’t show you any advertisements or get you onto the subscription plan to avoid them. (Which is of course why people are running them on Windows 10).

      In other words, they don’t make Microsoft any money. They’re “just games”, ie. software designed to entertain and amuse the user. That is how Silicon Valley works today; nothing can be a stand alone product without integrated advertising anymore that doesn’t stop working when the company running the service no longer feels like doing so.

  9. Juan said on July 9, 2019 at 11:20 am

    There is something called rebellion in the real world, for many closures windows 7 their users are not going to kneel on the ground.There is life with w7 away from the control and dictators off w10. What they can cause is general sanation and boycott from markett for w10 and migrations in the opposite direction towards linux mint!

    1. Lambo-san said on July 10, 2019 at 8:33 pm

      See I like Windows 7 better than Windows 10, but I’m a gamer, and my old PC (which can easily run both Windows 7 and Windows 10, but had 7) was too old, too loud and producing too much heat. I had to get a new one. My old one has BIOS, my new one has UEFI and some of the components don’t support Windows 7, so I have to use Windows 10. I don’t like it, but it gets the job done, so far I’m doing OK with Windows 10. It’s not as intuitive and easy to use as Windows 7, but as more time passes, the more my OCD goes down and I stop giving a fuck. I’m content that it just works and I don’t fiddle with the settings too much.

    2. Tamris said on July 9, 2019 at 3:18 pm

      Yeah, XP fanboys said the same thing in 2014, and where is XP now? Barely anyone uses it.

      1. Berner said on July 10, 2019 at 10:54 am

        My Mercury mail server has been running under XP since 2013. When I see a compelling reason to replace it, I’ll put a Rapsberry pi instead…

      2. Anonymous said on July 10, 2019 at 4:41 am

        I would like to still use XP but hardware manufacturers say otherwise. There’s no driver provided in XP anymore. XP is still the best OS, the last OS where it’s able to manually arrange folders and loads just under 20 seconds on HDD.

      3. krew said on January 17, 2020 at 6:56 pm

        I’m with you. XP was the best OS Microsoft ever came out with, but they can never leave anything alone. Every new generation of MS employee has to put their brand on things, whether it’s better for the end user or not.

      4. John Fenderson said on July 9, 2019 at 7:09 pm


        Around 3% of all consumer computers are running XP. That’s a minority, but a far cry from “hardly anyone”. To put the number into perspective, that’s a higher installed base than Linux, Windows 8, OS X 10.11 and OS X 10.12 combined.

      5. TimH said on July 9, 2019 at 5:36 pm

        I use XP under Virtualbox because the footprint is lighter than 7 or later, and legacy support is better.

        Absolutely the OS does not get access to the LAN or WAN.

    3. Maasai said on July 9, 2019 at 2:49 pm

      >There is life with w7 away from the control and dictators off w10.

      You can say that again

  10. 420 said on July 9, 2019 at 10:48 am

    They will do everything they can to get people to leave windows 7

    1. Kevin said on July 9, 2019 at 4:10 pm

      Well, they sure were successful with me!

      > uname -sr
      > Linux 5.0.0-20-generic

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.