Microsoft announces yet another Windows 7 support extension (for SMBs)

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 2, 2019
Windows, Windows 7

Microsoft announced yesterday that the option to get extended support for the company's Windows 7 operating system will be available to businesses of all sizes.

Support for the Windows 7 operating system ends in January 2020. Microsoft will deliver security updates for the operating system until that month but won't produce security updates or any other update anymore afterward for free.

The company announced previously that Enterprise customers may extend support by up to three years. The price of support starts at $50 per user and year and double each year so that $100 and $200 need to be paid per user in the following years.

Up until yesterday, that was the only way to extend support for Windows 7 (except for the exception of voting machines in the US 2020 election which would also be supplied with security updates).

windows 7 extended support small business

Yesterday's announcement allows businesses of any size to extend support for up to three years.

With that in mind, today we are announcing that, through January 2023, we will extend the availability of paid Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU) to businesses of all sizes. (Previously, Windows 7 ESU was only available to Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Enterprise customers in Volume Licensing.) The Windows 7 ESU will be sold on a per-device basis with the price increasing each year.

The extended security updates for Windows 7 will be sold on a per-device base and not on a per-user base like they are for Enterprise customers. The price per device depends on the year and edition of Windows 7.

Basically, the costs per year are identical for Windows 7 Professional and only half for Windows 7 Enterprise. It needs to be noted that the SMB extensions apply to the entire device while the Enterprise extensions to individual users.

Product Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
SMB: Windows 7 Pro ESU 50 100 200
SMB: Windows 7 Enterprise ESU 25 50 100
Enterprise: Windows 7 Pro ESU 50 100 200
Enterprise Windows 7 Enterprise ESU 50 100 200

Businesses may start to purchase ESU "through the cloud solution provider program" for Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Enterprise devices starting December 1, 2019.

Additional information is available on the Microsoft 365 Partner Center. Home users may install security patches provided by third-party security company 0Patch for their Windows 7 devices.

Closing Words

Business and Enterprise customers may purchase extended support updates for Windows 7 for up to three years which leaves Home users as the only group that cannot purchase extended support for the operating system. While it is unclear how many Home users would pay for extended Windows 7 support, it is not unrealistic to assume that a good chunk would if the pricing was right.

I think it is unlikely that Microsoft will announce a support extension option for Home users even though the company could probably make quite a bit of money from such an extension.

Now You: Should Microsoft offer support extensions for Home users as well? (via Born)

Microsoft announces yet another Windows 7 support extension (for SMBs)
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Microsoft announces yet another Windows 7 support extension (for SMBs)
Microsoft announced yesterday that the option to get extended support for the company's Windows 7 operating system will be available to businesses of all sizes.
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  1. Anonymous said on October 3, 2019 at 2:10 pm

    > Up until yesterday, that was the only way to extend support for Windows 7 (except for the exception of voting machines in the US 2020 election which would also be supplied with security updates).

    What, there are voting machines running Windows ? Voting machines make frauds so much easier than before that they should be considered as killing free elections even when they are sanely designed. But… running Windows… really ?

    1. Peterc said on October 4, 2019 at 4:52 am

      @Anonymous: Yeah, I was about to to shake my head in disbelief when I read that, too, but the thing is, I’ve developed head-shaking fatigue since I read that nuclear-missile-equipped Royal Navy submarines run a custom version of Windows XP. I mean, there’s only so much head-shaking a man can do.

  2. Peterc said on October 2, 2019 at 9:15 pm

    From the End of Support FAQ for Windows 7 and Office 2010:

    “When will the Extended Security Updates offer be available?
    Extended Security Updates has been available for purchase since April 1, 2019.”

    Perhaps Microsoft just forgot to make an announcement when Extended Security Updates became available for purchase, *six months ago*. Or perhaps they just forgot to update the FAQ when they determined that they couldn’t force enough users to migrate to Windows 10 DSREC (Data-Slurping and Rent-Extraction Channel) and decided to go ahead with the ESU contingency plan.

    “Who should I contact for more information about pricing and ordering for Windows 7
    Please contact your Account Team CE for pricing and ordering information tailored to specific
    customer scenarios.”

    What the hell does *that* mean? Does it mean that Windows 7 Extended Security Updates are limited to users who have some kind of “Cloud Solution Provider” contract? And maybe Extended Security Updates aren’t *really* available for SMBs of “any size”? I’m leaving the Microsoft ecosystem entirely when Windows 7 hits end of life, but I know a small-business owner who would be interested in this offer for his two Windows 7 Professional computers. What he needs to know is *where to sign up and who to pay*. Enough with the obfuscatory corporate-speak already.

    1. Allan said on October 6, 2019 at 4:58 am

      John G. i got same version of Windows 10 as you.I have not had any problems with it at all.When i update Windows 10 i do it manually every month,so don’t get any bad updates.

  3. John G. said on October 2, 2019 at 3:02 pm

    I’m sorry but I can’t stop laughing. Amount of articles everywhere made by Microsoft that absolutely recommend to use W10 everywhere and now they are offering to support Windows 7 for a lot of money. 200 bucks, oh, come on, guys! Absolutely madness. They don’t know how to fight and destroy W7 users and now they want to take more money from them. Meanwhile, a lot of new W10 ISO with a lot of new bugs are waiting to be released. My sister said me days ago that when all the bugs of 1809 will be solved, the bug free version will be replaced forcely by another W10 version full to the brim of bugs, failures, issues and problems. That’s no evolution. That’s changing old problems by new ones. For example, my cousin is fighting everyday with 1903: low sound problem in Youtube, games, movies, no night light, flickering problems, and all of them with no supposed hardware problem. I am stuck at 1809 by WU and sincerely I am proud of it. At least for me, W10 LTSC should be offered for all people at free cost.

  4. Leo said on October 2, 2019 at 1:44 pm

    There are a lot of self-employed people world wide. I was reading that 50% of the population in Columbia are self-employed, the UK is around 15%, Japan and Germany is around 10% and the USA is around 6%, so we can assume they are wired in some fashion. If their very small business requires billing, product shipping and or service delivery they are probably using applications that require Windows.

    The self-employed represent tens of millions of people in these countries (and other countries not listed above) who probably work from home and have one laptop or desktop. I’d hazard a guess that the majority are either on XP or W7 because their hardware, though running well, has upgrade restrictions (e.g. RAM) and W10 is becoming a very hungry beast and requires modern hardware and higher specs. Those who have a very modest income are unlikely to purchase extended support for W7 even if it were made available.

    W7 Home Users who are not self-employed have options. Many do not need Windows at all.

    Microsoft knows that they could potentially make millions from Home Users who want to stay on W7 but it would not bode well for their WaaS strategy. Bad for business.

    1. The Punisher said on October 16, 2019 at 4:21 pm

      @Leo I can’t imagine anyone who’s self employed outside a very wealthy country to happily fork out $100+ just to keep an OS updated. They’ll either switch to 10 or keep running their 7 or Vista or XP the way they were. There are some people who are staying on 7 because 10 is bug-ridden, and will keep themselves safe on their own, by running AV and disabling unsafe services. The others, who would benefit from this, this isn’t even going to get on their news feed.

      The only reason why MS is pushing this is, it seems, to generate some goodwill about the premature retirement of the 7.

      @Sam I don’t know what software you’re using on your 10, but IME Windows 7 is the one which is lighter and faster. I can get 7 to run just fine on 2-4GB RAM which can’t be said of the 10. Not to mention 10 bans a lot of old hardware it could still run on.

    2. Sam said on October 4, 2019 at 3:37 pm

      For me, w10 is lighter and faster. W10 can run on hardware that is unimaginable to run w7 on. I don’t like w10 for many reasons but resource hungry is not one of.

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