Don’t panic. If you’re using a Windows 7 PC, here’s what the announcement means. On January 13, 2015, Microsoft changed the status of Windows 7 support from “mainstream” to “extended” phase. Security patches will continue to be released. That level of support will last until 2020.
Happily that doesn’t mean your computer is going to automatically break or stop working, but it does mean Microsoft will no longer offer free help and support if you have problems with your Windows 7 software from this point on. No new features will be added either.
If you haven’t been calling Microsoft for support, then you’ll likely not do so in the future — so, no worry about support cost.
Yet another end is nigh for Windows 7. After months of buildup—Microsoft killed standalone software sales of the operating system in October 2013, and Windows 7 consumer PCs stopped being manufactured in October 2014—the venerable OS is finally exiting “mainstream support” on January 13, 2015.