Microsoft: We goofed on that Windows 7 end-of-sales date

Microsoft: We goofed on that Windows 7 end-of-sales date

Summary: Microsoft officials are now saying the end-of-sales date for PCs preinstalled with Windows 7 is 'to be determined,' rather than October 30, 2014.


Last week, Microsoft made it public that it planned to stop allowing its PC partners to sell machines with Windows 7 preloaded as of October 30, 2014.


The Redmondians are now saying that date was posted in error. The new official word is that Microsoft still has yet to determine when the Windows 7 preload cut-off date will be. (Neowin reported the change from October 30, 2014 to "TBD" over the weekend.)

A spokesperson supplied the following statement explaining the mix-up:

"We have yet to determine the end of sales date for PCs with Windows 7 preinstalled. The October 30, 2014 date that posted to the Windows Lifecycle page globally last week was done so in error. We have since updated the website to note the correct information; however, some non-English language pages may take longer to revert to correctly reflect that the end of sales date is 'to be determined.' We apologize for any confusion this may have caused our customers. We’ll have more details to share about the Windows 7 lifecycle once they become available."

Microsoft also confirmed that the other cut-off date -- the end of availability of boxed copies of Windows 7 sold at retail -- was, indeed, October 30, 2013.

It will be interesting to see if Microsoft ends up sticking with the October 30, 2014 OEM cutoff date or not. That timing would make sense if the Softies think they can get more Windows 7 users on a path toward upgrading (or at least considering upgrading) to Windows 8 within a year's time. If things aren't going so well, perhaps Microsoft will push the PC-preload date out further.

The end-of-support date for Windows 7, as of now, has not been extended. Mainstream (free, Microsoft-provided) support for Windows 7 with Service Pack 1 installed isn't expiring until January 13, 2015. Microsoft will continue to provide security fixes for Windows 7 for free until the end of extended support, which is January 14, 2020.

Topics: Windows, PCs, IT Policies, Windows 8


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • The sooner the better

    The sooner they kill off Windows 7, the better off everyone will be. Developers, users, and partners will all benefit from a unified version of Windows. They need to make sure the Windows 7 lifespan doesn't end up resembling that of XP. What a nightmare that turned out to be!
    • except

      That windows 8 completely sucks.. I mean you can use it yes... But it is just inferior to Windows 7 in literally every way. They should actually just take Windows 8 and take it out of the picture. And then rebuild Windows 9 as part of a new OS that is similar to 7 on the front end. Even if Windows 8 Kernel is similar to Windows 7 there are too many things that have been changed that make it a piece of garbage.
      • No Windows 8 for businesses

        Windows 7 Pro is excellent for business purposes. I am hoping it spins off a future windows business OS. Instead of putting a lot of time and money in training people to work with Win 8 it makes more sense to put the same time and effort in converting the desktops to Linux. As a benefit with Linux you don't have the NSA and TPM 2.0 issue.
        • That makes no sense.

          Unlike 8, Linux is completely different from Windows 7.

          It takes 5-10 minutes to learn the basics of 8, since a majority of work will be done on the desktop.

          Linux? A week at the least, months or years at most.

          Converting applications to Linux will take even longer.

          And Linux has the same NSA issues as Windows and all other operating systems, simply being that nobody can confirm or deny what it can do.

          Also, isn't TPM just a security chip? Switching to Linux won't kill off the hardware, if you really want to avoid it, since computers will still be made with it.
          • Don't sell Linux short. Could be your future.

            It is different from Windows but similar in a lot of ways. It is very useable for front end desktop work. Most business use offline servers and proprietary databases for the heavy lifting the OS less important.
            Linux is open source not having the same NSA issues. There are thousands of people working on code. Microsoft is completely proprietary. You are purchasing on trust.
            Linux does not address or work with TPM. I am sure if it ever does you will hear about it quickly.
            So far we setup 2 Linux machines for testing and it looks promising!
          • TPM is a character device.

            Linux absolutely does support the TPM. Like Windows, support is optional.
          • Re: Linux? A week at the least, months or years at most.

            Seriously, I have wiped clean many Windows (insert version here) laptops/PCs and installed Mint and or Ubuntu and the users usually just need prompting on where to find the menus, etc. Females seem to favor Ubuntu and have no problem installing applications with a mouse click from the software center.

            At least you did not try to pull that "drivers issues" thing some of the rather lazy trolls here use.
          • Judging by the number of flags...

            Judging by the number of flags you got you are very wrong. Linux can be learned in 5 minutes and windows 8 could take years to master. Just think how much stress people have when they see no start button! It is back in 8.1 but it is now square, not round like it used to be! Oh horror!
            Then start menu is different. Users just go to start menu and get totally lost. They scream and panic. Sometimes they even kill themselves because windows 8 is such incredibly painful experience.
          • You're 'avin a laugh!

            "It takes 5-10 minutes to learn the basics of 8, since a majority of work will be done on the desktop.

            Linux? A week at the least, months or years at most."

            I've introduced Linux to 70 year olds and they're using it in 10 minutes.

            Don't confuse usage with administration. And if you think Windows admin is a breeze - think again. Out of the two, I'd pick Linux over Windows any day, and I could bore you with a list of reasons why.
          • Hardly true

            Perhaps you haven't taken a look at Linux lately. KDE4 is more "Windows-like" than Windows 8 in the sense of having an application menu that works just like 7's start menu and relying upon a proper desktop with windowing.

            Honestly, I'd say the learning curve for Windows 8 was higher. While you can skin it to look however you want, KDE4 is very similar to Windows 7. Heck even LXDE seems easy to use compared to Windows 8's bizarre tiles.

            As for converting applications, its hit or miss, but running things in WINE is becoming much more hit than miss these days. Once you've set up WINE how you want it, a .wine folder can easily be copied from one system to the next. These days though, I tend to do most things on the browser and Chrome or Firefox are the same on Linux as Windows.

            The NSA isn't really an "issue" for businesses but Linux uses open code. You can thumb through it if you know C and if you want to make sure the binaries don't have hidden stuff in them, you can compile from source and checksum the results to see that they match. The NSA actually has contributed to Linux. Security Enhanced Linux was created by the NSA. The thing is, since anyone can review the code, it has been thoroughly and publicly audited and proven to not have backdoors. Windows and OSX don't have publicly viewable source code. Nobody knows if there are any back doors or not.

            The TPM is a security chip. Linux and Windows both can use it and neither requires it. Windows uses it for bitlocker. Linux can use it for encryption but most programs don't. In general, if you don't want the TPM you can just switch it off in the BIOS.
        • Poll shows Enterprise will embrace Win 7

          A poll showed that a majority of enterprise running Windows XP will be migrating to Windows 7 and not Windows 8. That percentage of the polled was 65% Windows 7 and 4% Windows 8. Sorry Linux lovers but only 1% said they would move to another OS including Linux. Over 5% said they would keep XP and run a virtual machine and use third party options to keep XP safe.
          • Enterprises are moving to UNIX/Linux in droves

            It's called iOS, Android, HTML 5 and Cloud. Locally, it's called Web Servers, Mail Servers, Database Servers, etc. None of the major cloud vendors use Windows to power their clouds (except MS and Azure). The migration is happening now.
      • I think you are confusing...

        I think you are confusing change with inferiority. Windows 8 is more stable than 7 and runs next generation applications. The Windows 8 GUI is the Windows GUI of the future, so the sooner you learn to deal with it, the better off you'll be.
        • Flags for being right

          It is in still to kick and complain about Windows 8. When you try and support it look how many flags you got.

          I have considerable experience with both Windows 7 and Windows 8. There is no question that Windows 8 is more stable.

          Touch is the future. A GUI that favors touch is the future. Windows 7 is horrible with touch. I fully agree with you that the sooner you deal with it the better off you will be.

          I will bet I get a lot of flags for this.
          • In Style

            Fix typo
          • One input method of many

            As someone who at this point has limited experience with 8.1, but on a tablet, I'd say it has a long way to go. The major issue I have with my tablet, which I do not use with a separate keyboard, is that in desktop mode, the on screen keyboard does not come up automatically when you enter a text field. Since much of what I want to do with it can't be done in Metro, that is a major failing. And that's without considering how poorly designed the two OSK options are. I can work around these issues, but for a system that was supposedly designed for touch, this is a major problem. One that I do not have with Android.

            Touch is a *part* of the future. Just as it's a major part of the present right now. Keyboards didn't go away when mice came on the scene or when voice recognition arrived. Touch is great for consumption and certain specific activities. It works for others. But it's a poor second for some, for at least a while yet.
          • nope...

            touch is ONLY useful for small devices where other types of input are impractical.. and even then, a 'touch keyboard' is used!!

            the only other use is for big displays in public places, to minimise problems due to dirt and exposure (all hidden behind toughened glass )

            and showing of your powerpoint at a conference...
          • touch is the future... yeah right... until...

            thousands of oh&s cases send corporations sprinting for the nearest desktop keyboard and mouse only interfaces...
          • Precisely

            4 out of our 11 staff came down with RSIs on our touch systems.

            It'll happen. You read it here first.
          • Not even first

            Thus has been well known in at least part of the computer industry for at keast tgree decades. Apple did a study on vertical touch just a few years ago and found that yes, even with touch being rediscovered recently, it's still an absolutely terrible idea to rely on vertical touch screens. So unless Microsoft has a plan to get us all to start buikding monitors into desk surfaces, they will rethink their thoughtless jump to touch.