Anyone keen to continue using Windows 7 will soon have to apply for extended support. Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU) are good for companies that do not want to switch to Windows 10 or will not manage migration by the end of support date and therefore require a transitional solution. The Extended Security Update is available from April 1, 2019.

Official support for Windows 7 ends on January 14, 2020. From this date, there will be no more patch releases and security updates. But until 2023, Microsoft is offering extended support in the form of Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU) for companies that do not want to switch to Windows 10 within this timeframe. ESU will also support Office 365 based on Windows 7 during this period. This contract is the only way to continue using secure Windows 7 within the enterprise beyond the end of support.

It will no longer be free, but only available as a paid service. The contracts must be negotiated with Microsoft and will be built around so-called framework conditions.

Conditions for Windows 7 Extended Security Updates

  • Windows 7 was purchased as part of a volume license agreement.
  • The offer applies to the Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Ultimate and Windows 7 Enterprise versions.

Office 365 ProPlus & Windows 7 Extended Security Updates

Organizations that use Windows 7 within the ESU program obtain additional support for Office 365 and Office 365 ProPlus for the term of the agreement.

“In addition, Office 365 ProPlus will be supported on devices with active Windows 7 Extended Security Updates through to January 2023.”

Prices for Windows 7 Extended Security Updates

The initial information indicates that Microsoft plans to roll out sales in several stages and on a per-device basis. Prices for the first year start at US$50 and go up to US$200 for the final year. Companies that use Windows 7 in the Enterprise version will seemingly only pay half.

Key data:

  • Per-device licensing
  • Cumulative security updates will be made available per contract year.
  • To be eligible for the following years (second year/third year), the contract must also have been concluded from the first year.
  • The Windows 7 ESU program is available across all program channels (VL/CSP).

As an alternative, Microsoft offers a solution based on Virtual Windows Desktop in Azure that already includes the ESU program up to 2023.

“For organizations where a virtualization solution might be appropriate, Windows Virtual Desktop is the only cloud-based service that delivers a multi-user Windows 10 experience, optimized for Office 365 ProPlus, and includes free Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU).” – Source: Microsoft

Companies that are interested in this solution can sign up for the Public Preview.

Although Windows 7 can remain in use thanks to the Extended Security Updates, companies should not use this extension as an excuse for inactivity. Now the time has come to consider a switch to Windows 10 and proactively start shaping the future of your organization’s IT infrastructure.

Are you aware of the potential that Office 365 offers for your business?

Where Windows 7 offered an operating system, Microsoft 365 is an entire package that offers Windows 10, Office 365 and Enterprise Mobility + Security. Instead of purchasing a product or license, Microsoft 365 is a subscription service. Our experts are happy to introduce the solution to you.