By providing extensive support, organizations could safely run Windows 10 years after the planned retirement in 2025.
Microsoft will almost certainly provide extended support for Windows 10, which will allow organizations to safely run the operating system for years after its supposed 2025 retirement date.
Although there is nothing certain about Microsoft, the company does not tend to follow a proven practice. If something like the Extended Security Updates (ESU) concept has generated revenue and stifled business customer complaints, Microsoft will be left with twice.
The last clue comes from the server from 2012
The latest indication that ESUs are here to stay came last month, when Microsoft announced that it would offer three years of additional paid support for Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012 R2 and SQL Server 2012.
«Customers who are unable to meet the support deadline and have software or subscription licenses under an Enterprise Agreement subscription will have the option to purchase extended security updates to receive another three years of security updates,» Debbi Lyons Product Marketing Director, Azure SQL and Database Migration, and Vijay Kumar, Product Marketing Director, Windows Server and Azure Arc, wrote in a July 14 post on a company blog.
Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 will no longer be supported on October 12, 2023; SQL Server 2012 ends its support on July 12, 2022. ESUs will be sold for all of these products in one-year increments for up to three years after the end of the original support. Therefore, ESU licenses for Windows Server 2012 R2 would be extended until October 12, 2024, October 12, 2025, and October 12, 2026.
Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 and SQL Server 2012 join other venerable operating systems and products that Microsoft has provided ESU coverage with, including Windows Server 2008, Windows 7, and Dynamics AX 2009.
Bet on ESU for Windows 10
With precedents like these, the last two editions of Windows Server, the last two editions of SQL Server, and the latest Windows client, it’s a safe bet that Microsoft will continue to produce ESUs for software that reaches its expiration date. In chronological order for Windows, those data are:
- Windows 10: October 14, 2025
- Windows Server 2016: January 12, 2027
- Windows Server 2019: January 9, 2029
Because Microsoft has standardized for three years ESU, paid one year at a time, at the lowest price in the first year and then higher each year thereafter, to encourage customers to switch to a still compatible edition, those practices will continue for Windows. Server. (The first year for Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2 ESU, for example, will cost 75% of the license cost, and the next two years will be 100% and 125%, respectively.) Windows 10 will almost certainly keep these settings; the first ESU will extend support until October 14, 2026, and the second and third years will extend support until October 2027 and October 2028.
Although it may be easy for some to reject the idea of ESU for Windows 10 simply because the successor to Windows 11 is, at least initially, largely a reshuffle of UI and UX, which would be an underestimation of the impact of changing requirements.
Because Microsoft will require Windows 11-eligible devices to have 8th-generation or later Intel processors, some installed computers will not be able to run the operating system. (The percentage in an organization depends largely on the timing of the organization’s replacement cycle.) The number of affected systems will be significantly lower when Windows 10 is phased out in four years, but few things cause more customer problems than Microsoft, causing i to spend hardware budgets simply to run the next iteration of some software.