Published: Sat, February 03, 2018
Science | By Cecil Little

Microsoft Extends Windows 10 Support for Businesses and Schools

Microsoft Extends Windows 10 Support for Businesses and Schools

Office 2019 will not be supported on Windows 7 or Windows 8.1, despite those operating systems being expected to remain in use until 2020 and 2023 respectively.

Microsoft announced the next version of Office, Office 2019, previous year on September and they promised some new features in the new release. The short period between when Office 2019 comes out and when Windows 7 support ends - a year and a half, at most - may be why Microsoft made a decision to not support that OS and software together, Mangan said.

According to Microsoft's recent update, Office 2019 will get five years of mainstream support, as well as about two years of extended support. "Software that is more than a decade old, and hasn't benefited from this innovation, is hard t secure and inherently less productive", they said.

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Microsoft said this is because "As the pace of change accelerates, it has become imperative to move our software to a more modern cadence".

Microsoft has a reason why they decided to make sure that Office 2019 only works with Windows 10.

Most importantly for IT pros is that Microsoft is planning to permit installations of Office 2019 only through its "click-to-run" streaming technology.

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To help customers like Accenture that are still transitioning to Microsoft's new software-delivery model, the company announced "an additional six months of servicing for the Enterprise and Education editions of Windows 10, versions 1607, 1703, and 1709", stated Bernardo Caldas, general manager for Windows, and Jared Spataro, general manager for Office at Microsoft, in a blog post. "This extension will be offered via normal channels".

"However, Windows 7 retains loyalty, especially among business users". According to a survey of enterprise IT admins a year ago, 68% of businesses are still running Windows 7, compared to 13% on Windows 10. In other words, the most popular OS is now Windows 10. Once Office 2019 rolls out, all users who haven't and refuse to upgrade to Windows 10 will need to gravitate to Office 365, stick with an older iteration of the company's office suite, or use the Office Web Apps.

A key group still holding on to Windows 7 are Microsoft's enterprise customers, which Microsoft hopes it can encourage to upgrade for Windows 10's superior security, which the company has argued on numerous occasions would have protected businesses from last year's WannaCry and NotPetya cyber-attacks. Combined with the other earlier versions of Windows, this means that Office 2019 won't be compatible with 59.98% of desktop users. Windows has gone farther than versions older than Windows 10 could catch up.

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