Every Windows product has a lifecycle. The lifecycle begins when a product is released and ends when it’s no longer supported. Knowing key dates in this lifecycle helps you make informed decisions about when to upgrade or make other changes to your software.
End of support refers to the date when Microsoft no longer provides automatic fixes, updates or online technical assistance. This is the time to make sure that you have the latest available update or service pack installed. Without Microsoft support, you will no longer receive security updates that can help protect your PC from harmful viruses, spyware and other malicious software that can steal your personal information. For more info, go to Microsoft Support Lifecycle.
Service Pack 3
14 April 2009
8 April 2014
Service Pack 2
10 April 2012
11 April 2017
Windows 7 *
Service Pack 1
13 January 2015
14 January 2020
Windows 8 **
9 January 2018
10 January 2023
Windows 10, released in July 2015 ***
13 October 2020
14 October 2025
Prior versions of Windows, including Windows 7 and
Windows 8.1, have limited support when running on new processors and chipsets from manufacturers such as Intel,
AMD, NVidia and Qualcomm. For more info, please see the Support Lifecycle FAQ.
* Support for Windows 7 RTM without service packs ended on 9 April 2013. Make sure that you install Windows 7 Service Pack 1 today to continue receiving support and updates.
** Updates are cumulative, with each update built upon all the updates that preceded it. A device needs to install the latest update to remain supported. Updates may include new features, fixes (security and/or non-security) or a combination of both. Not all features in an update will work on all devices. A device may not be able to receive updates if the device hardware is incompatible, lacking current drivers, or otherwise outside the Original Equipment Manufacturer’s (“OEM”) support period. Update availability may vary, for example by country, region, network connectivity, mobile operator (e.g. for mobile-capable devices) or hardware capabilities (including e.g. free disk space).
End of support: questions and answers
Mainstream support – Microsoft will offer mainstream support for a minimum of 5 years from the date of a product’s general availability. For example, if you buy a new version of Windows and five years later another version is released, you will still have two years of support left for the previous version.
Extended support – Microsoft will offer extended support for a minimum of 5 years from the date of a product’s general availability.
For more details about the difference between mainstream support and extended support, see the Microsoft Support Lifecycle Policy FAQ.
You can either install the latest available update or service pack or you can upgrade to a newer version of Windows. For more information, see
What does it mean if my version of Windows is no longer supported?
Learn why Microsoft ended support for Windows XP SP3 and Office 2003, what it means to you, and how you can get access to all available tools to begin your migration.
End of sales refers to the date when a particular version of Windows is no longer shipped to retailers or Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). Examples of OEMS are Dell and Toshiba – PC manufacturers who often pre-install Windows software.
This table gives end of sales dates for specific Windows operating systems.
31 December 2001
30 June 2008
22 October 2010
30 January 2007
22 October 2011
Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium, Ultimate
22 October 2009
31 October 2013
31 October 2014
Windows 7 Professional
31 October 2016
26 October 2012
30 June 2016
18 October 2013
1 September 2015
29 July 2015
* Note that when the retail software product reaches its end of sales date, it can still be purchased via OEMs (the company that made your PC) until it reaches the end of sales date for PCs with Windows pre-installed.
End of sales: questions and answers
When Microsoft launches a new version of Windows, we will continue to allow OEMs to sell PCs pre-installed with the previous version for up to two years after the launch date of the new version unless otherwise announced. Certain OEM versions of Windows products include downgrade rights (as outlined within the software licence terms). Downgrade rights make it possible to use a previous version of Windows instead of the licensed software pre-installed on a new PC. See Downgrade rights for additional details.
We will continue to allow retailers to sell the previous version of Windows for a year after the launch date of the new version.
For Volume Licensing programmes, licences will continue to be available via downgrade rights after the end of general availability. General availability of licences for the previous version of Windows will cease as soon as the new version is available, or when otherwise determined by Microsoft. However, we will make media available for the current version as well as the previous two versions.
Service packs and updates are part of the process of keeping Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8 up to date. Service packs combine the latest updates and fixes into one package or download. A service pack can include security and performance improvements, as well as support for new types of hardware. To install the latest service pack for Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7, or to install the latest update for Windows 8, visit the Service Pack Centre.
Windows XP SP1
30 August 2002
10 October 2006
Windows XP SP2
17 September 2004
13 July 2010
Windows XP SP3
21 April 2008
8 April 2014
Windows Vista SP1
4 February 2008
12 July 2011
Windows Vista SP2
26 May 2009
Windows 7 SP1
22 February 2011
Windows 10, released in July 2015
Service packs and updates: questions and answers
For Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8, support ends 24 months after the next service pack releases or at the end of the product’s support lifecycle, whichever comes first. If you are using software without the latest service pack, you won’t be offered any new security or non-security updates, although pre-existing updates will continue to be offered. Refer to the Service Pack Lifecycle Support Policy for further information.
Not necessarily. Update notices only indicate that your software has not reached its end of support date. To find out if you already have a service pack installed, read the information on our
page. To install the latest Windows service packs, see the Service Pack Centre.
You can find this information on the
Windows 8.1 Support Lifecycle Policy
See the following table for service pack support information.
Windows 2000 Professional,
Windows 2000 Server, Advanced Server and Datacenter Server
SP3 or earlier
SP426 June 2003
Update Rollup No. 1 for SP428 June 2005
Support for Windows 2000 ended on 13 July 2010. Microsoft is no longer producing public monthly security updates or service packs.
Windows Server 2003
SP213 March 2007
No further updates planned
Windows Server 2008
SP1(Windows Server 2008 was released including SP1)
SP226 May 2009
Not yet established
Windows Server 2008 R2
SP122 February 2011
To use prior versions of Windows software on PCs installed with newer versions, it is possible for consumers to obtain a licence for downgrade rights. These downgrade rights will vary depending on whether the software was acquired via Volume Licensing, OEM or FPP. To learn more about these rights, review the
downgrade rights licensing brief.