All services, big and small, end one day, and Windows is no different. In fact, Microsoft is deliberately cutting updates to their operating systems after a defined period. With Windows 8 and 8.1 starting to show their age, can you still use the operating systems? If yes, should you?
Let’s see when Windows 8 and 8.1 are out of print and if you should use them after that date.
When does Windows 8 and 8.1 lose support?
If you’re using Windows 8 or 8.1, you’ve already passed the main support end date – which happened on July 10, 2018. However, it’s not something to panic; standard support simply means that the operating system will not receive any fancy new features.
Windows 8.1 still has security updates, but it will end on June 11, 2023. As such, unlike Windows 7, you still have plenty of time to use Windows 8.1 before Microsoft disconnects.
Can you still use Windows 8 or 8.1 after that?
Yes! When June 11, 2023 arrives, it simply means that Microsoft will no longer fix the security holes that appear. This is not a self-destruct date for Windows 8 or 8.1; it will always work well.
Do you still have to use Windows 8 or 8.1 after that?
The urgent question is not so much “if” you can use Windows 8 or 8.1 after this date, but “should” you. Without more security updates, continuing to use Windows 8 or 8.1 can be risky.
The biggest problem you will face is the development and discovery of security vulnerabilities in the operating system. Since Microsoft will no longer fix them, this is a persistent hole in your system’s defenses.
However, that doesn’t mean Windows 8.1 will suddenly crash after the deadline arrives. In fact, many users remain loyal to Windows 7, and that operating system lost support in January 2020.
If you read the comments in the article linked above, you will see why people keep using it. It turns out that the loss of support does not immediately mean that the operating system is a duck sitting in the world of cybersecurity.
By deploying strong antivirus, maintaining a good firewall, and staying safe online, you can continue to use an older operating system. In fact, these are all the points we covered in our guide to securing Windows 7 after its support deadline.
Do you need to upgrade to Windows 10 before 2023?
Should you continue to use Windows 8 or 8.1? For now, if you wish, absolutely; it’s still a safe operating system to use.
When 2023 arrives, Microsoft will start putting the operating system to bed. Here you have a choice: if the thought of a lack of security updates is enough to worry, then it’s a good idea to upgrade to Windows 10. That way, you can continue to receive updates security update for your PC.
However, if you want to stick with Windows 8 or 8.1, you will find that it is quite possible to do so. Not only is Windows 8.1 safe enough to use as is, but as people prove with Windows 7, you can equip your operating system with cybersecurity tools to keep it safe.
If your main concern is to use an old program that may not be compatible with Windows 10, you should know that there is a compatibility mode that allows you to run old Windows programs in Windows 10.
Do you plan to continue using Windows 8 or 8.1 after the arrival of 2023? Let us know below.
Image credit: Windows 8.1
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