By Ivy / Last Updated July 13, 2020

When is Windows 7 end of life?

In Microsoft, there are two support models, including mainstream support and extended export. During the mainstream support span, Microsoft provide regular feature updates, design changes, warranty claims, patching and security updates and this support model has reaches its end of life on January 13, 2015.

After that, extended support has been introduced. It’s used to ensure the security of Windows 7 and mainly provides patching for bugs and security updates. After careful consideration, Microsoft decide to stop the 10 years of product support for Windows 7 since January 14, 2020.

According to Microsoft office, the main reason to stop support for Windows 7 is to focus on new investment with newer technology and great experience. And Youtube company speculate that Microsoft is likely to release a new operating system called Windows 12.

Windows 7 end of life what does it mean?

Since January 14, 2020, Microsoft has officially announced Windows 7 end of life. You may want to know what does it mean.

That is to say, after January 14, 2020, Microsoft does not provide any technical support for Windows 7, including software updates, security updates, and fixes and your computer will become more vulnerable to security risks after the date. And Microsoft customer service, Related services and devices, such as, Internet Backgammon and Internet Checkers, Electronic Program Guide for Windows Media Center, Internet Explore, will be disconnected.

What is the risks of Windows 7 end of life?

After Windows 7 end of life, your computer will be more vulnerable. In view of this, Hackers and other criminals will make use of the vulnerabilities to attack your computer, and finally your will lose your data forever or pay for Hackers or other criminals. WannaCry and NotPetya is the best example. Anyway, you need to take data security seriously.

Can you still use Windows 7 after 2020?

After the mainstream support end of its life, there are still 37% of computer using Windows 7 and only 41% computer upgrade to Windows 10. What’s more, in a 2018 survey, 43% IT professional said that their company is still using Windows 7 and 17% business were not aware that mainstream support was ended.

Windows 7 End Of Life

But now, Windows 7 completely end of its life and Microsoft does not provide any technical support for users. Many users may have this question, “Windows 7 end of life can I still use it”.

Yes, even if Windows 7 has reached its end of life, you can also use Windows 7 as you like. It will work as before, but you may be bothered by the security risks issue. It may be attacked by virus, hackers or other criminals. Thus, it’s suggested to free upgrade to Windows 10, so that you can ensure security of your data and OS, as well as enjoy technical support from Microsoft.

"Windows 7 end of life what should I do?"

As mentioned above, since January 14, 2020, Windows 7 end of its life. “What should I do?” may be one of a question for users who are still using Windows 7.

According to Microsoft office, you’d better upgrade to Windows 10. At the same time, it still says that you can use Windows 7 after 2020, but your computer will be exposed to many risks, such as, virus attack, hack, new bug, etc.

Next, in the following article, I’ll show you how to backup your system if you still use Windows 7 and upgrade to Windows 10 with installation media.

Backup your system if you still use Windows 7

Without Microsoft's technical support, starting January 15, 2020, Windows 7 is no longer as secure as before. So, you need a trust and reliable backup and restore software, which allows you to backup system, disk, partition, or files in simple steps and save it to external hard drive. Here, I highly recommend you free AOMEI Backupper Standard.

Here are some advantages of this software:

  • Regular backup with schedule settings: To protect your OS or data, one backup is not enough. To continuously protect your Windows and files, you need a schedule backup, such as, daily backup, weekly backup, monthly backup.

  • Backup only changed files with incremental or differential backup:Backups occupy much space if its original size is very big. So, AOMEI launch two new backup type: incremental backup, differential backup, which only backup changed files and occupy less disk space.

  • Compress backup image: For larger system drive, you still can choose to compress the image with “Normal” or “High” compression level. The higher compression level, the less disk space is used.

  • Email notification for backup task: If you want to get backup result clearly without waiting until the backup task 100% complete, you can use email notification.

  • Bootable media for Windows 7, 8, 10: If you are afraid of system or disk failure, you can create a bootable media so that you can boot computer in trouble.

To backup your system after Windows 7 end of life, use the following steps:

1. Preparing for backup tasks. Download AOMEI Backupper Standard, install and launch it. Connect the external hard drive to computer and make sure it can be detected.

2. Click “Backup” and “System Backup” subsequently. To backup files, click "File Backup" as instead.

System Backup

3. Click where the arrow point, and select a path to save backup image.

AOMEI Backupper will automatically y select the required partitions for a system backup, that’s because there are some hidden boot related partitions on a computer and you may ignore it. Finally, the computer in trouble is still unbootable after recovery.

Select Path

4. Set a schedule setting to auto backup Server 2012 R2. You can click “Schedule” and select daily, weekly, monthly, or incremental backup, differential backup separately, or combine any two settings, such as, daily incremental backup.

Schedule Settings General

5. After all sets up, click “Start Backup”.

Tip: To enjoy better experience, you still could consider the following features:
Event-trigger backup: If you want to backup system at a specific event, such as, User logon, System shutdown, you can use event-trigger backup under the General tab.
USB plug in: If your target drive is USB drive, you could consider using this feature. This software will automatically backup your system at the next time as long as you create a schedule backup with “USB plug in”.
Backup Scheme: This feature is very useful for users who want to create a schedule backup, because it will automatically delete old backups when the backup task reaches the number you set.

All of the features are only available on AOMEI Backupper Professional or higher version. If needed, you can go to edition comparison and select the proper version.

Windows 7 end of life upgrade to Windows 10

If you search “Windows 7 end of life extended” on the internet, you may know free upgrade to Windows 10 is one of the best ways. But Microsoft has removed the free upgrade option. If you want to use Windows 10 and enjoy its technical support, you can choose to reinstall Windows 10 using installation media.

Free Upgrade Is Not Available


  • Download Windows 10 installation media and create an installation media with it.

  • Backing up your system or files on the computer. By default, clean install or reinstall Windows will remove the original operating system and create a new one. To avoid system failure owing to human error, you can backup system in advance. a

Windows 7 end of life upgrade to Windows 10, use the following steps:

1. Set boot priority for your installation media. Restart your computer, press the specific key (eg: ESC, F2) on the first screen, go to boot option and move CD/VD or USB drive to the firs option using “+”, hit F10 key to save the changes and exit. After that, just wait and your computer will restart to Windows Setup page.

2. Click Next in the Windows Setup page.

3. Click “Install Now”. Then, you will see these words “Setup is starting” and wait patient until the next window pop up.

4. Click “I don’t have a product key”.

5. Select the operating system you want to install and click Next.

6. On the “Applicable notices and license terms” page, tick “I accept the license terms” and click Next.

7. On the “Which type of installation do you want?”, click “Custom”.


8. Delete the original partitions and create a new operating system with it. Just select the partition you want to delete and click Delete, then repeat these operations until all the partitions are deleted, select the unallocated space and click Next. After installation, set up your references.

Note: If you don’t want to buy extra product key, you can create a system image backup and bootable media on a working Windows 10 computer. Then, use this system image to restore your computer to Windows 10. If are worried about hardware issue, you can use “Universal Restore” feature (supported by AOMEI Backupper Professional).

Written in the end

Reading here, you may already know the answer to “Windows 7 end of life what to do”. The best way is to upgrade to Windows 10 free, because it’s much safer. But Microsoft has removed its free upgrade option, you can only reinstall Windows 10 on the existing computer and reinstall will remove all your personal data.

So, no matter if you use Windows 7 or Windows 10, backing up your system is necessary. Only in this way, you can continuously protect your system and data saved on system drive. Even if there are something unexpected happens, you can still restore system from backup.