Microsoft Windows 7 & Windows 2008 Server Have Officially Reached End of Support. You’ve heard us frequently talking about end of support for Windows 7 and Windows 2008 Server. The January 14th, 2020 deadline has already passed, and end of support is officially here.
If you have Windows 7 computers and/or Windows 2008 servers, here are the key takeaways.
- Windows 7 and Windows 2008 Server reached end of support on January 14th, 2020.
- There is Extended Security Updates available for Windows 7, but NO Extended Security Updates for Windows 2008 Server (unless you are willing to move your Windows 2008 servers to the Microsoft Azure Cloud).
- Cost for Windows 7 Extended Security Updates is $119 total ($69 for ESU license, $50 for deployment/patching setup).
- Windows 7 computers and Windows 2008 servers will be considered “out of compliance” and no longer supported under your SPOT Managed IT Services agreement effective January 14th, 2020.
Below is additional information and FAQs.
What You Need to Know About Windows 7 and Windows 2008 Server End of Support
Microsoft announced the End of Support (EOS) for several of their software, some of the expirations effective after January 14, 2020. That means none of the normal security patches or fixes to common business software such as Windows 7, Office 2010, SQL 2008 R2 SP1 or Windows Server 2008 will be provided.
This creates greater cybersecurity risk for organizations and could prevent compliance.
There are 3 options for business owners to deal with this increased risk.
- Upgrade to newer versions of OS or software (ideal solution- allows normal patching and support, but higher initial cost due to new license fees, upgrade labor)
- License ESU updates for short term patching (next best option-helps extend software life with some lesser software and licensing costs, slightly increased risk from older technology and will eventually need to upgrade anyways) – only available for Windows 7
- Do nothing (lowest initial cost, much higher risk, Fulcrum charges hourly rates for security incidents, on top of normal monthly fees, and could increase your cybersecurity insurance premiums)
NOTE: EOS could violate security and privacy safeguards if you take credit cards or handle healthcare information as a Covered Entity or Business Associate. If you are bound by compliance, then you would need to pursue one of the first two options.
- Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) Criteria 6.2 requires organization to install and maintain current security patches on point of sale machines and servers (which would stop after EOS dates).
- HIPAA 45 C.F.R. §164.308(a)(5)(ii)(B) dictates patching vulnerable software promptly as a requirement for HIPAA compliance, to protect PHI (Protected Health Information). Be sure to also check support for network attached medical devices and machines.
Windows 7 Extended Support Now Available for SPOT Managed IT Clients
The end of support for Windows 7 and Windows 2008 Server is now in effect (as of January 14th, 2020). Microsoft recently announced the availability of Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU) through Microsoft Cloud Service Providers such as The Fulcrum Group.
The Fulcrum Group Platform team has tested the Windows 7 ESU licenses, and has determined an approach for verifying which Windows 7 computers have ESU and which don’t. In addition, the Platform team has determined a process for ongoing patching of Windows 7 computers that have ESU license installed.
Fulcrum Group EOS Support Policy for SPOT Managed IT Clients
The Fulcrum Group will continue to provide support under our SPOT Managed IT agreement for Windows 7 computers that have Windows 7 Extended Security Update licensing purchased and applied. Windows 7 computers that do not have Extended Security Update licensing purchased and applied as well as all Windows Server 2008 servers will be considered “out of compliance” with our SPOT Managed IT Services agreement, excluded from coverage under our SPOT Managed IT Services agreement, and any ransomware, malware, or network issues caused by “out of compliance” Windows 7 computers or Windows 2008 servers will not be covered or supported under our SPOT Managed IT Services agreement. The client will be billed for any remediation services required to resolve any issues caused by “out of compliance” Windows 7 computers or Windows 2008 servers. You will be asked to sign a Hold Harmless agreement for any “out of compliance” Microsoft software that remains in place after January 14th.
Windows and Office End of Support FAQs
Q: What does Windows 7 ESU include?
A: Windows 7 ESU include security updates for critical and important issues as defined by Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) for a maximum of three years after January 14, 2020. After January 14, 2020, if your PC is running Windows 7 and you have not purchased Extended Security Updates, the computer will no longer receive security updates.
Q: Is there an ESU offering for Office 2010?
A: There is no ESU offering for Office 2010. Clients must be running Office 2013 or later versions of Office to be properly supported.
Q: Is there an ESU offering for Windows 2008 Server?
A: There is no ESU offering for Windows 2008 Server, so you are limited to upgrading to the newer versions of Windows Server (Windows Server 2012, 2016 or 2019). Microsoft also offers an option to migrate Windows 2008 Servers to Microsoft Azure Cloud, with associated for monthly fees. Contact your Fulcrum Group Fractional CIO for more details.
Q: What is the cost for Windows 7 ESU licenses?
A: Windows 7 ESU licenses cost $69 per computer for the 1st year (January 15th, 2020 through January 14th, 2021). In addition, there is a labor cost of $50 per computer to deploy the license and confirm enrollment into our Windows 7 specialized patching update process. Microsoft will announce pricing for years 2021 and 2022 at a later date.
Q: What editions of Windows 7 are eligible for ESU?
A: Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Enterprise.
Q: When is Windows 7 ESU licensing available?
A: Windows 7 ESU licenses are available immediately from The Fulcrum Group.
Q: What happens to my Windows 7 computers that don’t have ESU licensing?
A: Windows 7 computers without ESU licensing will stop receiving Windows patches and updates as of January 14th, 2020. In addition, these computers will no longer be supported under your SPOT Managed IT Services agreement.
Q: Does Windows 7 ESU licensing automatically renew for year two?
A: No. Windows 7 ESU licensing will be purchased separately for each of the three years it will be made available (2020, 2021, and 2022). To continue ESU, clients will need to purchase each year’s ESU license separately.
Q: Is there a minimum purchase requirement for Windows 7 ESU licensing?
A: The minimum quantity is 1.
Q: Do I just upgrade to Windows 10 or Windows 2019 Server?
A: Before upgrading, be sure to discuss with your Fractional CIO and check with your specific software vendors on what operations systems or Office versions are supported. Some vendors may include upgrades/updates as part of their support agreement or provide replacements. Some line of business applications might steer you to “not the newest OS” or drive you to move to an alternate vendor for proper support and compliance.