Microsoft begins blocking updates for older Windows versions on newer hardware

It’s the end of the line for Windows 7 on the latest PC designs.

Anyone running an older version of Windows on new hardware received a rude shock this week when the latest Patch Tuesday updates rolled around.

Instead of receiving the latest security updates for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, those customers saw an error message instead.

Unsupported Hardware

Your PC uses a processor that isn’t supported on this version of Windows and you won’t receive updates.

This issue occurs with newer hardware equipped with 7th-generation Intel processors (“Kaby Lake”) and AMD Ryzen (“Bristol Ridge”) chips. Systems with the Intel CPUs installed went on sale in late 2016. Devices built using AMD’s new chips are just beginning to reach the market.

Although the sudden end of updates might come as a surprise to some PC owners, it isn’t unexpected. Microsoft announced the change in its support policy more than a year ago, in January 2016.

Going forward, as new silicon generations are introduced, they will require the latest Windows platform at that time for support… Windows 10 will be the only supported Windows platform on Intel’s upcoming “Kaby Lake” silicon, Qualcomm’s upcoming “8996” silicon, and AMD’s upcoming “Bristol Ridge” silicon.

When Microsoft initially announced the restrictions, they were also intended to impact some PCs that use 6th-generation Intel processors (“Skylake”), which went on sale in late 2015. The company backed off slightly on that plan, releasing a list of Skylake-based systems that will be fully supported. (Microsoft’s official list of Skylake systems supported on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 was last updated in August 2016, shortly before the Kaby Lake launch.)


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