Microsoft ended free upgrades from Windows 7 and 8 to Windows 11 on September 29, 2023. This means that users who are still using Windows 7 or 8, will need to purchase a full version of Windows 11 to upgrade.
Microsoft wants to focus on supporting newer versions of Windows 11 with better security and performance
In 2015, Microsoft offered free upgrades from Windows 7 or 8 to Windows 10 but the company ended this offer in 2016. However, there was a loophole that allowed people to upgrade to Windows 11 for free by first upgrading to Windows 10 and then using a Windows 7 or 8 product key to activate it. This loophole closed on September 29, 2023.
Microsoft’s free upgrade offer for Windows 10 / 11 ended July 29, 2016. The installation path to obtain the Windows 7 / 8 free upgrade is now removed as well. Upgrades to Windows 11 from Windows 10 are still free.
Microsoft stated that the decision was made to ensure that all users are using the latest version of Windows, which has the best security features and performance. The company also noted that Windows 7 and 8 have reached the end of their support lifecycles, which means that they are no longer receiving security updates.
It is recommended that Windows 7 and Windows 8 users upgrade to newer PCs that support Windows 11 as these older OS after their end-of-support dates bring a risk to the computer and data.
Some options for upgrading to Windows 11:
- Purchase a full version of Windows 11: This is the only option if the PC meets the minimum system requirements for Windows 11.
- Buy a new PC with Windows 11 pre-installed: This is the best option if the current PC does not meet the minimum system requirements for Windows 11.
- Continue using Windows 7 or 8: However, Microsoft no longer supports Windows 7 and 8, and they are becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats.
Users who are unsure whether their computer meets the system requirements for Windows 11, can use the PC Health Check app to check their system compatibility.
If have any questions about upgrading to Windows 11, users can visit the Microsoft website for more information.