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End Of Life

Are You Prepared For Windows 10 End of Life?

6 min. read
23/05/2024
By Esben Dochy
Windows-10-End-of-Life

On June 11, 2024, version 21H2 of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise will go end of life. This EOL date means that your devices won’t receive any more security updates, patches, or technical support from Microsoft. Microsoft officially announced at the end of April 2023, that 22H2 will be Windows 10’s final version. This would mean that Windows 10 will be fully end-of-life by October 14th, 2025. We recommend that you update all the Windows installations within your organization.

Windows 10 Lifecycle

Windows 10 uses Microsoft’s Modern lifecycle, which really just means that Windows 10 is considered to be a continuous services/supported product. The actual dates of when Windows 10 versions and editions are going end of life are not dynamic however. These remain fixed at dates that Microsoft determines.

Based on our own internal data, 44.49% of Windows 10 devices are at risk of being unsupported once version 21H2 goes end of life on June 11, 2024. One of the most concerning findings is that 19.68% of these devices are still using Windows 10 version 21H2, whose last editions will reach end of life on June 11, 2024. The persistence of these outdated and unsupported versions exposes businesses to a variety of security vulnerabilities, as these systems no longer receive critical updates and patches from Microsoft.

Windows 10 OS Distribution May 2024

Additional interesting insights from our analysys shows than only 3.55% of Windows 10 devices are running a Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) or Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) versions, with version 1809 being the most used LTSC version at 53.27% of all long-term versions.

Risks of Running Unsupported Windows Versions

Running unsupported Windows versions comes with several significant risks. Without regular security updates, these versions become prime targets for cyberattacks, leaving sensitive data and critical systems vulnerable. Additionally, using outdated software can lead to non-compliance with industry regulations and standards, potentially resulting in hefty fines and legal ramifications.

Recommendations for Organizations

To mitigate these risks, organizations should take several important steps. First, they should conduct a thorough inventory of all IT assets to identify devices running unsupported Windows versions. Due to the sheer number of versions and editions of Windows 10 this can become very complex. There is the Home & Pro edition, Enterprise, Education, and IoT Enterprise editions. Additionally, some versions are available as LTSB (Long Term Servicing Branch) or LTSC (Long Term Servicing Channel) editions as it is now called, which also have their own specific dates. That’s why we provide our Windows 10 EOL report. This report looks at the specific Windows version and edition and shows how much longer it will be supported.

Planning and executing an upgrade strategy to transition these devices to the latest supported versions is crucial, with priority given to those at the highest risk. For organizations requiring longer support cycles, considering Windows 10 Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) or Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) versions can provide extended support and greater stability.

There were already several Windows 10 versions that went end of life (EOL) in the past (1507, 1511, 1607, 1703, 1709, 1903, 1909, 2004, 20H2 for Home & Pro, and 21H1). We always recommend updating your installations to the latest Windows 10 version. In this case, that is the worldwide deployment of Windows 10 22H2.

Windows 10 Final End of Life

On April 27, 2023, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 10 version 22H2 will be the final version. There will be no new releases for Windows 10. This means that when 22H2 goes end of life on October 14, 2025, Windows 10 will be fully out of support, 10 years after its initial release in 2015. From then on, the product will no longer receive any new features, updates, or patches. If you want to remain supported, you will be forced to upgrade to Windows 11.

Windows 10 Enterprise and Education and IoT Enterprise – 21H2 End of Life

Version 21H2 of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise will go end of life on the 11th of June, 2024. From that point on, version 22H2 will be the only remaining version of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education and IoT Enterprise that is still in support. For Windows 10 Home and Pro, this was already the case. Make sure to update all Windows machines that are still running any of the older versions.

Windows 10 Home and Pro – 21H2 End of Life

Version 21H2 of Windows 10 Home and Pro will go end of life on the 13th of June, 2023. This means that version 22H2 will be the only remaining version of Windows 10 Home and Pro that is still in support. Make sure to update all Windows machines that are still running any of the older versions. For the Enterprise and Education and IoT Enterprise version 21H2 will remain in support until the 11th of June, 2024.

Windows 10 – 20H2 End of Life

Windows 10 version 20H2 Enterprise, Education, and IoT Enterprise editions will go end of life on the 9th of May 2023. The Home and Pro edition already went end of life in May of last year. This means that the 20H2 version is now fully out of support. In order to remain supported, make sure to update all installations to version 21H2 or 22H2. These are now the only versions that are still in support.

Windows 10 – 21H1 End of Life

On December 13, 2022, Windows 10 version 21H1 will be going end of support for all editions (Enterprise, Education, IoT Enterprise, Home, and Pro). Make sure to update any Windows 10 devices to version 21H2 or higher. For the Enterprise, Education, and IoT Enterprise editions, Version 20H2 is still supported as well. For Home and Pro though this version has already gone end of life.

Run the Windows 10 End of Life Audit

The Windows 10 EOL audit will help you with identifying which machines need to be updated. It also shows you how long your other machines still have before they go end of life. It gives you a complete list of all Windows 10 devices, their EOL date, and how many days there are remaining until end of support.

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Windows Server EOL

Recently, Microsoft has also started releasing more and more versions for Windows servers, bringing it in line with their regular Windows 10 releases. While dedicated server releases are still supported for a long time, should you be running one of these newer versions, it is important to keep an eye on when it might stop receiving updates. Head over to our Windows Server EOL blog post to find out more and a report for a Windows Server EOL overview.

Are you ready for Windows 11?

Are you ready to say goodbye to Windows 10 entirely? We have made a special Windows 11 blog and report to help you audit your network to do a Windows 11 readiness check of your systems.

Windows-11-infographic-2023

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