NEW YORK (AP) — If you’re still using Microsoft’s Windows 7, your computer might soon be at risk…

Microsoft will stop providing free security updates for the system on Tuesday, meaning computers using it will be more vulnerable to malware and hacking.

Users who want to protect their computers need to upgrade to Windows 10. They may also need to buy new computers because older machines might not be compatible with Windows 10.

Tech companies typically phase out older systems after a number of years and focus efforts on updating current versions of software. Windows 7 came out in 2009.

Windows versions

  • Windows 8, which came out in 2012, will have free support end in 2023.
  • Windows 10 starts at $139 for a basic, “Home” version. Microsoft
  • Microsoft is also ending support Tuesday for Windows Server 2008 or 2008 R2 operating systems.

Purchase extended protection

Those who run Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Enterprise can buy extended protection for up to three years. But it might be worthwhile to just to buy new PCs or get Windows 10.

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Microsoft will also be ending support on Oct. 13 for Office 2010 a package that includes word processing and spreadsheet software. Owners need to explore newer versions of Office, including a subscription offering called Office 365.

To find out which version of Windows your device is running:

1. Press the Windows logo key  (on your keyboard) and at the same time, press the R on your keyboard

 

2. When the box pops up on the bottom left corner of your screen, type in:

winver

Click OK

 

3. A window will pop up telling you which version of Windows you have.

Find out more information on how to upgrade your system on the Windows website here.

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Author: ANA Newswire