After multiple extensions, Microsoft is finally cutting off
support for Windows 98 starting tomorrow. The extended support available to businesses and other users has been in effect for quite some time now, but will be ending for both Windows 98 and Windows ME. While many were aware that it would happen, there are businesses who are upset by this. After all, as the article brings out, some companies still rely on the aging OS:
For many small businesses, though, Windows 98 was - and still is - a workhorse operating system. And for many of those entrepreneurs it won't be easy to replace because the business has integrated its processes around hardware and software specifically designed for Windows 98. For large corporate users, Windows 98 is long gone. But one in five consumers still use Windows 98, according to Gartner Inc., and based on my observations that's about right for small businesses too.
This probably won't force or encourage “legacy” customers to switch, and likely they will instead turn to in-house or contracted support more. Newer software is supporting 9x less and less, so eventually a switch will be needed. But as a tech, I still often see aging DOS and AS/400 systems in use, so likely 98 will stick around for a long time yet.