Recap: Windows 7 was released to manufacturing in July 2009 and became generally available in October of the same year. According to NetMarketShare, 42.45 percent of desktops / laptops are running Windows 7 as of August 2018.

Microsoft’s Windows 7 operating system crossed over into the mainstream support phase back in January 2015. As part of its retirement plan, Microsoft announced at the time that critical security updates would continue to be delivered until January 14, 2020.

The idea was to give customers plenty of time to prepare to upgrade to Windows 10 and for most ordinary consumers, that’s more an adequate.

Migrating to a new operating system isn’t always as easy for enterprise customers, however, as creating images and custom software can be a tedious and expensive endeavor. Often times, it’s more cost efficient to ride an older operating system to the very end, even if it means paying extra for extended support.

For those in that boat, Microsoft recently announced that it will offer paid Windows 7 extended security updates through January 2023. This service will be sold on a per-device basis and the price will increase each year, Microsoft notes. It’ll be available to all Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Enterprise customers with volume licensing. A discount will be offered to those with Windows software assurance, Windows 10 Education or Windows 10 Enterprise subscriptions.

Pricing wasn’t mentioned in Microsoft’s blog post – for those details, you’ll need to contact your Microsoft account team.