Microsoft has made several announcements today, offering some changes to its support policies for Windows and Office. In the good news, the Redmond software maker is offering a support extension to Education and Enterprise editions of Windows 10.
While Microsoft has previously offered extensions at the last minute, this is the first time that the company has announced an extension for all the last three versions of Windows 10, including Fall Creators Update, Creators Update, and the Anniversary Update. Support extension for Windows 10 version 1511 was announced earlier.
Along with this happy announcement, the company also released a not-so-happy statement. Microsoft has confirmed today that the next major update coming to Microsoft Office will only work with Windows 10. Office 2019 will be released later this year (yes, in 2018). However, only Windows 10 users will be able to enjoy its new features and improvements.
Office 2019 apps (including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook, and Skype for Business) will only work on the following:
- Any supported Windows 10 SAC (Semi-Annual Channel) release
- Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC (Long-Term Servicing Channel) 2018
- The next LTSC release of Windows Server
The above list means that when a Windows 10 version goes out of official support, Office 2019 will also go out of support for that version. Microsoft says this is being done to ensure both Windows and Office receive timely security updates. "Software that is more than a decade old, and hasn’t benefited from this innovation, is difficult to secure and inherently less productive," the company wrote. "As the pace of change accelerates, it has become imperative to move our software to a more modern cadence."
More changes... Office 2019 client apps will be released with Click-to-Run installation technology only
Not only Office 2019 will not work with Windows 7 or 8, the company also added that users will no longer be able to buy an installation package carrying the entire suite, as the company won't "provide MSI as a deployment methodology for Office 2019 clients." Microsoft said that starting with this year's launch, Office 2019 "client apps will be released with Click-to-Run installation technology only."
Microsoft will, however, continue to provide MSI for Office Server products. The company added that Office 2019 won't receive the usual 10 years of support, but will be moved to five years of mainstream support, followed by two years of extended support. Again, because a decade old software is "difficult to secure and inherently less productive," Microsoft said.
Happy about these changes coming with Office 2019? Will that affect your decision to stick with Windows 7? Don't forget to share your thoughts.