With all support for Windows 7 now ended, there’s a lifeline for business and enterprise customers who haven’t yet migrated their PCs to Windows 10, or who perhaps need Windows 7 for mission-critical systems. Microsoft is allowing some business and all enterprise customers to extend support for up to three years, until January 2023.
There is a caveat with this, support will start at $50 per PC for the first year, and the price of extended support will double for each year after, making it $100 per PC in year two, and $200 per year in year three. You can purchase extended support through a qualified Cloud Solution Provider partner, from which many businesses will already have purchased their Microsoft 365 and other Microsoft subscriptions.
When you purchase extended support you will be issued with a new Product Key for your Windows installations. There are two ways to use this product key on your PCs. The first is through the Control Panel. Open System to change the Product key.
Before activating your new product key, you should run Windows Update, you might need to do this several times, to make sure the PC(s) are fully up to date, this is very important.
At the bottom of the System screen is a Change product key link. Click this and you will be prompted to enter the new product key. If the PC is connected to the Internet, the new key will automatically activate. If this doesn’t happen you will be prompted to activate the PC at a later date.
The other method to enter your product key is to open the Command Prompt with Administrator rights, and to run the command slmgr /ipk XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX where you substitute the X’s for your new product key. Next, type slmgr /ato to activate the new product key.
You can then use the command slmgr /dlv to check the status of your product key and activation. You will see that extended support has been activated, and in the Remaining Windows rearm count section, you will see how many activations you still have available to use.
You will need to repeat this process at the beginning of year two, and year three if you purchase further support, so you might want to bookmark this page and come back to it later. With the new product key in place however, that PC will continue to receive security and stability updates until the 15th January the following year.
Post expires at 1:00am on Friday July 15th, 2022