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Microsoft closes Windows 7 escape route for Windows 8 haters

Software

Windows 7 has been a very convenient fall-back position  for computer users who don’t like to migrate to the touch-focused Windows 8 and 8.1 operating systems. However, Microsoft Corp. is shutting that escape hatch.

Microsoft will stop selling Windows 7 licenses to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) effective November 1st this year.

Businesses, and people willing to pay a premium for the deluxe model of Windows7, can still purchase computers with loaded with Windows 7 Professional.

However, PC makers will no longer have access to Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium or Ultimate licenses by next week as Microsoft has set October 31st as the end of sales for PC with pre-installed versions of these operating systems, according to the Windows lifecycle fact sheet.

The end of sale date for Windows Professional 7, has not been set yet. Windows 7 Professional will likely remain available until the release date of Windows 10.

Retail software sale for Windows 8 and 8.1 are set for October 31st also, but that end of sales for PCs with pre-installed Windows 8 and 8.1 has not yet been established. This means Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 can still be purchased through OEMs, Microsoft said.

Windows 8 never really clicked with businesses with managed IT departments, according to Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst at Moor Insight Strategy.

In an interview with online technology publication PCWorld, he said businesses appear to be waiting for Windows 10 while OEMs he spoke to are not worried about the end of sale of Windows 7 and are shipping a majority of their consumer PCs loaded with Windows 8.

Up until now, he said, Windows 7 Home provided OEMs with a “nice incremental sales opportunity” because they could sell the OS to customers who didn’t like Windows 8.