Microsoft blocks Kaby Lake and Ryzen PCs from Windows 7, 8 updates

Windows 10 or bust.

IDG

IDG

The time has finally come: Microsoft is dropping the banhammer on mixing modern processors with classic Windows operating systems.

Users are reporting their Windows 7 and 8.1 PCs with Kaby Lake and Ryzen processors are being blocked from receiving updates, according to Ars Technica and Tech Report.

That means all updates, including security updates, will be unavailable on PCs with brand new hardware running the two older operating systems. The first hints of this were revealed in March, when a Microsoft support page appeared detailing the policy of blocking updates for Kaby Lake and Ryzen-toting PCs using Windows 7 or 8.1.

Microsoft’s stance on PCs running a classic Windows build with newer processors actually goes back to January 2016. At that time, Microsoft announced a plan to ease the transition to Windows 10 for enterprises by certifying some Skylake processors to run Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 for a limited time. The company also added that Intel’s Kaby Lake, Qualcomm’s 8996 Snapdragon processsors, and what we now call AMD Ryzen would all require Windows 10.

Since then, Microsoft has proved more flexible on the Skylake front. Select members of that processor generation will be able to run Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 until both systems reach the end of their extended support periods in 2020 and 2023 respectively. For Ryzen and Kaby Lake, however, Microsoft hasn’t budged, with Intel and AMD willing to play along.

windows 10 logo Microsoft

Why this matters: Microsoft’s rationale for refusing to take a step backwards is understandable. With Windows 10, the company is trying to get out from under its heavy legacy of backwards compatibility. Many critics have argued that backwards compatibility has held the company back from inovating and moving forward quickly with advanced features.

But in this case, Microsoft is pushing users too far. Windows 8.1, for example, is still covered by mainstream support until January 2018—at least on paper. Windows 7, meanwhile, is under extended support until January 2020. Users should be able to run the software they want as long as its at least mainstream support, but Microsoft’s not having it.

It’s a Windows 10 world and we’re living in it—whether we like it or not.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Windows 10RyzenWindows 7intelWindows 8.1

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ian Paul

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?