Back in August last year, Microsoft announced that Intel and AMD’s next-gen processors, Kaby Lake and Ryzen respectively, would officially be supported only under their flagship Windows 10. At the time, Redmond said the policy shift was necessary as to focus on the “deep integration between Windows and the silicon.”
As new silicon generations are introduced, they will require the latest Windows platform at that time for support. This enables us to focus on deep integration between Windows and the silicon, while maintaining maximum reliability and compatibility with previous generations of platform and silicon.
It seems that the time has finally come; users of Windows 7 and 8.1 PCs with Kaby Lake and Ryzen processors are reportedly being blocked from receiving OS updates from Microsoft. Users have started to see the ‘Unsupported Hardware’ error message which means they will be missing all updates, including important security updates, via TechReport.
With Windows 7, the move might be considered somewhat reasonable given the mainstream support for the OS ended in 2015 although it’s still under extended support until January 2020. But in this case, Microsoft has also stopped updates to Kaby Lake and Ryzen PCs running Windows 8.1, an OS which is covered by mainstream support until January 2018.
Microsoft’s rationale for pushing users to upgrade to Windows 10 is also understandable. The company is trying to break away from its legacy of backwards compatibility which is said to be holding it back from innovating with advanced features.
However, as per the most recent Steam hardware and software survey, nearly 35 percent of their users are still using the Windows 7, and 8 percent have Windows 8.1 installed. Meaning, with Microsoft blocking updates on old Windows, a large number of PC gamers will now have no choice but to choose between their current Windows OS or the latest hardware.
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