Microsoft cuts short support for downgraded Windows Skylake PCs

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Microsoft cuts short support for downgraded Windows Skylake PCs

List of affected hardware revealed.

Microsoft and its hardware partners have revealed the list of Intel Skylake-based PCs that will lose support after 18 months if the computers are downgraded from Windows 10 to Windows 7 or 8.1.

The software giant along with Dell, HP, Lenovo and NEC today outlined a list of 100 PCs that will fall victim to a policy change outlined by Microsoft earlier this month.

The company previously said it would support downgrades to Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 until January 2020 and January 2023.

But on January 16, Microsoft backtracked on its pledge for newer hardware featuring Intel's Skylake processors.

It will now only support Skylake PCs that have been downgraded from Windows 10 until next year.

Older Intel hardware will still be supported until 2020 and 2023.

Vice president of Microsoft's Windows and Devices Group, Terry Myerson, said Windows 7 was designed almost 10 years' ago and requires device drivers and system firmware to emulate the older operating system's expectations of hardware architecture.

"As partners make customisations to legacy device drivers, services, and firmware settings, customers are likely to see regressions with Windows 7 ongoing servicing." Myerson said.

He made it clear that a downgrade to Windows 7 and 8.1 on Skylake PCs should only be temporary, and users were expected to shift to Windows 10 no later than 2017.

"During the 18-month support period, these systems should be upgraded to Windows 10 to continue receiving support after the period ends," Myerson said.

Enterprise customers running Windows have been notoriously slow to upgrade to newer versions of the operating system.

Older PCs will continue to receive support for Windows 7 and 8.1. As per existing policy, Windows 7 and 8.1 running on processors prior to Intel Skylake, such as Haswell, will be fully supported to January 15 2020 and January 11, 2023 respectively.

Windows 10 will be the only Microsoft operating system supported on newer processors and systems on chips, such as Intel's Kaby Lake, Qualcomm 8996 and AMD Bristol Ridge, Myerson said.

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