Microsoft to finally close shutters on Windows Vista

11 Apr 2017

Image: komkrit Preechachanwate/Shutterstock

The least-loved of the Microsoft operating systems has run out of road.

Microsoft is ending support for Windows Vista, more than a decade after it launched.

“After April 11, 2017, Windows Vista customers will no longer receive new security updates, non-security hot fixes, free or paid assisted support options, or online technical content updates from Microsoft,” the software giant said in a post on its support forum.

“Microsoft has provided support for Windows Vista for the past 10 years, but the time has come for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources towards more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences.”

A cloudy expanse

Windows Vista was released worldwide in January 2007 to a world that had yet to really embrace smartphones, and the Apple iPhone was just a rumour without a name.

The launch came after numerous delays and it was to be the successor for Microsoft’s breakthrough and highly acclaimed operating system, Windows XP.

However, Vista was a beast that was too much for many of the consumer PCs on the market at the time.

It had high system requirements, restrictive licensing terms and, ultimately, it was highly incompatible with pre-Vista hardware and software.

Even computers that debuted in time with Vista struggled, and I have uncomfortable memories of trying to get it to even work on Wi-Fi at the time.

However, Microsoft appeared to be rediscovering its mojo in 2009 with the arrival of Windows 7. It was no surprise then that, within a year of its adoption, it had outpaced Windows Vista.

Despite the success of Windows 10, Microsoft is still paying the price for failing to move swiftly on smartphones. Recent research by StatCounter revealed that Android has overtaken Windows as the most used operating system in the world, with 37.93pc share for Android and 37.91pc share for Windows.

Microsoft ended mainstream support for Vista in April 2012. After full support ends today, computers running Vista will still work but they might become more vulnerable to security risks.

Goodbye Vista, it’s like we hardly knew ye.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years