RIP Windows 10: Here’s when Microsoft is pulling the plug

Windows 10 logo on laptop
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Microsoft will lower the curtain on Windows 10 in 2025, with all security updates for the operating system ending October 14 of that year. So it may be time to consider an upgrade to Windows 11

Version 22H2, the latest iteration of Windows 10, will now be the last update for the operating system; you’re likely to already be on this version, especially if you’ve done a fresh install of Windows 10 lately.

So that means any new Windows features won’t be ported to Windows 10, with Microsoft only committing to monthly security updates until October 2025. 

“We highly encourage you to transition to Windows 11 now as there won't be any additional Windows 10 feature update,” Microsoft’s blog post on the subject explained, clearly signaling the end is nigh for Windows 10. 

Time for an upgrade 

an image of Android apps on a Windows 11 laptop

(Image credit: Microsoft/Dell)

For anyone buying one of our best laptops, this won’t be a problem as they tend to all come with Windows 11 installed. The problem is that people with older but capable machines will find themselves left out in the cold given Windows 11 has some stringent hardware requirements related to securing the operating system.

This sucks a bit for people like me, as I have a perfectly capable gaming desktop and gaming laptop that can run the latest games provided I tweak a few settings, yet don’t have the hardware chops to support Windows 11. I could potentially upgrade the desktop, though it would take a good amount of component swapping. But the laptop’s life as a secure and supported machine look numbered. 

If you do have a PC that’s ready to run Windows 11 but has held fire on upgrading, then let us reassure you that the operating system is in a much better place than it was at launch. It’s more feature-packed, performs well and its user interface is easy enough to get used to. 

Make sure you check out the Windows 11 system requirements before you upgrade, and check out our roundup of the best Windows 11 laptops if your hardware can't handle the new OS. And if you're looking for an alternative, check out the best MacBooks you can buy if you want to switch to macOS or consider one of the best Chromebooks if you want something super simple. 

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Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.