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Today is when Microsoft stops selling Windows 8 and Windows 7

Windows 7 Ultimate
Windows 7 Ultimate, catch it if you can.

Today is when retail sales of consumer editions of Windows 7 and Windows 8 stops. From today, original equipment manufacturers will no longer be able to bundle Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium and Ultimate editions as well as Windows 8 with PCs.

You will still find computers on sale in the channel running these OSes but they are likely to be clearance or end-of-line stock. Windows 7 Pro however will still be available from OEMs for at least another year, targeting mostly businesses rather than consumers.

The law of demand and supply means that some Windows 7 devices are likely to go up in price over the next few months even as Microsoft prepares for the launch of Windows 10.

Businesses will still be able to get a downgrade path to Windows 7 Pro when they buy Windows 8.1 Pro for a foreseeable future. After all, the last thing Microsoft wants to do is alienate enterprise and business buyers.

Windows 7 still accounts for the biggest share of the global desktop operating system market with the 13-year old Windows XP a distant second with Windows 8/8.1 being third.

It is also very likely that you will find a big market for genuine Windows 7 licenses on auction sites but we advise caution as Microsoft's EULA (end user license agreement) could make any second hand purchases null and void.

  • Check our review of Windows 8.1, Microsoft's current commercial flagship.
Desire Athow

Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Then followed a weekly tech column in a local business magazine in Mauritius, a late night tech radio programme called Clicplus and a freelancing gig at the now-defunct, Theinquirer, with the legendary Mike Magee as mentor. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global techfests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. He has an affinity for anything hardware and staunchly refuses to stop writing reviews of obscure products or cover niche B2B software-as-a-service providers.