Action Required: Upgrade from Windows 7

August 13, 2019

RE: If your computer runs Windows 7 it is important to make sure you upgrade to a supported operating system before Jan. 14, 2020. Find out which version of Windows you are running

To faculty and staff,

//www.urbannetwork.co.uk/windows-7-end-of-life/

On Jan. 14, 2020 Microsoft will discontinue support for its Windows 7 Operating System. This matters because active support from Microsoft is key to keeping Windows computers from being compromised by the world-wide hacker community. For the security and integrity of campus Windows computers, it is critical to run a supported version, which is also campus information security policy. A compromised computer not only exposes you and your data to theft, unauthorized access or change, it also exposes the entire campus.  

Windows 7 is an older version (the current version is Windows 10) and a computer running it may be 10+ years old. If you are running Windows 7 on your computer, the best way to prevent your computer from being compromised by hackers and to meet campus policy requirements is to upgrade your operating system. In some cases, your computer’s operating system may not be able to be updated and a new computer will need to be purchased in order for you to stay in compliance.

Next Steps

1. First, find out which version of Windows you are running. Visit this website to determine which version of Windows you have on your machine: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/13443/windows-which-version-am-i-running

If your version is above Windows 7 you can stop here. If it is Windows 7, move on to step 2.

2. Upgrade your machine's operating system. There are several options available depending on your current situation:

  • If the computer is managed by your departmental IT, submit a request through your department’s internal process. 
  • For university owned computers (any computers purchased with university funds, not personally owned), contact IT Client Services. 
  • For personally owned computers, download a newer operating system and follow the instructions to install it on your computer.

3. Purchase a new computer. If you wish to upgrade your university-owned machine, contact IT Client Services

4. I’m not sure what to do. If you need help or have questions about this process please fill out this short form by Oct. 1 (extended to Nov. 1) and someone in IT support will follow up. Students who need assistance can contact Student Technology Services for help.

What happens if I don’t upgrade?

After Windows 7 support ends, security updates or fixes, software updates, and/or technical support will no longer be available. Without security patches, these systems will be easy targets for hackers, malware, and viruses.

Campus policy requires that devices connected to the network run software for which security patches are made available in a timely fashion. After support ends, Windows 7 will no longer be in compliance and those machines will be blocked from accessing campus networks beginning March 1, 2020.

Thank you for playing an important role in helping to safeguard the institutional data and systems entrusted to us.

Regards,

Larry Conrad, Associate Vice Chancellor for IT and Chief Information Officer
Jerry Yerardi, Associate CIO IT Client Services
Jeremy Rosenberg, Chief Information Security Officer