Windows Vista was one of Microsoft’s least favoured operating systems and the proof is in the numbers.

According to NetMarketShare’s February 2017 data, only 0.78% of machines are still running Vista – far fewer than its much-loved predecessor Windows XP, which still runs on 8.45% of PCs even though Microsoft stopped supporting it in 2014.

All support for Vista is due to end very soon too, so if you’re one of the few still using it you might want to consider your options.

When does support for Windows Vista end?

Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows Vista on April 10, 2012 but extended support ends on April 11, 2017.

This applies as long as you have Service Pack 2 installed. If you haven’t got Service Pack 2 installed on your machine already, you should do it now by clicking here.

Windows lifecycle sheet

Is Service Pack 2 the last version of Windows Vista?

Yes. See above for more.


How long do I have until Windows Vista support ends?

Support ends on April 11, 2017.


Is it still safe to use Windows Vista?

Once an operating system enters extended support, it's still very safe to use. It means that Microsoft will continue to patch any security threats but won't add any new features (as it would do during the 'mainstream support' phase). 

To find out more about the differences between mainstream and extended support, click here.

Time is quickly running out for Vista. You still have some time, but you might want to consider upgrading sooner rather than later.

However, be warned, as some software makers such as Google Chrome and Firefox are already dropping support for Vista.


Why do I need to update from Windows Vista?

Windows Vista was released over 10 years ago, so Microsoft has turned its attentions to newer products including Windows 7 and Windows 10. As such, Windows Vista will no longer be safe after April 11.


Can I download and upgrade from Windows Vista to Windows 10?

Yes, you can upgrade your PC to the latest version of Windows, Windows 10, however be sure to check that your PC is able to handle it.

If your machine came with Vista we're guessing that means it's an old PC. Rather than buying Windows 10, it might be better and cheaper to get a new computer altogether.

For more on upgrading to Windows 10, click here.


Watch – Find out about the safest browsers to use on XP and Vista in our video below: