Published: February 24, 2020
Go here to see a table outlining the support phases for the Fixed Policy.
Extended Support is available to all customers. Extended Support is not offered for consumer software (excluding desktop operating system software), multimedia products, online services or products governed by the Modern Policy. To see what is included in the Extended Support phase, go here.
Microsoft will not accept requests for warranty support, design changes, or new features during the Extended Support phase.
If the problem is specific to the Microsoft product and it is within the Fixed Policy, Microsoft will provide support. If the problem is a result of the combination of the operating system and the Microsoft product, the problem will not be supported.
To receive technical support and security updates for a Microsoft product, the Microsoft Lifecycle Policy requires that the product’s supported service pack be installed. Go here to view the Fixed Lifecycle Policy.
For information about support for a product or for a service pack, search the product lifecycle database.
In the Mainstream Support phase, product support benefits are available to all customers. In the Extended Support phase, security updates are provided to all customers and paid assisted support is available. Extended Hotfix Support is required to request non-security updates for products in Extended Support. Unified Support is a prerequisite for Extended Hotfix Support. Customers with Unified Support can work with their support contact to determine the options that are available for their specific circumstances.
The Fixed Lifecycle Policy is designed to take the guesswork out of determining the length of time Microsoft provides support and servicing for a product. In most situations, Microsoft provides a minimum of 10 years of support. The lifecycle combines 5 years of Mainstream Support and 5 years of Extended Support. For consumer software and multimedia products, Microsoft offers a minimum of 5 years of Mainstream Support *. For information about lifecycle dates, search the product lifecycle database.
* Extended Support is not offered for consumer software, multimedia products, or products governed by the Modern Policy.
All desktop operating system products, whether used for personal or business purposes, receive a minimum of 10 years of support under the Fixed Policy. This includes 5 years of Mainstream Support and 5 years of Extended Support on the latest service pack or update. Microsoft does not differentiate support between consumer and business versions of desktop operating system products.
Minor releases follow the same lifecycle as the major product release.
An example of this is Windows Server 2012 R2 which has the same Mainstream and Extended Support phase as the parent product, Windows Server 2012. Likewise, Dynamics AX 2012 R3 follows the same lifecycle dates as the initial release of Dynamics AX 2012.
A component receives the same support as its parent product or platform. When a parent product or platform is in Mainstream, or Extended Support, so is the component. When a parent product or platform reaches the end of support, so does the component.
For example: If a component is licensed for Microsoft Windows, support ends for the component on the same date that support ends for Windows.
Note: Sometimes a component will receive security updates or feature enhancements that are independent of its parent product. We encourage customers to install component updates as they become available.
Add-ons are supported along with the product they work with. However, support may be terminated by providing a minimum of 12 months' notice.
Tools are supported along with the product they work with. However, support may be terminated by providing a minimum of 12 months' notice.
No. Extended Hotfix Support is not necessary to obtain technical support for a product in the Extended Support phase.
Microsoft understands that local laws, market conditions, and support requirements differ around the world and differ by industry sector. Therefore, Microsoft may offer support and/or servicing options that go beyond Extended Support. These options may include assisted support, security and/or non-security updates and may extend beyond the Lifecycle end of support date.
Microsoft encourages all customers to remain current to ensure they stay supported and can take advantage of innovations found in the latest products. Staying current also minimizes security risks, compliance risks, and frequently lowers the total cost of ownership.
Once a product transitions out of Extended Support, no further support will be provided unless an Extended Security Update (ESU) program is available for that product. Go here to learn more about ESUs. If ESUs are not offered, customers will NOT have access to:
- Security updates or non-security hotfixes
- Free or paid assisted support options
- Microsoft product development resources
- Updates to online content (Knowledge Base articles, etc.) *
*Online content may be available if the product is still within the Self-Help Support phase.
Microsoft is committed to providing products with improved security. Our long-term goal is to remove security vulnerabilities from all our products before they are released. Although we strive to remove vulnerabilities during development, software vulnerabilities remain a fact today and we must be prepared to respond when they are discovered. Microsoft advises customers to install the latest product releases and updates, security updates, and service packs to remain as secure as possible. Microsoft may be unable to provide security updates for older products, leaving them at risk in the face of more demanding security requirements. For the latest information on security advisories and bulletins, please visit our Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC).
Security updates will be provided for the duration of the product’s lifecycle.
For more information about the support and servicing timeline for a specific product, search the Lifecycle Product Database.
An update should only be installed on the service pack for which it was designed. Microsoft creates security updates for supported service packs whenever commercially reasonable and available to all customers. You can request an update that is not security-related for service packs that are supported per the Fixed Lifecycle Policy.
No. If a security update is created, it will be made available to all customers through the standard security release process, for the duration of that product’s lifecycle. The monthly security release occurs on the second Tuesday of the month.
Yes. Microsoft Lifecycle Policy permits the creation and broad distribution of certain non-security updates during the Extended Support phase. For example, it may be necessary to provide a non-security update that enables continued connectivity and servicing through the Automatic Update or Windows Server Update Service.
If Microsoft releases a security update on the same day a product is scheduled to end its lifecycle, the security update will be provided to customers. Support of the security update will continue for a minimum of 30 days.
For customers who are entitled to receive security updates past the end of support, support will be provided for a minimum of 30 days after a security update is released.