If your Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 machine is equipped with Intel or AMD’s latest processors, you won’t be able to get the latest Windows updates. Microsoft simply says this is because the new processors were “designed for the latest version of Windows” and that compatibility on the older Windows platforms is difficult. Last month, this was anticipated to kick in at an undetermined time. But today, Ars Technica reports that the compatibility issue is starting to take effect this month. CPUs that are affected by this Windows update block include the following:
- Intel 7th Generation “Kaby Lake”
- Intel 6th Generation “Skylake” (at a later date)
- AMD Ryzen
- AMD “Bristol Ridge”
- Qualcomm “8996” (Snapdragon)
Users that encounter the issue will see this prompt when attempting to update their OS:
This is critical for users in this particular situation, since security fixes for the platforms are tied to Windows updates. Features specific to Ryzen, Skylake, and Kaby Lake–such as power management–are said to be difficult to support on the older platforms. Windows 7 also requires hotfixes for NVMe and USB 3.0 support, both of which are common in modern systems.
Back in January 2016, Microsoft announced that both the Windows 7 and 8.1 platforms will cease to support Intel 6th generation Skylake CPUs in July 2017. However, Skylake-based systems from 16 different vendors will continue to receive support on the older operating systems.
According to Steam’s official hardware and software survey, about 35 percent of its users are still on some version of the Windows 7 operating system. About eight percent are using a version of Windows 8.1.