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New year, new OS: OneDrive support axed for old versions of Windows from 1 Jan 2022

Microsoft has reminded everyone that OneDrive is for the chop in Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 by the end of the year.

The warning applies to personal users – support for business users “will be aligned with the Windows support lifecycle.”

Destined for the axe is the personal version of the desktop application responsible for synchronising files with Microsoft’s cloud storage.

Updates will cease beginning 1 January 2022 followed by the killing off of personal file synchronisation after 1 March 2022. A cynic might wonder if April’s OneDrive for Business borkage was a dry run.

That support should be terminated for Windows 7, which breathed its last on 14 January 2020 (although enterprises can pay to keep the venerable operating system supplied with security patches for a few more years), is not surprising. Similarly, the end of support for Windows 8, which was thankfully taken around the back of the barn on 12 January 2016, is hardly a shock.

Windows 8.1, however, remains in extended support until 10 Jan 2023 – unlike the personal OneDrive desktop client for the operating system.

As for the why, Microsoft wants to focus resources on new technologies and operating systems “and to provide users with the most up-to-date and secure experience.”

“We recommend upgrading your operating system to either Windows 10 or Windows 11 to avoid disruption,” said the company.

While the desktop sync client might be for the chopping block, web access will continue to work. Or customers could look elsewhere for their cloud storage needs. Dropbox, for example, currently offers a desktop app for Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10 and 11 (although not in S mode). Box’s sync client, however, only supports Windows 7 in Extended Security Update guise, and not Windows 8 or 8.1. ®

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