Can You Stay on Windows 10? Everything You Need to Know

Windows 10's end of support is scheduled for October 14, 2025. We'll help you decide whether to stay on Windows 10 or upgrade to Windows 11.
Can you still keep using Windows 10?

As we approach October 14, 2025, many Windows 10 users are concerned about what the future holds for their operating system. With Microsoft's official end of support for Windows 10 looming, questions arise about security, functionality, and the necessity of upgrading to Windows 11.

By the end of this article, you'll clearly understand what the end of support means for you, your options, and how to decide whether to stay on Windows 10 or upgrade to Windows 11. We aim to provide practical advice to help you feel prepared and less overwhelmed about your next steps.

What Does Windows 10 End of Life Mean?

Windows 10 lifecycle dates

When Microsoft ends support for an operating system, it's called the End of Life. At this date, Microsoft stops providing several key services of the OS, including:

  • Security Updates: Critical patches that protect against new and existing vulnerabilities.
  • New Features: Updates that introduce new functionalities or improve existing ones.
  • Bug Fixes: Corrections for software issues that can impact performance and usability.
  • Technical Support: Access to Microsoft's customer service for help with problems.

For Windows 10, this means that after October 14, 2025, these services will no longer be available. Your system will still function but become increasingly vulnerable to security threats. Microsoft is ending support for Windows 10 to focus on Windows 11, which features enhanced security, improved performance, and a modern user interface.

The Current State of Windows 10

Windows 10 continues to operate smoothly and reliably, offering users a familiar interface and robust performance. Despite the impending end of support, the operating system will remain functional, ensuring continued access to applications and internet connectivity.

Despite the end of support, Windows 10 will continue to operate as it does today. Users can still run their favorite applications, connect to the internet, and use the system without immediate issues. This continuity is crucial for many who rely on PCs for daily activities, work, and entertainment.

One of the strengths of the Windows ecosystem is its large and active user community. Many tech enthusiasts and security experts will likely continue to develop unofficial patches and workarounds to address vulnerabilities. This community support can help mitigate some risks of staying on an unsupported operating system.

Should I Upgrade to Windows 11?

Windows 11 free upgrade

The decision to upgrade to Windows 11 depends on factors like hardware, budget, and needs. It offers enhanced security, a modern interface, and improved performance. Windows 11 also introduces productivity enhancements like virtual desktop support and Microsoft Teams integration. 

Upgrading to Windows 11 can be challenging due to device compatibility issues. 43% of devices studied are incompatible, forcing users to stick with Windows 10 or invest in new hardware. Assessing costs, benefits, compatibility, and the importance of daily activities before upgrading is crucial.

Windows 11 System Requirements

One of the significant barriers when upgrading your OS is the Windows 11 system requirements. To install Windows 11, your device needs to meet the following criteria:

  • A compatible 64-bit processor with at least 1 GHz and 2 or more cores.
  • 4 GB of RAM or more.
  • 64 GB of storage or more.
  • UEFI firmware with Secure Boot capability.
  • TPM version 2.0 (Trusted Platform Module).

Many older PCs, especially those purchased several years ago, may not meet these requirements. This incompatibility forces users to either invest in new hardware or continue using Windows 10.

How to Stay Safe on Windows 10 After End of Support

1. Make Regular Backups

One of the most critical steps to take is to ensure regular backups of your data. This practice protects against data loss in case of malware infections or system failures. Use an external hard drive or cloud storage service to protect your important files. Here's how to make a backup on Windows 10:

  1. Click on the Start menu, then select the gear icon to open Settings.
  2. In the Settings window, click on "Update & Security." From the sidebar, select "Backup."
  3. Click "Add a drive" under the "Back up using File History" section.

    Create a backup on Windows 10

  4. Choose the external drive or network location to save your backups. Once the drive is selected, turn on "Automatically back up my files" to enable File History.
  5. Click on "More options" to configure what gets backed up, how often, and how long the backups are kept.
  6. Click "Back up now" under the "More options" section for an immediate backup.
  7. Ensure the backup is complete by checking the backup drive for your files and folders.

Following these steps, you can efficiently back up your Windows 10 files using the latest methods.

2. Use Third-Party Security Solutions

Without Microsoft's security updates, relying on third-party security solutions is essential. Invest in a reputable antivirus and anti-malware program to help protect your system from threats. Additionally, consider using a firewall to block unauthorized access to your PC.

3. Practice Safe Browsing

Adopt safe browsing practices to minimize the risk of encountering malware. Avoid clicking on suspicious links or downloading files from untrusted sources, and ensure your web browser is always up to date. However, secure browsing goes beyond just the websites you visit. Consider the following tips if you're planning to stay on Windows 10:

  • Use Strong, Unique Passwords: Use strong, unique passwords with upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters, and use a password manager for secure password management.
  • Enable Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): Enable two-factor authentication for enhanced security. It requires a second form of verification beyond a password and ensures account access even if a password is compromised.
  • Be Wary of Phishing Scams: Phishing scams trick users into giving away personal information, so check email addresses, look for fake websites, and avoid clicking on links or downloading attachments from suspicious emails.
  • Use Secure Connections: Ensure a secure website by checking for "https" at the URL and a padlock icon in the address bar. This indicates encrypted connections, making data interceptions harder.

4. Check Community Resources and Support

Take advantage of online forums and communities where tech enthusiasts share tips, patches, and solutions for staying secure on Windows 10. Websites like Reddit, TechNet, and various tech blogs can be valuable resources for finding help and advice.


While the end of support for Windows 10 on October 14, 2025, marks a significant change, it doesn't mean you have to panic. You can continue using Windows 10 with some precautions and awareness of the potential risks. Evaluate your hardware's compatibility with Windows 11, consider alternative operating systems, and leverage community support to stay safe and functional.

Making an informed decision requires weighing the pros and cons, understanding the implications of staying on Windows 10, and preparing for the future. Whether you upgrade or stay, ensure you have a strategy to protect your data and maintain your system's performance. By staying proactive and informed, you can navigate this transition with confidence and security.