Microsoft won’t let you buy Windows 10 licenses after January 2023

If you want to build a Windows 10 computer, you should hurry up since Microsoft will stop selling product keys on January 31.

Windows 10 product license page
  • Microsoft will stop selling Windows 10 licenses on January 31, 2023.
  • This change will affect Windows 10 Pro, Workstation, and Home.
  • After January, you may still be able to purchase product keys from other retailers.

Microsoft is expected to stop selling license keys for Windows 10 at the end of January 2023. According to the official product pages (via PCWorld), January 31, 2023, will be the last day to purchase and download Windows 10 Pro, Workstation, and Home. 

Of course, this only applies to users who plan to build a custom computer and want to run Windows 10, instead of Windows 11. If you purchase a new device, it’ll come with the latest version of Windows installed and activated.

It’s clear that Microsoft wants to slow down the operating system as it is expected to retire on October 14, 2025

The product page on the Microsoft website reads: “January 31, 2023, will be the last day this Windows 10 download is offered for sale. Windows 10 will remain supported with security updates that help protect your PC from viruses, spyware, and other malware until October 14, 2025.”

Windows 10 product license details
Windows 10 product license details

This is only the Microsoft store side, after January, you may still buy licenses from other retailers like Amazon and Newegg while stock is available. 

Although this is not good news for everyone since there still are a lot of people who don’t want to switch to Windows 11, you will still be able to activate a Windows 10 installation in a number of ways. For example, since Windows 11 and 10 are similar, you can use a Windows 11 license key to activate Windows 10

In the same way, if you plan to upgrade from an older version of Windows, you still can use a Windows 7 and even a Windows 8.1 product key to activate Windows 10. Of course, as long as you first erase the old installation to free up the license.

One thing to keep in mind is that you are only permitted to do this in the machine with the original installation because you will probably be using an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) license that doesn’t include the rights to transfer the product key to another computer.

On the other hand, if you have a retail version of Windows, which you purchased separately from the computer, then you can transfer the license as long as you first erase the old installation to free up the license.

Finally, even though, the website states that after January 31, you won’t be able to download Windows 10, the page is referring to the paid product. The operating system files will continue to be available from the Microsoft download page until it retires on October 14, 2025.