As web rendering technology becomes increasingly sophisticated and secure, they rely more and more on the latest operating system technologies, which makes it difficult to support older operating systems.
Today Microsoft announced that with Windows 7 Extended Security Update (ESU) and Windows 8/8.1 end of support on January 10th, 2023, and Google Chrome ending support for Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1, Microsoft Edge browser version 109 and Webview2 Runtime version 109 will be the last respective versions to support these operating systems. Additionally, WebView2 SDK versions 1.0.1519.0 and higher will no longer support Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1.
Both Microsoft Edge version 109 and Webview2 Runtime version 109 are scheduled for release the week of January 12th, 2023 (to learn more, see Microsoft’s release schedule). While Microsoft Edge and Webview2 Runtime versions 109 and earlier will continue to work on these operating systems, those versions will not receive new features, future security updates, or bug fixes.
Microsoft Edge version 109 will also be the last supported version for Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, and Windows Server 2012 R2. Internet Explorer 11 will remain supported on those operating systems for as long as they are in support.
Fixed vs Evergreen versions of WebView2 Runtimes
This end-of-support timeline applies to both the Evergreen and Fixed versions of the WebView2 Runtime.
Previously installed Evergreen WebView2 Runtimes will update as normal to version 109 but will not continue updating after that. After the end of support, future attempts to install the Evergreen WebView2 Runtime on Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1 will install version 109.
Fixed versions of the WebView2 Runtime higher than 109 will fail to start on Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1 and should not be used on those operating systems.
Getting new versions of Microsoft Edge and the Webview2 Runtime
To get new versions of Microsoft Edge or the Webview2 Runtime with up-to-date functionality and security, end users should upgrade to Windows 10 or later.
Microsoft is also encouraging developers to end support for Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1, saying ending support for these operating systems will help keep end users safe from potential security threats and risks as both operating systems go out of support on January 10th, 2023.