It’s official: AMD Ryzen won’t support Windows 7

jayar.decenella@gmail.com' By: Jay Decenella
2 minute read

If you are adamant on clinging onto Windows 7, chances are you will miss out on upcoming Ryzen driver support from AMD after the Sunnyvale chip maker confirmed its next-generation CPUs will be exclusive to Windows 10.

Previous rumors held that AMD was working on the chipset drivers for its upcoming socket AM4 platform for Windows 7. After validating the Ryzen desktop processors, the company decided to roll out support and drivers for Windows 10 to achieve the best performance. That means Ryzen chips will have no issue booting into older OS like Windows 8.1, Windows 8 and Window 7.

The decision is not surprising, nonetheless. Microsoft already hinted at the possibility that AMD’s Ryzen chips, along with Intel’s Kaby Lake processors, would support only Windows 10. The idea is to closely align the design of hardware and software to achieve the best performance. It does not make sense, then, to support Windows 7 with Ryzen given the operating system and processor’s huge generation gap. Well, AMD conducted a test on Windows 7 with Ryzen, but some features might not have worked properly, forcing the company to abandon the older OS.

Microsoft explained last year that new generations of silicon require the latest Windows platform for support. This necessary alignment enables the company to focus on deep integration between the OS and the silicon while keeping the performance reliable. It remains unclear whether that argument is valid. We have yet to see whether AMD upholds its decision to support Windows 10 with Ryzen entirely or allow Ryzen-based APUs to become an exception.

While the news is dispiriting to the loyal Windows 7 users, it provides a chance for them to upgrade to the latest OS version. Perhaps it is time to let go. Share your thoughts!

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