Microsoft no longer offers security patches for Windows 7 machines that don’t have processors supporting SSE2. Windows 7 was the last Microsoft operating system to not require SSE2.
SSE2 stands for Streaming SIMD Extensions 2. It is one of the Intel SIMD (Single Instruction, Multiple Data) processor supplementary instruction sets. The decision to no longer offer security patches for Windows 7 machines that don’t have processors supporting SSE2 was made in April.
If you’re using Windows 7 on a machine with an AMD Athlon XP or Intel Pentium III processor, it won’t support these new Microsoft security patches.
Technically Microsoft offered Windows 7 with the guarantee they would cover security breaches related to it until 2020. However, under “Business, Developer, and Operating Systems Policy” they outline older computers might be more susceptible to security breaches and thus Microsoft is not liable to cover these.
Most mainstream PCs built after 2000 have processors that support SSE2s.
It’s possible you have an old PC beating around that uses Windows 7, and you could be caught up in this security loophole. Be sure to run a FixMeStick scan so you catch the malware that slipped past old security requirements.
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