Millions of Windows users could lose access to docs within weeks without update

Windows users around the world could lose access to their important documents, photos, and videos unless they install a crucial update soon, Microsoft has warned.

Users of Windows 7 and Windows 8 (including 8.1) will no longer be able to sync their folders with OneDrive from March 2022.

If you have one of these older Windows operating systems, you need to update your laptop or PC to a newer version of Windows soon or lose access to your files altogether.

Luckily, you should be able to keep accessing them temporarily using the OneDrive web app—or by upgrading your computer to Windows 10 or 11 for free.

"After March 1st, 2022, your personal files will no longer sync and should be uploaded / accessed directly on OneDrive for web," wrote Microsoft's Ankita Kirti in a blog post.

"If you are currently using one of these operating systems, we recommend upgrading your operating system to either Windows 10 or Windows 11 to avoid disruption."

How to upgrade to Windows 10 or 11 for free

It's really easy to upgrade to a newer version of Windows.

If you want to upgrade to Windows 10, head to this download page and click 'Update Now'.

It will activate your computer's built-in Update Assistant and take you through the necessary steps to upgrade.

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Once you've installed it, you will be able to use the new operating system free for a little while, until it prompts you to get a licence key.

You can pick one of these up for under 20 pounds and it will include a free upgrade to Windows 11 once your install is ready.

Alternatively, you can find out if you can upgrade straight to Microsoft's latest, Windows 11, using this page. Just make sure you meet the minimum system requirements in order to run it.

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