CN - Operating System Life Cycle Information

OS Support Life Cycle

The following are the steps in the support life cycle for CN-supported computers:

  1. Early Adopter/Not Recommended. In this phase, a new operating system has recently been released by the vendor and is untested in our environment. Customers may see compatibility or functionality issues and IS staff will do "best effort" support. Community Network will be conducting formal testing of the new operating system to ensure stability and compatibility within the enterprise environment prior to transitioning to the Optional stage.
  2. Optional (New). During this phase, Community Network staff will install the new operating system upon request only, and will fully support it.
  3. Standard/Recommended. During this phase, Community Network staff will install this operating system on all new computers and when performing a rebuild (unless the customer requests a different operating system).
  4. Supported. During this phase, Community Network staff will install the old operating system upon request only but will recommend that customers upgrade to a newer operating system.
  5. Decommissioning. During this phase, the vendor has announced that they will soon stop providing security updates and Community Network will actively work with customers to upgrade their systems.
  6. CN Unsupported. This includes operating systems that are no longer maintained by the vendor, as well as home versions of operating systems that are not appropriate for university-owned computers. 

Current Support Status for Windows and Mac Operating Systems:

  • Windows:
    • Windows XP - CN Unsupported
    • Windows Vista - CN Unsupported 
    • Windows 7 - Decommissioning (End of vendor support: January 2020)
    • Windows 8/8.1 - Supported (Not Recommended)
    • Windows 10 Home - CN Unsupported
    • Windows 10 Enterprise LTSB/LTSC - Not Recommended except in special cases
    • Windows 10 Enterprise Semi-Annual Channel - Standard/Recommended
    • Windows 11 Enterprise - Optional, Supported
  • Mac OS
    • OS X "Mavericks" (10.9) - CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2016)
    • OS X "Yosemite" (10.10)- CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2017)
    • OS X "El Capitan" (10.11) - CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2018)
    • macOS "Sierra" (10.12) - CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2019)
    • macOS "High Sierra" (10.13) - CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2020)
    • macOS "Mojave" (10.14) - CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2021; See: Known Issues in Mojave)
    • macOS "Catalina" (10.15) - CN Unsupported (End of vendor support: Fall 2022; See: Known Issues in Catalina)
    • macOS "Big Sur" (11) - Supported (See: Known Issues in Big Sur)
    • macOS "Monterey" (12) - Supported (See: Known Issues in Monterey)
    • macOS "Ventura" (13) - Standard/Recommended (See: Known Issues in Ventura)
    • Note: CN will support a new macOS when it ships on new hardware from Apple. We do not downgrade macOS on new computers.

If you have a business need to install an OS not listed above, please contact us to discuss.

Should I upgrade?

When deciding whether to upgrade to a newly released operating system, consider the following:

  1. Software needs. Do you use less common software? If so, check with the vendor to see whether it is supported yet on the new OS.
  2. Computer age. If your computer is very old (5 years or more) your experience on the latest OS may be poor. In that case, you may be better off ordering a replacement computer. Contact the Service Desk for assistance determining whether your computer meets the minimum requirements for a new OS.
  3. New OS features. If there is something you need or want to try in the new OS, then upgrading may make sense. If not, it's better to wait at least a couple of months to give third party vendors time to catch up and for the OS vendor to release bug fixes.