As of April 11, 2023, security updates and support for Microsoft Office 2013 will no longer be available, potentially increasing your organization’s exposure to security risks or affecting compliance obligations. If you are connecting to Microsoft 365 via an Office 2013 client, you may also experience performance or reliability issues.
What Does the End of Support Actually Mean?
Almost all Microsoft products have a support lifecycle, also known as the Microsoft Lifecycle Policy, that lasts a fixed number of years from its initial release. During this lifecycle, they provide bug and security fixes. At the end of this lifecycle, the product reaches what is known as the end of support, and Microsoft no longer provides the following:
- Technical support for issues
- Bug fixes for issues that are discovered
- Security fixes for vulnerabilities that are discovered
What Should Be Your Next Move?
For starters, reach out to your Connection Account Manager to begin looking at your upgrade options:
- Microsoft 365 Apps: The subscription version of Office that comes with many Microsoft 365 enterprise and business plans.
- Office LTSC 2021: Sold as a one-time purchase, through a volume license agreement and available for one computer per license. OR Office 2021: Available through traditional volume licensing programs with Software Assurance.
What’s the Difference Between These Options?
The key difference between the two is that Microsoft 365 Apps are regularly updated, sometimes as often as monthly, with new features, whereas Office LTSC 2021 remains static with the features from its initial release date in September 2021.
Microsoft 365 subscription plans include access to Office applications and OneDrive. When bundled in a suite, other cloud services including Teams, Exchange Online, and OneDrive for Business are available to your organization. Microsoft 365 Apps is the version of Office that comes with many Microsoft 365 enterprise and business subscription plans. It includes the full versions of Office apps in a user-based licensing model, meaning users can install Office on multiple devices with their license. This gives users access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, and Teams whether they are using a Windows 11 device, an Apple device, and/or a mobile device.
Office LTSC 2021 is available to organizations through a volume licensing agreement for enterprise admins to deploy to users in their organization. It is supported on devices running Windows 10 or Windows 11. The following Office products offered through volume licensing are available on devices running Windows:
- Office LTSC Professional Plus 2021
- Office LTSC Standard 2021
- Project Professional 2021
- Project Standard 2021
- Visio LTSC Professional 2021
- Visio LTSC Standard 2021
These products use Click-to-Run rather than Windows Installer as the installation technology, but you would still use Key Management Service to activate. Office LTSC has 5 years of Mainstream Support and does not offer Extended Support.
It is also important to note that Office LTSC is separate from the Office that is available through Microsoft 365 plans. Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise (formerly Office 365 ProPlus) already has all the features included in Office LTSC 2021, along with many additional features. If you have already deployed Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise, you would not need Office LTSC 2021.
For more information, or if you need assistance in planning for this transition, contact an Account Manager today.