Microsoft has officially discontinued the well-known Windows Essentials 2012 suite of tools, as end of support was reached on January 10.
Windows Essentials 2012 was a suite of free applications supposed to help you perform a series of tasks on your Windows computers without the need for third parties. The pack included Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Windows Live Writer, Windows Live Mail, and OneDrive.
With support for Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10, the Windows Essentials 2012 suite no longer makes sense for Windows users, pretty much because alternatives to the built-in programs are already available by default in Microsoft’s operating system.
For example, the Photo Gallery is no longer needed because Windows 10 itself comes with Photos, an app that provides not only image viewing capabilities but also other features. At the same time, Windows Live Mail is also redundant given the fact that a Mail app is offered by default with Windows 10, so Microsoft’s decision to discontinue the entire pack is by no means surprising.
Since end of support was reached on January 10, Microsoft was expected to remove the download links during the same day, but at the time of writing this article (January 11), Windows Essentials 2012 can still be downloaded.
But in case Microsoft does remove the download link, you can still get Windows Essentials 2012 from Softpedia using an offline installer that lets you use any of the aforementioned applications.
Just like before, the installer allows you to select which programs you want to install. But again, keep in mind that if you’re still running a supported Windows version, chances are you already have a powerful alternative from Microsoft that integrates more features and is fully compatible with modern operating systems.
If you want to install Windows Essentials 2012 specifically for Windows Live Writer, an open-source fork is already available for download as Open Live Writer, providing similar features and UI.