What do you mean by Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy?
Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy provides consistent and predictable guidelines for product support availability when a product releases and throughout that product’s life.

The Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy took effect in October 2002, and applies to most products currently available through retail purchase or volume licensing and most future release products. Through the policy, Microsoft will offer a minimum of:

  • 10 years of support (5 years Mainstream Support and 5 years Extended Support) at the supported service pack level for Business and Developer products
  • 5 years Mainstream Support at the supported service pack level for Consumer/Hardware/Multimedia products
  • 3 years of Mainstream Support for products that are annually released (for example, Money, Encarta, Picture It!, and Streets & Trips)

What were the phases of Support Lifecycle?

For more information, please refer the following articles: