Bye Bye Windows XP
The time has come to say goodbye. On April 8 2014, Microsoft officially ended support for its aging operating system, Windows XP.
You really, really need to dump Windows XP. No, really. Windows XP was great, and many users still love the operating system (me included!), but...it’s more than a decade old.
Although it may still appear to work fine, the mantra of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” doesn’t really apply to Windows XP. It’s broken in many ways, and now that Microsoft has opfficially dropped support, it really is be broken.
Why should I upgrade?
Security - First and foremost, this is a security issue. Windows XP-based machines will still work after tomorrow, but Microsoft will no longer roll out security updates for the OS. That means your computer will be more susceptible to hackers and other scammers, who could exploit bugs that Microsoft is no longer fixing to gain access to your machine and steal your personal information.
Security experts believe that cybercriminals may already be hoarding Windows XP flaws, waiting hungrily for the expiration of Microsoft support. At that point, there will be no more Patch Tuesday security bulletins, and no patches or updates from Microsoft to address critical security concerns in Windows XP. It will be open season. You are the target.
Compatability - Software companies hate supporting multiple operating systems - it means they have to test all their software multiple times. So with Microsoft dropping support for Windows XP, software vendors are hot on their heels, rejoicing at the opportunity to drop an operating system from their minimum requirement spec. 4
You may (and by "may" I mean "will) find that the next great version of your business software does not work on Windows XP.
Even Microsoft's dropped support for Windows XP with it's own Internet Explorer back at version 9 - so version 10 and 11 simply won't run - this means that your browser is unsecure and you likely already can't access some websites.
Performance - It's likely that your old Windows XP system is running on old technology, slow hard drives, and takes 5-10 minutes to startup before you can use it. Modern computers ruinning Windows 7 with SSD hard drives take less than a minute between turning them on and reading your email or browsing the web.
Are there any exceptions?
No. Period. You're already behind the times.
Is this really a huge deal or Y2K-level dramatics?
It seems like news of a new data breach or computer scam makes news every day; do you really want to put yourself at risk because you like XP, or you just don't want to bother with an upgrade? It's only safe if you never connect your computer to the internet, ever (and what fun is that?!?!)
"Windows XP users' systems will be six times more likely to come under attack by third parties than those running Windows 7."
Ondrej Vlcek, Avast's chief operations officer
What's so great about Windows 7 or Windows 8?
Windows 7: If you’re still using Windows XP, there’s a good chance you won’t want to go through the shock of upgrading to Windows 8 - and by that I mean DONT DO IT (wait for Wdinwos 10 instead).
Windows 7 isn’t the latest, but it’s the most widely used version of Windows and will be supported until January 14, 2020. Even today, many businesses are upgrading from Windows XP to Windows 7 — not Windows 8.
Microsoft, of course, would much prefer that you embrace its latest operating system, Windows 8. It has been slow to pick up market share and busiuness's are not adopting it due to the loss in productivity caused by it's unfamiliarity.
How to Upgrade
It's unlikely that your Windows XP computer hardware meets the minimum requirements of Windows 7, and even if it does - it's simply not worth the hassle - you will end up with a slow computer and a lot of wasted time.
Now is the time to replace your Windows XP disosaur with a flash new Windows 7 desktop or laptop.
Get in touch to plan your upgrade strategy today.