Goodbye to Windows XP?

On April 8, 2014 Microsoft will end extended product support for Windows XP, its long running popular desktop Operating System.  It’s hardly been a secret.  Microsoft has been announcing since September of 2013 that Windows XP will be reaching its end-of-life cycle.

What does that mean for the end user?  Will your PC suddenly stop working?  Will your XP license stop working?  The answer is no.  Your XP computers will continue to work as they’ve always done, and you won’t really notice any differences. 

What does end-of-life mean and how will this affect you, the end user?  Microsoft will no longer provide product and security updates for computers that continue to run Windows XP and software developers will no longer support XP as a platform to run new versions of their software applications.  Without product and security updates your XP computers will become increasingly vulnerable to viruses, malware, and security hacks.  Older, out-of-date Operating Systems are particularly popular targets for hackers and viruses.  As new security flaws are identified, they simply won’t be fixed.  These types of security flaws can be readily exploited.  Additionally, as new versions of software are introduced, they won’t be compatible with Windows XP.  This means as you upgrade a peripheral or install the latest version of software like your favorite photo editing software or important business applications you use every day won’t be compatible with XP and not supported by that manufacturer or software developer.

So what can you do?  Microsoft has been pushing XP users to upgrade to Windows 8, but in most cases the older computers running Windows XP simply don’t have the resources to effectively run the latest version of Windows.  If you are trying to extend the life of your computer by purchasing and upgrading parts it will be problematic at best, since parts for older computers aren’t readily available and expensive when you can find them.  The best investment would be to replace the aging computer with a new one running either Windows 7 or Windows 8.  If are concerned with getting Windows 7, which has been out for a while, don’t be it has support through January of 2020.  If you have an office full of XP computers, you should consider a phased approach to replacing them so that you aren’t hit with a large purchase all at once.  Spectrum Technologies can help you identify the most cost effective scenario and the timeline in which to do the upgrade.  You’ll end up with newer and faster computers that will increase your productivity and protect your office from security vulnerabilities.  Call one of our Solutions Experts or one of our Systems Engineers if you have you would like to learn more at (915) 781-2000.  We’d love to help!