End of Support for Windows XP

End of Support for Windows XP

As of  April 8th, 2014, Microsoft will no longer be supporting Windows XP.  What does that mean? 

It means you should probably take action. After April 8, 2014, there will be no new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options or online technical content updates.

Running Windows XP SP3 and Office 2003 in your environment after their end of support date may expose your company to potential risks, such as:

Security & Compliance Risks — Unsupported and unpatched environments are vulnerable to security risks. This may result in an officially recognized control failure by an internal or external audit body, leading to suspension of certifications, and/or public notification of the organization’s inability to maintain its systems and customer information.  Not good for you publicly traded types.
•Lack of Independent Software Vendor (ISV) & Hardware Manufacturers support — A recent industry report from Gartner Research suggests "many independent software vendors (ISVs) are unlikely to support new versions of applications on Windows XP in 2011; in 2012, it will become common." And it may stifle access to hardware innovation: Gartner Research further notes that in 2012, most PC hardware manufacturers will stop supporting Windows XP on the majority of their new PC models.

Yes, April 8th, 2014 is 2 years away.  But it may take a while to transition your current desktops to Windows 7 and eventually 8.  You should start now.  If you have a replacement schedule, new machines will come with Windows 7 installed.  No worries there.  But if you have existing machines that you want to hold on to, you might consider upgrading them to the latest version of Windows.  But, keep in mind, you likely will need more memory to run the latest and greatest.  Memory is fairly inexpensive compared with a new computer.  Be aware that applications will need to be checked to see if compatibility with Windows 7 will be an issue. 

Application developers are well on their way to making the switch to Window 7.  But many don't have the programming staff time to rewrite their application or bring it up to date.  If those apps are stuck in a time warp and only support XP, it might be a good time to look around for a better software manufacturer.  Because in 2 years, which will go fast, your problem just got bigger.