The End is Nigh:
A date that everyone should put in to their diaries. A date that is sending a shiver down the spines of many business owners and home computer users alike. A date that many columnists are calling the next Y2K, (not that they are scare mongering at all!!)
April 8th, 2014.
This is the day that all support for Windows XP, Microsoft Office 2003 and Windows Server 2003 ends. There will be no more security updates, no more security fixes and no more support from Microsoft and is expected that all the 3rd party vendors will cease support soon after.
OK, so the world is not quite coming to an end but this will leave any users who are still using XP without security updates for what is already the most insecure operating system. Windows XP/Server 2003 will not cease to function, but as Microsoft drops support so will the industry. Most of the software now produced is incompatible or untested with XP, new pieces of hardware fail to work with this ageing operating system and as time goes by there will be less and less available which will function on XP.
With 6 months to go, what is your plan? Initially, let’s find out if you do have XP/Server 2003.
On your computer click on the Start button – Right Click on ‘My Computer’ – select ‘Properties’ – on the window which appears it should say on the first few lines which operating system you are using. If it mentions XP or Server 2003, it is time to start the process of changing.
For Office 2003, open a Word document, click on Help and About, it will tell you here which version of Office you are using. If it is 2003 of any variant, time to change.
If you are a home user then hopefully not much of a plan is needed. Buy a Windows7/8 machine, move your data across to the new platform, and your life will improve immensely. You will have a secure operating system on a faster machine which will react when you want it to. Let’s be honest, any machines out there that are still running XP are somewhat slow anyway. My recommendation – do it now!!
Business – time to get your skates on!! Microsoft do say that, depending on the size of network obviously, it can take up to 18 months to plan and rollout a desktop upgrade from XP to Windows 7/8. Most business don’t have the internal skills to complete a pain free transfer from XP, at this point your best plan is to pick up the phone and contact an IT support company…