The End of an Era – What Does the End of Windows XP Support Mean for You?
Tuesday the 8th of April saw the end of an era for Windows users as Microsoft turned off their support for the Windows XP operating system. This means that for thousands of users still running Windows XP there are some tough choices ahead. Do you move operating systems, or just stick it out and pay the price?
Well, to help you decide, we’ll break it down a few key facts for you that you might not know. Firstly, what are the downsides of having no support?
The main concern that has been flying around is the security risks. There is a lot of talk of an impending wave of hackers worming their way in through the newly unprotected network. But just how true is this? You will be able to install all security updates right up until the 8th, but after that date no new updates or patches will be released. So this means if a vulnerability is revealed in the operating system, there will be no patch for it, opening up the way for hackers. It’s a risky area, and one that might leave your computer open to infection in the future.
The good news comes for you applications. While there will be no direct support from Microsoft for XP, other software providers won’t stop updates. A cyber hacker looking to gain access to a computer will often use software as an entry point. These criminals know what kinds of software are most commonly installed on PC’s (Adobe Reader and Java for example) and so use these as typical targets. But these applications continue to update no matter what version of Windows you run, so you can keep the software up to date and secure, and sure up the common entry points for computer hackers.
If you are running Windows XP for your business, then you may face compliance issues if you stay with XP. If your business is governed by regulatory obligations (like HIPAA for example) then you may find that you don’t meet their compliance requirements.
While Windows XP is an operating system, the loss of support could have implications for your hardware too. Most PC manufacturers will stop supporting XP on all new and existing hardware, which mean the drivers required to run Windows XP won’t be available. So if you need to replace your PC and you’re still running XP, you may run into problems.
So again it boils down to those 2 choices – do you migrate to a newer operating system or stay put and take the risks?
At the end of that day that’s up to you, but we migrating to the latest OS edition (at time of writing, Windows 8). Running the most up to date software doesn’t just change your interface, it helps protect you against hackers and viruses, keep your applications running smoothly and patch any weaknesses that are found.
For more information on transitioning to a new operating system from Windows XP, Contact Us