Are You Ready For The End Of Windows XP?
On April 8th 2014 Microsoft will cease offering patches and technical support.
Not planning ahead for the migration can leave your business vulnerable to many security situations: virus attacks, sophisticated hackers accessing your valuable information, and an increase to your IT costs to support your current Windows XP environment.
What’s Holding You Back?
Familiarity—A change to Windows 7/8 may seem to involve too much effort in re-training users and technical staff.
Cost—Cost of such a major replacement project and the impact on the business
Fear of Compatibility—Your business may have a legacy application that is unsupported on Windows 7/8 or above and redevelopment of the application to supported platform is not easily possible.
Planning For The End of Windows XP
Cost Outsourcing -the complete XP support function to an IT services company is unlikely a viable option. It is estimated the cost of support will be $200 per PC in the Year 1, going upward to $400 in Year 2
Legacy Application – can be virtualised with such tools as VMware Thin App, though not the most recommended solution due to the instability of the operating environment.
Available Options -wherever possible migrate to Windows 7, Windows 8 is still immature and the changes to the desktop interface are not easy for all users to adapt to.
Review if full desktop model is the right solution for your organization or a server based approach of either full or hybrid virtual desktop.
Migration Considerations – collect information to get bigger picture on what has to be done
Upgrade outdated hardware and software. Any new hardware upgrade while still on XP, will prevent XP from taking full advantage of your system. XP will only take up to 3 GB Ram and no more.
Determine which applications and data are truly needed.
Investigate how to incorporate new technology into the business.
Have the IT pros analyze your entire environment to understand which devices and applications are actually used.
Testing –once determined which applications are most important, conduct a compatibility test to see which apps will port over to Windows 7 or Windows 8.
Other Best Practices—Determine how much productivity loss will occur during the Windows XP migration and calculate hidden costs and weigh it against the IT support cost of $400/year per PC to support XP.
Plan – to teach employees on how to use the new operating system. The transition doesn’t have to be as difficult as you may think.