Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end, and this includes Windows 7.
After 14th January 2020, Microsoft will no longer provide security updates or support for machines running Windows 7 or Server 2008. Here’s what you need to know:
What does this mean for you and your business?
When Windows 7 reaches its End of Life phase on January 14, 2020, Microsoft will stop releasing updates and patches for the operating system. It’s likely that it also won’t offer help and support if you encounter any problems.
However, that doesn’t mean Windows 7 will stop working on January 14 2020 – you’ll still be able to use Windows 7 for as long as you want. So the good news is that you’re not going to wake up on January 15 to find your Windows 7 PC no longer boots up, but you will no longer receive software updates, including security updates from Microsoft.
As a result, any machines that are still running Windows 7 after the 14th of January will be more vulnerable to online threats, therefore, it’s advised that businesses develop a plan to replace their legacy systems.
What to do with your PCs and Laptops?
In most cases, moving to a new device with Windows 10 is the recommended solution. Upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10 has a number of benefits. For a start, because both operating systems are made by Microsoft the upgrade process is relatively easy, and in many cases you can keep your files. Today's PCs are faster, lightweight, more powerful and secure than ever. Whilst solid-state drives have increased in storage capacity they have also decreased in price so it makes sense for business users to upgrade their computer hardware at the same time as they upgrade to the Windows 10 operating system.
What to do with your Server?
If you’re a business that still runs Windows Server 2008 or Small Business Server then an operating system upgrade will be needed but it’s also recommended that you upgrade your server hardware at the same time. Modern operating systems allow you to take advantage of virtualisation features which can provide a wide range of benefits, especially as far as backups and disaster recovery are concerned.
What happens if you choose to ignore this?
We don’t need to remind you that this means no more updates, patches or bug fixes for these business-critical products. If you continue to run your systems with unsupported software you are putting the security of your organisation at risk. Take a look at what happened to NHS with the security breach that occurred in May 2017. Not only did it cause mass disruption to NHS core services, but the attack also cost them £92 million in damages and all because they decided to continue to use Windows XP after the support ended.
What to do now?
It’s recommended that businesses seek the guidance of an expert to develop a plan to identify and replace any legacy systems with updated technology. This typically involves identifying legacy machines and testing critical software applications to make sure they are compatible with the new platform. A fair amount of planning will be required to ensure a successful migration over to a new system.
Get all the help you need
ION Networks are experienced in helping businesses upgrade to the latest operating systems and in recent years have migrated hundreds of client machines to Windows 10. In order to ensure a smooth transition, we strongly recommend that businesses take action and plan ahead to upgrade their systems well in advance of the 14th of January 2020.
ION Networks can offer advice on upgrading your systems and can even manage the whole process for you, we can supply any new hardware or software that may be required, allowing you to take advantage of the latest technologies and maximise your return on investment.
To book a free consultation fill in our contact form or call and speak to a member of our support team on 01842 890000.