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Microsoft has announced the date for Windows 7, Server 2008 & Exchange 2010: End of Life: January, 2020. If you have these programs running on your hardware it’s time to upgrade.

What Does End Of Life Mean? In the tech field, End of Life is a term describing the end of support for a hardware or software product including security updates and customer service. This means that the developer will no longer fix flaws and bugs. You can still use the product – but at your own risk.

The end of life for a software product can be a significant challenge for businesses. Currently 70% of businesses are using Windows 7 worldwide. How these businesses navigate the impending end of life deadline will rely largely on careful planning. The sooner you start the planning the smoother this process will be.

Why Should You Upgrade?

Well, that’s simple, you will leave our business vulnerable to exploits, hackers and bugs if you don’t. Microsoft will stop releasing updates and patches for these programs. In today’s world, protecting your clients, employees and business data is central. We all know how many email scams there are out there, imagine what they can do if you have Windows 7 on your PC? Not upgrading is enabling these malicious hackers another avenue into your network.

Will Our Windows Programs Still Work?

The answer is, Yes. Even though these programs are End of Life, that doesn’t mean they will stop working on January, 2020 – you’ll still be able to use the programs for as long as you want, but is not a good idea. The biggest issue with continuing to use these outdated programs is that it won't be patched for any new viruses or security problems once it enters End of Life, and this leaves your network extremely vulnerable to any emerging threats.

What's more, if a large number of companies continue to use Windows 7 after the End of Life date, that could actually be a big incentive for malicious users to target viruses and other nasties at Windows 7. As a business you do not want to leave your network system vulnerable. Your clients trust you are keeping their data and information safe. Upgrading is a must.

What Should You Do?

Start making a plan to have all your Windows 2008 Servers, Exchange 2010, and Windows 7 PC's and laptops either replaced or upgraded to the latest versions. This can involve some time to plan and execute, don't wait till the last minute!

What Do I Need To Do To Prepare?

Upgrading to a new operating system takes time and careful planning, particularly if you have numerous machines and systems to assess. A smooth and successful transition to a new operating system requires you to:

  • Identify machines that need to be upgraded or replaced

  • Identify and consider replacing legacy systems using older operating systems and/or software with updated technology

  • Develop a timeline and budget for upgrades and replacements

  • Implement security controls to separate critical systems from Windows 7 machines that cannot be upgraded or removed

  • Plan for employee training to learn the new system

I would advise you to begin planning your company’s transition now, well in advance of the 2020 deadline. The sooner you begin these plans the more time you will have to address issues that may come up during the transitioning phase.

Lets make your plans to upgrade now. Contact us today: 407-331-5921 or .

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