After April 8, 2014, Microsoft will no longer support the Windows XP operating system. The company will stop releasing security updates and hotfixes, providing non-security hotfixes, updating online technical content and providing assisted support of any kind for XP.
Over the last few years, technology has continued to advance and has left XP out of the picture. New hard drives use the Advanced Format, which changes the bytes per sector on the hard drive. Windows XP simply does not support these new Advanced Format hard drives. Over the last year, Microsoft programs like Office and Internet Explorer have stopped being designed to work on their little brother operating system. Even in 2010, Office 2010 required the latest Service Pack to be installed on an XP system to support it.
SO WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU?
- No more security updates or hotfixes – The lack of security updates for the system increases your risk of being a victim of viruses, spyware and other malicious software, leaving your system, your data and your personal information without the protection you are used to.
- No more non-security hotfixes – When issues occur and bugs are reported on an operating system, Microsoft corrects those by issuing “hotfixes.” With the sunsetting of XP support, they will no longer be fixing these issues.
- Microsoft is eliminating support – You will no longer be able to get support for anything related to the XP operating system. Microsoft will also not be updating the online technical content.
AM I USING WINDOWS XP AND CAN I UPGRADE MY OLD PC?
There is a free website that will help you detect if you are running Windows XP. Unfortunately, most PCs built to run XP are not powerful enough to support the features in Windows 7 or 8. You can use the Windows Upgrade Assistant from Microsoft to check your existing system and see if you have the computing power and if your programs are compatible with Windows 7 or 8.
IT’S TIME TO GET UPGRADED
While Windows XP is still some people’s favorite operating system, it’s probably time to move on. The new Windows 8 system is similar – it is Windows, after all – and has some great new features. The average user does not have a touchscreen display, so you will not be able to take full advantage of Windows 8. I would recommend to upgrade to Windows 7, which is less intimidating than Windows 8. Windows 7 will provide you with more features and efficient ways to take care of your day to day activities.
NOT READY TO SWITCH?
We strongly recommend clients move off Windows XP to maintain security. If you aren’t ready to give up on it, we have assembled a list of actions you need to take in order to minimize your risk on the unsupported system.