If you’ve been keeping up, Microsoft announced its plan to end regular service updates to the Windows 7 operating system on January 14, 2020. If you need to catch up, read more about it in our previous blog post. Those who are still running Windows 7 will need to take action in the next year to prepare for the transition over to Windows 10.
What To Expect
According to TechRadar, Windows 7 has been in the “extended support phase” since January 15, 2015, which means that no new features were added and warranty claims were deemed invalid from then on. However, there have been changes made to fix security and bugs in the operating system since the extended support phase has taken effect.
After January 14, 2020, there will no longer be any updates to the operating system unless you pay a yearly fee, which will steadily increase. Additionally, this will only be an option for three years.
So this leaves you with the question: What are my options?
- You can continue to use the Windows 7 operating system with no regular or security updates. According to How-To Geek, this is the riskiest move, since you are essentially setting yourself up for increased vulnerability to cyber attacks. When calculating the cost of switching over, consider the costs your company would face in the instance of a successful breach to cover all your bases.
- As stated, you can continue to pay and get security updates for up to three years after the beginning of the “End of Life” phase. This will only extend the inevitable decision that you will have to make in the years to come, but it will be a good option for those who wait until the last minute to consider their plan of action.
- You can bite the bullet and upgrade. If you are worried about compatibility issues, consider that during testing only 49 of 40,000 apps that were used on the Windows 7 operating system were found to not be compatible with Windows 10.
In short, the biggest recommendation we can make is that you not continue to use Windows 7 after the End of Life phase begins. This only puts your company at risk of being a victim to cybercriminals who are sure to target these systems.
MDL Technology, LCC, is a proud Microsoft partner, offering the best in customer relationship management services using Microsoft Dynamics 365 Great Plains as well as dedicated cybersecurity monitoring. Learn more on our website.