Windows 7 End Of Life Is Coming – The Time To Plan Is Now

As of January 14th, 2020, Microsoft will be ending all support for Windows 7. If you still have this version of Microsoft’s Operating System in place on your workstations, now is the time to start looking into other options for your engineering firm.

Microsoft long ago announced that they are stopping mainstream support for Windows 7, an immensely popular operating system that many users will be reluctant to say goodbye to. Many will try to keep using it for as long as possible, but as support is scaled back, the reliability and security of the computer will fade. What can you do at your engineering firm to get ahead of it?

As of January 14th, 2020, Microsoft will be ending all support for Windows 7. If you still have this version of Microsoft’s Operating System in place on your workstations, now is the time to start looking into other options for your engineering firm.

No support means no updates, and no updates means no critical patches or fixes to protect you against cyber threats looking to exploit gaps in your security. There is no substitute for these patches. Without them, you have no choice but to upgrade to a newer supported OS.

What Happens At Windows 7 End Of Life?

All support for Windows 7 will end on January 14, 2020. This means no more bug fixes or security updates. Over time, the usability of Windows 7 will degrade. There will be a loss of usability and increased vulnerability.

What Does The End Of Support Mean?

This means that you won’t get bug fixes or security updates from Microsoft.  Over time, the security and reliability of Windows 7 will make your engineering firm’s computers vulnerable:

  • Your computers could be infected by malware,
  • Your antivirus won’t be updated,
  • Your online banking transaction protection may expire, and
  • Your financial data could be exposed to theft.

Does This Mean Windows 7 Won’t Be Reliable?

Yes – your applications may not be updated, your other software could be incompatible, utilities won’t be supported, and new devices may not connect to your system.

Computer manufacturers will no longer support Windows 7, meaning devices like printers, desktops, laptops and more won’t be guaranteed to work as they should. Your security programs and third-party browsers won’t support Windows 7.  When you browse the Web, you could be exposed to cyber threats.

Will Internet Explorer Still Be Supported On Windows 7 After End Of Life?

According to Microsoft, support for Internet Explorer on a Windows 7 device will also be discontinued on January 14, 2020. As a component of Windows, Internet Explorer follows the support lifecycle of the Windows operating system, it’s installed on. See Lifecycle FAQ – Internet Explorer for more information.

What Does Loss Of Usability Mean?

  • Applications may no longer receive updates.
  • Features may become incompatible.
  • Utilities may become unsupported.
  • New devices may not connect.

What Does Increased Vulnerability Mean?

  • Software bug fixes to protect you from the latest exploits may no longer be issued.
  • Your PC could be infected by malware.
  • Antivirus programs may no longer be updated.
  • Online banking transaction systems may expire.
  • Your financial data could be vulnerable to theft.

What Now? Is It Time To Upgrade To A New Operating System?

Yes, you should begin planning an upgrade to Windows 10 on all of your workstations and be prepared to have the upgrade complete by the end of 2019.

What Are The Benefits Of Upgrading From Windows 7 To Windows 10?

Upgrading from Windows 7 to 10:

  • Makes computers run smoother and faster.
  • Provides a more economical use of memory and disk space.
  • Improves security.
  • Boots up your computer from sleep mode faster than before.
  • Provides many other benefits.

You can also benefit from features that Windows 7 doesn’t provide:

  • Cortana – a personal assistant that runs on artificial intelligence (AI).
  • Search the Web right from your desktop.
  • Get reminders based on time, places, or people.
  • Quickly add a virtual desktop.
  • With Windows Apps new applications are available on all of your devices.
  • A brand-new browser — Edge — that’s better suited to the modern web.
  • Track packages, teams, interests, and flights.

With Windows 10’s new application programming interface called Windows RunTime, your Windows Store Apps are remotely installed and updated. They can also be cleanly uninstalled.

There are RunTime apps for Mail, Photos, Maps, Calendar, Groove Music and more. And you can easily download any of the 700,000 applications from the Windows Store.

With Windows 10’s new application programming interface called Windows RunTime, your Windows Store Apps are remotely installed and updated. They can also be cleanly uninstalled.

There are RunTime apps for Mail, Photos, Maps, Calendar, Groove Music and more. And you can easily download any of the 700,000 applications from the Windows Store. Enjoy apps like:

What Do I Need To Do Before Migrating?

To make sure your hardware is ready for the next software environment, you should perform a series of inventories:

  • Software Inventory
    Go through your start menu, programs folder and any other locations on your PC and make a note of all the applications and utilities you have.

    • Categorize them into 3 groups:
      • Required
      • Optional
      • Unwanted

Check your required software versions against the most current versions from the vendor to determine if you need to upgrade them. If so, make a note of the cost to do this.

  • Software Wishlist
    Decide what you need, how soon, and do a similar upgrade and cost determination.
  • Hardware Requirements
    Make sure your current hardware is compatible with the most current Windows Operating System (Windows 10). This means checking:

    • The space on your solid-state drive or hard drive.
    • The RAM or memory requirements.
    • The CPU or Processor.

If they don’t meet the requirements, it may be best to purchase a new machine with Windows 10 installed. Then you can reinstall any current applications that you require.

Should I Consider Purchasing A New Computer?

If your computer is three or more years old, and running Windows 7, in most cases it makes sense to get a new one.

For most Windows 7 users, moving to a new device with a Windows 10 operating system is the best path forward. Today’s PCs are faster, lighter in weight, more powerful, and provide increased security.

The average price is considerably less than that of the average PC was eight years ago. This Guide from Microsoft can help you choose a new PC in just a few easy steps.

Do You Have More Questions About Upgrading To Windows 10?

Every Windows operating system has a lifecycle. It’s important that you stay up-to-date about essential End-of-Life dates. This will help you make informed decisions about when to upgrade or make other changes to your software or hardware. Furthermore, your IT company can also help you make informed decisions about when to upgrade or make changes to your other software or hardware.

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