As of April 8th, 2014: Windows XP will lose all support from Microsoft. What does this mean?
Will XP continue to function?
All that this means is that, Microsoft will no longer release any patches, service packs, updates, or security updates for Windows XP. The operating system itself will continue to function normally, and you can continue to use your computer as normal. Though your system will operate, you may be more exposed to security threats. You may also miss out on some innovations with technology, since the OS will not be upgraded to work with anything new.
Your main concern will be security. XP will not be patched for any new viruses, malware, adware, etc. You know those little windows that pop-up and ask you if you want to report the problem to Microsoft? Well they actually use that information for these security updates. The company is constantly patching there software to protect you from security threats. This will no longer occur.
The main concern will lay with businesses. It is highly recommended that business migrate their systems. These are the computers that are most highly targeted, because of the data that is related to you and your customers. To top it off, Office 2003 will also be losing support. XP Pro has been the cornerstone of businesses for the past ten years, but migration will need to happen soon, as it can be a hassle, and can take several man hours.
Can I Upgrade My system?
This question depends on what OS you want to migrate to. If you are going to stick with Windows, Computer Depot’s recommendation would be either Windows 7 or 8.1. At the moment the deciding factor is which OS you are the most comfortable with. Both are stable, but most individuals have a preference as far as GUI.
Some older computers will be able to upgrade to either. To decide, either consult with a computer technician, or investigate the minimum spec requirements of each.
Should I Just Buy a New Computer?
I always answer this with a couple questions. Does your current system do what you need it to do? Will it be more affordable to upgrade, or to buy a new system? Typically, an upgrade to Windows 7 or 8.1 will cost around $240.00 without any hardware upgrades. This does seem like a lot of money, but if you have a high quality system, it wouldn’t be wise to just buy a new one, that happens to be on sale for $299.00, because it will most likely be dead within the year.
If you are moving on to a new system, Computer Depot always recommends Lenovo laptops, and custom built desktops. The quality in these systems is simply light years beyond your typical, low cost HP or Dell.
If you do upgrade to a new computer, or the latest operating system, you will also see benefits in speed and security.
In conclusion: We all love XP, but if you have security or speed concerns, it may be time to move on to greener pastures.
Seymour Store Manager