When Microsoft launched Windows XP, it was first released to computer manufacturers on August 24, 2001, no one was sure what to expect. Would the operating system become a mega-hit like Windows 98 or would it disappoint customers the way other systems did? Now over a decade since its launch, Windows XP is widely considered one of the best operating system versions to ever hit store shelves. Companies around the globe are still running the operating system, even though two successors have launched. But the time has come for every company to finally cut the cord and ditch Windows XP. Yes, it’s a fine operating system that supports all your accessories and applications, but it’s really past its prime. And with an outdated design that many employees find tedious at this point as sleeker, easier to use competitors hit the market, it’s about time you ditch XP in favor of another operating system, such as Windows 7 or even Mac OS X Lion, that can deliver all the features you need – rather than settling for having only some of them. Here are the reasons why Windows XP, after a long tenure in your office, needs to go.
1. It is outdated
There’s no doubt that you’ve kept all your Windows XP installations up-to-date and working as well as possible, but no matter what you do, Windows XP is outdated. From its design to its sluggish performance, even on new computers, it’s time for XP to be put aside for something new.
2. Think About Security
Now that Windows XP is running Service Pack 3, it’s far more secure than it was. However, it’s still not as secure as Windows 7 or even Mac OS X Lion. If security is one of your top priorities — and it should be — think seriously about ditching XP for something new. Also Microsoft ended support for Windows XP on April 14, 2009. Now only Extended Support is available until August 04, 2014, this means you will have to pay for support. This also means no major new patches will be coming out for this operating system.
3. Windows XP Mode in Windows 7
Many companies say that they want to keep XP because it works with all the applications and accessories they use. However, with the launch of Windows 7, that’s not a good reason anymore. As long as you deploy Windows 7 Ultimate or Windows 7 Enterprise edition, you’ll get a virtual version of XP included.
4. Don’t Get Locked Into Windows 8
The last thing you want to do is wait too long to deploy a new operating system and get caught with Windows 8. Right now, we know that Windows 7 is a winner and a worthwhile enterprise option. But the jury is still out on Windows 8. It will need time to bake after it’s release sometime this year, supposedly.
5. Employees Are Used to Newer Operating Systems
Now that Windows 7 has been out for a couple of years, chances are, your employees are well-versed in how to use it. That’s a good thing. Because of their knowledge, you shouldn’t need to worry about training or seeing a drop in productivity.
6. Maybe Mac OS X Is a Better Option
If you don’t need Microsoft’s OS to conduct business, think seriously about dropping XP for Mac OS X Lion. Apple’s system is more secure than XP, well-designed, and thanks to its App Store, supports many of the applications you need. At least keep it in mind.
7. PCs Are Affordable
Too often, companies have limited budgets, and can’t invest in everything they want. But with the PC market slumping, it’s a good time to make deals. Vendors like HP, Dell, and Lenovo are trying to attract new customers with good prices. Ditching XP now might just be less costly than you think.
8. Windows Vista Isn’t a Concern
If you stuck with Windows XP to avoid Windows Vista, you don’t need to worry. Windows 7 is not Windows Vista. It’s a high-quality operating system with several features you’ll like.
9. The Competition Is Moving Away
You need to think about the competitive landscape and what your company’s chief counterparts will do next. They’re likely thinking about deploying a new OS in their operation because of all the benefits new software offers over XP. The last thing you want to do is give them an advantage. And sticking with XP is doing just that.
10. It Future-Proofs You
There’s no telling what the future holds. But if anything is certain, Microsoft is moving forward, and developers and accessory makers will move with it. By ditching Windows XP now, you can future-proof your business no matter what products come along.
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