January 14, 2020 – even sooner for those who don’t download a recent security update. This means Microsoft will no longer update or support the operating system after that date. And, while Windows 7 is a decade old at this point – launching on July 22, 2009 – it’s still incredibly popular, with recent reports from Netmarketshare suggesting that Windows 7 is still being used on 39% of all PCs. If you are seeing this email you are either still on Windows 7 2008 or Server 2008/R2
End of Life: What it means
While EOL products don’t stop working immediately, the company will no longer provide support for them. That means if anything breaks, there won’t be a fix available. However, the biggest risk of continuing to use end of life products is that they will no longer receive patches or security updates. This leaves you vulnerable to cyber-attacks with a potential loss of data, because it’s virtually impossible to prevent attacks from hackers if a product contains security vulnerabilities that aren’t being fixed. You are 800% more likely to be attacked and brought down if you are out of compliance!
Hackers exist to prey on vulnerabilities, and end of life software provides them with ample opportunities. You spend time and money on increasing security awareness and implementing malware, so don’t take unnecessary risks with your software by refusing to migrate.
New applications are optimized for the most recent operating systems. That means when using EOL operating systems, you may not be able to upgrade to the latest and greatest, so you’ll have to hold onto legacy applications.
End of Life: what should you do?
So, if you still use Windows 7, or Server 2008/R2 what should you do? There are several things we’d recommend you do in preparation for, and the first is to consider upgrading to a newer operating system.
Planning for Migration
When software inevitably becomes obsolete, it can post a challenge for businesses. But keep in mind extended support for these products doesn’t officially end until January 14, 2020 (and July 9, 2019, for SQL Server). You do have some time to formulate a migration plan, so there’s no need to panic. However, 2020 will be here before you know it, and you don’t want to wait until the last minute to handle a move of this magnitude.
Just taking into consideration the number of computers running Windows 7, estimated at 39% of all business workstations right now, the line for upgrade assistance will start getting very long as we get closer to these dates. The time to start planning is now.
Contact Us if you would like more information or if you would like to discuss formulating a migration plan before it’s too late!