Microsoft has officially announced that it will retire support on the XP operating system, Office 2003 software suite, and Small Business Server 2003 on April 8. That means any computer or server with these software programs installed will be completely exposed to serious hacker attacks aimed at taking control of your network, stealing your data, crashing your system and inflicting a host of other business-crippling problems you probably do not want to have to deal with.
Good bye Windows XP. And good riddance. Windows XP was the LEAST secure operating system (by far) -Windows Vista was actually a far safer option and that’s a scary thought. Windows XP is old; the 1st iPod was released the same year as windows XP. In a world where the 5th generation iPhone is in use, no one should be left using an O/S that predates the 1st iPod!
Will your Win XP system stop working after April 8th? No, but after April 9th any computer or server with these programs installed will be completely exposed to serious hacker attacks. Microsoft will also stop offering it’s free Security Essentials antivirus product to Win XP systems after April 8th. The good news is the risk can be mitigated somewhat if you are using a strong firewall and anti-virus software, but be aware that these may not be sufficient to completely protect you.
It’s a scary world out there, and the for-profit-cybercriminal thugs are filling Peer-2-Peer networks and the internet with more malicious software by the day. There’s a huge library of malware and viruses mostly focused at taking down XP and stealing your information that is armed and ready to go on April 9th.
Unless you don’t care about cyber criminals running rampant in your network, it is strongly recommended that you bite the bullet and get on with the upgrade. Smart business has been getting rid of Windows XP and moving to Windows 7 or Windows 8 over the past 3 years, but the fact remains that as of early this year 500 million users were still running XP. If you are one, and there is a strong chance that you are, we recommend that you don’t put it off any longer – switch or get infected.
We understand that changing your OS will entail some expense, including new licenses, hardware, and some training. Fortunately, these things are designed to help you operate more efficiently and increase your productivity in the long run. But such change will take time, and if you need some help with your upgrade project we’ll be happy to work with you.
You can reach Bob directly by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org