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Windows 7 Exit Strategy

By:Christine Fettinger

Companies running Windows 7 as their primary OS should start reevaluating their OS needs. To embrace or dismiss Windows 8? What should businesses do after support ends for Windows 7?

Instead businesses should learn from the Windows XP ordeal as the outdated OS caused major security vulnerabilities.

Switching existing PCs and laptops to Windows 8 is unreasonable without a solid business case. The changes from Windows 7 to Windows 8 is minimal to the average user as most believe the UI is a step backwards from Windows 7. If an upgrade path is in the near future for hardware—Windows 8 is definitely recommended. However, if hardware is properly functioning with Microsoft still actively providing support—there is no reason to switch.

Even the updates can be frustrating as Microsoft constantly patches Windows 8.1. Countless update schemes such as Windows 8.1 Update 1 and Windows 8.1 Update 2. Due to recent feedback Microsoft released Windows 8.1 update combined with mouse and keyboard improvements to increase enterprise functionality. To address other complaints they have also included the option to boot to the desktop instead of the start screen.

Rumors of Microsoft’s successor to Windows 8 is codenamed Threshold. Estimated shipping date for Threshold is roughly the same time frame of Windows 7’s expiration date. The end of support for Windows 7 is January 2020. To bridge the gap enterprises will need to decide whether they should stay on Windows 7 for another 5 years or switch to Windows 8.

Statistically Windows 8 sales are lagging behind Windows 7. An estimated 200 million Windows 8 licenses were sold in 15 months. Compared to 240 million licenses in the first year of Windows 7. The stats speak for themselves as the majority of enterprise PCs are still on Windows 7 with Windows 8 playing catch-up.

For now Windows 7 will remain top dog. Upgrading will cause compatibility issues for industries with compliance requirements. The wait for official support by independent software vendors can be lengthy. These vendors also have to go through a series of validation processes for compatibility. However, Windows 8 will work great with your Windows 8 powered surface, tablet, and laptop devices with touch features.

We hope that this blog has helped you gain better overview of where Windows 8 currently stands. Technology is constantly evolving with a substantial growth mobile device territory that will have an effect on PCs.

Our recent blog discussed the Enterprise PC. We predict that the Enterprise PC is alive and well as we described it as the go-to form factor for businesses. When the time is right CyberStreams can help your business make the right decision on when to perform your Windows 7 exit strategy.

CyberStreams can help you ease decisions such as these, contact us for your Enterprise IT needs.