by Bill MacLennan, CEO of Your Computer Hero
It’s decision making time again. Microsoft is forcing businesses to upgrade to Windows 10. As with any technology upgrade, it is wise to gather a few critical details before jumping into a major upgrade like this. So, in this article I want to give you the relevant information to guide your planning for the transition. Most of all, I want to help you uncover any hidden costs and avoid expensive surprises while adopting the new Windows 10 operating system.
Deadlines and Cost with Windows 7
As of January 14, 2020 the only people who will receive support for the Windows 7 operating system are those who are willing to pay for it, and it’s not cheap. For Windows 7 Pro you will pay $50 per machine for the first year, the second year jumps to $100 and the third year it will double again to $200 per machine. Microsoft will completely phase out support for Windows 7 after the three years.
Risks: Why does Microsoft Support Matter
Since Microsoft produces the most widely used operating systems, hackers are constantly trying to find holes in it. Therefore, ongoing Microsoft support is critical. They routinely push out updates and patches that shore up vulnerabilities found in the software. This is why there is a huge security risk in continuing to use an operating system that is no longer supported. I believe there is even some risk in continuing on the paid extended support. Since Windows 7 is no longer in focus, Microsoft may be late in pushing out critical updates or understanding vulnerabilities.
What’s Involved With Moving to Windows 10
You may recall the transition from Windows XP to Windows 7. Many people tried to adopt the new operating system without much thought our planning. Unfortunately, some people ran into huge surprise costs when it wouldn’t work. In most of these cases, it wasn’t the software. The computers were under powered to accept the upgrade. That is also going to be true with the new Windows 10 operating system.
Two important things to consider when planning for the transition to Windows 10:
Age of Computers: You may run into trouble if your computers are 5 or 6 years old. It is critically important to assess each computer in your network before you start the migration to Windows 10.
Mechanical vs. SSD Hard Drives: The biggest change we have seen in the computers in the past several years is the transition from mechanical hard drives to the faster solid state (or ssd) hard drives. See pictures below. The new Windows 10 operating system will definitely work better with the solid state drives. Since the ssd’s have come down in price considerably, it may make sense to replace computers rather than upgrade them.
If you have not yet made the transition to Windows 10, it may be something to consider as you look at your fourth quarter spending for 2019. Give our shop a call, our technicians are equipped to help you with the planning and implementation of the new Windows 10 operating system.