Countdown to Windows XP Obsolescence

Windows XP logoThis is a special notice for all Windows XP users.  The countdown to the date when the Windows XP operating system will be formally obsolete has begun.

Beginning on April 8, 2014, Microsoft and all other hardware and software companies will discontinue their support of the Windows XP system.  When that happens, XP will become haven for viruses because antivirus programs will be outdated and stop working.  New peripheral devices such as a printer, keyboard, or mouse will be unable to connect to the computer because the system does not meet the minimum requirements to run them.  HP has already shut off support for Windows XP, and other big brands will follow suit over the course of the year.  If you call a retailer or other company for direct support and say you are still running XP, they will be unable to assist you.

So, what should the XP user do next?  It’s time to upgrade to a newer operating system (OS):  Windows Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8.  PC Ninja can help you with that transition, either by putting a newer OS on your current computer, or guiding you in the purchase a new machine.  Right now, we suggest that customers hold off on Windows 8, which has a huge learning curve due to its new user interface, as well as glitches and bugs that will be sorted out in time.  Windows 7 has the most similar appearance to XP, which should make for an easier transition.  Retailers will only stock Windows 8, so if you prefer Windows 7, be aware it is only available through special order or online.  Whether you are interested in a brand new computer or just an upgrade, PC Ninja can offer advice as to which operating system or computer would be best for you.  Depending on the age and performance of your current computer, an upgrade may or may not be possible.  PC Ninja can help you determine if the machine would be capable of supporting newer software.

This date of obsolescence also applies to the primary XP software, Microsoft Office 2003, so if you plan to continue using Word, Excel, Powerpoint, or any other programs under the suite of 2003, be prepared to upgrade that software package.

Another aspect to consider in this transition is a data transfer.  If you upgrade the computer, the data will first have to be backed up and temporarily removed while the new OS is installed, after which all files will be reinstalled.  With a new computer, data can be directly transferred from the old to the new hard drive.  Though all data should transfer without an issue, not all software may be supported on the newer system, such as nearly obsolete programs like Microsoft Money, or programs that have more recent versions.  In these cases, you may need to purchase new or upgraded software to be compatible with a particular OS.  PC Ninja can walk you through all these decisions and make this a simple transition.  Whether you are looking for a new computer or not, PC Ninja can perform a backup to ensure that all your data is secure on an external hard drive.

To discuss cost-effective options on an upgrade or computer purchase, call PC Ninja at (484) 671-2445, or send a query through our online contact form here.

(As discussed on a WEEU radio broadcast 6/13/2013.)

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