Windows XP was the second most popular operating system (OS) from Microsoft. As of 2006, Microsoft had sold 400 million copies, and no one knows how many pirated copies of the OS were illegally installed in that time. But all good things must come to an end. As of April 2014, Microsoft has officially discontinued software updates to Microsoft XP.
Now, if you do still have this archaic OS installed (XP came to market in August of 2001, that’s like the Middle Ages to us computer nerds!) there is hope for you to keep using XP. In January of this year, Microsoft revealed that its Anti-Virus product (MSRT) would continue to be updated for XP until July 2015. This is a good thing for people who still have to use XP. I have clients in the printing and machining industry who have machine-controllers that only run on XP. It’s one thing for a small company to replace a computer for $500-$1000, but it’s another thing altogether for a machine shop to change out a giant piece of equipment for $20k-$100k!
The problem that IT professionals are running into is that the latest OS from Microsoft isn’t quite ready for prime time in the professional environment (and many IT professionals doubt if it ever will be!). Just the other day I was advisingone of my older clients that they should only get Windows 8.1 if they’re going to be using the touch interface. Every time I’ve used Windows 8.1 in the office environment, the new Start page simply gets in the way of me being able to do my job quickly and efficiently.
So what are the advantages of the new Windows 8.1? Well, if you find that you need to have a tablet with a touch interface that can run Windows applications, then this is the system for you. If you’ve always wanted to run Office (or other typical, Windows-compatible programs) on an iPad, then this is the product for you!
What are the disadvantages of the new Windows 8.1? Compatibility. Not all of the major business software packages work on Windows 8.1 (especially older versions of software). For example, older versions of Quickbooks are not compatible with Windows 8.1. If you want a keyboard and a mouse to create documents, or to enter numbers into spreadsheets then there’s no real advantage to Windows 8.1 for you.
If you, or someone from your company needs further advice on new computer systems, or if you have any comments about the newsletter, please email us at: