Tag Archive for Windows

End of Windows XP Support

No More Microsoft Windows XP

No More Microsoft Windows XPIn less than 1,000 days, on April 8, 2014, Microsoft will stop issuing security patches, updates, and hotfixes for all versions of Windows XP.

You may, or may not, be aware that Microsoft issues FREE updates to Windows and other Microsoft software products every Tuesday evening. Most computers will automatically retrieve them when the computer is connected to the Internet. (Although, some people, who don’t know about the service, choose not to install them. Is that you?)

On April 8, 2014, PCs running Windows XP will no longer find updates and fixes to download, so those computers will remain at risk to any new security threats that arise. Furthermore, many other companies (known as “third party” providers) will no offer service or support for their hardware or software applications on systems using Windows XP.

What about businesses using Windows XP? Business owners and managers may find this may generate more complexity, security risks, and ultimately, added management costs for IT departments.

Industry analysts say that it can take from 12 to 18 months for an organization to migrate, and a recent Gartner report stated that “more than 50% of organizations that do not start deploying Windows 7 by early 2012 will not complete their deployments before Windows XP support ends.” (Read “Creating a Timeline for Deploying Windows 7 and Eliminating Windows XP“)

Several other versions of Windows have had their service runs ended within the last year.

Previous End of Support Schedules for Other Windows Operating Systems

  • Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) support ended on July 12, 2011. SP2 is still being supported.
  • Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2*) support ended on July 13, 2010. SP3 is the most recent and last service pack issued for XP systems.
  • Windows 2000 support ended on July 13, 2010.
  • Windows Vista Release to Manufacturing (RTM) support ended April 13, 2010.

Ready to Deploy Windows 7? Whether your a home user or a business user, I encourage you to consider making the move to Windows 7. If you feel your computer is still going strong on XP you may find it runs even better on Windows 7. Otherwise, if your budget allows, you may find it’s more cost effective to buy a new system.

Windows Easy Transfer

Windows Easy Transfer

What about the files on my old system? Moving fromWindows 7 from Windows XP is easier than ever. Windows 7 comes with powerful tools to assist and guide you every step of the way. If you decide to get a new system, you can use Window Easy Transfer to move your files from one system to another using a network or USB flash drive.

Some of the world’s most prominent companies have made the move to Windows 7 like Boeing, InfoSys, Dell, Samsung, and BMW and getting benefit from the cost-savings, security, and productivity gains Windows 7 delivers.

On the homefront. I have helped several people upgrade their Windows XP computers to Windows 7, and they say their computer is faster than it was with Windows XP. I have been very impressed with Windows 7’s performance. It’s easy to install, and works great with every device I’ve connected to my computer — specially with devices that weren’t supported by Windows Vista (hiss).

Need help? If you have any questions you can send them to me at skylarkingblog @ gmail.com or with the contact page on this site. Or consult with your local computer service professional.

Windows 7 from The Microsoft Store. You can purchase Windows 7 on DVD from The Microsoft Store. If you have more than one computer in your home, or your family, then I recommend the orange package below. It will allow you to upgrade 3 computers for one low price. It’s my favorite package. Click the image below for more information.

Also, if you get the Home Premium version or the Professional version, you can always upgrade to a higher level for a reasonable price using the Windows Anytime Upgrade feature on your Windows 7 installation. I have used it to upgrade one Home Premium computer to a Professional system.

Yahoo Email and Upgrading from Vista to Windows 7

I read this question online recently:

I am upgrading from Windows Vista to Windows 7. How do I back up my Yahoo! emails and do I need to do it?

If you have a free Yahoo! email account then there is no need to back up your emails because the emails are stored on Yahoo!’s servers and not your computer.

If you have a paid Yahoo! email account, called Yahoo! Mail Plus, which costs $19.99 per year, then it is possible that you could be downloading email messages to your computer with a program such as Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Mail, Eudora, or some other program or email client.

Generally, when you are upgrading from Windows Vista to Windows 7 there is no need to erase your hard drive. When the hard drive is erased it is usually referred to as a “clean install”. While it’s always good idea to do a backup before an upgrade, it isn’t necessary. When upgrading from XP to Windows 7 the hard drive must be erased, so this is a case where it would be a good idea to have a backup of some sort.

Still, if you want to take the precaution of doing a backup, go to a computer store and get yourself an external USB drive such as a MyPassport from Western Digital and use the Windows Easy Transfer wizard to copy important files to the external drive. For more info on Windows Easy Transfer go here: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-vista/features/easy-transfer.aspx

For more info on upgrading from Vista to Windows 7 go here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/help/upgrading-from-windows-vista-to-windows-7

Microsoft Ends Bulk Shipments of Windows XP

After 7 years, as of June 30, 2008, Windows XP will no longer be made available to large computer makers, such as Dell, Lenovo, or Hewlett-Packard, or to major software retailers such as Best Buy and Circuit City. The blends of Windows XP are currently XP Professional, XP Home, XP Media Center Edition, and XP Tablet PC edition.

What does this mean for the consumer? Mainly, you won’t be seeing any boxed copies of Windows XP on the store shelves as copies start to sell out. Otherwise, Windows XP will still be available in the following ways:

  1. Small, independent computer makers, such as local businesses, will have access to XP until July 2009. (Some reports state until January 2009).
  2. Manufacturers of ultra-low cost laptops and PCs, such as Asus, will have access to XP for 2 more years; that’s until 2010.
  3. Brand name computer manufacturers and retailers will be able to continue selling XP for as long as they have stock, but they will be unable to order new copies.
  4. Some PC makers, like Dell, are making it possible to downgrade a new Vista computer to XP for an indefeinite period.  Some times the service is free, and some times they charge $50 for the service. This is possible due to a loophole in the Vista license that allows downgrades from Vista to XP at no additional cost. (That’s at no cost from Microsoft, not the manufacturers, hence the possible fee.)
  5. Major PC makers are also allowed to sell XP on low-power systems that lack the computing power required to run Vista.

Additionally, if you’re having trouble with your current copy of Windows XP, Microsoft will continue to support Windows XP until August 4, 2014. You can find that on the Support Lifecycle page on Microsoft’s web site.

My Experience With Vista

Personally, I’ve had no problems worth mentioning with Windows Vista. Maybe I’m lucky, but I’d also say only a third of the people I know with Vista have any complaints — and some of them stopped complaining after Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) was released back around April 15, 2008.  Also, I’ve heard lots of complaints from people who don’t have, or haven’t seen, Vista.

I have found that Vista works best on computers less than 3 years old, if the hard drive is completely erased (formatted), and Vista is installed from scratch. After the initial installation a few of the devices attached to my computer weren’t supported, but after I installed the most recent Windows Updates –this is prior to the release of Vista Service Pack 1, or SP1– all my devices were functioning properly.

Looking for a New PC?

If you’re in the market for a new PC, and you’re thinking about Windows Vista, I recommend you spend at least $1,200.  That should buy enough processing power and memory to keep Vista, and you, happy.  If your budget is under $800 you might consider in looking for a new XP while they’re still available. As always, I recommend buying from a major retailer or direct from the manufacturer.

Windows 7: The Next Windows

Microsoft has announced the pending release of what is being called Windows 7. According to John Fontana at NetworkWorld, a letter was sent out by senior vice president Bill Veghte at Microsoft to Microsoft customers on Tuesday, June 24, 2008:

In the letter sent to “Windows Customers” and titled “An Update on the Windows Roadmap,” Veghte said “our plan is to deliver Windows 7 approximately three years after the January 2007 general availability launch date of Windows Vista.”

Perhaps Windows 7 will do for Windows Vista what Windows 98 did for Windows 95, or what Windows XP did for Windows Me: It made Windows work again. Meaning? Perhaps Windows 7 will find the acceptance that has, so far, seemingly eluded Vista.

Further Reading:
June 30, 2008: Windows XP going away today . . . but not really
Dwight Silverman’s TechBlog at the Houston Chronicle

June 30, 2008: Windows XP Officially Retired By Microsoft
By Paul McDougall at InformationWeek

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