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What’s The Risk Of Running Old Computer Equipment?

If you still run Windows 7 or Windows 8 on your computer, you could be vulnerable to a wide range of risks. Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows 7 back in January 2015 and extended support in January 2020. Similarly, Microsoft terminated mainstream support for Windows 8 back in January 2018, and the extended support will end in January 2023.   While you can still use both Windows 7 and Windows 8, you won’t receive additional security or functionality updates after discontinuing support. This leaves you vulnerable to various cyber risks and hardware inefficiencies. The best remedy is to upgrade to Windows 10 or Windows 11 to secure all the security features and functionality that ship with the new operating systems.

Risks of Running Older Windows Operating Systems

Delaying to upgrade to Windows 10 or 11 for much longer may leave you open to the following risks:

1: Hacker Attacks

Cybercriminals are continually sharpening their hacking techniques, so you will need constant security updates to keep hackers out of your system. Microsoft usually provides these security updates and patches as part of its support service. Once support ends, your operating system won’t be receiving any further security updates, leaving you unprotected against evolving hacks and exploits.

2: Software Incompatibility

Not every new software solution is backwards compatible. If you are running an ageing operating system, the chance that new software programs or apps you download currently will not run on it increases. Software developers often pay close attention to OS specs and design new software to leverage the extra processing capability of advanced operating systems such as Windows 10.   Upgrading to Windows 10 or Windows 11 will also ensure you get maximum benefits from your hardware, get access to bug fixes, and ensure your system is protected from hacking attacks. It also ensures compatibility with modern software and apps.

3: Hardware Slowdowns

Windows 7 and 8 are several years old, which translates into decades in this fast-moving tech industry. They were not designed to run on the most current hardware, triggering system slowdowns and crashes.

4: Bug Battles

Every operating system suffers from bugs. They can cause a broad range of computer functionality issues. As part of Microsoft’s extended support, the company continually identifies bugs and provides Windows users with periodic fixes through downloadable updates. Once Microsoft terminates support services for an operating system, you won’t get any more bug fixes, meaning you’re on your own whenever issues crop up.

Options for Outdated Windows Users

It is common for business owners to procrastinate on technology upgrades. It’s often an expensive and complex process, but there comes a point in the tech life cycle when failure to upgrade can present serious concerns. You need to maintain your competitive edge by using secure technology that works as efficiently and effectively as possible.   If your computers still run Windows 7 or Windows 8, you should begin your upgrade to Windows 10 or Windows 11 as quickly as possible on all your workstations. Upgrading to newer Windows operating systems present the following benefits:

  • It makes computers run faster and smoother
  • Provides an economical use of device memory and disk space
  • Boots up your device from sleep mode faster than before
  • Improves security

Windows 10 comes with a new application programming interface known as Windows Runtime, which allows your Windows Store Apps to be remotely installed and updated. Besides, the apps can be cleanly uninstalled. There are RunTime apps for Maps, Mail, Photos, Groove Music, Calendar, and more.

Do You Need New Hardware?

If your current computer is 3-5 years old and still runs Windows 7, it makes sense to get a new one. Investing in new devices with Windows 10 operating system preinstalled is often the best path forward for many businesses. Besides, modern PCs are faster, more powerful, lighter in weight, and provide increased security.   To check that your current computer meets the minimum system requirements of current Windows Operating Systems (Windows 10 and Windows 11), check out the following:

  • The RAM or memory requirements
  • The memory space on your hard drive or solid-state drive
  • The CPU or Processor capacity

That said, most computing systems bought within the past 2-3 years should be able to run Windows 10. You may not necessarily require cutting-edge hardware to make the new operating system work.

Windows 10 Migration Considerations

Even though Microsoft offers automated operating system migration capabilities, you should avoid migrating your system without proper forethought or strategy. First, you need to evaluate your business software compatibility. If you still use an older line of business software, you should evaluate whether they are compatible with newer operating systems. Fortunately, Microsoft has developed various services to help mitigate compatibility problems. Although most of the software you currently use may still be supported on newer operating systems, be sure to verify and find out for sure.   Secondly, you need to craft a clear migration plan. Consider how the migration may impact your users since a few hours of downtime can be extremely detrimental to your business’s productivity. So, it’s critical to work with an experienced IT service provider to ensure that the migration is done professionally without costly downtimes. It’s also best to execute migrations in the evenings, after hours, or during the weekend.

Get Professional Help with the Upgrade

The process of migrating all your data, apps, and other IT assets to a whole new environment can be complex. Fortunately, Tektonic can help you upgrade to a new operating system smoothly and safely. Our team has successfully migrated thousands of systems to Windows 10 and Windows 11 already, giving us the expertise and experience needed to ensure your migration goes right the first time.   Tektonic has been providing exceptional IT Support for businesses throughout Vaughan, ON, since 1998. We offer enterprise-level IT services and solutions at prices that suit most businesses. Our team of IT experts can become your outsourced IT department, resolving issues quickly before you even notice them. Contact us today to schedule your consultation!

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