Does your business use Windows 7? Are you ready for January 2020? Do you understand what is changing?

Ten years after Windows 7 was launched, Microsoft will stop supporting it from January 14th 2020. Is your business ready and do you understand the implications?

What is Windows 7?

On a PC or laptop, you have an operating platform, Microsoft Windows. Then you have your user software, Microsoft Office.

Your machine will have had Windows installed on it when you first got it.

There is no subscription or operating costs. But, you will receive periodic updates to the software and security.

You also benefit from a support service if things go wrong and you need to contact Microsoft for help.

Then, you buy or subscribe to your chosen Office package. This is for your applications like Word, Excel PowerPoint etc.

What is happening?

On January 14th 2020, Microsoft will no longer support Windows 7. Any computers with Windows 7 will still function and you’ll be able to carry on working but Microsoft will no longer provide the following:

  • Technical support for any issues
  • Software updates
  • Security updates or fixes

Do you have any computers using Windows 7 in your business?

This is something you will need to check on every desktop and laptop computer.

If you have Windows 8 or 10, check by:

  • Pressing the Windows logo key + R, type winver in the Open box, and then select OK.

If you think you have Windows 7, check by:

  • Select the Start button, type Computer in the search box, right-click on Computer, and then select Properties
  • Under Windows edition, you’ll see the version and edition of Windows that your device is running.

Can you just keep using Windows 7?

You can continue to use your PCs or laptops running Windows 7. However, without continued software and security updates, your business will be at greater risk of viruses, hacking and system integration issues.

If you run third-party software, like a CRM system, they might not support using a Windows 7 machine either.

Plus, if your business is certified as being part of Cyber Essentials, your certificate will not be valid two weeks after Window 7 becomes unsupported by Microsoft. This is because Cyber Essentials require security updates are run every 14 days and on Windows 7 this will no longer happen after 14th January 2020.

What are your options?

You have three main options to consider for your business:

  1. Buy all new hardware with Windows 10 installed – If you have not been planning for this, it could be ruled out as an option because of the expense. It will get you brand new kit and a bang up to date operating platform though.
  2. Buy refurbished hardware with Windows 10 installed – This could be a far more cost-effective way of upgrading your business hardware and it actually works out at only marginally more per unit than upgrading your current kit (option 3). It is definitely worth looking into as an option. You could rollout a mix of refurbished and new kit for your business all running Windows 10.
  3. Upgrade your current hardware from Windows 7 to 10 – This could be an option for you. You’ll need to upgrade each desktop and laptop and it will depend on the age of the condition of your equipment as to whether this is a viable option. An ageing desktop might not have the capacity needed to run Windows 10.

If you would like to explore your options, find out more about refurbished computers and laptops or look into upgrading or getting new machines, please get in touch with us here.

You need to act now so you are ready for January 2020.