In a little less than a month, Windows 7 will reach the end of its life cycle (insert solemn music here). Effective January 14, 2020, Microsoft will stop providing security updates and support for PCs running Windows 7. Yes, if you must, you can keep running your PCs with Windows 7 after January 14, 2020, but you’ll be exposing your business to a great security risk. Continuing to run Windows 7 after January 2020, may cause some serious security and compliance issues for your business. Unless you absolutely have to continue running Windows 7, in order to stay in business, it’s just not worth the gamble. PCs running Windows 7 will no longer receive security and feature updates, which means you may be exposed to some pretty serious malicious threats.
Microsoft recommends businesses upgrade to the latest feature updates of Windows 10 Pro to “keep the good times rolling” and help reduce security risks. Windows 10 Pro includes tons of features to help protect precious data and increase productivity. Such features include:
Enterprise grade security, including BitLocker which can put your content in lockdown if your device is ever lost or stolen.
Powerful management tools to increase productivity, such as storing office files in the cloud, so you can collaborate and work on projects with your team in real time, no matter where your team members are located.
Remote Desktop Need to access content on another machine within your network? Windows 10 Pro includes remote desktop, so you can keep working from any location with an internet connection. (Note: if a connection needs to be made from outside your network, such as working from home, VPN is highly recommended. Click here for more info on the risks of RDP and benefits of VPN.)
Windows Ink lets users use a digital pen to sketch ideas, and links directly with Office and other apps, so you can store your thoughts as they come, and retrieve them anytime, anywhere.
Hello, is it really you? Windows 10 Pro also includes a feature called Hello, so you can log in with your face, or your fingerprint. Hello is designed to get you securely logged in and working in less than 2 seconds.
Hey Cortana, help! And of course, your digital assistant, Cortana, is always there to help you meet deadlines, suggest and search for data and documents, and help you navigate through your apps and files.
This is great news for many businesses, but there are some businesses that must continue to remain tied to Windows 7 in order to ensure that certain business-related software continues to run smoothly, so that they can stay in business. For those folks, the death of Windows 7 can be daunting news. Microsoft appears to be aware of this, and so they have what they call a “last resort” option for folks who need to continue running Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Enterprise. If you find yourself in that position, you can purchase Extended Security Updates (ESU). Be aware, though, that these Extended Security Updates will only carry you through January 2023, and will only include “critical,” or in some cases “important” rated Security Updates and Bulletins. It will not include technical support. This option gives you a few extra years to carefully coast while you research new programs that meet your business needs and will work with an updated version of Windows.
A more recommended method, called virtualization, is also available as a fallback option for folks who need to continue running Windows 7 to ensure certain programs will still work on their PC. Windows Virtual Desktop includes free Windows 7 Extended Security Updates.
Need help upgrading your business? Contact us today and we’ll get you started!
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