Wednesday, April 30, 2014

It's Time to Upgrade from Windows XP - Really... it is.

Look... I am not one of those "early adopters" who says "If you aren't running what just came out yesterday, you aren't current enough!"  But really, folks, you are still running Windows XP?  Yes, I'm sure you've got your reasons -- I mean, I know a lot of people felt let down by Windows Vista and it made them cling harder to Windows XP than ever before -- but that's all behind us now, isn't it?  Windows 7 is a fantastic operating system and -- despite the Metro interface Windows 8 is pretty good, too.  And even if you just can't bring yourself to use Windows 8, Windows 7 really is the best OS Microsoft has produced in every way.

So, here are some compelling reasons to ditch Windows XP and make a move.... now.

Really.  This isn't a drill and it's not people running around flailing in the streets screaming that the sky is falling.  Windows XP is simply not as secure as... well any other operating system on the block.  Even if you updated it with every patch Microsoft has produced, you are still far more vulnerable than anyone else to hackers, malware, viruses and bugs.  And, like it or not, if you are still running Internet Explorer for Windows XP (no matter what version) you are wide open to numerous exploits that are simply not going to be fixed by Microsoft.  Ever.  That means that your personal information may very well be wide open out there for anyone to see.  Just take a moment to consider what the Heartbleed vulnerability did -- and what that means to you as a Windows XP user.  Those things can happen at any time -- and Windows XP and Internet Explorer for XP will no longer be updated to fix them.

Everything from newer software to hardware to plug-ins will no longer be developed to work with Windows XP.  You will, at some point, buy a printer that will not work with Windows XP.  And Microsoft Office versions after Office 2010 do not run on XP properly.  If you really like Internet Explorer, you'll need to upgrade Windows to a newer version to run the most secure and compatible version of the browser.  For the time being, cloud storage like Google Drive, DropBox, Box, OneDrive etc, all still support Windows XP client - but that will eventually go away.  And 802.11ac wireless will not be supported in Windows XP... these are just the easy ones, there are more I'm certain.

It may seem counter-intuitive to say that spending money on a new operating system and/or new computer will save you money... but in reality it is true.  Just the time you will save in the operational efficiencies make it worth it, but that's not all.  The time and money you will save not hunting down drivers written by some guy in his basement to make that new thing you just bought work -- and then it doesn't really work... you'll probably not pull your hair out as much too.  And the faster machine in and of itself will make you work better, faster and smarter.

It is worth mentioning that you may be running Windows XP because you have an old piece of software or hardware that does not run in Windows 7 or 8.  That is possible.  However, there is no one piece of software that cannot be replaced in exchange for keeping your data safe and secure.

Don't like Windows 8?  Consider an Apple.  They aren't as incompatible as they used to be...

And here's some real, tangible reasons to ditch Windows XP:

Bruce is the author of five books: Sands of TimeTowering Pines Volume One:Room 509The Star of ChristmasPhiladelphia Story: A Lance Carter Detective Novel and 
The Insider's Story: A Lance Carter Detective Novel.  He also has a new novel coming out in June 2014, The Kill Commission.  Follow Bruce's Novel releases by subscribing to his FREE newsletter!

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