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Microsoft wants to get Windows XP below 10% by April 2014

Microsoft has hatched a plan to get resellers to help wean customers off Windows XP by April 2014. Windows XP currently holds the second largest percentage of the computer operating system market right below Windows 7. According to Net Applications, Windows XP holds 37.17% of the operating system market while Windows 7 holds 44.37%.

Microsoft is reminding resellers and customers that there is less than a year left until all support for Windows XP is stopped. On April 8, 2014, Windows XP will no longer receive patches or updates including critical security updates. Moving consumers from Windows XP to a newer version of Windows is reportedly one of Microsoft's top priorities for its fiscal 2014, which began on July 1.


That could be a tall order for Microsoft since the software giant and its partners would reportedly need to migrate 586,000 computers per day over the next 273 days to eliminate all machines running Windows XP.

Microsoft is rolling out several programs, offers, and tools to encourage users to leave Windows XP behind. Those programs include Accelerate where Microsoft will pay some reseller and integrator partners to create a proof of concept Metro-style apps to help lure customers to Windows 8. Microsoft is also going to extend the program call Get to Modern aimed at small and medium businesses.
 
It was reported earlier this month that Windows 8 market share just finally crept ahead of the unloved Windows Vista operating system.

Source: ZDNet



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RE: Updating to Win 7
By retrospooty on 7/10/2013 12:02:59 PM , Rating: 3
"If anyone is not running Windows 7 over XP its laziness or incompetence."

If your company is using software that simply wont work on 7, it could be attributed to cost. We don't have that issue where I work, and we have plenty money to upgrade but not all companies are in that boat. Some are unable to get rid of legacy software what only runs on XP because they don't have the budget to get on to a better system... So they cant upgrade all PC's to 7 (which is also a cost).

I am a systems admin at a 500+ user company and we have all but a few old timers in remote offices off of XP. of our 99% on 7, probably 90% of it is 64bit and we are good to go. We will NOT be going to Windows 8 ever, as long as the start screen is as it is now. Windows 8 will simply not happen until is is better suited for non-touchscreen computers.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By dgingerich on 7/10/2013 12:53:27 PM , Rating: 5
I agree with him. IT managers who stick with older OSes (and this has happened a lot in the past, I've seen it many times in my 16 year career) past the term of support are incompetent. They are either incompetent in defining their budget, incompetent in deciding the company to supply their software and/or hardware, or incompetent in running their department in general.

I've seen far too many IT managers who are afraid to put forward to manager that their software and hardware need to move forward. A company stuck on old hardware will fail, and any IT manager who lets that happen, getting their company stuck to the point that they can't upgrade and can't get replacement parts and can't work with newer apps and hardware, will be blamed, justifiably, for letting it happen. IT managers keep the momentum for change. That's part of the job. If a company doesn't change and adapt to new conditions, it becomes paralyzed, and then they lose the ability to keep doing business. I've seen that happen many times to small businesses.

I've also seen far too many IT managers decide on a vendor based on who brings them golfing more often, or who gives them more marketing fluff or gifts, (I had one manager who decided on a VoIP phone system solely on the one company that sent him a bottle of scotch) or based on who sent them the most help in the migration. While the last one does have some value back to the company, that is not a good reason to choose a vendor. The best reason to choose a vendor is for who will be the best to support the product into the future, giving bug fixes and updates as well as having updated equipment or software that will work with future operating systems. Even for custom software sources, look for a company that is willing to support the product into the future. A company that would write the program you want, but won't supply bug fixes or future updates for future operating systems is a totally incompetent company. Don't use them. Find one that will supply this future support. It will cost more, there's no doubt about that, but it will save a lot in the long run. It's a better bet to hire the people to develop and maintain the software in house. That's expensive, too, but it keeps your future intact and is actually cheaper than totally custom software, over the long run.

Finally, I have seen far too many IT managers who just go for the 'now' and just troubleshoot, reacting, instead of running the department for the long run, anticipating the future trouble and growth, and keeping the company ahead of the curve. I've seen two small businesses (one marketing company and one fashion company) and one fairly large business (400+ employee health care company with three hospitals in Chicago) fail completely because their IT management wound up getting them stuck with old hardware and software, eventually causing their company (in the case of the big company, the accounting department) unable to do their work because of failed hardware or software.

(In the case of the large health care company, they fired their entire helpdesk and the IT manager for being unable to keep their accounting software working on an old IBM mainframe that hadn't been supported for almost a decade when it failed. Of course, they kept their mainframe development people and went back to an IBM mainframe, out of date even before they began, to get it working again, but they spent so much on a failing system, the company folded a little over a year later. If they had just moved to, what was current back then, an Oracle or SAP database accounting system, they would have saved millions in development costs and had a system that would have stayed current for another decade.)

So, in short, it is IT management making decisions looking toward the future that prevents these things from even coming up. Incompetent managers look to the 'now' and cause problems like this. A good IT manager can come in and see these things developing and turn the tide from killing the company. I've seen it happen.

Unfortunately, in my case, I just had authority over a couple test labs, and while I was able to turn the tide there, and get us into a professional, well cared for lab with the future in mind, I could not save my company from the future. I'm now watching it fall apart around me, with a layoff of 200+ people last October, another 30 in March, and now another 190. It could have been prevented, but management was only looking at maintaining the status quo. Now we're stuck, reliant on a shrinking market, our competitors moved to another sector long ago, and our attempts to catch up at least 5 years out of date. This company will die soon.

It's a shame, we used to be one of the IT titans back in the late 80s and 90s, with our name and our product's name on every IT manager's lips, supplying OEM stuff to other big vendors.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By retrospooty on 7/10/2013 2:05:08 PM , Rating: 2
WOW.... That is a long one. Like I said, we dont have that issue and are 99% Win7... Our servers are all fairly new as well. We do the standard 5 year lifecycle... But it's not always up to the IT management. If the company is small with no decent budget and is using some legacy software they bought a decade ago that has no updates, and a replacement software is a ridiculous amount of $$$ and upper management simply doesn't have the cash, there is no choice for IT. Broke = broke. Alot of smaller companies are hurting. It's not necessarily due to incompetence, sometimes businesses struggle in the real world.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Motoman on 7/10/2013 2:20:03 PM , Rating: 4
It's almost never "up to" IT management.

CIO: We need a budget to develop a replacement for all these old DOS programs we've been running on for 30 years.

CEO: They still work. Denied.

My first job out of college was as a programmer working on a project to replace a program made in the 70s that was supposed to be only temporarily used until the "real" program got made. Which supported the largest LOB the company had. The problem was that the "temporary" program worked. Ergo, it "temporarily" was in use for about 20 years.

As IT, you're not going to get budget to replace things that work. Even if they're ancient. Companies aren't in business to keep their IT tech up to date - they're in business to make money, and the BOD isn't going to approve requests for money to replace things that are still working.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Mitch101 on 7/10/2013 2:46:49 PM , Rating: 3
Sad but True the wrong people are making the decisions.

Upgrades are generally easy and supported by vendors. Vendors usually have a maintenance fee which is much lower than repurchasing a product. When they miss too many updates now It becomes a project with massive planning and training. Often times there is a premium for support of legacy equipment and things must be built in parallel and not upgraded doubling many costs. In a lot of cases it then cant be managed internally and here comes the contract services to get upgraded further multiplying the costs.

If they dont pay it on the front end they further delay, complicate, and skyrocket the cost to upgrade.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By retrospooty on 7/10/2013 4:42:15 PM , Rating: 2
"Upgrades are generally easy and supported by vendors. Vendors usually have a maintenance fee which is much lower than repurchasing a product. When they miss too many updates now It becomes a project with massive planning and training"

That is basically true but you arent looking at the whole picture. You are assuming the vendor still exists and/or support the product. Many companies are running previously purchased software that is very old and wont run on 7. In many cases the software vendor is either gone from existence, or simply doesn't support the product any longer. If it is working and the cost is too high some companies simply wont move. 2 years ago, my sister was working at a Wells Fargo regional office. They bught a smaller bank that was still using MS-DOS on some of their PC's for some legacy software that they must have purchased in the early 1990's. In 2011 - MS DOS, I kid you not.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Motoman on 7/10/2013 6:35:52 PM , Rating: 3
The problem with the DOS program they had was probably that there was no problem with it. Probably did exactly what they needed to do...so no need to upgrade.

I have a number of small local businesses that I support (think like auto repair shops and such). A new one that I just started working with has an aging XP machine that is starting to act like it's going to die, so they want a replacement...the problem lies in the fact that the specialty software package they run their business on is DOS. And won't run on anything newer than XP.

Why are they still on the DOS version? Well, for one thing, there's nothing wrong with it. It is 100% perfect for their needs. Secondly, the software vendor is actually still in business, and has a new version available that's fully built for Win7 - but it's like $15,000. That's a big bill for a small, single-store business to swallow. To replace a program that works perfectly for them as it is...in DOS. From a business standpoint, that $15,000 outlay will get them *nothing*.

So...if I can't get the old DOS thing to work in Win7, I'll see if I can get it going in XP mode. If for some reason that doesn't even work, I'll probably be tracking down an XP license to build them a *new* computer with XP on it. Because otherwise, they're going to be throwing $15,000 down the toilet and getting nothing of value from it.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Tucci78 on 7/12/2013 10:46:13 PM , Rating: 2
"Sad but True the wrong people are making the decisions."

The CEOs are the people with the "drop dead" responsibility for getting business operations conducted under budget.

If the Chief Information Officers (CIOs) were the ones given the authority, the computer and other communications systems would work spectacularly while the company went bankrupt.

This is the reason why maritime Chief Engineers don't take the conn aboard ships at sea.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By dsumanik on 7/17/2013 3:11:46 AM , Rating: 1
lol, gimme a break,

go talk to that same ceo when his email wont work or he cant print the friday before deadline...temper tantrum crybaby spaz.

Better yet, hide his smartphone....they'll be happy to spend some money then.

One of the best things I ever did as an IT manager was price out, pre-order (got qoutes but no payment) then simply unplugged the accounting department from accpac for dos... the day before a cheque run. I let it sit till monday so everyone had a panic attack then "fixed" the scenario...and unplugged it twice more over the next week for good measure, then put forward the prices in a meeting with the accounting manager, and general manager.

2 weeks later the entire finance department was on a new system, and praising me as a hero, I havent had a hiccup since and they can now upgrade through sage indefinitely.

you gotta do the same thing with servers sometimes in small businesses, theyll let em run for 15 years and then balk at a 5000 dollar upgrade.

Rip the bandaid off quick, before it gets infected.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Hairyfeet on 7/11/2013 5:21:19 PM , Rating: 2
That is why I gave up working corporate and now work strictly with consumers and SMB/SOHOs because while the pay isn't as good at least i'm not bashing my head against the desk every day. The line in Under Siege about "Having to find solutions to impossible problems caused by other people" sadly is pretty much SOP for most corporate IT, at least where I was at.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Tucci78 on 7/12/2013 10:52:51 PM , Rating: 2
"As IT, you're not going to get budget to replace things that work. Even if they're ancient. Companies aren't in business to keep their IT tech up to date - they're in business to make money, and the BOD isn't going to approve requests for money to replace things that are still working."

The aphorism which Microsoft management has been missing since their decision to implement Vista? Runs like so:

Better is the enemy of good enough.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By Mitch101 on 7/10/2013 2:33:30 PM , Rating: 2
Thankyou and Well Said.

Ill tack on Companies having to pay a premium to have support for OS's that have been retired because they arent moving forward.

Upgrading to Windows 7 everyone is more productive and many more people are provided with multiple screens allowing increased productivity for clients and admins. I dread thinking about finding my apps at the bottom of Windows XP or living without snap.

Stability is higher with Windows 7 over XP as well and much less time is spent troubleshooting client issues.

There is a lot to love and appreciate about Windows XP its been a great run but Windows 7 is the new XP.


RE: Updating to Win 7
By JediJeb on 7/10/2013 7:47:40 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Stability is higher with Windows 7 over XP as well and much less time is spent troubleshooting client issues.


I have computers still with WinNT and WinXP that run for over a year at a time without being rebooted, how much more stable can you get with W7?

My W7 laptop nags me each weekend that it has been over 7 days since I last rebooted, is it that much less stable that it needs rebooting each week?


RE: Updating to Win 7
By JediJeb on 7/10/2013 3:01:56 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I agree with him. IT managers who stick with older OSes (and this has happened a lot in the past, I've seen it many times in my 16 year career) past the term of support are incompetent. They are either incompetent in defining their budget, incompetent in deciding the company to supply their software and/or hardware, or incompetent in running their department in general.


So you are saying that when an IT person can not upgrade a Windows XP, or WindowsNT or Windows95 computer because that $500 computer is connected to a $100,000 piece of equipment that would have to be replaced to allow replacement of that computer they are incompetent?

If our IT guy went to the boss and said "You need to spend $1,000,000 because we are going to move these 10 machines off of XP" our IT guy would be looking for a new job. What he can do that shows he is worth his salary is make those older machines integrate with everything else in the building, which is no easy task.

We did finally convince management last year to spend a few hundred thousand to upgrade some of the last less expensive pieces of equipment to more modern versions so we could get rid of the last few that were totally dependent on WinNT. We managed to do this because the interface cards fit into ISA slots and we simply told them they don't make new computers with that interface anymore so if one of those computers died we would be dead in the water for four pieces of equipment until we could purchase them new. Only the potential loss of that much productivity forced their hands.


"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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