At time of writing it is now just sixty working days before Windows 7 becomes end of life. This page is designed to help you understand what it means to have an operating system that is “end of life” and what this means for your business. Once you understand the implications you’ll need to decide what to do about computers that have Windows 7 installed on them.
What does “end of life” mean?
Microsoft will no longer update or support Windows 7 after its end of life date which is 14th January 2020.
Why is this important?
Microsoft will stop releasing updates and patches for Windows 7. It will not suddenly stop working – you’ll still be able to use Windows 7 for as long as you want – but it will become less secure over time. Windows 7 will no longer have security holes patched up so this leaves your business extremely vulnerable to any emerging threats.
What does this mean for my business?
If you do not migrate away from Windows 7, your systems will be what we call “inherently insecure”. Once vulnerabilities for Window 7 become known (but remain unpatched) we will see an increase in malicious activity that will seek to exploit these threats to gain access to your systems. If you value your business then you’ll take action before that happens.
What do we need to do?
For each Windows 7 computer on your network you need to decide if you want to upgrade the operating system or replace the computer with a newer model that carries Windows 10. The minimum recommended specification for Windows 10 is pretty low and so while you do not need to replace any computers, it is a good opportunity to cost-effectively replace computers that are five or more years old.
How much will this cost?
There are several factors affecting the cost of the switch from Windows 7 as described below. Your choices are broadly to either replace Windows 7 with Windows 10 on existing computers or to have new computers instead.
Process & Costs for Operating System Upgrades
If you wish to keep your existing computer but have Windows 10 installed on it then the most reliable way is to perform a ‘clean install’. This requires us to have your computer back at our workshop, take a full backup, wipe the hard disk, install Windows 10, reinstall your programs and then set up the computer back on your network. In each case users will need to be without their computers for at least one working day while we do the work and of course some time while we reprovision the PC into your network.
A Windows 10 Professional licence will cost £40 for a single use digital key (our default option) or £119 for an OEM licence (please specify if you prefer this). Computers without SSD’s would also be upgraded to SSD at an additional cost of around £45 for a 250GB SSD or £60 for a 500GB SSD.
There would also be a labour cost for this work and this will vary depending upon how much is involved. It might take just a few hours for customers that have fast computers and a simple client-server network. For customers that have slower computers and a more complex software setup it might take several hours to get you up and running. Of course all labour and site fees are charged for on our usual monthly billing cycle.
Process & Costs for New PC Replacements
For computers of a certain age, we think it is more cost effective in the long term to replace your computer with a newer model. There is little point in spending a day or two upgrading an old and slow PC to Windows 10 when you may as well just replace it.
For most users one of our HP ProDesk 400 G4 Desktop Mini PC’s will be sufficient, though if you have any extra requirements such as a dedicated graphics card we can quote you for something a little better.
Apart from the cost of the PC this is a simple matter of preparing the PC, bringing it to site and preparing it for your user. This typically is just a few hours work and causes the minimum of downtime.
If you choose this option your old PC will be removed from site, properly decommissioned and then disposed of in accordance with our usual WEEE policy and disposal rates.
How do we get the ball rolling?
By the time you read this page we will have sent you a list of computers at your site that are running Windows 7. You need to decide for each computer if you want it upgraded, replaced with a new PC or simply de-commissioned. Once you have made this decision please let us know by email so we can plan in the work. If you want us to make the decision for you then let us know and we’ll organise that too. Note that if any new computers are required we will require payment in advance.
What else do I need to know?
Some hardware and software that is Windows 7 compatible may not be compatible with Windows 10. Examples could be scanners, printers and some older versions of Microsoft Office. We will try and flag these up where we can and discuss your options with you.
I have another question!
If you have any other questions please don’t hesitate to contact us here.
Please note all prices exclude VAT.