We at Pitt Bull want to keep our clients informed on major changes that can possibly affect your business.  We wanted to bring to everyone’s attention that Microsoft is ending their support for Windows XP and Office 2003 on April 8th, 2014.  It is our goal to allow our customers to understand Why this is happening, what does it mean for you, and Where do I go from here?  Below you will find the answers to those questions:

Why is Microsoft ending support for Windows XP and Office 2003?

In 2002 Microsoft introduced its Support Lifecycle policy based on customer feedback to have more transparency and predictability of support for Microsoft products. As per this policy, Microsoft Business and Developer products, including Windows and Office products, receive a minimum of 10 years of support (5 years Mainstream Support and 5 years Extended Support), at the supported service pack level.

If your organization has not started the migration to a modern desktop, it is time to consider due to security risks and potential exploits from out of date software.  In order to ensure you and your business is secure then it is essential to remain on supported versions of Windows and Office, you should begin your planning and application testing immediately to ensure you deploy before end of support.

What does end of support mean to customers?

It means you should take action. After April 8, 2014, there will be no new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options or online technical content updates.

Running Windows XP SP3 and Office 2003 in your environment after their end of support date may expose your company to potential risks, such as:

  • Security & Compliance Risks: Unsupported and unpatched environments are vulnerable to security risks. This may result in an officially recognized control failure by an internal or external audit body, leading to suspension of certifications, and/or public notification of the organization’s inability to maintain its systems and customer information.
  • Lack of Independent Software Vendor (ISV) & Hardware Manufacturers support: A recent industry report from Gartner Research suggests “many independent software vendors (ISVs) are unlikely to support new versions of applications on Windows XP in 2011; in 2012, it will become common.” And it may stifle access to hardware innovation: Gartner Research further notes that in 2012, most PC hardware manufacturers will stop supporting Windows XP on the majority of their new PC models.

Get current with Windows and Office. This option has upside well beyond keeping you supported. It offers more flexibility to empower employees to be more productive, while increasing operational efficiency through improved PC security and management. It also enables your organization to take advantage of latest technology trends such as virtualization and the cloud.

Where do I begin, and how do I do a migration?

Pitt Bull Customers: Pitt Bull offers organizations in-depth technical resources, tools, and expert guidance to ease the deployment and management of Windows, Office and Internet Explorer products and technologies. If you need help to pilot and deploy a modern desktop solution we can begin planning your deployment.  There are many options for consideration before moving to the latest productivity and collaboration tools.  Organizations need to understand their best options to meet their business needs, and your company’s budget.  Call us today, we will help you make the right decisions for your business.