Windows XP end of life

We work with customers of all sizes in a range of industries all over the world. This perspective allowed us to foresee the lag in Windows 7 migrations. Despite repeated projections of rapid Windows 7 enterprise adoption, customers told us they planned to take their time. Some began planning or knew what their Windows 7 deployment strategy would be, but few had undertaken, much less completed, their Windows 7 migration.

But the story is different now. With Windows XP end of life less than a year away, customers are feeling an increasing urgency to complete their Windows 7 migration jobs. We see and hear about it from the same kinds of customers who were, due to necessity (usually related to application compatibility issues), waiting. These customers are now restless to get the job done.

There is a lingering question about the risk of not getting off Windows XP. We still have a number of very large customers who remain comfortable running at least a portion of their infrastructure on Windows XP because of application compatibility issues. Their assessment is that risk will be quite low, especially initially. And many customers are taking extra precautions to ensure that their use of an unsupported operating system doesn’t unduly expose them to risk.

Windows XP is stable and it stands to reason that, in time, it will be less valuable as a target for malware. It is conceivable that since consumerization and device proliferation, especially mobile devices and tablets, are overwhelmingly dominating the computing market that they would be a more likely target.

But a weakened Windows OS with an exposed attack surface won’t be ignored. IT departments are wise to tackle and complete this important project in a timely way. And with the shift in the market and the long tail to complete Windows 7 migration, we aren’t surprised to have so many conversations revolving around this seemingly old issue.