XP Expiry Will Push Firms to Win7, Experts Say

Dennis Faas's picture

Although prominent tech research firm Gartner recently reported that Windows 7 is "not a major architectural release," it suggests the imminent expiry of Windows XP should push most businesses to upgrade to the new operating system (OS) within the next two years.

In an October 13th presentation discussing the impact of Microsoft's upcoming Windows 7 (due for release October 22nd), research firm Gartner remarked that Windows 7 is "not a major architectural release," but instead more of an improvement "on top of Windows Vista's architectural changes." In other words, Windows 7 will not revolutionize the modern operating system, but is intended to address the many issues that plagued Vista's short period of existence.

XP Support to Cease by 2011

It's not all bad news for Microsoft and those anxiously awaiting the Win 7 launch parties: Gartner admits that Windows 7 will probably have a much more significant impact than Windows Vista, primarily because of the impending expiration of support for Windows XP. That's expected to come to pass sometime around the end of 2011, when independent software vendors cease supporting the XP OS. Gartner believes this should nudge most businesses towards Windows 7 sometime before then.

"Typically, more than half [of] organization's apps require Windows," said Gartner analysts Michael Silver and Stephen Kleynhans. "Replacing it is not an option." (Source: eweek.com)

It's expected businesses who haven't made the upgrade will enter the "XP danger zone" by the end of 2012, when applications and systems need maintenance but there's no support from Microsoft.

Recession May Impact Deployment

Gartner's suggestion for businesses: stop using XP before then. Eliminate its infrastructure and make the upgrade to Windows 7 before 2011. Businesses already deploying Vista should continue to do so and upgrade to Windows 7 in 2011.

It's not yet certain if businesses will follow this advice, however. Some predict that the recession, even if it is over, could force conservative firms to delay any software upgrades until at least 2011, maybe later.

As for home users, early reviews of Windows 7 suggest it's an impressive step-up from Vista and XP and worth a few extra bucks if buying a new PC -- but it might not be worth paying $120 or more for the full-fledged upgrade. (Source: google.com)

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