Why Upgrade to Windows 7?

This post is from Guest Author Rob Wakefield.  A gentle reminder that we have to keep our desktops up to date to avoid unplanned downtime.

Windows 7 has been available for a while now, and yet there are a lot of companies and individuals that have yet to make the switch to this operating system. Redmond Magazine recently published that only 25% of survey respondents reported that they have upgraded.  So what’s the delay for the rest?  Either they don’t see the benefit in upgrading, or they believe that it would simply be too time consuming and costly, especially to try and perform a Windows 7 migration on an company scale. These are valid concerns, but everyone need to weigh the costs of the migration against the long-term improved performance.

What exactly does Windows 7 bring to the table? This is a question a lot of people ask because, with the criticism that Windows Vista received, many companies feel that they can make do with the older operating system. They look at the possible costs of migration (which may include purchasing new computers to handle the new OS), as well as many of the problems that could conceivably come up, and they want to know that they will get definite value for their investment before making a decision.

As it turns out, many companies have reported that the migration from Vista to Windows 7 was much smoother than from XP to Vista, and that there were not as many device problems or failures. Nevertheless, there are still some concerns over the time it may take, the money it will require, and whether or not all the old software will still perform well. Another great advantage to this operating system is the ability to upgrade your internet browser. The difference between Internet Explorer 7 and 8 is like night and day. IE8 is the default browser for Windows 7, and boasts improvements like CSS and RSS feeds.  Note also that IE9 is now available, and that it only runs on Vista and Windows 7 and not XP.

These concerns have to be weighed against the benefits of an upgrade to Windows 7. For example, one of the most important things you must consider is the length of time that Microsoft will support its older operating systems. Sooner rather than later, they will stop releasing patches and security updates, and this could leave you vulnerable to attacks and viruses.  Also note new programs and applications, such as IE9, won’t be compatible with the older systems.

There are also a range of features that Windows 7 offers that previous iterations of the OS did not have. This includes virtual hard disk support, improved performance for multi core processors, better bootperformance, easier access to common tasks, and better support for new technology. These are thef eatures that can make you more efficient and more productive with your everyday tasks.

If your company relies on a Windows environment to remain productive, it may be extremely prudent to make the switch as soon as possible. The simple fact is that an enterprise-level migration can take a lot of time to complete, and there may be unforeseen issues that need to be resolved. Any of these little problems, though, will be much easier to handle during a planned migration than while you are rushing to upgrade after you suddenly lose support from a company.

Planning your migration in advance will save you a lot of headaches, and your company will be able to take advantage of the new security and performance features of the most current Windows operating system. Take the time to weigh your options and decide if this is the time to consider a Windows 7 migration.

Rob Wakefield is an older guy, but still loves anything technology-related. Wakefield is involved in his community, and enjoys speaking about Windows 7 migration to companies looking to switch.

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