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Time to Retire Windows XP

11/19/2012 by: The SunView Team

After all of the hype surrounding Windows 8, the topic of the End of Support for XP came up. As you are undoubtedly aware, the end of Windows XP support looms on the horizon. The hard deadline according to Microsoft is April 8, 2014. That deadline doesn't seem to be looming in fact it seems like it's years away. Oh, it is years away!

But according to the Microsoft End of Support site, the average enterprise deployment can take 18 to 32 months from business case through full deployment. Wow, that means that if you haven't started planning, you are running out of time - quickly.

One great way to help with a change of this magnitude is to implement a Change Management solution. Learn more by clicking on the offer below.

A few excerpts from the IDC migration report provided by Microsoft:

Costs can soar with older PCs and older operating systems. This study found that for five-year-old PCs running Windows XP, user productivity costs per PC per year nearly doubled from $177 in year two to $324 in year five, while IT labor costs per PC per year jumped from $451 in year two to $766 in year five. These higher costs were caused by a variety of problems, not all directly attributable to the operating system, but common in older solutions that required IT labor and help desk support activities. User productivity costs were driven up by higher levels of downtime caused by security woes, time wasted waiting for help desk response, and time spent rebooting systems.

IDC's analysis shows that supporting older Windows XP installations, compared with a modern Windows 7-based solution, saddles organizations with a dramatically higher cost. Annual cost per PC per year for Windows XP is $870, while a comparable Windows 7 installation costs $168 per PC per year. That is an incremental $701 per PC per year for IT and end-user labor costs.

They make a very impressive financial business case for migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7. This is my favorite calculation: every 230 PCs upgraded to Windows 7 equals 1 FTE. As for your end users productivity, Windows XP adds 7.8 additional hours of lost time per year when compared to Windows 7. Those are some very convincing reasons to migrate - sooner than later.

The ROI on updating the operating system and PCs is 12 months. Of course, the initial investment is pretty intimidating; probably why you have put it off. The largest real world exclusion from the IDC report is all of the customized software you are running. Empirically, that would seem to be a key reason why many of the laggard companies have not previously migrated. Knowing this, Microsoft's strict enforcement of their End of Support rules, seems to be more than a bit Draconian. That said, if you have been waiting, hoping for the Microsoft "reprieve" fairy to arrive, you are probably out of luck.

But, considering the cost in operational efficiency, more down-time and the additional support required for your current outdated system, the outcome is obvious - start planning your the migration now. Here comes the best part, if you were to add ChangeGear to help plan the Change Management, an ITSM solution that can be deployed in days not months, you would be well on your way to a successful migration.

Flickr Image: priceminister

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