Windows 7 – is it still OK to stay?

Written by Lee Ramm on 23 June 2016
We look at why Windows 7 could still have a place in businesses for some time to come, and Microsoft’s stance on support.

We’ve been on about the end date for the free Windows 10 upgrade looming and recommending to customers to upgrade whilst it is still free. But, what if you have an old software application (that is a key component to your business processes) which simply won’t run natively on Windows 10 or even in compatibility mode? There are many companies who have such niche products still in place. A piece of old software that just keeps running year on year without any issues until you are finally forced to move to new hardware or operating system.

You could look at purchasing a compatible software upgrade, but what if the vendor of the software has gone out of business or has no plans to make it work on the new Windows 10 OS? What if an upgrade to the software application is available but it is so expensive that you’d have to re-mortgage your house to pay for the new licence?

What are the options if you are in this situation? You could source an alternative product if one exists, rewrite your business processes using the new software, or if your application is really niche you could have Polymorph build you a new solution from the ground up.

Thankfully you have some time to think about your action plan because if you are still running Windows 7 Professional (or Ultimate) the good news is that Microsoft’s extended support for it will run for another 3+ years. The end date for support is currently set to 14 January 2020. In fact you can still purchase new PCs with Windows 7 Professional OEM pre-installed until 31 October 2016 if you so wished. Just remember that OEM software isn’t transferrable, it dies with the machine.

Retail copies of Windows 7 are no longer available via Microsoft but you may still be able to get copies from retailers if you look around a bit. Amazon for example have a few resellers with retail boxed versions available currently which can be installed on any compatible hardware.

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About the author
Lee Ramm
Lee heads up Polymorph’s IT Managed Services division (providing IT support and solutions for a wide range of clients) and has a Technical background with over 20 years’ experience in commercial IT support and solution provision.
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