3 More Reasons SMBs Stick With Windows XP

Microsoft says Windows 8 selling like hotcakes, or at least like Windows 7. Here's why some SMBs are just saying no.
3. They Just Haven't Done It Yet.

Hey, it's not like there's a magical switch you can flip to move seamlessly from one OS to the next. Moving dozens, hundreds or certainly thousands of machines -- and their aforementioned users -- can take time. Budget's one reason. Slim IT staffs are another. There's testing to be done and a host of other tasks, too. They're moving on their schedule, not Microsoft's.

Nate6203 said: "We have around 200 XP left but will be replacing them within the next two years with Win7." Likewise, Jim9456 probably won't make Microsoft's support cutoff: "We have about 40 Win 7 and 80 Win XP. Are slowly replacing the XP machines with Win 7. At the rate we are going will probably not make the April 2014 deadline."

Sometimes, it's the nature of the business that hampers -- or altogether prevents -- an OS migration. That's the case for Eprince, who supports around 100 XP boxes and just a handful of Windows 7 machines. "We've been close to moving on Win 7 for a couple years, but business needs leave us only certain windows of opportunity to do it," eprince said. "Another issue is an IT staff of two and both positions have had turnover which upends planning. I'm hoping to finally get images and a plan in place by the end of tax season. As an accounting firm, nothing can be done between Jan and mid April, except planning."

Mobile and remote workers can cause upgrade headaches, too. "Hard to get some of the laptops scheduled for an upgrade when they haven't even been in the office for over a year," noted afeitguy. Nonetheless, his organization is "mostly" on Windows 7 now, and he takes a less rosy view on the prospect of missing that April 2014 end-of-life date. It's not so much support that worries him but a lack of security patches.

"The day XP is unsupported, I'm hoping all of you with XP machines immediately disable their Internet access. Those machines will become liabilities," afeitguy said. "I know it's not always up to us, as IT staff, to decide whether you move forward or not, but it's not like Microsoft just cut out XP with no warning. There has been ample time to plan for this. More so than any other OS in the history of computing, pretty much."

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