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Your Guide to the End of Life

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Windows XP and Microsoft Office 2003’s End of Life is just around the corner. Now that we only have just about a couple of weeks worth of support left, it is definitely the best time for us to start upgrading from these long beloved programs.

Check how much time you have left here.

What do we mean by End of Life?

The End of Life is basically the time when Microsoft, or any other company, ceases to provide any further support for a particular product. In this case, it will be Windows XP and Office 2003’s support who’ll be meeting their end on April 8.

So beginning April 8, we won’t be receiving any technical support for these two programs anymore.  But most of all, there will no longer be anymore software updates and security patches as well.

Why should we move on?

  • The imminent threats

If you think that not having any more support services is not much of a big deal, I’d really beg to differ. Part of Microsoft’s support services includes security patches. These patches are used to keep our computer’s vulnerabilities well out of any threat’s reach.  

Continuing to use software that doesn’t have an up-to-date security patch can spell a whole lot of trouble for us users. This can leave our computers wide-open for threats such as malware infections and data theft to occur.

Now, what’s even more alarming is that Windows XP has already been a hot target for threats even long before its EOL. Just last year, data from the Dell Network Security Threat Report of 2013 showed that computers running on Windows XP operating systems were one of the most targeted devices of 2013. With its EOL fast approaching, Dell reports that we can expect the number of threats to Windows XP users to increase rapidly.

Download full Dell Network Security Threat Report 2013 here.

  • Old isn’t Gold

Though Windows XP has long been considered as a great operating system by both techies and non-techies alike, there’s still no point for us to hold on to a 12-year old operating system anymore.

Let’s remind ourselves that Windows XP was developed over 12 years ago. That means, it was also written during a time when computers with 1 GB worth of RAM and single core processors were considered as more than enough. But Of course, after 12 long years of technological progress, we now have computers whose specs are far more advanced than those that existed during XP’s heyday.

Case in point, Windows XP isn’t capable of bringing the best out of our advanced hardware, unlike the newer versions of Windows. Moreover, Windows XP won’t be able to support our computer’s advanced hardware specs as well. That said, if we’re looking to get the most out of our computers, upgrading to newer operating systems is the best plan of action that we can take.

How to upgrade from Windows XP?

  • Some preparatory tools

Upgrading our operating systems doesn't always mean that we have to buy new computers. Instead, it’s always best to check first if our existing computers can run newer versions of Windows in order to avoid any unnecessary hardware expenses.

Microsoft’s Upgrade Assistant/Advisor is a program that will help check our computers. It can let us know if our current hardware can run either Windows 7 or 8.1. Also, it will check as well if we have any current programs that wouldn’t be compatible with the new operating systems.

Read more: Windows XP Upgrade Tips - Will Your Existing Software and Hardware Work?

On the other hand, if we’re planning to buy an entirely new computer though, we can also use Windows Easy Transfer to help us migrate our files from our old computer that’s running on XP (or Vista) to our new one!

Now besides checking our hardware and software’s compatibility, it’s also best to judge for ourselves as to which operating system would be right for us. To know about the things that we need to consider, here are a couple of articles to help us:

  • Getting the upgrades

If you’re working with a nonprofit that’s eligible to receive Microsoft software donations via TechSoup Asia, you always can get the latest versions of Windows and Microsoft Office for only a minimum fee:

 

Upgrading from Windows XP

Windows 8.1 Get Genuine (32-bit)

English, Chinese (Simplified) or Thai

Windows 8.1 Get Genuine (64-bit)

English, Chinese (Simplified) or Thai

Windows 8.1 Enterprise Upgrade (32-bit)

Chinese (Simplified)

Windows 8.1 Enterprise Upgrade (64-bit)

Englishor Chinese (Simplified)

Windows 7 Enterprise Upgrade (32-bit)

Chinese (Simplified) or Thai

Windows 7 Enterprise Upgrade (64-bit)

Englishor Chinese (Simplified)

Upgrading from Microsoft Office 2003

Microsoft Office 2013 Professional Plus

English, Chinese (Simplified), Thai or Bahasa Indonesia

Microsoft Office 2013 Standard

English, Chinese (Simplified), Thai or Bahasa Indonesia

Microsoft Office 2010

Professional Plus or Standard

 

  • Time to upgrade!

Now that we’ve got everything settled, here now are some helpful articles that can guide us in our well-deserved upgrades: