The clock has ticked and the days are numbered for Windows XP. Since October 2001 the operating system had taken the world by storm. With only a few weeks left of support from Microsoft, Windows XP still holds over 25% of the Windows Operating system user base.
While no one is sure exactly what will happen when regular security patches are no longer being sent from Microsoft. The general consensus is that exploits are being stockpiled to target the operating system. Without the regular updates and support from many third party vendors, the already vulnerable operating system may become unstable and become a security risk to your home or business network.
Should you upgrade your current system or replace it? Good questions. There are many computers that came with XP that can comfortably run a more modern and secure operating system. Here are some guidelines:
How old is your computer? It is 2014, yes I know that doesn’t seem possible, but it is. How long have you had your computer and have you done any upgrades? If your computer is over 6 years old and has had no upgrades, it is time to move on.
What type of processor do you have? If you have a single core processor, Pentium 4 or Athlon single core processor, basically anything that does not support 64 bit processing it is time to move on.
How much ram do you have? For Windows 7 to be happy our bench mark is a minimum of 4 GB of ram. Can your machine support that much? Click here to find out.
Have you upgraded your hard drive? If your hard drive is anything less than 250 GB it might be a good assumption that it is over 6 years old, as with all mechanical parts there is a finite lifespan, hard drives slow over time and start to collect errors on the drive. Here is a great tool to run a quick check on your drive.
So here are some options for your XP machine: If it doesn’t meet the guidelines for upgrading you can always try Linux. Linux Mint and Ubuntu are two popular distributions. This is option is not for the faint of heart, while Linux has come a long way, you might want to give us a call before you explore this option. If your machine is worth upgrading or can have a few simple cost effective upgrades to have it work well with a new version of Windows then you need to choose between Windows 7 which is more similar to XP or Windows 8 which while it has grown on me, I still receive regular feedback from clients who are less than thrilled with the new user interface. Whatever route you take be sure to back up your data files before making any changes to your system.