I noted with interest today a ZDnet article quoting Gartner around Windows XP End of Life and the security risk of avoiding a Windows 7 Migration. It’s a timely article!
You see, this week we re-launched our Windows 7 Migration use case landing page, packed full of new resources including a bunch of new whitepapers, case studies and videos.
Two of the hot new resources include:
If you’re one of the 45% of organizations that hasn’t yet implemented a migration to a modern desktop such as Windows 7 or 8, you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. You either wear the risk of attack with precisely zero patches to protect you the moment April 8th 2014 passes or you pay handsomely for a custom support agreement.
Let’s allow the first one to sink in for a minute. Zero patches.
I don’t know about you, but the spectre of an unpatched operating system is a pretty significant security risk. Yet some organizations believe that they will be able to secure Windows XP to mitigate the risk and that combined with the length of time that Windows XP has been supported means that all the really bad security risks have been dealt with.
Bear this in mind. In the first quarter of calendar year 2013 (yes that’s this year), according to NIST.gov, Microsoft released 34 high severity updates that affected Windows XP-Of those 28 of them were network exploitable. While I’d agree that some can be mitigated through the use of effective privilege management techniques such as whitelisting and blacklisting, some can’t, and frankly anti-virus won’t save you either.
If you (quite reasonably) realize that support and patches are important to your short to long-term business viability, your next choice is a custom support agreement. I’ll encourage you to take a look at the whitepaper. These agreements aren’t cheap and at $200 per device (that means a cool $1M for a 5,000 device organization in the first year), rising to $400 per device in year 2 and $1,000 per device in year 3, not something you want to be running in the long term.
So why wouldn’t you spend some money now to avoid either choice? You’re going to have to do it at some time. Many would like to but don’t feel that they will be able to complete it in time. Some also have serious application compatibility issues. The thing is those companies may not be aware of the solutions that can help truly accelerate migration as they may be choosing rudimentary tools like User State Migration Tool (USMT) that take hours to work, miss tons of stuff users care about and have to be run after hours at higher contract rates – and manually assessing their application usage and compatibility.
Thankfully there are better solutions to this problem that can help to accelerate your Windows 7 migration!
AppSense has long proven its ability to be able to migrate the user persona and data seamlessly, without user interruption. We do it faster, at low cost too and deliver a great ROI. DataNow further enhances that story by helping to migrate data from the endpoint (especially laptops) without any VPN requirement and at the same time solves data access on any device. What you probably didn’t already know is that we can help solve the application compatibility issues that relate to Microsoft’s User Account Control (UAC) in Windows 7 utilizing our privilege management solutions, Application Manager and its reduced functionality cousin, Application Manager – URM Edition
But its not a complete solution without being able to understand what applications are actually in use and how these need to be packaged for a Windows 7 migration.
We have been working closely with Flexera to solve the app compat and packaging issue. Centrix and Lakeside, two very good partners of AppSense, can help you assess what has to be done first and also to help you understand what apps you can retire.
Join our upcoming Microsoft Webinar, Thursday 4th July, 2013 10:00 AM BST / 11:00 AM CET to learn how to:
- Quickly and easily migrate to Windows 7 with no impact to the user experience
- Deliver Windows 7 to your desktops for a third of the cost
- Standardize your Windows 7 desktops to lower ongoing IT costs while providing users with a fully personalized experience
- Live demonstration – migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7 and then to Windows 8