Fifteen Group’s IT Support Engineer Team Leader is Paul Williams. He has a degree in IT and extensive experience in the education sector, working for Blythe Bridge High School in the Staffordshire Moorlands, Entrust and the City Learning Centres across the city before joining us 18 months ago.
Here he answers your questions about the end of Windows 7 and the risks posed to your company.
Why is January 2020 such an important date?
The speed at which technology advances is incredible. No sooner has a new model been released, another is announced. Microsoft products are no different and a number of them are coming to the end of their life. On January 14th next year Windows 7, Windows Server 2008, Windows 2008R2 and Small Business Server 2011 will no longer be supported by Microsoft.
What does this mean?
After that date those products will no longer be supported by Microsoft which means no security updates will be provided. That means programs and data using those programmes will be left vulnerable to malware and cyber-attacks.
How vulnerable could this leave my company?
Very as it means that no updates will be released to fix vulnerabilities, which are potentially used by hackers. Aside of putting data at risk which can be potentially catastrophic for a company, it can also mean you breach General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) so now is the time to act.
How do I check what system we are on?
If you go to the control panel on your PC or laptop and to System it will tell you what Windows Edition you are on there. If you’re still not sure you can give us a call and we will be able to talk you through it.
If we are on one of the systems mentioned, what shall we do?
You need to update to Windows 10. That is Microsoft’s latest system and they issue feature updates to it every six months or so to help keep your systems and data safe as well as introducing new features.
How easy is it to update our systems?
It’s relatively easy. Our engineers would come onto site and upgrade your operating systems. How long that takes depends on how many staff and work-stations you have to upgrade. We would ensure that any downtime is kept to an absolute minimum and will keep you fully updated throughout the process.
Is there anything we would need to do?
You just need to leave enough time for the upgrade to take place so as the end of life date nears all the necessary processes have taken place. If you have a major contract to fulfill or are nearing a very important deadline we would advise that the upgrade is booked in to take place afterwards to avoid any disruption.
Who can Fifteen Group help?
We offer flexible IT solutions for small to medium enterprises and organisations in a wide variety of sectors, including healthcare, education and hospitality. We support every aspect of IT. To find more you can go to www.fifteengroup.co.uk , call 01782 326444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org