Debuting in 2001, Windows XP was one of the most popular and successful releases of Windows that Microsoft ever created. But, every good thing eventually meets its end, and on April 8, 2014 Windows XP will be doing just that. Microsoft will be officially discontinuing security updates and technical support for Windows XP this April. For businesses that have computers still running XP, this means one thing: a newer operating system is vital for secure and functional computing.

What’s going to change about XP in April? Will it still be functional on my computers running it?

Any computer currently running Windows XP will still function after the end-of-support date. However, as such, they will be and become increasingly prone to virus infection, crashing, and irreparable data loss.

  • Windows will cease to provide security updates to their systems. If an exploit in a Windows security was found in the past, Microsoft would take care of it by issuing a security patch for Windows XP. After the end of XP support if any security exploits are found by hackers Windows will not do anything to protect XP systems with. By running XP after support ends, you will be risking having your system infected or damaged.
  • Most computers running Windows XP have outdated hardware. Windows’ system requirements never change, so your hardware may handle XP fine. However, as software continues to develop it requires more processing power, RAM, and hard drive space. In other words, most computers currently running Windows XP will have increasing difficulties running modern programs.
  • Software companies are discontinuing development of Windows XP programs. Now that Windows Vista, 7, and 8 have superseded XP, software companies are focusing development for the most modern operating systems. Up-to-date software requires an up-to-date operating system.

Do I have to buy a new computer to upgrade from Windows XP?

Depending on your computer’s hardware, it’s possible that you can upgrade to a modern version of Windows without purchasing any new hardware. Here are the basic system requirements for the two most modern versions of Windows:

Windows 7 Windows 8
  • 1+ GHz 32-bit or 64-bit processor
  • 1+ GHz 32-bit or 64-bit processor with PAE, NX, and SSE2 support
  • 1 GB RAM (32-bit)
  • 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 1 GB RAM (32-bit)
  • 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 16 GB free space on HD(32-bit)
  • 20 GB free space on HD (64-bit)
  • 16 GB free space on HD (32-bit)
  • 20 GB free space on HD (64-bit)

If a computer currently running XP meets these requirements, it can be upgraded to a newer version of Windows without any new hardware purchases. Please note that the specs listed above are minimum system requirements; Outsource My IT recommends double the minimum requirements for RAM and hard drive space.

Another option for upgrading is to simply buy a new computer with Windows 7 or 8 already installed on it. Every manufacturer that produces business-grade computers will offer a variety of Windows machines.

Here at Outsource My IT we specialize at finding the right computer for your business. If you need assistance in figuring out how to upgrade your systems we are always happy to help. We can handle any form of upgrade, whether it is installing a newer version of Windows on your computer, upgrading your computer’s hardware and operating system, or helping you pick the right new computer to upgrade to, we can help.

Where can I read more about what’s best for me and my business?

Here are some helpful resources from the web that detail everything involved with the end of Windows XP support and the process of upgrading.

We are experts with Windows upgrades and configurations at Outsource My IT. If you plan to upgrade your systems or purchase new systems to prepare for the end of Windows XP support, feel free to reach out to us for consultation on your current computer situation. We can help you figure out the most cost-effective way to get your company running on the software and hardware best suited to your needs. You can reach us at 973-638-2722 or by emailing