Time to upgrade your workstations and servers?

5th December 2019

As 1999 faded into 2000 thoughts and minds were focused on the millennium bug, a nasty little software glitch which many feared might see computer systems crashing across the globe. Thanks to foresight and robust planning the potential crisis was averted with computer systems clicking over nicely into the new millennium.

Twenty years on, another date looms large on the computer calendar. On the 14 January 2020 Microsoft will cease all support for Windows 7 and the two windows servers designated 2008 R2 and SBS (Small Business Server) 2011.

Let’s say at the outset that in some ways this cessation of support isn’t as critical as the potential problems anticipated at the turn of the millennium. Computers operating Windows 7 programs and the two designated server types will continue to operate. So in theory there will be no sudden loss of service.

Fraud and data security
On the other hand, the loss of Microsoft support will mean that security patches and updates will no longer be available, leaving computers and servers vulnerable to security breaches. As a result, organisations will potentially be leaving themselves open to an increased risk of fraud and data security failure. In turn this means that companies may not be able to fulfil the requirements of GDPR (General Data Protection Regulations), thereby placing directors in breach not only of these regulations but also of their general duty of care under the Companies Act 2016.

There is also a chance that third-party software suppliers such as those offering virus protection will also withdraw ongoing support for the Windows 7 and designated server systems, further exacerbating the potential for security breaches. Also any liability insurance cover that you may have in place for data loss may become invalid.

Replace or upgrade
We therefore strongly recommend that companies take urgent action to upgrade or replace any systems affected by the withdrawal of Microsoft support. The route which companies follow will depend on a number of factors including budget and the age of existing systems.

For example, whilst it may be possible to upgrade Windows 7 PCs with a CPU of i3 or better, other models may not have a powerful enough operating system to be able to run Windows 10. On the other hand, businesses may decide to take this opportunity to replace older systems even if they are capable of being upgraded.

What action do I need to take?
Talk to the team at ThinkIT. We can work with you to identify legacy systems and to understand the costs and options which are available to you in order to ensure that your computers and servers remain data secure.


If you would like to discuss upgrading your current server or any other business IT requirement further,  please contact Paul McCarthy on 01392 435803 or email: Paul@thinkit.uk.com  for further information on ThinkIT’s services or to discuss any specific IT issues you may have.



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