Windows XP

Well, the time has finally arrived, tomorrow will be the last day that Microsoft will officially support Windows XP. I’m sure that most people have heard this news but there is still an astonishing 27% of computers running Windows XP. One of the most common questions I get asked is “Will my computer still work?” and the answer is “Yes”. The end of support for Windows XP doesn’t mean that on April 9th your computer wont turn on anymore.

What does it mean?

Operating systems that are supported constantly receive “Microsoft Updates” or if you have it enabled “Automatic Updates”. These updates can be performance updates, stability updates, driver updates, or security updates. They are released  typically once a week by  Microsoft, sometimes more often depending on the severity of the situation. Now that Windows XP will have reached the end of it’s support life cycle, this means that if a hacker or virus writer are able to find an exploit to infect the operating system, there will be no update provided to patch such a “hole”.

Now what?
Well, there are really only two options for those people who still have Windows XP.

Option 1: Continuing to use Windows XP

For those of you who need to continue the use of Windows XP here are a few things you can do to help keep your computer working well.

- Install an updated browser
Several years ago Microsoft stopped releasing new versions of Internet Explorer for Windows XP. In order to help keep you safe on the web I reccomend installing a more modern browser. My personal favorite is Google Chrome, but there are other popular options like Mozilla Firefox and Opera.

 – Have an updated Internet Security program
Anti-virus has always been important, but with the end of support here,  having a well rounded internet security program is even more important. Internet security programs will help protect against other variants of virus’ such as root-kits, malware, and spyware. We suggest using AVG Internet Security, and as Authorized Reseller’s we can not only sell you the program, but also help you install it an configure it. Call us at 509.382.1030 to get setup with a license.

 – Limit your use
This is one of the least popular suggestions but it is something to think about. Never open email attachments, avoid USB drives, and browse the internet carefully.

Option 2: Upgrade your computer

Obviously this is the better of the two options from a safety standpoint. Windows 7 will be supported until 2020 and Windows 8 until 2023.

PC Solutions offers a full range of desktops and laptops. We offer both Lenovo products, as well as custom built computers for specific needs. Call 509.876.1301 today and we will happily prepare a custom quote based on your individual needs.