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10 Things We Won't Miss About Windows XP

It's had a good run, but 2001's Windows XP is set to be dethroned by Microsoft with Windows 7 taking its rightful place on the throne. It’s disputed heir and younger brother Windows 8 will surely pick up a greater following as the months pass with more and more companies looking to make the move away from the soon to be exiled Windows XP.

The reign of XP’s model just doesn't fit modern requirements anymore, with Windows 7 and Windows 8 lending themselves to Thin Client computing, the cloud and VDI far more than the their legacy predecessor.

To celebrate XP's imminent departure to the big computer lab in the sky, we're taking a look at 10 reasons we will not miss it...

1. It's a ticking time bomb...

...at least in terms of security. Windows XP is a virus hot bed waiting to happen. Microsoft's Security Intelligence Reports (SIRs) clearly show that XP is a magnet for malware. This is one of the reasons the computing giant is putting the kibosh on XP support. After extended support ends in April 8th 2014 the gates will open for cyber criminals just itching to hack into outdated XP systems. It's enough to send chills up your spine.

2. You can forget about BYOD

If your business wants to implement an of-the-minute BYOD policy, you seriously need to move on from XP. Windows 7 and 8 are all set up and ready to support smartphones and tablets, while XP doesn't have the mobility features to support a notebook, let alone newer technology. If you want any time, any place connectivity – XP will get you laughed out of town.

3. You just can't get the drivers

Forget about hooking up new technology with the greatest of ease. Outdated XP doesn't have the drivers to make it so. If you're using new hardware, chances are you're going to need to trawl the internet to find a driver that works – all the while risking downloading one of those many XP security threats by accident in the process.

4. Intrusive Windows updates drive us crazy

Whatever you're doing, no matter how important, Windows Update interrupts asking to restart your computer. In a blind mid-work panic it is all too easy to hit OK rather than to stall the little blighter for 15 minutes.

5. Burning to DVD shouldn't be difficult...

But XP makes it so. You can burn to CD using XP but if you want to copy files and movies to DVD you'll be wanting a more up to date operating system.

6. File searches take ages

Hunting for a particular file? Don't worry, XP will find it in about 8 years' time. File searches are far faster on recent OSs, overcoming the rage incurred by a 30 minute trawl for a Word document.

7. Faffing with wireless connections is infuriating

Later operating systems remember and organise all of your wireless connections wherever you go so you only have to set them up once. XP doesn't do this which made working on the move a royal little pain.

8. Incompatible applications were a headache

IE9 and IE10 just aren't compatible with XP, If you want to run anything above IE8, for services that require HTML5, an upgrade is in order. You can also forget all about .NET.. Framework 4.5 or above. .NET Framework 4.0 is supported but you'll need to upgrade if you want anything more evolved.

9. Desktop provisioning is tricky

Desktop provisioning was a bit of a pain in XP. If you want to increase control over numerous images via Windows thin clients while cutting costs and boosting security, XP is not the perfect platform by any stretch of the imagination. Windows 7 meanwhile has several features installed as standard which make provisioning for both physical desktops and VDI far simpler. These tool help to migrate user personalities, assist deployment of Windows 7 clean installs and enable the upgrade of existing scenarios across to Windows 7. Available standard tools include:

  • MAP 4.0
  • Application Compatibility Toolkit 5.5 (including Standard User Analyzer)
  • Automated Installation Kit (including USMT)
  • Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010
  • and many more tools at your disposal

If you're looking for even more powerful provisioning tools, than those on offer by default in Windows 7 or 8, take look at other options available including Atlantis, VMware and Citrix.

10. Ugly gaming makes us sad

If you're a gamer you should have jumped off the good ship XP many moons ago. The operating system is only able to support DirectX video cards up to version 9. In 2010 the vast majority of games were designed for DirectX 10 and 11, leaving gaming on XP a graphically rubbish no-no.

XP may be retiring, but Windows thin clients are becoming ever more popular with businesses. Using just one server to run applications and software on multiple computers via the cloud, Windows thin clients provide a cost-effective, flexible solution for businesses – a new computing option to consider as we wave goodbye to a trusty old system. Ask 10ZiG all about Windows thin clients today.