Blog

News, opinions and updates from the Virtuoso team.

Feb
27

How to implement the right solution for your business

So, you’ve decided that moving your on-premises content to the cloud is the right solution for your business. But what comes next?

Whether you’re hoping to go all in on Office 365 or go hybrid, you want to make sure your business makes the most informed decisions and doesn’t rush the migration process. A stress-free Office 365 implementation is a significant project and takes careful planning, prudent decision-making and time.

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Jun
06

Office 365 has raised the game and here is why

Part I – Microsoft Teams

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Dec
30

4 Reasons You Must Migrate From Windows XP Now

Any business still using the Windows XP operating system must come to terms that  their borrowed time is coming to an end. On April 8, 2014, Microsoft will no longer support XP. Microsoft has continued to support XP through three releases – the unfortunate rollout of Vista followed by the Windows 7 and Windows 8 releases. By ending its support of XP, Microsoft is acknowledging that Windows 7 and 8, unlike Vista, are the successors of XP and they’re finally ready to move on. But what does this mean to small businesses that aren’t quite ready to say goodbye to XP?

 

The research firm Gartner has projected that roughly 15% of small to midsize  businesses will still be running Windows XP on at least 10% of their PCs when Microsoft support ends. While migrating from Windows XP is complex - requiring a detailed plan, fixed budget, testing, deployment, and training - SMBs today can’t continue to put it off. The Windows XP migration process needs to get underway sooner rather than later with April 8th cutoff date looming. Here are four reasons why SMBs must migrate now from XP.

  1. Businesses in industries with compliance regulations requiring up-to-date software to protect information, such as the financial sector, may face legal repercussions with the continued use of an outdated operating system. Such vulnerabilities could allow attackers to literally take over and cripple any PC that continues to run XP.
  2. While Microsoft has recently extended XP anti-malware updates through July 2015, without Microsoft updating other XP security patches, businesses that continue to run XP will be exposed and defenceless against new threats specifically designed to exploit XP.
  3. XP compatible printers, scanners, and software such as McAfee and Symantec, will no longer be made.
  4. The longer XP is used, the greater the liability becomes, and the more expensive it will get for small businesses to continue supporting an unsupported operating system.

Time is no longer on your side. It’s time to finally migrate from Windows XP before it negatively impacts business productivity, reputation, and your bottom line.

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Dec
29

Relax... Windows XP Migration Doesn’t Have to Be Such a Headache

If you’re a small-to-midsize business owner still using computers running on the Windows XP operating system, enough is enough! The end is near. On April 8, 2014, Microsoft will stop supporting XP. Whether you’re migrating from XP out of this sheer necessity, or you’ve been contemplating upgrading to a newer Windows operating system anyhow, here are a few things to consider.

Take Full Advantage of Newer Deployment and Management Options

There will naturally be a significant amount of retraining and app testing needed when you migrate from Windows XP to Windows 7 or 8. This may be the right time to upgrade your server and all desktop platforms to the most recent releases. On the server front, Windows Server 2012 R2 offers small businesses improved storage, virtualisation, uptime, and much wider support for mobile devices. 

Seek Outside Help

Anyone still running XP this close to the detonation date has very limited time. Although Microsoft has extended its offering of anti-malware updates to XP users through July 2015, come April 8th, your business will still be more susceptible to cyber- security threats if you are not fully migrated to Windows 7 or Windows 8. Organising a full-scale migration at this juncture may require the help of an expert Managed Service Provider (MSP) in your area who can use various automated tools to simplify migration processes.

Update Hardware 

If you’re still running Windows XP, chances are you’re using outdated hardware as well. Any machine currently running slow with XP will most likely be unable to handle a Win7 or Win8 upgrade. Although it’s more expensive, updating hardware in conjunction with upgrading your operating system may save you money in the long run. Not to mention make for happier workers. This may also be a good time to fully embrace the bring- your-own-device workplace.

Alter Your Approach Moving Forward

Windows XP is thirteen years old. It was introduced one month prior to the September 11th terrorist attacks.  Beyonce was topping the charts... as a member of Destiny’s Child. Friends reigned supreme as the number #1 show on network television. Support for Windows XP was supposed to end in 2011 but the poorly received release of Windows Vista offered a reprieve that is very unlikely to be repeated.

Moving forward, it’s important for SMEs to never put themselves in this situation again and to strictly adhere to Microsoft’s recommended yearly update cycle.

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