Path to Windows 7 – Part I. History and timeline

Windows 7 is now over 2 years old. October 22nd 2009 was the official release date for the OS that had the fastest adoption in history. A lot of lessons where learned over the last two years and I will go through a few of them on this blog.

Windows XP is now over 10 years old. When it was launched DSL connections was barely available and Wi-Fi wasn’t even on the roadmap. The first Wi-Fi client for XP was introduced on SP1 and a decent client was delivered on SP2. It is also worth mentioning SP1a, when Microsoft removed Windows VM, the engine to run Java applications. Windows XP has great back then, but lacks great features introduced by Windows Vista and Windows 7. User experience is not great on XP, which used to stand for eXPerience, but now stands for eXPired.

Windows XP extended support expires on April 2014, mainstream support finished in 2009. That means that to get support or bespoke patches you will have to pay a support contract (including retroactive to 2009 to today).
As an IT department you can’t afford to support an OS or applications that are no longer supported by the manufacturer. But one may argue that security updates are still available, and that’s true, that is the only benefit left available for free until the end of extended support.

The first lesson we learned over the last 2 years is that a migration from Windows XP to Windows 7 takes some planning, as no in place upgrade is available. There are several things to consider, they will be covered on the next few posts. A Typical “XP to 7” migration takes between 12 to 18 months, which means that if you start right now you don’t have much time left.

There is a great Desktop Gadget to follow how much time is left until XP eXPires. The gadget is called Windows XP End of Support Countdown Gadget.

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