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Migration from Windows XP – Wait for Windows 8?


A discussion that I have often with customers and with other professionals is when you start the Windows XP SP3 corporate migration. At the MVP Summit which ended last week the Windows IT-Pro group discussed this theme.

Some factors and questions always arise and are important to be seconded to speech in this matter:

  1. Windows XP Service Pack 3 support ends April 8, 2014
  2. Some question that is worth waiting for the release of Windows 8, currently in Consumer Preview equivalent to Beta
  3. Other question that even long ago, are 2 years until end of support
  4. Finally, the most innocent people believe is a simple task and will do in due course

Let’s talk about each of these points and draw a conclusion?

End of support for Windows XP in 4/8/2014

Despite official end in a bracket 2 years does not mean that everything will be updated. New product releases will not be supported soon, for example, a new version of Office or any application as a new browser.

The greatest impact is felt today in question of drivers, new machines do not have more drivers for Windows XP for component manufacturers. I am not referring only to computer manufacturers, but also manufacturers of drivers for video cards, printers and others. As an example, a recent launch of wireless printers are supported only on Windows 7 and the same goes for video adapters and 3D-based recent games.

Conclusion:The assurance that Microsoft will still support the XP does not mean that we do not have other items that are already being discarded application development and, above all, drivers.

Expect Windows 8

Let’s assume that the release of Windows 8 is in January 2013, stressing that is a guess.

See the sample project starting in January 2013 and the term that we would have to mgrar 1000 machines taking into account make 10 engraving per day, which is a reasonable number taking into account the migration job profiles and applications:


So terminariamos migration in July, but put some important factors that need to be taken into account:

  • Even if Windows 8 was released today, it would take a few weeks to stay available for sale and contracts being closed
  • The migration job is much more complicated because shortly after the release a few software vendors have already assessed the systems, which does not occur with large as Adobe but will happen for sure with minors
  • We’re assuming do 10 machines per day, what do we do with Windows 7 today easily, but with Windows 8 we may not achieve the same net migration rate
  • Migrating from Windows 7 is widely documented and known, so easy to get support. For example, the Springboard migration portal is complete and with English version
  • The new interface will require adaptation on the part of the user and migration can be a fiasco, as Windows 7 is consolidated and known users
  • The landmark “Service Pack 1” may not be a reality technically, anyway a manufacturer doesn’t make one SO full of problems then fix, but companies think so and no use wanting to discuss

Conclusion:The features that Windows 7 has Windows are very similar to 8 and the future migration can be done by Software Assurance (SA) agreement with migration more transparent in the future of WIndows 7 to Windows 8, or who knows by then already Windows “9”   ;-)

We still have 2 Years ahead

In the diagram above we simulated the situation if the migration was performed starting in January 2013, which would give us about 8 months off.

However there are very serious problems in migration that is relative to the compatibility of applications that do not get along well with the UAC (User Account Control).

In the work I do migration study, called Assessments, I come across very serious problems with applications that only run in administrator mode and complexity to resolve this is an important factor, taking into account that one of the goals of the companies is to put an end to the local administrator.

Another very common problem are unsigned ActiveX used in many applications of time of late ActiveX Document qu ese created with Visual Basic 6 or even Click Once .NET applications, since Windows 7 cannot run unsigned ActiveX components without having to leave him more insecure than XP.

Thinking about it and looking at the above project, again will a month will be enough to resolve the compatibility issues? Care, in many cases the only solution is to redesign the software!!!!

We need not even say that the hardware is also important because it leave a requirement of 512 MB from Windows XP to 1GB for Windows 7, taking into account a success just acceptable. No company will update the machines in just a few short months.

Conclusion: We have no way to know how long after we start the testing phase, the schedule may be easy to migrate, but the initial phase of compatibility and hardware upgrade can be the biggest problem.

Migrating is easy, do when the time comes

At the beginning of my professional career, 22 years (I’m getting old hehehe), was optimistic. Always said “this is easy” or other phrases as well, but the truth is that in the last years can’t talk like that. The parks of engraving much of the time they grew I managed network with 100-500 computers with programs in Clipper and Visual FoxPro.

The diversity of applications and the web have become our very complex environments and the number of stations that a company has is 3 times greater than the 10 years ago.

As professionals our function is to make the work environment without pain (no pain) and for this we have no room for optimism inconsequential and unfortunately often irresponsible.

Conclusion: Start early to not have to run after and see the term flowing through the hands.

Final Recommendation

After this discussion that this quickly start the process?

Follows the same project earlier starting today:


Terminariamos 1 year and a half migration before the deadline, already with visibility of Windows 8 released (hopefully) and with enough time to handle any deviation or difficulty. And once we launch the Service Pack 1 for Windows 8 you can begin the upgrade process no pain.

The market prediction is that in the middle of next year there will be a desperate move, migration mainly in countries like Brazil that leaves everything to the last minute. Avoid falling into the migration at this time, because the cost could double.

Anything to add? Leave your comment.


From → Windows, Windows 8

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