Technology Advisor Blog

The End is Near!  Windows 7 End of Support January 2020

Posted by Ann Westerheim on 12/7/18 1:52 PM

Windows 7Microsoft Windows 7 has long been a favorite operating system for business, but now the end of life for support is just one year away.  Although we're still seeing some line of business applications with problems running on Windows 10, it would be ill-advised to roll out any new systems with this operating system.  The official end date for extended support is January 14, 2020.  After this time, there will be no more security updates, and any system would be at risk for security problems, and out of compliance for a long list of industry security requirements.  

If you don't already have a plan in place to move your remaining systems to Windows 10, now is the time!  Every Windows product has a lifecycle. The lifecycle begins when a product is released and ends when it's no longer supported. Knowing key dates in this lifecycle helps you make informed decisions about when to update, upgrade or make other changes to your software.  Check out the Windows Lifecycle Fact Sheet on the Microsoft web site for more information.

As a general rule, we don't recommend upgrading an operating sytsem in place.  We typically recommend changing operating systems when you refresh hardware.  If you have very new hardware, then an in place upgrade may be worth a discussion.  In either case, we recommend having a plan in your 2019 budget to make sure this work is completed well in advance of the end of the year.

Keep in mind that many line of business applications may have problems with Windows 10.  Although Windows 10 was released three and a half years ago, not all third party software providers are up to date and this can lead to a very unpleasant surprise for a business owner.   In some cases, there's a problem because the business is running an old version and the upgrade comes with a significant price tag.  In other cases, the business may be running on the recommended version, but the third-party software provider just hasn't kept up.  This is the main reason we see businesses hanging on to older systems, but in January 2020, these systems will be out of compliance for security and a major risk to the organization.

Get your plan in place now for your remaining Windows 7 systems. We're here to help!  Call us with your questions. 

Tags: data security, Microsoft Windows 7

How to Add a Printer in Windows 7

Posted by Ann Westerheim on 7/20/11 10:15 AM

One of the big benefits of keeping your technology current is that routine tasks get a LOT easier.  One prime example is adding a printer.

If you're bringing in a laptop from home and you need to print in your office, or if you've just bought a new printer, getting ready to print in Windows 7 is easy.

Add a PrinterTo add a printer, hit the "Start" button on your system (windows logo in the lower left hand corner of your screen), and select "Devices and Printers".  From there, select "Add a Printer".  You'll have two options:  (1) Select a Local Printer - this would be for a non-USB printer connected directly to your system.  Windows automatically installs USB printers when you plug them in! (2) Add a network, wireless, or BlueTooth printer.  This would be the standard configuration working in an office environment.

Its just a few more mouse clicks to install the printer.  You'll see a list of available printers on the network, and when you select the one you want, Windows will find the driver for you.  The "driver" is the software that tells your computer how to print to a specific printer.

In Windows 7, you'll see that installing a printer is a quick task, and you'll be thankful that your technology is up to date (or the task would take a lot longer).

Tags: Microsoft Windows 7, printer

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