Category Archives: Get 2 Modern

Running Windows XP? What are Your Options?

Frustrated Woman at Computer With Stack of PaperThat’s right…April 8 is the end of support for Windows XP and Office 2003.  And you still haven’t upgraded.  Is it really that bad?  What can you do?

Microsoft certainly has some very frightening things to say about the consequences of running Windows XP past April 8.  We’ve compiled a summary at:  http://xprisk.bansheecloud.com

Of course, Microsoft has a vested interest in having everyone upgrade.  So what do the experts say?  See for yourself by going to Google and searching for “Windows XP end of life”.  (You can try it on any search engine, but if we recommended Bing, we could be accused of having you use a Microsoft-owned search site.)

So what can you do about your Windows XP machines?

The best thing to do is upgrade Windows.

John Gracyalny, vice president of information technology for the SafeAmerica Credit Union, says businesses who are reluctant to upgrade should think twice.

“The cost to upgrade is not very high, compared to the potential costs of a breach, both in possible real dollars as well as reputation loss,” he says. Should a hack occur, businesses “are going to look like they just don’t care about their customers’ information.”

It’s the end of the line for Windows XP, USA Today

The cost of upgrading is actually less than you may think.  Microsoft has partnered with many manufacturers and vendors to provide a wide range of discounts and incentives.  We’ve added a few of our own.  For example, you can get up to $300-350 in credit for trading in your old device or computer.  We’ve compiled a list at http://get2promos.bansheecloud.com

Get your XP machines off the internet…now.

Any machine running Windows XP and connected to the internet will be a security vulnerability.  Any vulnerability can become a way for hackers to get into your network, threatening the safety of all the data on your network.

So power off your XP machines or disconnect them from the network if you really want to be safe.

 

Consider other operating systems or devices.

Windows certainly isn’t the only game in town.   Of course, if you haven’t opted to pay for a Windows upgrade, you probably won’t pay more for a Mac.  But Apple is a viable alternative.  Just make sure you keep your Mac protected.  Malware attacks are not as common, yet Mac OS does have its share.  That’s because many more computers are running Windows.  As the saying goes, “Big money draws the flies.”

As an alternative, you can try Linux.   There are different flavors, known as “distributions” — and most are free to download and use.  We recommend Ubuntu for people new to Linux.  The desktop is similar to Windows and we’ve seen people get accustomed to it very quickly.  Just go to www.ubuntu.com

Bear in mind that a lot of business software only runs on Windows.  Sure, you can boot a Mac to Windows, but if you run XP, you’ll still be as vulnerable as anyone else.   And Linux aficionados will say you can use Wine to run Windows software, but it can be a pain to configure and may not have the complete functionality.

 

Yes, upgrade your antivirus…but.

As always, you should have the most up to date anti-malware protection.  But bear in mind that without security updates from Microsoft, third party developers can only do so much to protect your computer.

 

Call us for help!

If you’d like to know more, call us at 424-CLOUD-04 (424-256-8304) or email info@bansheecloud.com

We’d love to discuss your options, in the full context of your business or personal goals.

You can also find out more at:  http://get2modern.bansheecloud.com

 

 

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URGENT UPDATE: Windows XP Support Ends TOMORROW, April 8

As we have been warning everyone, April 8, 2014 will be the end of support for Windows XP. If you are running Windows XP on ANY machine connected to the internet…you will be subject to serious vulnerabilities that may compromise your data and the operation of your entire network.

While it can be argued that Microsoft (and Banshee Cloud) has been hyping this up in order to gain sales of Windows 8, we have always made it a point to point out the opinions of third party experts.

Bloomberg Businessweek and the Portland Press Herald have published an informative article on businessweek.com on this topic: Will shutdown of Microsoft XP leave users vulnerable?   Here are some key points are made by security expert Sari Greene and Jesse Kidder of Best Buy.

“Organizations that continue to use XP past end-of-life endanger their customers, employees and communities, which may result in costly security, compliance and liability issues,” Sari Greene, founder of Sage Data Security in Portland, wrote in a newsletter to clients.

“There is no question that criminals will continue to develop malware to exploit Window XP weaknesses. What is different is that there will be no corresponding fix,” Greene said. “We know that those with malicious intent will continually scan company networks for weaknesses. An end-of-life operating system like Windows XP is an open invitation to launch an attack, which may result in a costly breach.”

Continuing to run an unsupported operating system could result in legal liability, as well as denial of insurance coverage for companies, Greene said.

On the consumer side, Jess Kidder at Best Buy observes:

“The biggest fear people have is whether their computer will still work after April 8. Your computer won’t die or explode, but as far as security, you won’t be protected anymore.”

If you are running ANY computers with Windows XP, we suggest you contact us or an IT expert immediately.   Please make sure that the expert you are working with is fully briefed on the Microsoft Get2Modern program.   There are a lot of incentives put together by Microsoft that can give you substantial savings, should you decide to upgrade.

For more information, we’ve taken the Get2Modern program and added it to our website in a format that can be read on all devices: http://get2modern.bansheecloud.com

 

Old PC Time Running Out

Tech Guru: “Why you need to upgrade. Now. “

Here’s some great third party commentary on why you need to stop using Windows XP.  On anything connected to the internet.  Period.

This isn’t coming from us and it’s not hype from Microsoft.  Look at the name of the YouTube channel and you can see that this is a LINUX show.  By the way, if you think you want to try Linux, we can help you with that too!  More on that in a future article.

We’ve Compiled All The Promos & Incentives to Upgrade from Windows XP/Office 2003

With some promotions literally about to expire at the end of the month, we’ve been asked to compile a complete listing of all the promotions and incentives we are offering. These are available from numerous vendors, including Microsoft…and ourselves! Basically, a lot of people have done a lot of work to make it as simple as possible for you to upgrade your outdated and vulnerable systems.

Please visit our Get2Modern Promos microsite at http://get2promos.bansheecloud.com

We were inspired by a Fourth of July fireworks stand flyer, because we want to make sure that Windows XP and Office 2003 don’t “blow up in your face”!

Note that many of these offers and incentives can be combined and the amounts plus availability are based upon the specific upgrades and products which are best for you. We would love to evaluate your systems and requirements and see how much we can offer you!

Get-Modern-Promos-eCard

Get 2 Modern Site Updated: Are you Still Running Windows XP/Office 2003?

topBanner-img2šIn only a few more days, Microsoft will stop support of Windows XP and Office 2003.  If you’re still running either, you could truly be out of luck.   We’ve created a new, mobile responsive microsite with not only the latest updates from Microsoft but also a list of all the upgrade promotions available and more information on the impact of the April 8, 2014 End of Support deadline.  Please visit http://get2modern.bansheecloud.com today!
šIf you have any questions or need any help with upgrading, please feel free to contact us at any time at 424-CLOUD-04 (424-256-8304) or email us at info@bansheecloud.com
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Windows XP – Finally Retiring…and Then What?

UPDATE (Feb 27, 2014):  We’ve added a new, mobile responsive microsite with not only the latest updates from Microsoft but also a list of all the promotions available and more information on the impact of the April 8, 2014 End of Support deadline.  Please visit http://get2modern.bansheecloud.com today!

Windows XP continues to be one of the most popular operating systems in history.   After the less-than-stellar release of Windows Vista in 2007, many users opted to keep using Windows XP.  Due to popular demand, Microsoft has continued to support and update Windows XP.  But back in 2012, it was announced that Windows XP will no longer be supported after April 8, 2014.  Many were skeptical of this, as Microsoft had attempted to do this several times in the past.  But with Windows 7 becoming popular and the release of Windows 8.1, the time has indeed come to say goodbye to Windows XP.

But the question now arises…what will happen if you haven’t upgraded and are still using Windows XP?  Considering the ongoing issues with computer security, running Windows XP already is a security vulnerability and when Microsoft stops pushing updates, XP will become a fairly open target for viruses, spyware, and all manner of malware.  Even if you have the latest anti-malware software installed, the developers will no longer be able to provide reasonable protection for your computers.

And security is only one of the issues that will make any computer running Windows XP a liability.

So what can be done?   The obvious answer is to upgrade your computer.   Microsoft has created several incentives to upgrade to Windows 8.

But what if you don’t want Windows 8?   Our first recommendation is that you discuss with your IT professional the pros and cons of Windows 8 vs. Windows 7.   But also understand that there are alternatives.  Over the next several weeks, we will discuss these alternatives in depth.  And by all means, feel free to contact us with your questions at 424-CLOUD-04 (424-256-8304) or email us at info@bansheecloud.com

Microsoft has provided us with some useful information about this, along with the incentives previously mentioned.  We’ll go over much of this in our blog in the coming weeks as well.  In the meantime, you can find out more at our Get 2 Modern microsite at http://get2modern.bansheecloud.com http://bansheecloud.com/get2modern

Support for Windows XP Ends

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