Gartner: Organisations should plan now for Windows 7 EOL | ALC Training News

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Operating systems (OSs) are the platforms on which businesses conduct a significant portion of their operations, and as such it's essential that proper frameworks are in place for managing OS end of life (EOL). Failing to ensure a proper OS transition can lead to the possibility of security breaches and other issues.

Research organisation Gartner has recently published a report detailing the necessity of planning for the end of Windows 7, the current mainstay of organisations. Even though the end of support is planned for 2020, the date is fast approaching. Most recently, businesses struggled to leave Windows XP by the end of support deadline, leaving many stuck on the unsecured platform.

"Nearly a quarter of PCs in organisations were still running Windows XP after support ended, leaving IT to figure out how to secure Windows XP and/or find funding to do so," the release stated.

Nothing can be as important during an OS transition as the proper IT training and frameworks. Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology (COBIT), for example, is able to ensure proper control objectives are in place and in use by various managers and IT staff within the organisation.

A number of factors require consideration during an OS transition, especially with the large amount of data that needs to be carried over. When the move to a new OS is undertaken, COBIT is able to ensure confidentiality and availability of data are maintained. 

Gartner has outlined a set of basic options for enterprises assessing a move to a new operating system, which have been outlined below.

  • Deploy Windows 8 (the latest release) on PCs within the organisation – this could be an issue without a solid business case;
  • Deploy Windows 8 on new PCs – an option that makes sense for some, but may still not be ideal due to the OS split;
  • Wait for the next Windows release – skip the current Windows 8 and continue using 7 until a new revision releases.

In any transition case, having the staff trained in the correct certification will be invaluable.

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