January 14 marks the end of two Microsoft operating systems: Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. After these titles are retired, using them could quickly result in a major problem for your business’ IT security. If you haven’t made the switch to other solutions by now, you are running out of options. Let’s quickly go over what you can do.
Upgrade Your Hardware and Migrate Over Your Data
Unfortunately, this option has two considerable downsides: it’s going to be pretty darn expensive, and since there is a very limited amount of time to get it done, you’ll likely have to pay even more to expedite the process. Furthermore, despite the professionalism and skill that our consultants at ExcalTech will bring to the table, rushing this normally slow and controlled process is bound to create complications. Sure, Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 may still work, technically speaking, but it will only become harder to find the other components that play nicely with the software you rely on, not to mention riskier to even attempt.
Before you bite the bullet and replace all of your hardware, you may have the option to simply upgrade the solutions present in your infrastructure already. Windows 10 has a few fairly attainable benchmarks. They include:
- Processor – 1 GHZ or faster
- RAM – 1 GB for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit
- Hard disk space – 16 GB for 32-bit or 20 GB for 64-bit
- Graphics card – DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver
- Display – 800 x 600 resolution
Having said that, these are the minimum points for Windows 10 to work, so don’t expect your users to break any records using it with those specifications. Instead, we recommend that you have a dual-core processor rated to at least 2 GHz, anywhere from 4 to 8 GBs of RAM, and a 160 GB hard drive at the minimum.
Virtualize Your Data Via the Cloud
Of course, you also have the option to simply use virtualized solutions, rather than acquire new in-house hardware. Not only are virtualized servers more cost effective than purchasing a new in-house system, you have much more flexibility in the types of servers you can host. Microsoft Azure, for instance, offers virtual machine capabilities that cover the gamut of a business’ needs.
It should be said that virtualization also assists with budgeting for your IT, as the purchases you would have made otherwise are turned into predictable operating expenses, rather than a pricey capital expense. Plus, with services like Azure, your solutions are maintained as a part of the cost, so when compared apples-to-apples, virtualization could easily be the less expensive option for you to go with.
Empower Your Team with Microsoft 365
Admittedly, while Microsoft 365 won’t do much to resolve your difficulties with Server 2008 R2, you can implement it quickly, which helps when you’re trying to beat an End-of-Life deadline. As it offers a comprehensive assortment of key solutions–including Windows 10, the Microsoft Office 365 productivity suite with Microsoft Teams, Outlook, and OneDrive–supported by the tools you need to keep your data secure and under your control, you could certainly do worse than implementing Microsoft 365.
Microsoft 365 Business takes these benefits even further than other cloud systems, while never losing sight of the productivity benefits that you are looking for from your business’ chosen solution. Additionally, with easily scalable licenses, this is likely a great choice for your organization to implement.
While Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2 were once the standard for businesses to utilize, those days are long past. Don’t let their lack of support create problems for your business. Call ExcalTech today to ensure that all of the solutions you leverage in your operations are able to serve you well. Give us a call at (877) 638-5464 to learn more.