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December 18, 2013

Majority of IT professionals still running Windows XP nears end-of-life

Despite 96% running Windows 7, XP is still used on some devices in 76% of companies.

By Claire Vanner

An overwhelming majority of 76% of IT professionals are still running Windows XP on some devices today, despite Microsoft retracting support for the operating system in April 2014.

Spiceworks has released a new study, ‘Getting Over Your XP’, exploring the plans, considerations and issues in the run up the Windows XP end-of-life (EOL) date.

The study revealed that 36% of IT professionals who are still running XP will leave the operating system on at least one device following the EOL.

"The data clearly illustrates how prevalent Windows XP remains 12 years after its initial release," said Kathryn Pribish, Voice of IT program manager at Spiceworks.

"The next four months will be a busy time for the majority of IT professionals migrating XP-based systems and for the vendors who can provide professional services and support for resource-strained IT departments."

The survey also highlighted that 96% of IT professionals are running Windows 7 on their network today compared to 42% running Windows 8 or 8.1, and just 30% running Apple’s OS X. This shows that while XP is still present in most work places, IT professionals are consciously upgrading to newer OS on some devices.

Of those IT professionals who still run Windows XP on company desktops and/or laptops, 49% plan to upgrade at least some of their devices to Windows 7, while 7% plan to upgrade to Windows 8 or 8.1. The majority of IT professionals (74%) cited the importance of "maintaining a similar user experience" as the primary reason why they’re planning to upgrade to Windows 7-based devices.

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When IT professionals were asked why they haven’t already migrated their company’s XP devices, 55% cited a lack of budget, 39% referenced a lack of time, and 31% said they didn’t have the resources needed.

"Organisations currently maintaining PCs on Windows XP need to understand that they will put their networks and data at high and increasing risk if they continue to use it after Microsoft discontinues support in April," said Scott DeTota, senior director, product and partner management, CDW.

"Upgrading to a more current version of Windows, though, also brings the benefit of newer, more powerful functionalities as well as improved security and productivity. CDW is prepared to help our customers work through the decisions they need to make and help them capture the benefits of upgrading their systems."

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