Don’t be exposed when support for Windows XP Ends on April 8 2014

Still using a Windows XP machine? Microsoft launches two free tools to help customers migrate from the 12-year-old Windows XP

Hong Kong, 10 March, 2014 – Microsoft today reminded customers that it will be ending its support for the Windows XP operating system (OS) and Office 2003 on April 8, 2014. This means that there are less than 30 days to go before consumer and enterprise customers actively using Windows XP PCs and Office 2003 are left without security patches and customer support.

After April 8, 2014, Microsoft will no longer provide security updates, hotfixes, nor software patches for Windows XP and Office 2003. There will also not be customer technical service assistance for Windows XP and Office 2003. This means that consumers and businesses that rely on Windows XP will no longer receive the updates that help protect their vital business PCs from harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software. Furthermore, the lack of technical support will result in costly productivity loss for businesses in the event of computer downtime or software compatibility issues.

Announced today is the launch of two new free tools from Microsoft to help customers to migrate from Windows XP as well as a detection software to help users detect the version of the OS in use. As part of our on-going awareness effort, on March 8, 2014 at 3:00 p.m., customers using Windows XP (Home and Professional editions) will receive a notification via Windows Update informing them of the support deadline and encouraging them to visit www.Windows.com to find out more about what the end of support means for them.

  • Free Windows XP migration tool: PCmover Express for Windows XP. Microsoft has partnered with Laplink to provide PCmover Express for Windows XP, which copies a user’s files and settings from a Windows XP PC to a new device running Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1. PCmover Express will be available for download at www.windowsxp.com;
  • Windows OS automatic detection website: AmIrunningXP.com. For customers unsure of what version of Windows they are using, Microsoft is launching AmIRunningXP.com, a site designed to automatically detect if a PC is running Windows XP or a newer version of Windows like Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1. If Windows XP is detected, the site provides links to more information on Windows XP end of support and guidance on how to upgrade to a modern OS.
Old Is Not Always Gold
Old Is Not Always Gold
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Joelle Woo, Director of Marketing and Operations said, ”Windows XP and Office 2003 were widely used and have helped hundreds of millions of people to get productive for both work and play. However, after 12 years, the way people use technology has evolved. Just like you cannot imagine yourself using a mobile phone which is 12 years old, Windows XP and Office 2003 are no longer adequate for the new, always-on world that we live in.”

When Windows XP was launched in October 2001, notebooks were brick-like with short battery life, as well as very expensive. About 8% of the world were using the Internet in 2001 compared to 39% today. We had personal digital assistant (PDA) devices with no access to the internet while the devices we know and love today are touch-enabled and are almost always connected via social tools and apps.

“While internet access brings lots of goodness, it’s also a hotbed for cyber criminals who go where the people go. So it’s really critical that customers who still own or use Windows XP devices recognize that it’s not just about upgrading to something new. This is about protecting your devices from security threats, especially if you are using the internet. Windows XP wasn’t designed for today’s mobile, always-connected lives, or for protecting businesses and individuals from the millions of new online security threats that have emerged,” added Woo.

Many users may brush off these security threats, thinking that malicious software and hackers will never target them. In reality, however, the personal information that we have amassed and shared throughout the years are valuable payloads for hackers. In addition, Microsoft’s latest Security Intelligence Report (Vol. 15) found Windows XP SP3 to be 5.68 times more vulnerable than Windows 8 RTM, along with a staggering 82.4% higher malware infection rate. For SMEs, the average cost of a severe security breach is US$54,000 to US$100,000.

While some third parties are extending support for their products on Windows XP, it is important to note that the effectiveness of these solutions for an out-of-support operating systems is limited. Running a well-protected computer starts with using modern, supported software and hardware designed to help protect against today’s online threats. Our advice is for customers to move from Windows XP to a modern operating system such as Windows 8.1.

To minimize this risk, Windows XP users must upgrade to newer operating systems that not only offer enhanced security features like built-in firewall, anti-virus, and rootkit malware protection. Microsoft’s partners like Lenovo, Dell, HP, Asus and Acer have also continued to innovate new form factors such as tablets and convertibles with a wide range of affordable choices to suit any lifestyle and workstyle. Windows 8.1 is also well-optimized for both touch and non-touch scenarios, supporting the users who prefer to a mouse and keyboard and the users who prefer to use the touchscreens.

Consumers currently running PCs with Windows XP can also purchase Windows 8.1 with media in box set through designated retailers for an estimated retail price of HK$1,369. They are recommended to download and run the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant to check if their PCs meet the system requirements for Windows 8.1.

Microsoft also has a “Get to Modern” upgrade offer to allow enterprise customers’ software to always stay up-to-date for maximized security, productivity and efficiency. Customers can get 20% off when they upgrade to Windows 8.1 Pro.

In addition, together with Office 365, Windows 8.1 offers a faster, safer, more productive and more personal experience that supports your work and personal life – from multi-tasking on Word, PowerPoint, email, while watching videos and listening to music to connecting your friends and families with you.

For more information regarding the migration to newer versions of Windows and new PCs or tablets which meet your needs, please visit www.microsoft.com.hk

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Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.