Microsoft Facing Windows XP Migration Crisis

Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft recently announced a 15 per cent price cut on Windows 8 for businesses looking to move away from Windows XP. However, experts are now saying that Microsoft faces a tough task in trying to move everyone off the aging operating system (OS).

Microsoft's "extended support" window for Windows XP ends on April 8, 2014. That gives the firm almost a year to shift between 30 and 40 per cent of all computer users away from the OS. (Source:

Large Firms Slow to Spend Cash

But Betty Junod, director of desktop product marketing at US-based VMware, says that will be a near-impossible task.

The problem: there are still many large companies using Windows XP. For them, moving to something new will be very time-consuming and expensive.

"Our studies have shown that large enterprises have made the least progress in migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7, with 64% yet to complete their migration," Junod said. (Source:

Even when it comes to mid-sized companies, Junod estimates that at least half continue to use Windows XP.

Gary Schare, president and chief operating officer at Browsium, agrees that Microsoft faces a significant challenge in convincing large firms to give up on XP.

"[The] easy Windows 7 migrations [have] already [been] done," Schlare said. "What's left are the difficult and expensive migrations facing the largest of enterprises." (Source:

Banks, Hospitals Still on XP: Expert

Schlare said that you can include banks, hospitals, and government agencies as examples of businesses and organizations "stuck" on their migration away from Windows XP.

Not helping the situation, according to Schlare: tight budgets and an ongoing economic recession that has left many large firms hesitant to spend 'rainy day' cash.

"In these tough economic times, it is not surprising that business leaders do not want to invest a substantial amount of money in something that essentially isn't broken, as is the case with Windows XP today," noted Adrian Foxall of UK-based migration firm Camwood.

What's clear is that many of these firms will not be using Windows 7 or Windows 8 by April 2014.

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