Changing of the Guard

It is August 2001: if you were like me you were probably waiting in line to see the latest blockbuster hit, “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.” The artistic stylings of Kevin Smith are just too irresistible. The only thing that would have made that film better would be a little Costanza, but I digress. August 2001 was also the introduction of Windows XP, the operating system most of us have been using for nearly a decade. Longevity is a great thing, but Microsoft would like to change this.

This “All Tech Considered” piece on NPR last week highlighted why Microsoft isn’t content with your computer being stuck in a world with Kevin Smith as Silent Bob:

Microsoft packed up its bags and moved on a while back — XP is now two iterations away from Windows 7, the current Microsoft OS — but getting companies off XP hasn’t been easy. It’s been around since 2001, making it positively fossil-like in computer years, but companies (including this one) continue to balk at the expense and possible pain of upgrading the OS.

Still, “It’s just a fact of life that we can only milk a cow for so long,” analyst David Cappuccio told a recent conference.

Choking off supply is an effective way to eventually force the issue. Companies have been slower to upgrade their PCs than in the past, but computers eventually go the way of all mechanical things.

Re-striping sleek new PCs with the old operating system is simply going to make less and less sense, even if the IT department has a perfectly good site license. There’s something that just seems wrong about installing XP on, say, a computer with a six-core processor. It’s like strapping a jet engine on a bicycle — technically, everything might work, but you wouldn’t really recommend it.

Basically, Microsoft would like to see your computer enter a world where Smith is a guy complaining about an airline’s size requirements…or maybe not. All kidding aside, how will this farm-out of XP affect your organization, or has it already occurred? We look forward to your insights below.

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