What is End of Life?
Microsoft products receive five years of Mainstream support and five years of extended support for all of its Windows releases. During Mainstream support Microsoft provides regular and free security updates and product patches. When a product reaches the end of its mainstream support cycle it will enter a further Extended support phase. During this phase security updates and product patches remain free for the product, however some other updates are only supplied on a paid basis and require a separate hotfix agreement.
List of products reaching end of support in January 2020;
Exchange Server 2010 (all editions)
Dynamics NAV 2009 R2
Expression Blend 3
Expression Design 3
Expression Encoder 3
Microsoft Expression Studio 3
Expression Web 3
Hyper-V Server 2008
Hyper-V Server 2008 R2
Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5
Windows Server 2008 R2
Windows Server 2008
Windows Server Update Services 3.0
System Centre Data Protection Manager, version 1807
System Centre Operations Manager, version 1807
System Centre Orchestrator, version 1807
System Centre Service Manager, version 1807
System Centre Virtual Machine Manager, version 1807
What does this mean for me?
End of Life support for affected Windows operating systems and applications means Microsoft will no longer be issuing security updates for those products
Cyber crime is an ever increasing risk in all aspects of IT communication and it is a company’s legal obligation under GDPR to take all reasonable steps to protect systems.
This should be a multi-level approach using security products such as Kaspersky, Sophos and Malwarebytes, however, the base level must be using current versions of operating systems and applications which receive regular updates when relevant.
Third Party Applications
Suppliers of application software such as Pegasus and Sage update their products in line with Microsoft supported products and therefore expect their users to conform to the same policy.
Can I continue to use unsupported products?
The answer to this is yes if it still works for you, and you are prepared to continue to take the risk.
However, like not paying insurance, there is no problem until there is a problem.
Institutions such as Banks and Insurance companies have absolutely no sympathy in these situations.
A further consideration is that company auditors are increasingly including adherence to GDPR in their audit reports.
What Should I Do?
It is time to begin planning now, if you haven’t already. Upgrading or replacing devices is always a costly exercise so a planned and managed roll out for critical systems over time may lessen the strain.
We would strongly recommend reviewing your system. If hardware is not an issue, then migrating to a new operating system on affected machines where possible may reduce cost. If this is not possible then the option to replace the machines is advisable.
If you are unsure of whether you will be affected, here is a list that Microsoft have published which specifies which products are reaching the end of life and their end of support date.
End of Life Product List
Also for a more comprehensive investigation, a Product Life Cycle Search.
Product Lifecycle Search
Here at PM IT Systems we can help with the transition in order to minimise interruption to your business. If you need help reviewing your system, or just aren’t sure, call us on 0151 678 1387 or alternatively send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will help!