Windows 7: Should You Upgrade?

by henrytuttle on January 28, 2010

For PC users, it seems that as soon as they get comfortable with a system, a new version is being released. Take Microsoft’s newest release, Windows 7. It was released in October 2009. Human nature is to resist change. And this is why most system users would rather endure a root canal than make the switch – even if it provides more functionality.

So, how do you know if it’s time to upgrade? Here are some questions to ask – and answer.

How old is your Windows version?

Are you a few versions behind, e.g., still using Windows 2000, 98 or NT? If so, it’s definitely time to upgrade. Why? While being one version behind is understandable, to be two or more versions behind could actually be hurting your employee’s productivity. How/why?

There’s a reason that software and application systems are upgraded. In spite of the glitches that come with every version, newer versions do tend to run faster and offer more features, which allow users to complete tasks faster.

Can you effectively interact with clients?

Further, the more outdated your Windows version is, the less you may be able to effectively interact with customers. This is because newer programs often don’t take older versions into consideration, which brings us to the next question . . .

Is your older version supported?

At some point, manufacturers stop supporting older versions. So if there are problems, there’s less (or no) support available to solve them. Again, this goes directly to productivity.

What message are you sending to clients?

If you’re using Windows 2000 and your clients are using Windows 7, what message does this send to them? Probably that you’re out of date, out of touch and/or too small to compete.

Two Reasons to You May Want to Wait to Upgrade to Windows 7

In most cases, being one version behind is okay because your clients probably are as well. For example, if you’re using Windows XP and it’s serving your needs, then it’s probably okay to wait because you’re only one version behind.

Furthermore, you can always fall back on the ideology of wanting to wait for “the kinks to be worked out” before switching. In fact, you may hear some of your clients who upgraded to Windows 7 lament that they wished they’d waited.

Windows XP is probably the most used operating system in the world right now. And with good reason – it’s fulfills the needs of most users and they are comfortable with it. If this is the case for your workforce, hang on to it a little longer before upgrading to Windows 7. Do more research; wait for more “fixes” to come down the pike. Then, when you feel ready – pounce!

Henry Tuttle writes about computing issues and offers advice on IT topics. From offering details on the Windows 7 virtual PC to explaining Citrix printing solutions, he offers valuable advice that is useful for average computer users and business owners.

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