As Microsoft prepares to pull the plug on support for Windows XP SP2, a move that stops the release of security updates for that operating system, research firm Gartner is urging businesses to start planning and testing Windows 7 this year with a plan to completely eliminate Windows XP by the end of 2012.
“Gartner believes that organizations need to get Windows XP out before Microsoft ends support for it in April 2014, and if possible, they should eliminate it by the end of 2012 when new versions of many applications are not expected to support XP, and independent software vendors (ISVs) will increasingly eliminate XP support,” the research firm said in a note to businesses.
Microsoft plans to drop support for Windows XP SP2 on July 13 this year. Businesses still on this version of the nine-year-old operating system should upgrade to Service Pack 3 or to Windows 7 as soon as possible to continue receiving security patches.
It’s important to note that extended support for Windows 2000 will also be retired on July 13, 2010. After that time, Microsoft will no longer provide security or any other updates for Windows 2000.