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Data Protection: The end of an era - 7 things every Windows XP user should know

JackieSu ‎04-23-2014 07:10 AM - edited ‎02-20-2015 12:37 PM

By now, everyone must have heard that support for Windows XP ended on April 8, 2014.


This means, Microsoft will no longer offer the security upgrades that protect XP users from newly emerging viruses, spyware, and other malware.  


Experts, including those at Microsoft, warn that consumers who failed to migrate to a newer OS before the deadline will expose their systems to hackers eager to exploit XP’s vulnerabilities.  


Are you still on the fence? 

What I am saying is move off Windows XP sooner than later.  As stated earlier, XP machines are now more vulnerable to hacking or widespread industrial espionage. Organized cyber criminals are bound to cash in on XP security vulnerabilities on all XP machines.  Also, keep in mind that even third-party security programs have begun to drop support for XP users.


You won’t be able to get upgrades for Windows XP-based applications, drivers, or resolve XP-related issues via normal support channels.  As time goes on, it will be increasingly more expensive and painstakingly slow to maintain the legacy XP system.


Use this step-by-step checklist to make the transition and upgrade now:


STEP 1:  Decide whether you will move to a new PC/laptop or upgrade to a new OS with your existing machine

If your current computer is still in good shape, make sure that it’s compatible with the new operating system you purchase. The system requirements page on Microsoft’s website is the first place to check.


STEP 2:  Backup your Windows XP machine before doing anything else

Whether you are getting a new computer or continuing on with the old one, back up your XP system right away.


STEP 3: Choose the right backup tool

A copy-and-paste job of files in Windows Explorer is not sufficient. Windows XP is a complex operating system with data and configurations such as bookmarks, favorites and system settings that you likely are not aware of.


STEP 4: Back up everything to a secure cloud

Cover your bases with a full backup. And for Pete’s sake, back your system up to a secure cloud (and you’ll see why on step 5).  You never know what you'll need until you need it.


STEP 5: Restore all your files to the new system at your own pace

Now that you have backed everything up to a secure cloud, the moment you log in to your brand new system, you will be able to access all of your data right away.  You do not have to suffer any downtime or lose any productivity due to the data migration.  How cool is that?


STEP 6: Don’t throw away your old backups

As tempting as it may be, do not discard your Windows XP backup. You may need to access a file or folder in two months—or three years, you never know.


STEP 7: Keep backing up

In no time, you’ll be storing photos, music, videos and other digital memories on your new OS. That’s data, too—some of it undoubtedly irreplaceable. Protect that data with regular backups. If you drop that new laptop or spill coffee on the keyboard, backups are the only way to recover your precious digital life. PCs are replaceable; memories are not.


HP Connected Backup is the right backup tool for the job.  Check it out at




For more from this author, don’t miss:

Data Protection: Top 3 Pitfalls to Avoid When Migrating from Windows XP

Data Protection: How BYOD and falling in love with your mobile device causes IT headaches

Data Protection: Ten Must-Haves in a Cloud Service Provider

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About the Author


Su serves as Director of Product Marketing for HP Connected Backup and LiveVault, and has more than 20 years of experience in enterprise software including SaaS, data protection, and information management & governance. She is based in Northern California.

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