Managing Windows XP® end of life

Windows XP® background

As announced several times, Microsoft stopped supporting the Windows XP® operating system on April 8, 2014. Windows XP® users will no longer receive software updates or tech support from Microsoft, although the company announced earlier this year that it will continue to provide virus warnings for Windows XP® until 14 July 2015. (Windows Server 2003 server operating system will also reach its end-of-life in July 2015.)

Risks to consider

Microsoft is recommending Windows XP® users to upgrade to Windows 7 or 8, but this involves costs for new operating system software, and could also require investment in new hardware since the PCs (or other hardware devices) that have been used run Windows XP® for some years may be incompatible with the latest Windows operating systems.

Computers using Windows XP® after the end-of-life date could become more vulnerable to security risks and viruses, in addition, Windows XP® users will find new software and hardware which is optimized for more current Windows operating systems, so that greater numbers of apps and devices may not work with Windows XP®.

Windows XP® end-of-life presents some critical risks to the safe management of assets and plants operating on Windows XP®-based solutions, a situation that also affects ABB automation and control systems.

ABB can help you

For our customers using Windows XP®, ABB has two solutions to help eliminate or mitigate the end-of-life risk.

ABB’s recommendation - Evolution: By far the best solution is to see this as an opportunity to upgrade your existing ABB automation system with new ABB products and application software. ABB has defined a product support life cycle policy for its control systems and products to help our customers’ predict support for their automation assets. This policy then forms the basic lifecycle management foundation for ABB’s Automation Sentinel program. This program enables you to evolve the existing system in accordance with your plant and business requirements, while maximizing your return on previous investments made in the system.

A temporary solution with PC Refresh: For those customers who prefer a temporary solution first, we have created PC Refresh. Given the enormity of budget challenges facing our customers, we offer a way to replace a single node or an entire system with new hardware that maintains the functional operation of the system and is capable of running Microsoft operating systems compatible with your installed ABB software products.

ABB can also provide on-site project coordination and installation services as per your service contract.

Please do not hesitate to contact your local ABB office to receive more information.

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