Reasons to Reboot

We get a lot of calls and emails about computers not performing as expected. It’s amazing what a good reboot can do – if you really do it.

Rebooting cleans up a lot of the electronic junk that builds up as you go in and out of applications, open and close files and content from the Internet. Like anything else that piles up, all the electronic junk blocks access to your disk space and RAM (random access memory) for applications, files, email and Internet browsing. After two or three weeks of keeping email programs, applications and files and websites open, you’ve essentially clogged your system’s electronic arteries.

A reboot flushes all that stuff out of your RAM. One way to characterize RAM is that it’s like a pad of notepaper. When you run out, you need to erase some information on the pad or get another pad. Rebooting is like erasing the paper in the notepad. It lets your computer start with a fresh, clean slate when you restart, and in most cases, that solves a lot of performance issues.

We always ask our clients with performance problems if they’ve rebooted their computers, and they invariably say they have. When we get into their systems through remote access, we see something different. When we get into conversations, some people with laptops think that they have rebooted their systems just by closing the lid for a few seconds and then opening it back up. Others, with desktop computers, think that shutting off the monitor reboots the computer.

Unfortunately, neither of those actions will reboot a computer. Here’s what you need to do. First, save all open files and emails and bookmark web pages if you want to retain easy access to them. Then, close all applications. You should do the same with phones and tablets before rebooting them.

For a PC or Windows-based computer running Windows 10, click the Windows icon on the task bar on the lower left side of your monitor and then click on the “start” icon on the left. You’ll have the option to restart the computer, which will reboot it.

For Windows 8, point your mouse to the lower-right corner of the screen, move it up and click Settings. Click Power and then click Restart.

For a Mac, you can follow this simple, 3-step process:

  1. Press the power button (or press Control+Eject) and, when a dialog box appears, click the Restart button.
  2. Choose the Apple key and then click Restart.
  3. Press Control+Command+Eject (or Control+Command+Power button).

For phones and tablets, you can power off the device for 10 to 30 seconds and then power them back on.

For all computers, you can hold the power button until the unit shuts itself off. We consider this a last resort because it stops the system with an electronic jolt. But if nothing else works, this will do it. Let it stay off for 10 to 30 seconds and then restart it.

Sometimes, restarting in “Safe Mode” allows your computer to perform some diagnostics and verify basic systems are in good working order. With a Windows7 computer, press the F8 key when you turn on the computer, and then use the Arrow keys to navigate to “Safe Mode” and hit enter.

Windows 10 is more involved, but it’s not that hard once you get into the routine. Follow these steps:

  1. Click or tap the Start button, and then the Power button. You’ll see a Restart button. Hold down the Shift key when you select Restart
  2. When you get the full-screen menu with six options, select Troubleshoot>Advanced options>Startup Settings.
  3. Click the Restart to begin the reboot. You’ll get to a Startup Settings option.
  4. Use the Arrow key to navigate to Enable Safe Mode or Enable Safe Mode With Networking

For a Mac, immediately press and hold the Shift key. The white Apple logo will appear on your display. Release the shift key when you see the login window.

Because “Safe Mode” limits your computer’s capabilities, we recommend restarting in your regular mode once you see everything is functioning properly.

We recommend you reboot your systems no less than once a week as a preventive measure. It shouldn’t be much of an inconvenience. We still remember when we had to reboot computers several times a day. If your system is still sluggish after a reboot, contact us by phone – 973-433-6676 – or email for a remote diagnostics session.

Rolling Out Windows 10…Rolling Up 7 & 8

If you haven’t chosen to install Windows 10, Microsoft will be making the decision for you – though you will still have the opportunity to roll back to Windows 7 or 8. If you still want to buy Windows 7 or 8 for your computer, Microsoft has set the final purchase dates. Here’s what you need to know.

When Microsoft began rolling out Windows 10, the company invited users to reserve the new operating system. As Microsoft got the new OS ready for computers based on each machine’s manufacturer, it sent each owner a notification that it was ready for download and installation. That’s changing, according to a post by Terry Myerson, executive vice president of windows and devices, Microsoft.

Before the year’s end – which is approaching fast – Microsoft will make Windows 10 an “optional update” for all Windows 7 and 8 users. The kicker comes in 2016.

“Early next year, we expect to be re-categorizing Windows 10 as a ‘Recommended Update,’” Microsoft says. “Depending upon your Windows Update settings, this may cause the upgrade process to automatically initiate on your device. Before the upgrade changes the OS of your device, you will be clearly prompted to choose whether or not to continue. And of course, if you choose to upgrade (our recommendation!), then you will have 31 days to roll back to your previous Windows version if you don’t love it.”

However, the move to Windows 10 is getting harder to avoid. You can read more thoughts by a couple of commentators, such as Gordon Kelly for Forbes and Mary Jo Foley for ZDNet. But here are a couple of things to keep in mind:

  1. Microsoft is proactively installing Windows 10 code on computers to make the process go faster. It won’t spring into action unless you complete the Windows 10 installation process, but it is there – and that could understandably bother some people.
  2. At some point, you will need to make the active decision NOT to install Windows 10.

In my opinion, Windows 10 is big upgrade over 7 and 8 with more speed, security and capability. I encourage all Windows users to install it on their computers. I am not happy about some of Microsoft’s tactics, but I understand the “big picture” strategy behind them. It becomes expensive for them to support outdated software.

With that in mind, Microsoft has set the final purchase dates for OEMs for Windows 7 and 8. For all intents and purposes, Windows 7 has not been available for computers purchased at retail stores, but as a reseller, we are able to get them. We are able to get computers with Windows 7 Professional, but Microsoft has set Oct. 31, 2016 as the cutoff date. For Windows 8, the cutoff date is sooner – June 30, 2016. The final sales day for Windows 8.1 is Oct. 31, 2016.

We have no problem with any client staying with Windows 7 and 8 or 8.1 operating systems – even though we intensely dislike the Windows 8 family. While we strongly urge home and SOHO users to go to Windows 10, we understand that larger business and professional users may have application software tied to 7 and 8. Migrating from those older systems will require planning to make the move efficiently and cost-effectively. We can help you map out a technology plan for the next 12 to 24 months. Call us – 973-433-6676 – or email us to set up a strategy session

Windows 10…Rollin’, Rollin’, Rollin’

Windows 10 is continuing its rollout. If you have a qualified computer, you can upgrade to the new OS for Windows-based computers over the next 11 months or so. We’re seeing a lot of tips and tricks for Win 10 floating around the Internet, and that’s a good sign people are embracing it. Here are some remedies for some concerns.

For the most part, Windows 10 has been working fine for most installations. The biggest early problem we have seen is with application software that has been customized primarily for businesses. In all likelihood, the app software publisher should be the one to update their code to meet the needs of Windows 10. Check with them to see if they have updated their code. If enough customers let them know it’s a need, they’ll get it done to protect their business base, if nothing else. If they don’t do it, start planning for new app software because change is an ongoing process, and you’ll hit serious limitations with an outdated program.

Microsoft is pushing out updates and fixes as other issues are reported, so we don’t think it’s worth waiting for bugs to be corrected. It took less than two weeks for the company to start issuing the cumulative updates, and the new OS is designed to install them automatically.

However, if you want to turn off the automation and choose which updates to install and when to install them, you can select those options. You can also choose to update all Windows 10 computers on a network.

A number of users are concerned about Windows 10’s capability to share passwords for Wi-Fi networks. Again, you can turn off that function.

You can explore all of your options by going to the new Control Panel. Click on Settings and then click on Updates and Security. Then, click on Advanced Options. Choose “How Updates are Installed” and “How Updates are Delivered” customize them to your preferences.

Some problems with Windows 10 have involved drivers. Check with the manufacturers or Windows Updates to see if new drivers are available. They should be there, and everything works fine once you install the new drivers.

While we have seen a lot of complaints about having to pay for some features that used to be free, we’re seeing that many of them involve having to pay for games such as Solitaire. Our reaction: “Come on!”

The more important concern is whether to use Microsoft’s built-in (free) security software. We’ll just remind you that Microsoft is not in the security business. We strongly encourage you to get your security software from providers who specialize in that field.

Again, just to repeat the experience of loading Windows 10 on my son’s computer, all I did was start the process. While it was loading, I ran some errands. When I returned home, all I had to was accept the licensing agreement, and the computer was ready to go.

We know new technology has its quirks, and we know some people can be intimidated by it. We can talk you through some of the issues with a quick phone call – 973-433-6676 – or remote in to help you. We can also answer some of your questions by email. Just let us know how we can serve you.

Windows 10: Our Initial Evaluation

We just installed a test version of Windows 10 on one of our laptops to put it through its paces. Based on first impressions, we like a lot of what we’re seeing – unlike Windows 8.

For our businesses, which need to accommodate a wide range of technical knowledge among their users, getting everyone up to speed will be much faster. While Windows 10 has some features of Windows 8, it has much more in common with Windows 7 and XP.

The new Start menu gets back to the efficiency many users became accustomed to with Windows 7 and XP, beginning with its location at the bottom left corner of the screen. But it will have some of the visual cues from Windows 8 that made that OS more adaptable to tablets and smart phones. You’ll be able to customize the application programs you want to activate from the Start menu by adjusting the size and location of tiles to click and launch. If your computer is set up with a touchscreen, you’ll be able to tap and swipe just like you do on a device. That feature may prove useful for people who go back and forth between computers and devices.

Windows 10 will let you click a button to see all of your open apps and windows, and a black box running along the bottom of the display will prompt you to create a virtual desktop to keep everything you open there as an independent work space. Users who like to run several different types of programs will be able to create separate desktops for each. Business users will be able to create one desktop for specific applications related to one type of business task. Home office users will be able to separate work and personal-use applications, and home users will be able to group all sort of uses such as shopping, entertainment and gaming.

Microsoft will be getting closer to how we work and play in many other areas. It will include Cortana, its virtual assistant, which will be able to run in the background and offer assistance as you browse. That will be more useful on mobile devices, especially if you need something like a review and directions for a restaurant on your browser.

The new Photos app will scan your devices and OneDrive account for photos and arrange them into a giant collection. It will also automatically enhance all of the photos it finds, fixing red-eye and exposure levels if you like. It will be completely optional, and works on raw files, too — if you don’t like a change, you can undo it so you can undo changes without affecting the original file.

These are just some general improvements we like for Windows 10. What are some features or capabilities you’d like to see in the new OS? Let us know by phone – 973-433-6676 – or email. We can see if they’re included and help you access them.

Remember, Microsoft will offer a “free upgrade” from Windows 7 when Windows 10 is released this summer, but as we’ve noted before, the free version is likely intended to get you into a subscription that will automatically update to maintain system performance and security. We can discuss that, too.


‘Free’ Windows 10 Upgrade

Microsoft plans to introduce Windows 10 during the second half of the year – and it’s offering free upgrades for Windows 7 and 8. Free? Well, sort of.

Although nothing is set in cyberstone, early indications are that Microsoft will provide a free upgrade for qualified customers for a year. After that, you may have an option to continue with whatever version you downloaded; buy a copy or sign up for a subscription.

That last possibility may be the way Microsoft will go. The company has been pushing subscription-based software for a long time – at least as far as time is measured in technology – and it seems to be successful. Office 365 is a major part of their business, and when it’s time to upgrade software, Microsoft upgrades Office 365 first.

We like Office 365, and our customers who have subscribed like it. We know email will always work, and we know that all the performance and security updates will be installed. If Windows 10 follows the Office 365 model, we believe it will be a great product, especially for homes, home offices and small businesses.

The upgrade offer will likely apply to Windows-based computers and devices, and that makes sense for Microsoft as the company tries to expand and strengthen its customer base through integration. The company believes that as customers start to learn better how the software works, they will grow to appreciate (or become dependent upon) the innovations and will pay to stay on board with the most up-to-date software available.

So, who may be left out of the free offer? Enterprise users will not qualify for the free upgrade. In not so many words, Microsoft notes that enterprise customers are already on subscription for the service and that they will see the value of maintaining Microsoft across all of their platforms.

Many anti-virus programs and other applications are already available through subscription, and we advise you to take advantage of the benefits. In almost all cases, the subscription works out to be less expensive when you factor in all the benefits of performance and security – especially as hacking becomes more prevalent.

Now would be a good time to start assessing how you can take advantage of Windows 10. Most of the systems on Windows 7 and all of the systems on Windows 8 or 8.1 should be able to migrate to the new OS. We can help you evaluate your current system and see how it can meet your ongoing needs over the next 6 to 24 months. That can help you budget for seamlessly moving forward with your technology. Call us at 973-433-6676 or email us to set up an appointment.

Windows of Opportunity Opening for Microsoft?

Microsoft has announced Windows 10, and it can’t be coming to a computer near you soon enough if you have Windows 8. We believe Microsoft is finally on the right track with a new operating system that creates a cohesive environment across all platforms. Here’s what you can expect.

For home users, you’ll get a lot of the look and feel of Windows XP back – along with the ability to use the tiles of Windows 8 and 8.1. You will be able to upgrade to Windows 10.

Except for one business client, who had no option but to go to Windows 8 because of poor service from a previous support provider, all of our business clients are on Windows 7 – or are surviving with XP. If XP is making your business life intolerable – or difficult – you can upgrade to Windows 7 Professional, which is the version we provide.

We don’t know at this time what upgrades Microsoft will make available for Windows 7 users. We’re hoping they’ll be liberal in their policies because we believe they damaged their reputation and because we believe there are still a lot of Microsoft users out there.

Despite all you hear and read about Apple and the Mac, Windows is still the dominant operating system, but it is a fast-changing world. A lot of what you’ll see in Windows 10 is a refined version of the attempt Microsoft made with Windows 8 to better integrate with the iPhone and iPad worlds. The touchscreen capability was a big part of that strategy, and you can expect to see that continue in Windows-based tablets and phones. We believe many laptop users will migrate toward lighter-weight tablets as they make more use of the cloud and as habits change over time.

Accounting for the timing of habit changes is one reason for Microsoft to upgrade its OS so quickly. A vast majority of business users – as well as many home users – could not easily adapt to the tiles and the lack of the “start” button in the lower left corner of the screen. Windows 10 will restore the “start” button and other familiar navigation cues, and it will help Microsoft integrate with the “swipe” capabilities of device touchscreens. A lot of PC users have iPhones and iPads, but businesses have been reluctant to change complete office systems, and home users have been cost-sensitive. The argument that Macs are virus-free has lost steam as their infection rate has increased.

However, we caution you not to expect to be up and running immediately. Microsoft still needs to work out the bugs that plague any new system. As it stabilizes, we’ll start testing it and begin to formulate our recommendations.

In the meantime, we believe the new OS will be part of other upgrades from Microsoft. These could include a new version of Office – especially Office 365, which we continue to recommend – to remain up to date with software changes and changes in the way the world does business.

We hope Microsoft will push out a new Office for the Mac world, especially with the coming of Yosemite, Apple’s new OS for the Mac. Otherwise, Mac users could migrate to Pages, Keynote and Numbers, the Mac’s version of Word, PowerPoint and Excel. We usually see leaked images of changes such as this, and the rumor mill is churning. In addition to Yosemite, we expect to see a new iPad and the official rollout of Apple Pay.

With so many changes coming and so many possibilities, it’s critical to make sure you plan your technology acquisitions with great care. We can help you plan and budget for your business and home needs and help you phase in and integrate the systems you need to make business and home life efficient. Call us at 973-433-6676 or email us for answers to your questions or to set up an appointment to discuss your needs.


The OS Outlook

Operating System updates are a way of life, but some of them can offer the means to change your technology life.

Apple’s iOS 8 is getting all the attention now because it coincides with the introduction of the iPhone 6 models and the Apple Watch. In our home, we’re using the new OS to monitor and control our kids’ use of their phones and devices, and we’re taking advantage of cool features, such as integrating with our iPads and computers.

Yosemite, the next OS for Apple computers will have similar ties. The net effect will be to put more pieces of the integration puzzle together.

Similarly, Google is looking for more integration with its Android OS for mobile devices and Chrome for laptop and desktop computers. Reports indicate that Android ???L devices will able to tell a Chromebook the user is nearby and have the laptop automatically login — doing away with the password once again. Chrome will also be able to display SMS messages and call details on a Chromebook and warn that your nearby phone is running low on battery.

On the Microsoft side, we’re working hard to get past our issues with Windows 8, which we believe fell short of integrating the tablet look and feel with laptop and desktop computers. We are looking forward to hearing about changes or seeing previews of the next Windows OS – hopefully a new Windows 9.

To counter the problems of Windows 8, we have encouraged clients to buy new computers capable of running Windows 7. We are now hearing rumors that Microsoft will end its support of Windows 7 in January 2015. What that means is that support options will change.

We believe Windows 7 will remain a strong OS. Many companies are still rolling out Windows 7 systems, and we still see more XP operating systems than we care to acknowledge. We continue to recommend migrating from XP to Windows 7 to get better performance and tighter security.

We can help you select and manage devices, computers and operating systems. Drop us an email or call us at 973-433-6676 to discuss your needs.

Windows 8.1 Update – Do it Today!

Did you just install Windows 8.1 on your computer and think you are set? Think again. You need to install Update 1 (like a Service Pack update) Windows 8.1 today in order to get all service updates for that version of the Windows operating system. Here’s why it’s important to act now.

Windows 8.1 Update is a cumulative update to Windows 8.1, containing all the updates Microsoft has released for Windows 8.1. This means that if you install this update, you will not need any earlier updates. And that’s a good thing – because there won’t be any more updates for 8.1 unless you have Update 1. More important, Update 1 is the new servicing baseline for Windows 8.1, which means that May’s security updates and all future updates will be dependent on Windows 8.1 Update.

Today, May 13, Microsoft will issue security patches that detail flaws they are fixing and those flaws will be left unpatched for all Windows 8.1 users until you install Update 1. If you stay with Windows 8.1 and don’t install Update 1, you will face the same problem as Windows XP after Microsoft cut off security updates last month. This is nothing new. Major updates to previous editions of Windows (“Service Packs”) also had “cut-off” dates for users to apply updates. But the XP cutoff came after 13 years, not after just eight months.

Once you install Update 1, you’ll be fine. In fact, you’ll be able to take advantage of some features that should have been in Windows 8 all along.

If you don’t have a touchscreen, Update 1 intelligently goes to the desktop by default on startup or reboot and uses desktop apps by default. It also reduces the sensitivity of hot corners, highlights newly installed apps and dramatically improves the Modern UI for keyboard and mouse users. It also cuts its install size in half (from 32GB to 16GB) on SSDs, runs faster on slower hardware and drops minimum memory requirements from 2GB to 1GB of RAM.

While the results are better, we still believe it changed too much too quickly for businesses with users accustomed to using a keyboard and mouse. The update won’t solve all of our issues, but it will help make them more manageable.

Regardless of your OS, it’s important to keep the software up to date. Updates maintain protection against malware and hackers and help keep your system at peak performance. Having all your software up to date also makes it easier and faster to install new programs and equipment.

We do have some cautions about updates. Make sure you get them from the software publisher to ensure you’re getting the genuine product. Also, don’t click on “extra products,” such as other browsers that you may accidentally set as your default or that may reset your search-engine preference.

If you have any questions about the Windows 8.1 Update 1 or any other updates, contact us right away for help – [email protected] or 973-433-6676. Keeping your OS and other software up to date aids security and keeps your IT system running more smoothly.


Pop-Ups at XP’s 11th Hour

“Hear ye, hear ye,” the Windows town crier is saying. “It’s 11 o’clock for Windows XP, and if you haven’t upgraded or made your upgrade plans, all is NOT well.” The town crier will come in the form of pop-up messages, starting today, that can lead to either a bad solution of operating-system issues or a breach of your security. If you want to eliminate annoying pop-ups and their consequences, you need to replace your XP OS with a new one that will meet your needs and avoid the ultimate pop-up problem.

Security of your data – and likely your identity – will be your biggest problem if you remain on XP. As soon as Microsoft stops issuing security updates, hackers will swing into action. They will have had a month to crack the last security patches, and they have all the time you give them to further their exploitation of your vulnerabilities. Their clock will stop ticking when you stop using XP.

In the meantime, the ticking – in the form of pop-ups – could drive you batty and lead to a security breach before the end of XP’s support. The pop-ups from Microsoft will direct you to the company’s web pages for Windows 8, which we believe is not good for businesses. Your annoyance level is sure to increase, but the worst consequences will come after you let your guard down and click on any of the many hacker redirects that are sure to come.

We all click on pop-ups at some point without really knowing to where they are redirecting us. In essence, these links are no different than bank and credit-card scam links that try to get you to enter sensitive information. Once a scammer has you unknowingly at their website, they likely will be in your network – with access to all the information stored on computer drives and servers.

If you move away from Windows XP ASAP, you’ll have no more pop-ups and one fewer set of security worries.

In addition to the annoying pop-ups and security vulnerabilities with XP, you’re going to lose operating efficiency. The newer operating systems are suited for the newest programs you use for business and home. As Microsoft ends XP support, it ends support for Office 2003. But if you try to use Office 2003 with a newer operating system, you’ll find it just doesn’t have the same capabilities. Any perceived savings from not investing in OS and software upgrades will be quickly eaten up by operating inefficiencies.

One more note, this one on timing. You need to allow time for ordering and taking delivery of computers with a Windows 7 OS. You cannot buy them off the shelf at your favorite retailer. Major manufacturers may have some computers in stock, but a late rush could wipe out their inventories, pushing delivery back considerably – even with expedited shipping – and leaving you exposed. You could buy new computers with Windows 8 installed, but businesses will not be happy. The OS’s totally different look and feel will bog down operations.

So, if you haven’t done anything yet, we advise to contact us right away (phone: 973-433-6676 email: [email protected]) to set up a plan and a schedule to move from XP. Here are some options, in order of preference:

Replace Your Computers with Windows 7 Machines

We can get them, and we can get them in quantities from 1 to 10. We can best help you by not only determining how many computers you need but what you will need each one to do. Some users in an office will require more computing capability, meaning faster, more expensive machines. We can help you get a computer that matches each user’s needs and avoid overpaying.

Replace Your Software – or Phase in What You Can’t’ Do Now

While it would be preferable to get all new software to take advantage of more speed and capability, you may need to phase in transitions. We can analyze your new computers and the capabilities of your current software to determine which programs should be upgraded first. This will give you the opportunity to perform your most critical tasks with the most up-to-date systems and minimize the consequences of having to take fast action in less-than-ideal conditions.

Business and home users can lower their out-of-pocket expenses or manage cash flow better by subscribing to Office 365. Microsoft offers a number of plans, but basically, you get a subscription that includes a number of licenses that cover computers and devices. We discussed this in detail last month, and we’ll be happy to review your options with you.

Switch to Mac

We would only recommend this for home users and some SOHO businesses with one or two users. While we love Macs – and fully support them, there are a couple of major issues. First, most of the robust programs for business applications are written for Windows-based computers. In many cases, Windows versions are better when you have programs that run on both platforms. Second, you will need to train everyone in your office on the Mac, and that could present the same issues as switching to Windows 8.

Ideally, you should replace all of your XP computers and business software at the same time, but in the real world, we know it’s not possible for everyone. However you choose to approach the end of XP, contact us right away to help you (phone: 973-433-6676 email: [email protected]). The clock is ticking, but it’s more like a time bomb that is going to go “boom” very soon.

This article was published in Technology Update, the monthly newsletter from Sterling Rose LLC.

Microsoft Matters

We use the word “matters” as a noun and a verb. In the matter of Windows XP and Windows 7 and Microsoft’s OS odyssey, migrating to 7 still makes the most sense. Despite all the chatter about Windows 8 upgrades and moving to Linux, Microsoft remains the dominant OS in the PC world for many reasons.

OS performance aside, Microsoft has done a great job of penetrating the market. Despite all the Apple devotees, the vast majority of businesses and government agencies (from national to municipal) run on Windows, and they have hundreds of millions of computers. Hundreds of millions of iOS and Android mobile devices tie themselves to the networks that tie together all those computers.

With the end of the XP operating system plainly in sight – April 8, 2014 is the day Microsoft pulls the plug – we see migrating to Windows 7 as the only viable option for our PC-based clients. Here’s why:

  • Linux is simply too cumbersome for home, SOHO, small business and mid-size business use. Yes, it has great flexibility, and because it’s open software, anybody can add great new features and upgrades at any time. But there’s a downside to all of this.Home and SOHO users may not have the technical knowledge to install, configure and use Linux software and upgrades. A few users may like the hobby aspect of playing with Linux, but if you are running a business from your home, you probably don’t want to mix business and play time.For businesses, you’ll just spend way too much time and money training and retraining employees. You need to assess how many of your employees have the ability to absorb all of the training and if you have the ability to absorb the loss of efficiency as they navigate the learning curve. For the most part, you didn’t hire them to become geeks.
  • Everybody knows Windows, especially the straightforward XP and 7 systems. In addition, many business applications from accounting to manufacturing operations are written for commonly used interfaces. That means Microsoft Windows – along with Apple and the common iOS and Android devices.
  • Better business software and upgrades will continue to be written for Windows. Why? It’s basic business: Everyone uses it, creating a lot of profit opportunities. Highly popular consumer programs and apps will continue to be written for Windows for the same reason.

If you are a small to mid-size business, we believe it’s imperative to migrate to Windows 7. Besides tax advantages for acting now (See 1040 Over and Out), you need to stay on the good side of the law – the law of supply and demand. Right now, Windows 7 computers are available, and prices are stable. But as we get closer to April 8, 2014, any increase in demand can rapidly deplete supplies; that’s a prime condition for rising prices. Even if supplies are stable, a sense of urgency can trigger a price increase. On top of that, the available IT resources to install, configure and test systems will be strained. You could wait longer for service, or it could become more expensive, especially if you lose production at an inopportune time.

Our solution? Call us (973-433-6676) or email us to assess your technology needs and develop a schedule to get your new systems up and running in a timely and efficient manner. Microsoft matters, and it really matters that you resolve any issues as quickly and effectively as possible.

This article was published in Technology Update, the monthly newsletter from Sterling Rose LLC.