Windows 8.1 End of Life How to plan for and replace your outdated PC

If you are still running Windows 8.1, then you may have noticed the new full-screen pop-up warning you that ‘end of life’ is advancing. Upgrading to Windows 10 couldn’t be easier. In this article, I’m going to take you through the process of how to upgrade your Windows 8.1 software securely.

Windows 8 Start Screen

Why is Windows 8.1 coming to its end of life?
Everything has its time and for Windows 8.1 the final curtain will close in January 2023. We have already said goodbye to Windows 8 back in 2016 and now it is the turn of its update which first came out in 2013.

Of course, all things come to an end and Windows 8.1 has had a good run. Whilst it wasn't the longest serving update, Windows did promise a 10-year service plan.

Think about it, how we use our tech has changed greatly since 2013 and with more and more people choosing to work either hybrid or fully remote roles it means our device activity has changed too. Then there is the emergence of apps. Microsoft wants to centre their focus on Windows 10 and 11 instead, where they feel the user experience and safeguarding are much more suited to the way we use tech in 2022.

End of life means that Windows 8.1 will no longer be supported by Microsoft and there will be no more security updates.

Any computer still on Windows 8.1 will be getting on a fair bit now, after all, Windows 8.1 is 10 years old and Windows 10 was released in 2015. Now it’s time to plan your replacement PC.

What happens to Windows 8.1 in January 2023 
Computers running Windows 8.1 will not stop working in January 2023, however, they would no longer be considered secure because they are unsupported. Developers of other applications will soon stop supporting Windows 8.1 too, continuing to run it puts you at greater risk of cyber security problems and the loss of productivity.

For example, if you use Windows 365 on your 8.1 operating system, then support for that too will cease in 2023. So now is the time to consider how to upgrade safely and securely.

How to plan for and replace your outdated PC

  1. Research - Start this process by looking at what you have across your business today and what you think you will need moving forward. Once you have this in mind it's time to start looking at the PCs on offer and the costs of programmes (including cloud options) you’ll likely need to buy licences for or subscribe to.
  2. Budgeting - New purchases can put a strain on your cash flow, so now is the perfect time to make sure you budget for what you need to spend across your business. This will allow you to work through the offers available to you.
  3. Select your hardware and software choices
  4. Sort through your file storage - It’s crucial that when you discard an older PC, you prepare to back up the files you need to migrate to new hardware. The best place to start is to go through your files and see what you really need, discarding the rest. This will save you plenty of space on your new hard drive!
  5. Back up all hard disk files on your old PC(s) - An often forgotten piece of advice is backing up your files. A great way to do this is to use a remote hard drive with a USB port, which will allow you to upload files to your new computer seamlessly.
  6. Boot up your new PC, install Windows and your extra software
  7. Migrate your backup files to your new PC

Need an expert to do this all for you? Contact us for a consultation and we’ll have you upgraded across your business in no time!

We will also make sure your new hardware and software are fully secure.

Westway IT

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