Your days with Windows XP are numbered. They are so numbered that we warned you in these pages nearly four years ago that the time had come to move away from Microsoft's then aging OS to Windows 7. But here it is, two weeks away from the XP support cutoff date, including security updates.
So if you don't upgrade your computers and believe Microsoft's many warnings, you'll be like Little Red Riding Hood in a forest full of wolves, while coated in duck fat and suitable for frying. You're toast. Worse, you're also lawsuit bait because no court in the land will understand why you didn't move to a secure environment with all of this warning.
Fortunately, Microsoft has come to lead you out of the woods and protect you from the wolves. This may be your last chance to take the road to safety. And just in case the reason you haven't made the move is because of cost, Microsoft is sweetening the pot so that even your CFO will go along with the change.
What Microsoft is doing through the Microsoft Store, is offering $100 off the price of a new PC running a new version of Windows if you'll just switch. All you have to do is show that you're still running XP and then buy a new PC costing $599 or more. Microsoft will also include 90 days of premium support for your new computer and free data transfer from your XP machine to the new one.
Proving to Microsoft that you're still running XP is fairly easy. You either need to log in to the Microsoft Store on-line using your XP computer and then navigate to the page to buy the new one. The choices include all-in-one machines, Surface Pro 2 tablets, ultrabooks and business laptops. You can also visit a physical Microsoft store with your old XP machine, buy the new one, then let Microsoft do the data transfer. Microsoft will even recycle the old machine for you so you won't be tempted to keep using that annoyingly reliable old machine, or worse, install Linux on it.
It's important to stress that this offer isn't just for consumers. A Microsoft spokesperson told eWEEK that businesses aren't excluded from this offer. You can choose from a variety of business computers that are part of this offer as well as devices intended for consumers.
The fact that you have to order the new PC from the XP computer you're replacing or bring it to a Microsoft Store means that companies with large numbers of XP machine will have to find some other way to upgrade. But for small businesses or those that include laptops and tablets in their BYOD plans can take advantage of this offer easily enough.