10 Best Practices for Migrating From Windows 7 to Windows 10

Microsoft is ending support of Windows 7 in early 2020, meaning companies need to make plans now to ensure a successful migration to the Windows 10 operating system.

Complex migrations such as these are why so many companies turn to Primary Support Systems for IT support in Toronto

Why Migration Is Necessary

Microsoft has announced it will stop issuing updates and security patches for its Windows 7 operating system as of January 14, 2020. While Windows 7 will continue to operate, any companies using Windows 7 after that date are opening themselves up to considerable risk.

Security patches and upgrades often include defenses or structural changes designed to address emerging security threats. Without these new improvements, companies will be much more susceptible to attacks that could hijack computer systems or steal data.

That’s why it’s critical to reach out for IT support that Toronto businesses need. Here are 10 tips for completing a successful migration from Windows 7 to Windows 10.

1. Choose the Windows 10 Release

There are multiple options today for Windows 10 versions. You’ll need to choose the right product for your organization. There are three versions:

  1. Windows Insider Program (WIP). Let’s your business be an early adopter of new features
  2. Long Term Servicing Channel. Used for devices that have a fixed function, such as point-of-sale devices and kiosks. Not intended for desktops
  3. Semi-Annual Channel. The most common solution for businesses, with a release every 18 months

You’ll also want to be sure that you understand the capabilities and demands for updates and how they will be managed, such as via a provider of IT support Toronto businesses rely on like Primary Support Systems.

2. Check Your Applications

Be sure that the applications your company relies upon are compatible with Windows 10. While most commercially popular software titles are compatible, any applications developed internally need to undergo rigorous compatibility testing to ensure your business can operate post-conversion.

3. Assemble the Right Team

Your project team needs a strong internal or external project manager, technical lead, application developer and representatives from key business units. Networking, help desk and IT security experts should also be included.

4. Create a Test Environment

A test lab is a virtual sandbox that can be used to test whether your applications and processes are operating properly in the new operating system before the solution is deployed for real.

5. Invest in User Training

While there are many familiar functions in Windows 10 compared to Windows 7, your employees will need time to learn how to do their work, discover the new features and capabilities, and ask questions. Changes in the Start menu, Control Panel and wireless networks are among the key changes that users need to learn.

6. Reduce Complexity

Too many business systems include custom configurations, add-ons and customizations, often designed as work-arounds. With a migration, it’s the ideal time to simplify your system configuration.

7. Contain Applications

Simplify your application provisioning by separating your applications from your OS. It’s a best practice and creates both flexibility and freedom in app delivery and usage.

8. Build and Follow Your Project Plan

An experienced, neutral project manager allows for the creation and execution and project plan that includes all the key components, from communication to workflows to deployment to training.

9. Choose an Approach

There are multiple deployment options, including:

  • PC Refresh. Purchase new PCs for the organization
  • In-Place Upgrade. Works well when there are no legacy apps or configurations that are not addressed
  • Re-Imaging. Restore the computers to a previous state with a wipe and installation
  • Virtual Desktop Infrastructure. Ideal for those areas with high levels of standardization, such as call centers

10. Choose the Right Partner

When in need of IT support in Toronto, businesses turn to Primary Support Systems. Our computer integration, project management and managed IT services deliver the peace of mind and reliability your company needs for success. To schedule a free, initial no-obligation consultation about your IT needs, contact us today.

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