Category Archives: News

XP lives on, often in some scary places!

We recently read a slightly alarming story (for which read ‘absolutely terrifying story’) regarding the company that runs the Fukushima nuclear power plant, (which suffered an ecologically disastrous triple meltdown in 2011).
  As it turns out, TepCo, (Tokyo Electric Power Co) is attempting to save money by delaying the upgrade of 48,000 of its PCs from XP. According to this article TepCo has been using XP-based PCs to run computers at Fukushima. 
  The implication of this article is clear – by leaving its computers on an antiquated system such as XP, TepCo may potentially be leaving itself open to hacking. And who knows what the consequences of that could be…
  There’s such a thing as ‘ambulance chasing’, and we’re not a fan. But nevertheless this highlights an alarming trend; that an incredible number of places are still on XP. 
  Even in very small ways you still see the unexpected ubiquity of XP wherever you go: Walk through a railway station and – wow – there’s a blue screen of death, hanging sideways on a billboard. Pay for your groceries and – wallop – there’s an XP-based POS staring you in the face.
  Being cynical, if half of our transport companies and retail firms haven’t got it together to upgrade from their various versions of XP, why should anyone be surprised if nuclear power plants are still on the ageing platform?
  Of course, this story also suggests that TepCo hasn’t undergone the appropriate degree of consultancy. The first port of call is to identify which computers involve mission or safety-critical systems, and prioritise migrations. Money may be tight, but it should never be *that* tight.

Microsoft puts the final nail in XP’s coffin

In one more month, Windows XP will officially be celebrating’s its first full year in retirement. Yes, for almost a whole year now, XP has been shuffling around the IT old folks home, presumably playing bingo with Netscape and winning arm-wrestling contests against its old pal Windows 98.
Yet despite this upcoming anniversary, it remains a worrying fact that more than 15% of the world’s computers continue to run Windows XP as their primary operating system. While it’s fair to assume that a good handful of these machines are being maintained by sentimental (if not unwise) individuals, the fact is that far more are being run as part of a larger enterprise operation. This is a dangerous game for any business to be playing, placing both their security and their customers’ data at risk.
This said however, the majority of enterprises are now paying out for Microsoft’s extended support option – at least until they get their apps migrated to Windows 7, 8 or 10. For the last year this has proved a sensible – if not costly – approach. Still, left with few alternatives, it was a price that most businesses were willing to pay.
Unfortunately however, following rumours from Microsoft last week, it looks like this cost is finally about to outweigh the benefits.
Yes, it appears that XP’s charming retirement home is planning on doubling its fees. According to this report on ComputerWorld, Microsoft is about to increase the cost of its extended support renewal from $200 a device to $400 a device – a staggering increase for any enterprise still hoping to cling to the out-dated OS.
For some in the market, this increase has been viewed as nothing more than a last-ditch attempt for Microsoft to squeeze more money out of the end of XP. Personally, we at Camwood think this is unlikely. If anything, the tech giant is playing a far longer and potentially smarter game.
The truth is that with each passing month Microsoft grows less patient with the ever shrinking community still clinging onto Windows XP. For them, as the number of large enterprise using the OS decreases, the time involved in maintaining post-life support grows increasingly costly – both in terms of development time and developer salaries. As a result, Microsoft is as desperate as anyone to move the remaining 15% away from Windows XP – especially if they can be convinced to switch to a similar Microsoft-based platform such as Windows 7 or 10.
From this perspective, it’s clear that the new pricing strategy is not some sinister ‘money grab’, but rather a forceful incentive for companies to abandon XP. Still, for the 14-year-old operating system that refuses to quit, will this decision prove the final nail in the coffin? Or is there still life in the OS yet? Only time will tell.

Change is the ‘new normal’: Industry report reveals IT priorities in a post-XP world

  • Independent survey of 250 IT Decision Makers from large companies detects widespread angst over the accelerating pace of change in IT
  • In the wake of XP migration, the majority of IT decision makers recognise that they need to adapt to respond to change in a faster, more agile way
London, UK – 8th April 2014  – Today a new report from rationalisation experts Camwood reveals that, in the wake of recent XP migrations, and with the accelerating pace of change in the IT department, IT Directors and Managers now see near constant change and migration projects as the new norm in the near future: Coping with this change has now become a primary concern for IT departments. Camwood’s report, ‘After the big XP migration: What now?’, (the successor to 2013’s ‘The end of XP – one year to go’), polled 250 IT Decision Markers (ITDMs) from UK enterprises with over 2,000 employees. According to this report 90% of IT Decision Makers believe that the pace of change in IT is accelerating, and that this presents a significant challenge. 72% find the pace of change in IT ‘unsettling’. 93% also agree that, in the new IT environment, a flexible IT infrastructure is key to their organisation’s success, with 79% believing that IT departments that don’t adapt risk demise. When asked what types of projects were driving this need for business agility, 65% cite big data projects, 50% mention cloud services, 44% compliance-related projects and 41% BYOD. In terms of how ITDMs perceived that users would drive change, 51% cited the desire for remote working as a major driver, 43% a desire for productivity gains, and 24% the desire amongst users for consumer-like environments. Over half of UK ITDMs perceive that the IT department will follow a centralised shared services approach within the next three years, with 17% envisioning a decentralised function with each business unit supporting its own IT function. Perhaps most interestingly, 69% of IT decision makers believe that the role of the CIO may fundamentally change or be eradicated in favour of a different kind of role in the next five years. “The death knell of Windows XP probably marks the last great ‘monolithic’ migration event,” Commented Adrian Foxall, CEO of Camwood. “The near future, as most ITDMs recognise, is basically going to be an accelerated version of what we’ve seen in the last couple of years. The new norm will be constant, successive change, due to ever-closer OS releases, and rapidly changing IT strategies and delivery methods. IT departments must be quick to react to this brave new world. Those who fail will rapidly fall by the wayside.” Camwood’s has made its whitepaper available to download for free here. About research: On 6-14th February 2013, Vision Critical conducted an online survey among 250 randomly selected British IT decision makers in companies of over 2,000 employees. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

Only 400 days to the end of XP – are you ready?

If your business is still using XP, then now’s the time to act. From April 8th 2014 Microsoft will end support of XP. From this date Microsoft will no longer offer any kind of support for XP, including crucial security updates. The good news is that a recent survey carried out by Camwood revealed that 85% of all senior IT decision makers are now aware that support for XP is running out. What’s shocking is that only 68% of that number has actually started their migration – with 1 in 10 planning to keep using XP despite the risks. If you haven’t yet started the process and unless you complete your migration within the next 400 days, your business-critical data will be left open to corruption, infection, theft or exploitation. It’s a serious issue (and 400 days isn’t as long as you think), so it’s something you need to address soon. Fortunately, here at Camwood, we know a thing or two about fast, efficient migrations that will make things easier. We’re here to help. As application rationalisation and migration specialists, Camwood has helped a huge number of companies complete their migration in good time. Migration is a vital step if you want to secure your valuable data, but companies hesitate to act as the process can seem expensive and time consuming. By working with Camwood you can enjoy a seamless migration that will keep your costs down and won’t interfere with the day-to-day running of your business. Contact us today and choose a time that’s good to talk.

The countdown starts today! With 500 days to go, businesses must prepare for the end of XP

  • Camwood today starts its official ‘end of XP’ countdown campaign
  • At this milestone date Camwood points out that “the end of XP support is a potential time bomb, and the clock is ticking.”
LONDON, 23rd November 2012 – Today marks 500 days until Microsoft officially switches off the lights for Windows XP, its longest-running and most-popular operating system. Yet businesses all over the world are still using XP, and hundreds of thousands of business-critical legacy apps are still dependant on this operating system. Unless these businesses have migrated within the next 500 days, their business-critical data will be left increasingly open to corruption, infection, theft or exploitation. April 8th 2014 is Microsoft’s official end date for support of XP. From this date Microsoft will no longer provide any form of support for XP, including crucial security updates. All companies currently running XP are being encouraged to move to Windows 7 or Windows 8. “A lot of companies are worried about the transition off XP and are fast running out of time to get there. But this needn’t be the case. Camwood has helped a huge number of companies complete their migration in good time,” said Kevin Gemmel, Head of Professional Services at Camwood, “” “Microsoft believes 50% of enterprise desktops are running Windows 7. Other assessments put the number much lower. Whatever the true number, there is still a huge number of companies that need to migrate. The end of XP support is a potential time bomb, and the clock is ticking. With all the potential compatibility and security issues looming from legacy systems, businesses need to understand migration is a necessary step to secure their valuable data.” With 500 days to go to this point, Camwood, the application rationalisation and migration specialists, now starts its official ‘Countdown to the End of XP’ campaign: Camwood intends to mark-off significant milestones over the next year-and-a-bit, issuing information to help businesses through the final days of XP. For more information, get in touch today!