It's 12 years since Microsoft's Windows XP launched and on 8th April this year, support for the operating system will come to an end.

Windows XP's End of Life comes as no surprise; but many businesses are still to upgrade. According to figures, Windows XP still has nearly 30 per cent desktop market share. This places it only behind Windows 7, which has around 50 per cent.

What is the Enterprise impact?

After 8th April, Microsoft will no longer support XP, and there will be no more patches or updates. For those who have yet to upgrade, Microsoft will extend support for XP for another year, but this could cost over £100 per PC, per month, after April.

Without support, after 8th April Windows XP will become more vulnerable and it may potentially become an even greater target for hackers. Those who choose to run XP could then see an influx of attacks such as drive-by downloads and zero-day exploits.

These risks are a big concern for businesses, especially if XP machines are connected to the network. If a breach does occur, it is possible the entire network could be compromised.

If your business hasn’t upgraded should you consider it?

Upgrading XP machines is something all businesses will have considered. Migration doesn't have to be difficult; those using Dell equipment can take advantage of the Windows Migration Fast Forward Service to assist at each step of the process.

On top of this, the XP Migration Hub on ComputerworldUK will be your guide to upgrading over the coming weeks. Our blogs will discuss trends such as changes in the way demand for enterprise IT is driven. Meanwhile, our in-depth features will, among other things, advise how to make enterprise XP apps work with Windows 8.