Probably not high on your radar but there are some software support dates to keep in mind, especially if you have one of the Windows 8.1 computers, you’re running Server 2012 R2, or have a TZ300 device.
Windows 8.1—This version reached (past tense) Mainstream support on Jan 9, 2018. That means no new features, just security updates. The extended support that includes security updates will end January 2023, that’s a little over a year from now. Computers are in short supply (see our previous articles about the world-wide chip shortage), and Windows 10 is solid; time to upgrade the OS or replace the computer all together, well in advance of the Jan 2023 deadline.
Microsoft Server 2012 R2—this server OS came out in November 2013, WAS Mainstream end-of-life (no new features, security updates only) in October 2018, and is scheduled for complete retirement in October 2023. Does that seem far away? Kind of, but replacing or upgrading a server operating system takes some planning and involves down-time.
If the server it’s running on is six (6) or more years old, you can choose between replacing that hardware or moving to a hosted solution. See our two-part series on these two options and how to choose next steps (April and May 2021 newsletters).
Sonicwall TZ300 units—these firewalls were end-of-life in January 2020. All support will end in January 2025 which means you have some time. As you consider your capital budget for 2023, we recommend that you plan to replace them.
Dell BIOS Updates
For those of you with Dell computers, there are some critical BIOS updates that need to be installed on the computers. All manufacturers are battening down the hatches (tip of the hat to our New England clients) when it comes to the security of their systems, and Dell is no exception (HP had some, too).
Dell has a critical firmware update that needs to be installed. Unfortunately, it cannot be pushed out with our regular patches; it requires some specific steps.
Here’s what the techs want to share:
You can coordinate this with Dell or give us a call and we’ll be happy to help. FYI—this will be a work interruption. The upgrade will take several minutes, so plan ahead, do some filing, grab a snack, and let these updates