My Software Has Reached End of Life. Now What?
When software reaches end of life (EOL), all of a sudden you find yourself wondering what impact will this have on our organization? Take a moment to understand what vulnerabilities may be at hand and what are some best practices for planning ahead.
Never just ignore EOL timelines because there are some risks to be concerned about.
EOL Software Dangers:
- Security vulnerabilities: When using software that’s no longer supported, computers become a gateway for malware. When vulnerabilities are no longer patched, it leaves the door wide open for hackers.
- Software incompatibility: New applications are optimized for the most recent operating systems. That means when using EOL operating systems, you can’t upgrade to the latest and greatest, so you’ll have to hold onto legacy applications which are likely also EOL, or soon to be. When the legacy applications come to their EOL, they are extremely difficult to migrate onto new infrastructure, costing your business time and money.
- Poor performance and reliability: Chances are, if you’re still running legacy apps or old versions of Windows, then you have some aging servers and workstations too. This will add to your risk because these likely out-of-warranty devices are prone to breaking down. Consider the downtime alone could be more costly than an overdue upgrade.
- High operating costs: If technology is out-of-date or out-of-warranty, both cost and downtime are magnified when a failure occurs. Your organization can’t afford a mission-critical app failing, and trying to maintain and bug-fix any post-EOL software can be very expensive.
- Compliance issues: Regulated industries like healthcare and e-commerce deal with lots of sensitive customer data. Entrusting your critical information to a decade-old OS or an insecure application? In addition to security lapses, it could result in big fines, company shutdowns, or more legal issues that could ruin your organization.
There is no bulletproof way to run EOL software. Security, compatibility and compliance are all challenges with EOL software.
What are some best practices to plan ahead?
- Define business service management requirements: Identify nice-to-have capabilities desired for incident management, service level assurance, problem resolution, change management, configuration management, self-service options, and integration requirements.
- Evaluate needs: Focus on options that will enhance profit, ease business operations, increase revenue and reduce company operational costs. Know what you are looking for and what you want to do for an EOL replacement.
- Focus on processes for operations: Identify service management processes that are unique to your business when considering vendors and purchases.
- Leverage modern technology: A good objective in EOL replacement is to apply the benefits of newer technology to resolve the most obvious pain points in your IT management organization. Investing in the latest software is great, but being mindful about outdated operating systems is even better.
EOL software poses a large risk to organizations every day. With an adequate understanding of the risks involved, advanced planning, and help from Bryley Systems, you can identify and migrate away from EOL software. Contact us at 978.562.6077, or by email at ITExperts@Bryley.com to learn more. We are here to help.