Jun 26 2023

The Switch to Windows 11 Might Be the Right Time to Upgrade Your Devices Too

Technology more than 4 years old may not run Windows 11. A modern workspace management program can help streamline the upgrade process.

For Microsoft users, Windows 11 offers numerous advantages over its predecessor when it comes to security, remote work and more.

Older devices, however, may not be eligible to upgrade from Windows 10 to 11, making modern device management a priority for business IT. Here’s what that looks like in practice.

Making the Move: What Businesses Need for Windows 11

The current version of Windows 10, 22H2, is the final version of the operating system, but Microsoft support won’t end until Oct. 14, 2025.  While this gives companies time to make the move, there may be restrictions on which devices are eligible for upgrading.

According to Microsoft, running Windows 11 on any device more than 4 years old isn’t advisable. Older devices could face performance, stability and security challenges, leading Microsoft to suggest that companies upgrade current hardware before making the switch.

DISCOVER: Click below to discover BizTech's 2023 list of small business IT influencers.

Benefits of Regular Device Upgrades

A lifecycle management program for your organization’s devices can help you manage OS changes and make the best use of emerging technologies.

In general, prioritize replacing devices that are between 3 and 5 years old, which is the typical lifespan for hardware such as desktop PCs, laptops, tablets and mobile phones.

Businesses should not keep devices in use until the bitter end. Not only does this risk sudden device failure and a lack of productivity, but it may also create challenges with OS and security upgrades, which can put device-driven processes such as remote work at risk.

LEARN MORE: How to maximize your device ROI through lifecycle management.

How CDW Can Help with Modern Workspace Management

Modern Workspace Management from CDW can ensure that companies have the right device for the job. Whether this means equipping users with newer devices to smooth the transition to Windows 11, configuring devices to optimize performance or creating end-of-life plans that ensure the safe disposal of retired devices, CDW has you covered.

Modern Workspace Management can assist with four key pillars, including:

  • Device selection: The first pillar, “Discover and Design,” can help companies define their needs and source the right mix of devices for their organization. Devices can also be customized if there is no prebuilt version that meets business requirements.
  • Configuration: The second pillar, “Deployment,” allows companies to benefit from imaging and provisioning across devices, which ensures that software is preloaded to enable zero-touch deployments.
  • Help desk support: The third pillar, “Manage,” provides help desk Level 1 and Level 2 service that gives end users phone, email, web and chat access to frontline tech support for their devices, allowing IT teams to offload issues such as password resets.
  • Replacement and end of life: The final pillar, “Refresh and Recover,” helps companies create and deploy device upgrade programs that ensure devices are replaced before they become security or performance risks. Through IT asset disposition (ITAD) programs, devices can be wiped and resold, in which case companies can get credits for the devices. Other options include wiping and reprovisioning devices within the company or having them destroyed in an environmentally sound manner.

EXPLORE: Click to learn more about solutions for your small business.

Navigating the New Device Landscape

Simultaneously managing both hardware and software requirements is no easy task. Older devices may not support new software deployments, while end-of-support dates put companies under pressure to select and implement new devices as soon as possible.

With Modern Workspace Management from CDW, companies can ensure all devices are capable of a Windows 11 upgrade, creating a long-term device upgrade program that keeps them ahead of the technology curve.

This article is part of BizTech's AgilITy blog series. Please join the discussion on Twitter.


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