Windows 7, 2008 Server, and Office 2010 End Of Life
When Windows 7 was released on October 22, 2009, Microsoft made the initial commitment to provide 10 years of product support. Currently, Microsoft has indicated that it will discontinue Windows 7 support on January 15, 2020. After this date, technical assistance and software updates standardly provided through Windows Update (Including Security Service Packs), will no longer be available for the product. Also, both Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, and Microsoft Office 2010 share the same end of life date.
At this point, Microsoft strongly recommends that all Windows 7 users move to Windows 10 before this January 15, 2020 deadline.
For those users who DO NOT intend to update their computers, there are a number of things to consider as follows:
Security Issues – Hackers will be ready to take advantage of any security flaws that are currently and later found in Windows 7. So while any PC’s running the Windows 7 operating system will continue to work, you will be at risk for both hacking and malware infections that could be potentially catastrophic.
PCI Compliance – Because Windows 7 will no longer be supported, if you run a Point of Sale System that runs Credit Cards through the system, you will be required to update all of your systems to PCI compliant systems. Failure to do this could result in possible penalties and fines especially if your systems are compromised.
Windows Explorer – Being that Internet Explorer is part of the Windows 7 operation system, it will also be part of this end of life process. While Internet Explorer is still supported by many web sites, developers will likely also discontinue support for using this Internet browser. Many on-line retailers and banks have already started pushing users to run alternative browsers such as Chrome and Firefox. In some cases, you will see warnings from websites, and in other cases, the site may just hang or crash.
For those users who DO intend to update their computers, there are a number of things to consider as follows:
Hardware Issues – Is your current Hardware Windows 10 Compatible? – If your computers/registers are more than 5-6 years old, the hardware may not be supported in Windows 10. Some older printer models and peripheral devices may not have drivers available for Windows 10.
Software applications – Is your currently installed software application supported running on Windows 10? Will it have to be moved to newer equipment? As an example, your currently installed POS and/or accounting software application may need to be updated. Do you have any customizations and/or third party applications that will require retrofitting or re-programming?
Time Constraints v.s. Support Costs – Based on experience, I have found that Windows 7 to Windows 10 upgrades of existing PCs can take anywhere from 8-24 hours per machine. The wide time element is largely dependent on a number of factors such as Internet bandwidth (Download speeds, resources), CPU Clock speed, amount and type of RAM, and any additional update work required after the upgrade has completed.
This means that when these upgrades are done in place, you should expect to see some extended down-time, and extended support interaction… which could also result in subsequently higher overall costs,
Over the years registers and PCs have actually come down in price, so in some cases, it might actually be less expensive to replace a register or a PC, rather than trying to upgrade an old and obsolete ones.
Scheduling and Assistance – Who will need to be involved in doing the required work? If you don’t have your own in-house or on-site IT personnel, will there actually be someone available to assist with the required work that is involved?
Please contact CCS Retail Systems in order to schedule the above work.
One day last week, after I returned home from work, I sat down on the couch, took off my shoes, turned on my favorite news program on TV, and expected to relax for a while before dinner. Alas! That did not happen. A power outage occurred suddenly, leaving everything in blackness. “Not a problem”, I thought. I have plenty of big candles in the kitchen cupboard.
I groped my way to the kitchen, found the candles, and then started looking for matches. I looked everywhere (in the dark) and couldn’t find a single match anywhere. After bumbling about for the next several minutes, I finally found a flashlight that had workable batteries and sat down to wait it out. I waited a looooong time with a hungry stomach because I also needed a match to light the Sterno under my fondue pot to warm some soup.
Why am I telling you this story? It’s to emphasize that the time to think about possible unexpected issues is to think about “what if’s” before you are caught off guard as I was.
When the weather starts getting wintry again, power outages can happen. The Internet can go down, and computers can crash. When it comes time to reconstruct, without sufficient backup, this process becomes extremely difficult, time-consuming, and expensive.
We’re here to help you with your backup solutions. If you have questions, call us today at 425-672-4806 or email us. You’ll be glad you did!
As we are approaching the end of summer, now is a good time to clean out your computer case of dust bunnies and dirt. When the dust and dirt start to build up inside your computer case, strange things can start to happen. The most common thing I see is random BSOD (Windows infamous Blue Screen Of Death). The messages associated with these can be very misleading, for example, I recently fielded a call from a customer that their terminal had a BSOD and it referenced memory issues. The customers IT department ran multiple memory test scans that showed there was nothing wrong. When they finally called CCS, I had them make sure the terminal was clean on the inside. I advised they pick up some canned air and blow out all the fans, heatsinks, and vents. After this was complete, no more BSOD’s.
Heat is one of the worst things when it comes to computers and can cause malfunctions that will have you chasing your tail. By simply being a little proactive, the frustration will be eliminated.
If you need help with cleaning up your PC tower or terminal, call the CCS Support Department and schedule a time that would work for you.
Quick Chip for EMV allows customers to insert (dip) and remove their EMV chip card at checkout in about 2 seconds. They can even do so before the transaction is complete. This is similar to the “Swipe Any Time” feature in NCR Counterpoint.
Quick Chip is also meant to help the payment industry’s transition to EMV chip.
In order to use Quick Chip with NCR Counterpoint, you will need to be running version 126.96.36.199, have an Ingenico ISC250 payment terminal with the required firmware version, and an account setup and configured with NCR Secure Pay.
So if you are already processing EMV chip cards through your NCR Counterpoint software, all that should need to be done is update your software to 188.8.131.52 and update your payment terminal to the required firmware.
With the update to 184.108.40.206, you will also be able to accept Pin Debit transactions using the EMV technology as well. There are some processor specific restrictions for Pin Debit, so be sure to ask CCS about your current configuration.
As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department at 800.672.4806 or email us at support.
Its summer time again, and it is time to check that your PC is nice and clean inside to prevent unwanted shutdowns and possible damage to your PC.
Cleaning out your PC is very easy to do, to begin with, you should purchase a couple of cans of compressed air. These can be purchased at most office supply stores, as well as Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Fred Meyer type stores. Once you have your compressed air, turn off your PC and unplug from the wall. You should remove the side of your case and blow out all of the dust that may be built up inside. Pay close attention to any fans and heat sinks as when the heat sink builds up with dust between the fins, it hampers the ability of it to cool properly causing strange problems to occur with your workstation.
Some symptoms of overheating are:
Strange errors/blue screens
A random shutdown of the computer
Slow or non-responsive actions
If you need help with removing the case or would prefer a professional do the job, contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department for help.