By now, most of us are already aware that Microsoft Corp would pull the plug on Windows XP by April 8 this year. But only a few of us know that aside from the old operating system, the technology firm is also ending two other programs on that fateful day—Office 2003 and Exchange 2003.
For quite some time now, the company has been making noise as it is set to ditch Windows XP. Now, it is also starting to talk about the deadline for the two other programs. In a statement, an analyst from the Directions on Microsoft said the company has seen similar kinds of pockets for XP and the two other software.
Microsoft’s Office 2003 was launched on October 21, 2003. It has since become among the most popular suites of programs. What went wrong with the program? Microsoft said that just like how many XP users skipped Vista to proceed to Windows 7, many Office 2003 users skipped Office 2007 to jump to Office 2010.
That pattern is affecting the migration of enterprises to Windows 8 and to Office 2013. Many users now migrate to Windows 7 and Office 2010 instead. To date, about 30% to 40% of Windows users still use Office 2003.
Again, with the looming end of support from Microsoft, security patches would be discontinued for Office 2003. This would be a drastic measure since the company has been patching the program aggressively in the last few years. In fact, up to 10 security fixes or bulletins were released for the edition in 2013 alone. It has shipped one this year so far.
Windows and Office 2003 are not the only programs that Microsoft would be retiring in about eight weeks, though. The Exchange 2003 will also lose its support from the company.
Microsoft explained that just like the two software, users also hung on Exchange Server 2003. Most of them skipped the next edition, which is Exchange Server 2007. As such, most enterprises adopted Windows 7, Office 2010, and Exchange Server 2010 almost simultaneously.
At the same time, the company would also cease providing patches to Office for Mac Service Pack 2 in April. It will then require all OS X edition users to migrate to Service Pack 3 so they would still be able to receive and install important security updates.