The MBA Guide to IT

Episode 8 – How often should I refresh my software?

Microsoft will stop supporting Windows 7 and Server 2008 in about a year.  Which raises the question, how often should I refresh my software?

SW doesn’t wear out, but it often becomes obsolete long before your hardware does.  You’ll need compatibility with SW that doesn’t exist yet.  Or you’ll have expectations that haven’t even formed yet.  Or the vendor will stop supporting it and you’ll have nowhere to go for fixes or security updates.

There are two schools of thought.  In some environments, you deploy the hardware and software as a matched set.  When either becomes obsolete, you retire the system and deploy a new one.  More often though, when new software arrives, you’ll upgrade when feasible.

If it’s important software, you’ll likely choose one of two models:

  • Buy the software and then an annual service agreement (usually 15-20%)
  • Subscription – The subscription can cost more over time but it’s worth it if the number of users fluctuates or if the vendor is providing continual updates like in security software.
  • The subscription model is expanding into many areas:  “Software as a Service”  “Hardware as a Service” “Infrastructure as a Service”  “Everything as a Service”

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see them come out with “Milk as a Service.”  Oh wait, they did that already.

    With the service subscription model, you can order your entire IT environment as a service.  You pay a fixed amount every month until your needs change – with slight price increases over time.  If predictable spending is important to you, this can be an attractive model.

    Episode #8 – 12/20/2018

    We use cookies to operate the site, improve your experience, and personalize our interactions with you.
    By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies.
    Please see our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, Disclaimer, and Cookie Policy.