Dell Launches OS Migration Tool As Windows XP Expiration Looms

Dell's Windows Migration Fast Forward Service supports the migration of up to 5,000 PCs and offers "modules" for image engineering, inventory, application compatibility testing, application packaging, deployment planning, process automation and field deployment. This gives customers the flexibility to choose the package of services that best fits their needs while streamlining the process to save time and money, Dell said.

The Windows Migration Fast Forward Service, according to Dell, is an affordable and fast way to transition to Windows 7 or Windows 8.

[Related: HP Launches XP-To-Windows 7 Migration Offensive ]

Windows XP, which is set to lose Microsoft support for patches and updates in April 2014, in August made up 33.7 percent of all PCs worldwide, or 37 percent of all systems running Windows.

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"This is an industrywide issue that many of our customers are dealing with right now," said Kevin Jones, Dell's vice president and general manager, infrastructure and cloud computing services, in a statement. "Our goal is to provide organizations of all sizes with an efficient migration solution. The Windows Migration Fast Forward Service adds to Dell's complete suite of migration offerings that make upgrading to Windows 7 or Windows 8 fast, simple and affordable."

Dell, Round Rock, Texas, declined to share pricing information when asked by CRN.

With the release of Windows 8.1, upgrade options are narrowing for Windows XP users. The latest guidance comes from Microsoft spokesperson Brandon LeBlanc, who said in an official company blog that "Windows 8.1 is not designed for installation on devices running Windows XP or Windows Vista."

Last year, Microsoft recommended Windows 8 as an upgrade for XP owners. Its most recent recommendation makes Windows 7 the only upgrade option for XP users. According to Microsoft, the deadline for the end of mainstream support for Windows 7 is January 2015 and the end of extended support is 2020.

Dell's Fast Forward Service includes cloud-based tools that can monitor a system's progress as it upgrades, according to Dell.