Why I Should Upgrade to Windows 8.1

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Why I Should Upgrade to Windows 8.1

June 1, 2014 - By: Derek Veillon

Windows 8.1 brings some great features that can help your business in numerous ways. Some of the benefits include enhanced staff productivity, better performance and enhanced longevity of the computers in your organization. Moreover, if you are already a Windows 8 user, you can get the 8.1 upgrade for free. So, you can enjoy the benefits without incurring additional expenses. Windows 8.1 is compatible with touch screen devices as well.

Windows 8.1 is available with multilingual support. This makes it very suitable for you if your business is spread over different countries or if you use the services of freelancers from different parts of the world. The feature makes this operating system very useful for multilingual organizations.

How does Windows 8.1 lead to better performance and why should I upgrade to Windows 8.1?

The biggest business benefit of Windows 8.1 is that it uses less RAM. Excessive memory usage can lead to several problems. For example, higher RAM usage reduces system speed. Since Windows 8.1 uses less RAM, programs and apps run at higher speed. As a result, your employees can do more work in less time.

Additionally, more memory usage also leads to excessive burden on the hardware, which in turn can cause the system to crash. This could potentially cause loss of crucial data and loss of productive time while reinstating the computer.

Windows 8.1 requires lower startup time compared to the previous versions. It also uses fewer CPU resources such as graphic cards and others. The combined benefits of all these features contribute to better overall performance of the employees and hence, your business.

Windows 8.1 is more secure

Windows 8.1 comes with enhanced security features that protect the computers in your business. Firstly, the Trusted Boot feature blocks malware and viruses from booting up when you start your system. The anti-malware system boots first, thereby blocking any malware before other programs, applications or third party drivers are booted.

The operating system also comes with a Windows Defender system that works on unknown malware programs and stops their execution. You also get secure backup of information with the OneDrive feature included in the operating system. Important files, apps, start screen and settings are stored using cloud technology.

The Storage Spaces of Windows 8.1 can use a RAID system to ensure that important data is retained in the system in case the system crashes. As a result, the important data of your business is not lost. Some of the other security features built into the operating system are remote business data removal in case devices are lost, and auto-triggered VPN.

Hardware compatibility

When upgrading an operating system, the first question that comes to mind is – will the new software be compatible to the existing hardware setup? The good news is yes, you can use Windows 8.1 with your existing hardware if it supports Windows 7. The upgrade is meant to work on older IT equipment as well. What’s more, it runs faster than the previous versions of operating systems even on older equipment.

Windows 8.1 comes in two versions – 32 bit and 64 bit. You can choose one based on the hardware you have and based on your requirements. The 32 bit version requires 1 GHz or faster processor, 1 GB Ram, 16 GB hard disk and Microsoft Direct X9 graphics device with WDDM driver. The 64 bit version requires the same processor and graphic cards as the 32 bit version, but it requires 2 GB RAM and 20 GB hard disk space.

Choice of editions

Windows 8.1 comes in four different versions. So, you can choose one based on the requirements of your business. The four versions are Windows 8.1, Windows 8.1 Pro, Windows 8.1 Enterprise, and Windows 8.1 RT. Windows 8.1 Enterprise is a comprehensive system for businesses since it has additional features over Windows 8.1 Pro and the other versions.

Both Windows 8.1 Pro and Enterprise versions have similar Start screens, live tiles, and apps including mail, calendar, people, messaging, music, video, photos and OneDrive. They also have BitLocker and BitLocker To Go, VPN client and remote desktop. The additional features in Enterprise version are Windows To Go, DirectAccess, AppLocker, BranchCache and Client Hyper-V built-in virtualization.

Windows Go To is a corporate Windows 8 desktop that can be booted on an external USB stick. If your company employs the Bring Your Own PC policy, this feature is going to be great for you. With this feature, your staff can access the corporate environment of your business without compromising on security. It is a fully manageable system.

BranchCache is a feature the enables content to be cached from central servers, files and websites into a Wide Area Network. This way, important content is readily available and does not have to be repeatedly downloaded. You can optimize bandwidth with WAN connections and ensure security.

Windows 8.1 has several such innovative features that make the upgrade worth it.

Remote access to information

Do you or your employees need to travel for work-related activities? If yes, you will find Windows 8.1 very useful. The operating system comes with OneDrive integration that enables you to sync the settings in your company’s computers to it.

Once your files are synced, you can access them from any location in the world and from any Windows 8.1 compatible device. What is more, you can also use the synced files in offline mode.

A step towards green culture

Windows 8.1 uses less RAM, fewer CPU resources and takes lesser time to boot. All these features contribute to a reduction in power consumption by the device. Whether you use desktops or laptops in your business, Windows 8.1 enables you to take a step towards green culture. It saves battery life on tablets and notebooks as well.

The operating system automatically drops to a low-power condition when the device is not being used for power-intensive activities. This helps you save on energy bills.

Before making the final decision about the upgrade, check whether the existing applications and programs you use are compatible with Windows 8.1. Most of the applications that run on Windows 7 will run on Windows 8.1 as well. However, programs that run only on XP will not work on 8.1 version.

Overall, the benefits of Windows 8.1 are definitely worth optimizing on for small and large businesses.

If you are looking to upgrade your computers to Windows 8.1 then contact us for a free expert consultation.