Microsoft is one of the leading names in computer software for desktops, and it keeps churning out newer, faster, and better programs for users around the world to make use of. This is what makes it a household brand. While many people would choose to upgrade whenever a new software program comes out, there are those that would like to downgrade. Since the creation of Windows 7 SP1, the downgrade rights of XP are now in question.

Back in 2009, Microsoft stated that any of its users would be able to downgrade to Windows XP Professional if they bought Windows 7 Professional. This was only intended to be allowed for a certain time period. This deadline is said to kick into effect by looking at one of two things. The first is Windows & and the second is Windows 7 SP1. The one way to work out the deadline is to look at the release date of the Windows 7. The company has said that downgrades would no longer be able to take place 18 months after the release of Windows 7, and if you do the math the deadline here would be April 2011. The other way to look at it is the release of the Windows 7 SP1 (Service Pack 1). As soon as this is released then downgrade rights would fall away. While there are two ways to work this out, whichever date arrives first would be the deadline.

The problem is that a date for the release of the Windows 7 SP1 has not been announced yet, so customers have no real idea of what to expect. The good news is that even after the downgrade rights have been abolished, there is still a way to get down to XP. This would basically mean that you can switch to Windows XP Mode f you are a non-software assurance customer. Windows XP mode is basically just a built in and virtualised version of the Windows XP, by Windows 7 Professional.

No matter which way you look at it, the SP1 is an important milestone in the computing timeline for both Microsoft and its customers. Microsoft originally wanted to set this plan in motion after 6 months instead of 18, but the company changed its mind after realising customers concerns. They were not so much worried about the service packs, but they were concerned about the limitations of applications that they would be able to use. In today’s fast paced world, it is well known that people want to be able to multitask and have everything they need on one machine. Another big problem with shifting to windows 7 is the cost, as many people’s budges would not easily allow for this.

Customers and important people in the IT community will be waiting with bated breath to see where Microsoft will take them next. The only advice that can be given is be prepared for the change, because as it stands at the moment, there is no stopping it.