Feeds

Whitehall and Microsoft thrashing out 1-year NHS WinXP lifeline

Substantial saving on Microsoft's $200-custom support tag?

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Exclusive The Department of Health and Microsoft are thrashing out a one-year support deal for tens of thousands of NHS PCs running Windows XP.

The agreement would give hospitals, trusts and GPs across England and Wales time to back away from Windows XP and implement a newer operating system.

A deal would mean Microsoft continues to provides security fixes for systems that miss an 8 April deadline to get off of Windows XP.

The second Tuesday of next month – traditionally Microsoft Patch Tuesday – will be the last day it will provide security fixes for Windows XP. After that, systems running on the OS will face new viruses, malware and identity theft attacks on their own.

The Reg exclusively reported here in February that the DoH was in talks with Microsoft to provide custom security coverage for PCs.

In February, the DoH told us that the talks would be concluded “shortly.”

With less than a month to go, sources have now told The Reg the agreement would see Microsoft cover health-service PCs for a period of up to 12 months. Sources indicated an agreement was nearing conclusion.

Further, they estimated the contract to be worth between £30m and £40m.

The deal would see a central framework put in place, with an agreement on price but no guarantee of business for Microsoft or obligation for NHS bodies to sign up.

“It covers all of the NHS at pre-agreed commercial terms," The Register source said.

Microsoft’s list price for custom support is $200 per PC in the first year of a support deal, $400 for year two, and $800 for year three.

NHS England has one million PCs meaning if the £30m - £40m value is correct, the health service has secured a considerable discount from Microsoft.

Microsoft had pitched the off-the-shelf price high to act as a deterrent in companies taking support and failing to move off of Windows XP.

Equally, setting a one-year limit on the NHS deal is important to force health-service organisations to get off Windows XP.

Also, a one-year limit can help potentially curtail costs, preventing the price per desktop doubling.

A spokesperson for the DoH told The Reg: “We are currently negotiating a package of support with Microsoft for the wider NHS system and expect an agreement to be concluded shortly.” ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.