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What’s good for home use isn’t for business.

Microsoft gives you a variety of choices when it comes to an Operating System for your computer.  Unfortunately, you frequently only hear about one or two. The home-based ones.

Operating Systems like Windows 10 Home and Windows 7 Home are all Operating Systems specifically designed for casual, home use. These operating systems are less expensive than their business-grade counterparts and dominate the computer world.

Unfortunately, for a reliable and stable business system you shouldn’t consider anything except one of the business-grade Operating Systems such as Windows 10 Professional.

Windows 10 Professional offers huge performance jumps over its home counterpart. Additionally, it is more resilient. If you’re sick and tired of the “Blue Screen of Death”, Illegal Operations, and lock ups and crashes, then the Professional version of Windows will be a welcome relief.

The business versions of Microsoft Windows crash infrequently, use memory more efficiently (making many tasks noticeably faster) and handle networking better than the home versions. Also, if a program does crash, there’s seldom a need to reboot the computer. Just restart the program and away you go.

More important than reliability is security. Windows Home versions provide significantly worse security than Windows Professional. Since the home versions cannot take advantage of centralized security features, such as those from your company’s server, or Microsoft’s cloud-based Active Directory, most people rely solely on a log in and password.  Even if your computer is currently prompting you for a password when you turn it on, it is a trivial task to get around it. Even a slightly experienced computer user can still get to your sensitive data!

The business versions of the operating system however, provide true security, when configured properly.  When connected to, and managed by, a Windows Server, whether in your office or in the Cloud, business computers can be locked down,  encrypted, remotely wiped (in case of loss or theft), and take advantage of other security and maintenance features that simply are not available in the home version of Windows.

The downfalls of these operating systems? First off, they cost more. Secondly, they require more experienced users to configure them (but not to use them). But the trade-offs are well worth the extra expense and effort.

The bottom line is, if you value your data and want computers that run smoothly, then you’ll need Windows Professional and a properly configured server in your office, or the Cloud.  Whether your business has 1 or 100 employees, resist the temptation to purchase the Black Friday, Back-to-school, or department-store deals.  These systems rarely include Windows Professional, placing your company and its sensitive data, at risk in this age full of ransomware, identity thieves, and cybercriminals.