Maxident Software http://maxidentsoftware.com Dental Practice Management Program Fri, 05 Feb 2016 14:27:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Windows 10 is Here! http://maxidentsoftware.com/windows-10-is-here/ Thu, 20 Aug 2015 21:36:08 +0000 http://newsitetest.maxidentsoftware.com/?p=1835 With much fanfare, Windows 10, Microsoft’s latest and final operating system, was introduced to the world on July 29. If first impressions mean anything, Windows 10 looks to be a vast improvement over the colossal misstep of Windows 8, and a solid foundation for Microsoft to build its new perpetual operating system plan on. With all the hoopla over Microsoft’s free Windows 10 upgrade offer, the calls have already started pouring in from our customers asking whether they should make the move.  And so far our answer has been an unreserved, “No.”

Here are five reasons for not hurrying to upgrade:

  1. The free upgrade offer is good for a whole year so there is no rush to cash in on it right away.
  2. One of the main selling points of Windows 10 is that it abandons the almost universally despised Windows 8 interface – losing the “Charms” bar and restoring the Start button – making the user experience more like Windows 7.  So if you’re still using Windows 7, from a usage point of view, there isn’t any reason to rush to switch.
  3. Microsoft will not be discontinuing security updates for Windows 7 and Windows 8 anytime soon. Support for Windows 7 will run until January 2020 and for Windows 8 until January 2023.
  4. Old printers, scanners or other attached legacy devices may not work. Microsoft has never guaranteed that drivers for legacy hardware will work with new operating systems – and all too often they don’t. If you have devices attached to your computer, you need to be sure that they are Windows 10 compatible drivers available for them.
  5. You don’t want to be a guinea pig. Even the most rigorous pre-release testing of a major software release won’t find all the bugs. There will always be hardware and software compatibility issues that only come to light once the operating system goes into general release and members of the public start to scream. It is better to wait for the dust to settle and the fixes to be released than to be one of the ones feeling the pain.

Upgrading too quickly to a brand new and largely untried operating system is never a good idea. There are always issues discovered once an operating system goes into general release. Sometimes these inevitable problems are relatively minor and can be corrected with a few Windows patches or driver updates. Sometimes it takes a while to achieve a degree of relative perfection – Windows XP SP2 – and sometimes the OS is such an irredeemable failure – anyone remember Windows ME? – there is no salvation and it has to be junked.

Which of these will Windows 10 be?  If I had to guess, I’d say Windows 10 is going to be a keeper – and Microsoft is betting the farm on it.  But still, before rushing out to install, consider this: in the first three weeks of its release, Microsoft reported that Windows 10 had been installed on over 14 million machines.  In that same period, there also pushed out three cumulative update bundles to fix bugs and patch security holes in their new OS. That’s a lot of people, discovering a lot of problems.

Generally speaking, unless you’re feeling adventurous, it’s a good idea to wait at least six months after a new operating system has been released before considering switching to it. Many large corporations wait years after an operating system has been released before they are satisfied it is worth the time and trouble to make the move. So sit back and wait for the kinks to get worked out of the (operating) system. Windows 10 is going to be around for a long time yet, so why not bide your time and play it safe?

 

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Conversions: A Scary Undertaking or Golden Opportunity? http://maxidentsoftware.com/conversions-a-scary-undertaking-or-golden-opportunity/ Thu, 25 Jun 2015 20:05:14 +0000 http://newsitetest.maxidentsoftware.com/?p=1135 You’re not happy with your current software, but the thought of switching is daunting. Your concerns run the gamut from “will I lose all my data” to “will my staff be resistant”. These are valid concerns. While no software company can guarantee 100% of your data will be converted, you want to ensure that critical data is successfully transferred.

The key to ensuring a smooth transition is through a sample conversion prior to pulling the trigger. A sample conversion is where a “test conversion” is run and the resulting data is reviewed with you thoroughly. This also includes a written report of what is converted. The Deployment Coordinator, Lucia, will ensure the maximum amount of data can be converted. However, nobody knows your data better than you and your staff. For this reason, we also show you the results and go over the written report to confirm you know what you’re getting.

This process can take some time. The review period helps to identify items to save time when you make the switch to digital. Keep in mind, however, that not everything will come with the converted data because of how each software stores the information. The time involved in a great conversion is time well spent!

This is a golden opportunity to identify bad practices and habits your staff may have developed over time and to change those practices for newer, better ways that will improve a myriad of things from workflow to accessing income hidden in your charts.

“Okay, but now how do I sell it to my staff?” Simply put, you tell them, well in advance, that the decision has been made to switch software and that you expect their support and cooperation.  While I’m not suggesting that you disregard their feelings, you must make it clear that this is a business decision and it’s your business to run as you see fit. You cannot avoid the staff being nervous about change, but change is often for the better. When the staff are very resistant to the change, they generally do not learn the new system as well as those who accept it. They may try to undermine the efforts for change because they are comfortable in their current set-up. Let’s face it, they will no longer be able to do their work while on auto-pilot… and that’s a good thing!

A conversion from Maxident software will set you free! Contact us to find out how!
call 1-800-663-7199 or email:info@maximsoftware.com  or visit our Data Conversions page.

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Reasons to Upgrade Your Hardware http://maxidentsoftware.com/reasons-to-upgrade-your-hardware/ Sat, 25 Apr 2015 19:28:56 +0000 http://newsitetest.maxidentsoftware.com/?p=1127 Few things in this world advance as radically, yet integrate themselves as completely into our daily lives, as technology. The internet is nearly ten times larger now than it was in the year 2000. Fifteen years ago Google did not exist and only five years ago no one had ever heard of an iPad. While the changes made in the area of the old standard personal computer (PC) in the same period have been far less dramatic, they have been no less significant. While many people may hold with the adage “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” the truth is there are some very good reasons for replacing older computers with current technology.

Performance

One of the most frequent complaints of computer users is how their computers seem to get slower over time. The most common cause for this is that the computer user is demanding the computer do more with the same limited resources.

Software applications are always designed to take advantage of the capabilities of current hardware specifications. Users running older, outdated computer systems are at an immediate performance disadvantage. The old Pentium 4 chip, once considered ‘rocket speed’ has now fallen to the level of the horse and buggy. A standard i5 workstation processor provides over eight times better performance than the old P4. That means a computer is able to efficiently run more applications concurrently while still providing faster response time.

When processor speed and performance are joined with advances that allow for more and faster RAM (the memory to run programs) to be installed in modern PCs and increased access speeds for hard disks (storage space) older computer systems simply cannot hold up under the demands of software designed for the current generation of computers. In addition, new computers are designed to run 64 bit operating systems which provide an additional performance boost.

No one likes to sit, staring at the computer monitor, waiting for something to happen, but that is the inevitable result of running outdated computer hardware.

Security

Microsoft has announced that Windows XP, the operating system standard for over a decade, will reach end of life in April of 2014. After that time no further updates or security patches will be released for it. Security analysts are already concerned that, given the large number of outdated but active computers that will still likely be running XP at that point, hackers are frothing at the mouth in anticipation of the huge opportunity that this will present them.

Updates aside, newer operating systems, such as Windows 8 and the much more popular Windows 7, are inherently more secure than Windows XP ever was. The quantum leap advancement of defensive technologies built right into current operating systems leaves Windows XP’s Data Execution Prevention (DEP) in the dust.

Reliability

Your computer will not last forever. Like everything else computers age and wear. Ambient conditions and just general use and abuse will cause the computer to eventually fail. The most vulnerable component is arguably also the most valuable – the hard drive that holds your data. The nature of the design of the standard, spinning hard drive means that it will eventually slow down with age, inevitably become unreliable as it begins to fail and finally die. Proactively replacing aging computer equipment before it fails is far less traumatic and disruptive than dealing with an unwelcome and unexpected hardware failure that will inevitably occur at the least convenient moment possible.

While updating computer equipment to meet current standards is wholly desirable, there is such a thing as being ahead of the curve. ‘Bleeding edge’ technology refers to releases that are so new that they have yet to be properly vetted leaving users subject to unexpected and unwanted bugs, glitches and headaches. The most prevalent current example of this is the release of Microsoft’s Windows 8.1. The rollout of this much anticipated update to the still fledgling Windows 8 operating system has been plagued with issues. Because of this we caution all our customers to avoid updating to Windows 8.1 until Microsoft has had sufficient time to address the myriad issues reported.

Maxident will be happy to direct our customers in replacing outdated computer equipment, including putting them in touch with hardware vendors offering computer systems fully in compliance with the specifications for running all Maxident software applications.

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