Software Conversion Services
Stuck with Visual FoxPro, dBase or other 32-bit applications that Microsoft no longer supports?
Are you contemplating a FoxPro or dBase conversion? Perhaps you have already drawn your own conclusions on why this is necessary for your company and your software application. The short answer to this question is that 32-bit applications are discontinued products.
In 2014, Microsoft officially ended support for Windows XP, and in 2015 for FoxPro. This leaves you today with no further updates or patches for such products.
While still a sophisticated and stable development tool, FoxPro is unfortunately not a tool that Microsoft will continue to develop. That means no new patches or updates will be forthcoming to provide support for future operating system and hardware changes that are to come. VFP 9.0 was the last version of Microsoft’s premiere database development tool.
Microsoft’s official position on a retired product is: “Customers are highly encouraged to move to a supported product as soon as possible.”
But while the support ended in 2015, FoxPro applications clearly didn’t cease to function. On the contrary, the FoxPro platform is a sophisticated and stable environment.
If all things remained constant—hardware never changed, new operating systems were not developed, etc.—it’s possible that your present application in FoxPro could continue to function for many years to come. But this is not guaranteed. As hardware and operating system software continue to advance, the 32-bit architecture of FoxPro will not work with more modern, 64-bit systems.
In addition to the technical aspects of the software and hardware, there is the human element. Since the FoxPro product is now retired, there are fewer remaining skilled professionals who understand and are proficient with this development tool. As time moves on, you can expect that this trend will continue.
What does this mean for companies using outdated applications? Changes to their system will be more difficult and potentially more costly since the skilled resources will be drastically diminished. And while the conversion of a FoxPro-based application may not be an immediately pressing problem, it is still prudent to plan ahead. Making plans sooner means having adequate time for re-development, testing, and deployment of a new solution.