back to article 1 in 7 WinXP-using biz bods DON'T KNOW Microsoft is pulling the plug

A large number of Microsoft customers are in for a rude awakening on 8 April 2014. With less than 400 days to go, 15 per cent of those running Windows XP are still unaware that that’s the date Microsoft finally turns off all support for its legacy PC operating system, according to a recent survey. After 8 April next year, …

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  1. mark l 2 Silver badge

    If the PCs running XP do not have access the the internet then i see no problem having them running past the end of life. A P4 box with 512mb RAM is quite capable of running XP and office software but to upgrade them to Win 7 or 8 they would need to have the RAM upgrade and maybe hard drives so it becomes more of an expense than just the OS license

    1. BillG
      WTF?

      Windows XP is the hackers port of call in terms of trying to get a foot hold and establish botnets,

      Yeah, sure. That's what they said about Windows 2000 and it's still a solid operating system.

      Look, my brother's laptop has Windows XP SP3 and he hasn't installed a patch in five years. He uses Outpost firewall and a good anti-virus and has never had a problem.

      Look, to me anyone who chooses hyperbole to call XP a "hackers port of call" is a bit suspect to me. And if that same person recommends Windows 8 over Windows 7, well, I'm wondering if that person has an agenda.

      1. Mr. Nobby

        Recommending Windows 8 over Windows 7 is just common sense.

        Windows 8 is faster and has more nifty features, there's just no point in getting Windows 7 if you have the choice.

        1. kb
          Facepalm

          WRONG

          There is a point to getting Win 7 over 8, the point being that if you don't have a touchscreen Win 8 is a mess. for example try win 8 on a laptop and see how often the stupid thing will get confused and decide one minute you are moving the cursor, the next swiping...because we all have to run smartphones now and those use swipes don't ya know?

          I'm sorry but after fighting that stupid thing for nearly 2 months Win 8 is the first MSFT OS since WinME I will NOT allow in my shop. Not that its gonna matter anyway as from the looks of it "Windows Blue" will be released in 2014 so like Vista Win 8 is gonna be a "here today, gone later today" release, ala the Star Trek rule.

      2. Kwac

        "Look, my brother's laptop has Windows XP SP3 and he hasn't installed a patch in five years. He uses Outpost firewall and a good anti-virus and has never had a problem."

        And we all know someone who is 96 years old, smoked 100 a day since they were 3 and haven't been hit by a bus (yet).

      3. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: BillG Windows XP is the hackers port of call ...

        And as we know from the MS security updates (including the one for this month), many fix the same security hole in ALL currently supported versions of Windows ie. XP, Vista, Win7 & Win8...

        No Windows per say is the target of malware writers because of its large installed base, followed by other platforms with large user bases specifically browser scripting languages.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Agenda??? HOW DARE YOU!

        ... After all, I'm "Head of Software" :)

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        And if that same person recommends Windows 8 over Windows 7, well, I'm wondering if that person has an brain.

        ...FYP

      6. kb
        Thumb Up

        Not to mention

        there is plenty of hardware out there that runs XP quite well that won't run Win 7 and 8 at all. I'm not just talking about the really old stuff like the 2004 Sempron nettop I use at the shop (which will be staying on XP as while it has 2GB of RAM and does its job just fine with AV and firewall neither the video nor the sound is supported in any OS other than XP) but I've seen plenty of Pentium Ds and early Athlon X2s that won't run Win 7, sure as hell won't run win 8, because nobody bothered to make compatible drivers. On one Pentium D I tried upgrading to Win 8 I found there was no sound, ethernet, or onboard graphics drivers to be had. You would have to throw out a system that frankly is overkill for the kinds of roles that particular customer has, all so MSFT can push their cellphone UI? No thanks.

        XP will be hanging around long past 2014, with so many Pentium 4s, Pentium Ds, and Athlons and X2s out there that still run great I have a feeling its gonna have a loooong tail. And I don't see how then will be different than now with regards to hackers, not like MSFT releases out of schedule patches hardly ever and as long as you have moved away from IE (since MSFT doesn't backport their browser) so that the browser gets patches? I don't see what the problem is. Heck there are still browsers out there that support Win98 (Kmeleon) so I doubt XP support will be going away anytime soon.

        1. lforsley

          Re: Not to mention embedded systems such as laboratory instruments

          These devices were interfaced to now ancient PC's running Windows XP. They're not connected to the Internet. They've rarely been updated. Yet, especially in US Govt. facilities, there are various moves a foot to control, license or upgrade them: except many times the instrument manufacturer hasn't! So these will continue to run XP as long as the hardware "breathes" regardless of MicroSoft, Govvey IT "specialists", managers, or Generals.

      7. streaky Silver badge
        FAIL

        "That's what they said about Windows 2000 and it's still a solid operating system"

        Yeah, no, it isn't.

        XP has a broken SSL stack which will mean very shortly the internet will stop working for you. Windows 2000 I don't even know wtf is going on there. That's ignoring the endless list of sploits that outpost won't ever save you from.

        Can't teach some people.

        There's no open source products that would even consider supporting code that old, why Microsoft feels it needs to baby dumbness is anybody's guess.

        1. streaky Silver badge
          FAIL

          Votedowns for truth, or why the reg is becoming like youtube.

          Seriously, you vote down but neglect to provide a counter-argument? Grow up.

          1. Vic

            > Seriously, you vote down but neglect to provide a counter-argument?

            If I were on of the down-voters[1], my argument would be simply this:

            If the Internet is suddenly giong to stop working for the *enormous* number of XP users around the world, then someone will change the way that works such that it *doesn't* stop working.

            So claiming your previous post to be "truth" without significant substantiating evidence is at best implausible, and at worst simple fear-mongering.

            Vic.

            [1] I wasn't, in case you were wondering.

            1. streaky Silver badge
              Boffin

              Nope. The SSL stack in windows XP is outdated and broken. There's no fixes coming, Microsoft have said so. End of.

              XP is an outdated OS and the day that it goes EOL people will start sorting out their support for it on servers, i.e. that is - removing it.

              Anything <= WinXP is affected by it.

    2. Bakunin
      Windows

      "If the PCs running XP do not have access the the internet then i see no problem having them running past the end of life. A P4 box with 512mb RAM is quite capable of running XP and office software ..."

      And how are those office files getting on and off the machine? USB drives? Floppies? A surface of attack (not matter how small or odd) is still a possible problem.

      I see your point and generally agree with you. I'm sure there will be a lot of Win XP machines at the back of warehouses and connected to small production lines that will happily carry on as normal. However, over time they tend to get forgotten about and can become the "Typhoid Mary" of your office.

      As much as I hate the upgrade treadmill it's worth looking at what's going to happen to them over the next year.

      1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

        And how are those office files getting on and off the machine? USB drives? Floppies? A surface of attack (not matter how small or odd) is still a possible problem.

        Most of which can be defended against by a decent anti-virus/anti-malware program, kept up to date.

        Now quite how long those will be maintained and supported is a supplimentary (but also important) question, as of course is customers having enough IS savvy to maintain them without access to the internet for standard self-updating.

        1. Michael Habel Silver badge
          FAIL

          Save that once Microsoft finally pull the Plug on the Patient. So to the like of Norton, Symantic, Adobe, Mozilla... And the List goes on. Nobody is gonna bother to support a dead OS.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "And how are those office files getting on and off the machine?"

        LAN/fileserver/printer - No direct internet access - it's common enough in small outfits.

        1. Snake

          Your recommendation, in regards to the topic of this story, makes absolutely no sense at all.

          We are discussing support in regards to OS security. Exactly how has Windows 8 proven itself in regards to security protocols, zero-day attacks and programmic security flaws?

          Oh yeah, it hasn't. Windows 8 is simply too new to have a proven security track record.

          Yet, here you are. Recommending it as a security 'upgrade', better than the 3+ year field proven Windows 7.

          You truly may wish to consider withdrawing your statement.

      3. This post has been deleted by its author

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        'Kiosk' devices

        Judging by the number of blue-screens I've noticed in airports, there are quite a lot of installations of WinXP or earlier running on unattended devices for the purposes of running advertising or customer information boards. I don't see these getting updated in a hurry ...

      5. Roland6 Silver badge

        "if the PC running XP ..."

        "And how are those office files getting on and off the machine? USB drives? Floppies? A surface of attack (not matter how small or odd) is still a possible problem."

        This surface of attack is the same for ALL versions of Windows - there is practically nothing in Win8 that makes it any less vulnerable to such attacks other than it will have security and bug fix support for a few years beyond that remaining for XP.

      6. markusgarvey

        plenty of small business's have small LAN's with no internet access...

  2. Piro

    Really?

    "“One customer said if you are going to push a new UI on employees, you might as well go all in and go Windows 8 rather than Windows 7,” Van Heerden said."

    I doubt that'd be a popular move with anyone involved.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Really?

      Windows 8 UI: Maybe if your an OAP!

      1. Tim99 Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: Really?

        I am an OAP, and a volunteer helping teach other OAPs computing - So far all of them hate Windows 8 - Except, maybe, those few who only seem to want internet access (so we might as well get them using iOS)...

        1. kb
          Paris Hilton

          Re: Really?

          They really tried pushing my doctor to switch his office to win 8, she and her nurses are all older, know what they did after trying Win 8 for a month? They went to iPads with keyboards and new charting software installed. When I asked her about it she said "I don't have to fight this like I did that other mess" and that was that.

          I have a feeling Win 8 is gonna come back to haunt them, as XP users are frankly just as well off going Apple or Google since they'll have to learn a whole new UI whichever way they go.

          Paris because I doubt even she would be stupid enough to run off her fans like that.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Really?

      "I doubt that'd be a popular move with anyone involved."

      Indeed not. And from a tech point of view it would be madness for any business to touch Windows 8 with Blue only months away, which can be relied upon to upset somebody, somewhere (if not everybody, everywhere).

    3. Vic

      Re: Really?

      > I doubt that'd be a popular move with anyone involved.

      Well, he did say "One customer" :-)

      Vic.

  3. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Meh

    "you might as well go all in and go Windows 8 rather than Windows 7"

    Why? Windows 7 is like XP and Windows 9 will be like Windows 7 if MS has any sense of self-preservation.

    1. stephajn

      Re: "you might as well go all in and go Windows 8 rather than Windows 7"

      Which, if Windows 8's pre-release behaviour from Microsoft is any indication, they don't. It is like they were in a car with the brakes cut, and had thousands of passengers yelling at them that the brakes are cut and they just stepped right on the accelerator and went forward with their ears plugged and humming.

    2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: "you might as well go all in and go Windows 8 rather than Windows 7"

        >The new Win 8 UI is all about MS attempting to get back into the profitable mobile game.

        Which MS decided to effectively exit when it decided to combine it's various client OS developments into a single release with all of the politic's, design, development and management problems that entails which have resulted in a greatly extending development. Whereas Apple iOS and Google's Android both created a new mobile OS derived from their respective parent OS'es, which enabled them to focus on the mobile user environment and rapidly innovate relevant features.

        As the article indicates, MS haven't been particularly pro-active in setting out the roadmap for their enterprise customers. Remember in the 90's MS effectively had two Window's development streams with 98 & ME being consumer releases which business largely ignored and used 95 until 2000 was released. XP suffered initially as MS brought the two code-bases back into line and so wasn't really a stable enterprise OS until SP2.

        As you point out, the question is whether MS's strategy for a unified UI will win long term, or whether they will continue to loose ground to the more agile pure-play OS's. Also in question is whether they can gain sufficient traction for their subscription-based licensing model.

  4. beep54
    Meh

    Eh, suck it up and move to 7. Which is essentially Vista service pack 4 now. XP was a nightmare when it first rolled out. You pretty much needed a whole new kit to run it and even then the drivers weren't there. Still, it became solid. Can't see moving to 8 any time soon until it is fixed. Good core, but it is very ugly.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seriously though

    Shouldn't all the bugs have been found in XP by now?

  6. Snake

    *Please* stop saying that you'll be "naked" after April 4 when Microsoft stops updates for WindowsXP. A claim like that is simply hyperbole.

    We are "naked" NOW. Security patches for any OS occurs *after* the threat has been examined and determined, after the fact of threat release into the wild. Everyone, everywhere, surfs naked NOW and uses various forms of prevention to avoid infection. The only thing Microsoft, or Apple for that matter, technically does is either immunize or cure you AFTER the threat is real. All of this acts in a similar fashion to biological diseases except there is no built-in systemic immunity; it is added artificially to the system in response to the detection of a threat.

    As a user, your actions will not change a single bit once Microsoft stops its updates. It will still be up to you to use preventative measures to avoid infections, only the source of a cure will change. Microsoft simply patches their systems to strengthen the measures you are taking yourself (anti-virus, firewalls, proxies, script controls, ad blockers and hopefully some common sense). WindowsXP sip not up and die on April 4, you will be as "naked" as before as your computer interacts with the world, that will not change much.

    1. KierO

      Wooh there. Many security patches on many OS's are actually privately reported or internally discovered. Not all are "Zero Day" exploits being used in the wild, THAT is hyperbole.

      And to say that people will not be any more or any less vulnerable once security patches stop is just encouraging bad practice. Many of the "Major" virus infections of the last 15 or so years relied on security flaws that HAD been patched!

      Staying patched is the number 1 rule to staying secure.

      1. Snake

        "Many security patches on many OS's are actually privately reported or internally discovered."

        And what part of this discovery process occurs on a system that isn't "in the wild" - that is, already vulnerable because people are using it, unpatched, on the internet as the exploit is being reported?

        Again, you are surfing "naked" NOW. All systems are vulnerable and the vulnerabilities get patched AFTER the OS rolls out, after the public is using it with all its existing holes and targets. The patches only try to plug some of the leaks in the sieve, after you have already been pouring the water of the internet in for, likely, months and months and months.

        The realization and you are already "naked" is part of your cure - rampant paranoid is your only hope of internet survival. From personal information to data integrity, only the paranoid survive.

    2. sparkiemj

      nicely put

      You said it in the best possible way .. That's exactly the thing all these article writers and nay-sayers and doomsday predictors of the end of windows xp don't seem to get ..

      People will be reluctant and loathe to migrate to a new OS as long as the current one still does its job quite well .. However, decreased support after 2014 april will gradually be followed by other software vendors esp. Browser and anti-malware software makers .. This, coupled with a new range of hardware devices like printers and so on with a new breed of interfaces and drivers may be the reason people will eventually shift to windoze 7 or 8 .. (a bit similar to how it happened from win98 to winxp )

  7. preppy

    Windows XP Upgrade

    Of course users will get to pay for the hardware and software upgrade.

    ....but can anyone tell me what additional VALUE or additional FUNCTIONALITY most Windows users will get from upgrading from XP to something else?

    1. Naughtyhorse

      Re: Windows XP Upgrade

      VALUE or additional FUNCTIONALITY

      well they'll be getting an OS thats supported by the manufacturer for a start!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Windows XP Upgrade

        @Naughtyhorse

        "well they'll be getting an OS that's supported by the manufacturer for a start!"

        As an independent contractor whose done a lot of work for Fortune 500's and SMB's in recent years, I can tell you I haven't felt any support from MS for SMB's since the 1990's! For example, on several occasions patchy MS patching broke more things than it fixed.

        Sometimes the patches themselves, or the delivery mechanism therein, or the added complexity of Virus / Malware software, conspire to bring about unexpected crashes or disable crucial features. In 2007 XP was updated with new common controls among other files. Several of these had update bugs and caused catastrophic failures in businesses I worked in.

        Office 2003 is on this expiry list too. Several updates in 2007 disabled or deactivated features. Whether MS did this cynically to create headaches for Office 2003 and move more 2007 product I'll forgo speculating! In any event, I couldn't get any help from MS on either issue. In the end, Sysinternals Process Monitor and the Depends.exe app came to the rescue thankfully-- not Microsoft!

    2. Sean Gray
      Facepalm

      Re: Windows XP Upgrade

      Improved performance?

      Increases security?

      USB 3 support?

      GPT support (needed for drives larger than 2TB)?

      The ability to have more than 4GB of RAM?

      Dramatically improved support for large scale deployment and management?

      1. Michael Habel Silver badge

        Re: Windows XP Upgrade

        Cause USB3.0 is so prevalent now.... Just like USB2.0 was back then when XP first came out.

        Perhaps by the time of Windows 9 you might have had a pint there.

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Windows XP Upgrade

        >Improved performance?

        Given the significant increase in performance of machines since 2002 this is likely only to be a problem to so called "power users" ie. gamers.

        >Increases security?

        Yet to be field proven, but as the MS security patches show the latest versions of Windows have many of the same security holes...

        >USB 3 support?

        It only needs a driver - remember LBA, IRDA, USB, SATA, WiFi, etc. ... Only MS (for commercial reasons) are only providing the driver in their latest OS as an incentive to upgrade.

        >GPT support (needed for drives larger than 2TB)?

        It's a driver see USB 3.0

        The ability to have more than 4GB of RAM?

        XP has been able to support 64GB of RAM, only there were two slightly different ways of implementing this in hardware that unfortunately couldn't be detected by software...

        Dramatically improved support for large scale deployment and management?

        Irrelevant as XP is already deployed and managed!

      3. Jess

        Re: Windows XP Upgrade

        > Improved performance?

        Supposedly, but I'm unconvinced.

        > Increases security?

        Obviously, but the question was what else?

        > USB 3 support?

        Odd, I have USB 3 on my XP system and it works fine.

        > GPT support (needed for drives larger than 2TB)?

        Fair point, but if you are still on XP, the likelihood of needing local support for over 2TB isn't that great.

        > The ability to have more than 4GB of RAM?

        You can make use of a little more than 4GB, but the situation is the same for vista, 7 and 8.

        You need a 64 bit version of the OS, and the 64 bit version of XP also supports GPT (apparently)

        Dramatically improved support for large scale deployment and management?

    3. ecofeco Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Windows XP Upgrade

      Easy. Win 7 is faster and easier to use and support.

      Seems that's not a good enough for the iconoclasts, though.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Windows XP Upgrade

        Faster? I could buy a faster car... doesn't mean I have to or want to.

        Faster to support? What, Win7 staff pick up their phones quicker? Hmmm... XP remains, for obvious reasons, the one that people have a decade experience of.

        There will come a time (and Microsoft will make sure of it, because their existence depends on it) when new software won't run on it, when it won't run on new hardware, and the upgrade to MS-Win-Whatever will be forced.

        Until then... Use it until it croaks and dies.

        Remember the typewriter days. Can I have a new typewriter? No: not while the old one still works. A bit more of that attitude applied to PCs and software would save a huge amount of money, and put a spoke in the wheel of MS's gravy train. Why the hell should MS take for granted that the commercial world will shower it in regular doses of dosh! For nothing. Lets show them otherwise!

    4. ps2os2
      Alert

      Re: Windows XP Upgrade

      MS doesn't really support their OS's anyway.

      The big issue is OEM and if they are going to continue offering software that runs on XP.

  8. KierO

    Started a new job last year and we are still running Windows XP. "We have dabbled with Windows 7" came the response, when asked what the plan was for migrating.

    One legacy app was holding them back from going to Windows 7, which after two days of working on I found a way to get it working on Windows 7.

    A little bit of work on WDS, USMT and Powershell and we now have a light-touch deployment of Windows 7 that works on almost all 15 models of desktop PC that we have in the office.

    Doing a desktop rollout, be it hardware or software, is one the least "Sexy" IT projects and the hardest to sell to management, you almost always get the same response "Why do we need to spend money on doing that, what we have works fine!"

    You mention "user resistance", but lets not forget that many of these "users" are the managers that oversee IT departments budgets!

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      @Kier0 Started a new job ...

      "One legacy app was holding them back from going to Windows 7, which after two days of working on I found a way to get it working on Windows 7."

      Did the legacy app vendor fully support your deployment on Win7 or did they insist you upgraded to a newer version that included Win7 support?

      Whilst you can often get things working (I suspect that given a little more effort you could of got the legacy app working on Linux or OS/X), it is another matter to deploy it into the normal business environment.

  9. HamsterNet
    WTF?

    Supprised companies on XP

    What kind of backwards ramshackle IT do you have if XP exists in your building? Its over a decade old, which is forever in IT terms. Have these IT managers even got a qualification in IT or just drifted into IT in the 80s.. We all know the types...

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Supprised companies on XP

      It works for them, why replace?

      Small businesses have more important things to spend money on.

      1. HamsterNet

        Re: Supprised companies on XP

        The same reason you have a car despite a horse and cart still working very well. I would even bet your car is newer than XP and you chose a newer car for about the same reasons you chose to update IT equipment.

        1. Bumpy Cat
          Devil

          Re: Supprised companies on XP

          If you have a ten-year-old car that still works fine, why should you change it for a new car that is ugly and doesn't work the way you expect? That's why people still use XP over Win8.

        2. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Supprised companies on XP

          My car is a 2001 model, and I do not like the stying of many current cars, and the only ones I like are too expensive.

          BTW it is more reliable than a newer BMW at work

    2. Stuart 22
      FAIL

      Re: Supprised companies on XP

      Microsoft were selling XP on netbooks up to 3 years ago (when I bought my last one). Windows 8 don't do netbooks so where do they expect me to go? Or do they expect me to throw away perfectly good 4 year old kit?

      A great Redmond plan to get Linux on the desktop? Sigh.

      1. Gordon Fecyk
        Thumb Down

        They keep saying that...

        A great Redmond plan to get Linux on the desktop?

        Then it hasn't worked in twelve years. Wasn't the Windows 95 Start Menu the first thing that was supposed to make people move to Linux? Or was that product activation on XP? UAC on Vista? The Start Screen on 8?

        I'm still waiting.

        1. Daniel B.

          Re: They keep saying that... @Gordon Fecyk

          Start Menu wasn't a bad change. In fact, Win95 was merely MS catching up to do a complete ripoff of the Macintosh System 7 interface, instead of the half-assed, DOSSHELL-based thing they used for the 3.x versions.

          XP activation theoretically would've done the trick, except the corporate keys started making rounds on the internet and thus the feature was defeated.

          Of course, the rest of the stuff you mention should've theoretically made people jump ship, but Linux hasn't quite got up to scratch on the install part, and lack of MS Office is a dealbreaker in many companies. But jumping ship to OSX does seem to be a real possibility...

          1. Michael Habel Silver badge

            Re: They keep saying that... @Gordon Fecyk

            One word WINE... One more Word; O2k7 is all the M$ Office ya need!

      2. Michael Habel Silver badge
        Linux

        Re: Supprised companies on XP

        Believe me son once you give Mint Linux a try for a few days you'll never miss Microsoft again.

        That is unless you like reading the Registers summery of this Months latest batch of Hotfixes.

        When it slowly dawns on ya that your no longer on Windows, and theres no reason to care about that crap anymore!

        1. Snake

          Re: Supprised companies on XP

          Regretfully, no.

          The problem with Linux fanatics is reality. The OS isn't the concern for the vast majority of users - it's the APPS. Linux has almost no native programs for specialized markets - no custom financial, system control, inventory control, Point of Sale, merchandising, CAD / CAM design, embedded system diagnostics, technical support assistance, et al. written for it. It makes absolutely no sense for the thousands upon thousands of companies currently dependent upon customized industry solutions to switch to a non-supported OS and then use an emulator or code interpreter just to run a program that can be run natively on the original OS, with willing tech support (by the developer or the OS manufacturer, MS) to boot.

          No sense AT ALL.

          And it is high well time that the Linux "Year of Linux!" fanatics finally realize this. Linux will NEVER grasp the desktop market because it is not - and has not been since the days of the war between Windows and OS/2 - about the operating system. People who believe that are living 20 years in the past, believing that the "Next Best Thing!", waiting over that hill, is the thing that will kill Microsoft Windows...which is exactly the same argument that OS/2 supporters used 20 years ago.

          Repeat after me: "Yes, I can be cured. I have a problem. The problem is that I can't realize that people want solutions in the form of applications to run and don't give a hoot as to what OS they [need] to do it."

          1. Pirate Dave Silver badge
            Pirate

            Re: Snake

            Funny, I think IBM felt the same way towards microcomputers/PCs and Microsoft back in the 70's. There was no financial software for those toy computers back in 1974, no COBOL., no reason to worry at all. IBM's mainframe business was HERE TO STAY and to think otherwise made "absolutely no sense for the thousands upon thousands of companies currently dependent upon customized industry solutions to switch to a non-supported OS and then use an emulator or code interpreter just to run a program that can be run natively on the original OS, with willing tech support (by the developer or the OS manufacturer, MS) to boot.".

            It's a cycle, see. At some point, MS will fall and a new giant will emerge. Might be Google, might be Apple, might be RedHat, might be some little company that hasn't even been incorporated yet.

    3. EvilGav 1
      FAIL

      Re: Supprised companies on XP

      We still have assembly language running on our mainframe, should we re-write all of that because it's no longer sexy and with-it in the IT world?

      In the world of large corporations, moving from one OS to another happens at a glacial pace and only when they have exhausted all excuses not to.

      1. Bill the Sys Admin
        Mushroom

        Re: Supprised companies on XP

        Its worrying that these companies employees are stuck on IE6! Thats as far as IE goes on Xp as far as im aware.

        1. Michael Habel Silver badge

          Re: Supprised companies on XP

          Actually it goes up to 8...

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Supprised companies on XP and IE6

          "Its worrying that these companies employees are stuck on IE6! Thats as far as IE goes on Xp as far as im aware."

          XP limit is IE8. However some companies' applications were stuck with needing IE6 compatibility though..

        3. Vic

          Re: Supprised companies on XP

          > stuck on IE6! Thats as far as IE goes on Xp as far as im aware.

          That's not the case.

          I have IE8 on this machine. I'm running XP SP3.

          It's a client's machine...

          Vic.

        4. MJI Silver badge

          Re: IE6

          Actually they tend to have the latest Firefox/Chrome ect

        5. Fuzz

          @Bill the Sys Admin Re: Supprised companies on XP

          I guess your "sys admin" role doesn't involve administration of Windows systems. XP runs IE 8

        6. Fihart

          Re: Supprised companies on XP

          @Bill the Sys Admin

          There are other browsers. They work with XP.

    4. Steve Todd

      Re: Supprised companies on XP

      There are of course companies with bespoke software that won't run on anything later than XP. Either they don't have access to the source for this or the cost of re-writing would be excessive. In those cases it's a no-brainier to hang on to XP for as long as they can.

      There's plenty of perfectly functional software on XP that just won't run on 7 or 8 (Microsoft wrote some of it for gods sake, look at their compatibility matrix some time) and any IT manager that spends his/her budget providing no visible benefit over what the users had wont last long.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: Bespoke & Legacy

        So XP is the latest OS for a lot of software

        Vista lost full screen command prompts.

        Netbios removal

        Netbios

        No need to remove them - they just like to force things

        1. Michael Habel Silver badge

          Re: Bespoke & Legacy

          Odd that seeing as I just came off XP I can tell ya that a Full Screen CLI never existed outside of an F8 Boot to CLI. So perhaps you're a bit young to remember that.

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Bespoke & Legacy

            XP machine on next desk to me

            Yes it does full screen command prompts, used it yesterday to set up a system for dot matrix printing (as I didn't migrate that edit screen)

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Supprised companies on XP

      Oh for crying out loud - its commonplace for big companies to still be running XP.

      I work for a major corporate where the default desktop globally is still XP. We have only /just/ started trialling Win7, and thats only been given to a handful of developers - only only because we've been demanding it.

    6. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: Supprised companies on XP

      "What kind of backwards ramshackle IT do you have if XP exists in your building?"

      Where I work we migrated away from XP. I believe the primary reason was the licence cost, with "due to end soon" coming a close second. After a look at the options (Windows, more licence cost) they did a migration by saving user files to a networked server, chucking away all the old desktop machines, and giving everybody midrange laptops with Ubuntu on. There was panic and chaos for a while (and the migration to OpenOffice really sorted out those who "knew" computers in general (who got on okay) from those who "knew" Office specifically (and floundered as things were slightly different)). Now everybody is happy and from the user side, there are no problems. There are some XP machines kicking around for software (like the environment monitoring) that is not available on other platforms, but by and large I think I'd say in this instance Microsoft might have shot itself in the foot.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I still have an unopened OEM version of XP for a computer that I postponed to build. I want to do it this summer.

    I understand "no more bugfixes". What about activation? Can I still activate after 8th of April ?

    What if you need reactivation after some time ?

    Does anybody know the answer to that ?

    1. elhvb
      Thumb Up

      Quote:

      As long as you're running a particular version of Windows, there's a possibility that you'll eventually have to reinstall it. And that means you'll have to reactivate it--a job that requires Microsoft's cooperation.

      That's a serious concern considering how much Microsoft wishes that Windows XP would just go away. They have promised to stop supporting the operating system in April of 2014.

      But Microsoft has assured me that they will continue to activate XP. Their exact words: "The end of Windows XP support will not affect activation, but rather security updates and phone/online technical support."

      From here:

      http://www.pcworld.com/article/250774/will_i_be_able_to_activate_xp_after_2014_.html

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows XP is going?

    what?? I was about to start my large corporation roll-out project as some people have been complaining that their Windows 95 and 98 boxes were unable to browse some of the internet sites we let them get to.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Windows XP is going?

      you may joke, but we still have some win98 PCs because the software on them doesnt work on anything newer, and no one will sign off the project to replace that software.

  12. Lockwood

    The "beloved" XP is the same OS that had a load of problems when it came out?

    Companies not liking the Fisher Price interface.

    Applications not working due to the differences between the 95/98 and NT kernel and application compatibility not being good enough for them.

    How many of these people clinging to XP were clinging to 98 for the first few years of XP's life?

    How many were clinging to WfW, rather than going to this new Windows 95 thing?

  13. Naughtyhorse

    Customers.... really???

    someone who bought a product 12 years ago, and has enjoyed free maintainence ever since.

    is that person really a customer?

    or merely someone that once did a bit of business with MS a long, long, looooong time ago.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Customers.... really???

      *Free* maintenance.

      Tell that to any moderately sized company that pays for MS support.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Customers.... really???

      I take issue with this - Maintenance??

      What you're actually talking about is the company who sold me the product in the first place gradually fixing all the broken and insecure code they bashed into the product in order to rush it to market to make massive profits for their shareholders.

      I see this as an obligation that they owe me and not some damned privilege I'm getting.

      1. EvilGav 1
        Thumb Down

        @AC 17:30 Re: Customers.... really???

        Interesting point, but the argument is somewhat flawed.

        Anything you buy has inherent "flaws" that can be used by a nefarious 3rd party - the alarm/imobiliser on your car can be circumvented; the locks on your front door can be picked; the condom you wear could fail.

        If you choose to park your car in a public and dodgy neighbourhood, is it the manufacturer of the alarm/imobiliser that's at fault if it gets stolen?

        If you leave your house for a long period and it gets burgled, is it the lock manufacturers fault?

        If you sleep with a skanky person and the protection fails and you get a virus, is it the condom manufacturers fault?

        Plugging a PC into the internet is always risky, you just take measures to minimise the risk (firewalls, AV, web check and so on). If the PC gets attacked and you're behind a firewall, why is it the OS that's at fault and not the firewall (after all, one is sold on the premise it protects you and one isn't).

        What you are "owed" is a working* operating system. That's it.

        * Let's not get into the "hur, hur, it's Windows, I wouldn't say it was 'working' hur, hur" comments

    3. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Customers.... really???

      >someone who bought a product 12 years ago, and has enjoyed free maintainence ever since.

      Obviously only someone who has NEVER being involved in MS licensing for business could come up with such a comment.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    fools

    anyone still running XP are fools that deserve to be pwned. anyone who doesn't know that support for XP is ending shortly, are idiots.

    there are lots of fools and idiots

    1. ecofeco Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: fools

      I have to agree. Useless old fogies is more like it.

      XP needs to die and go away forever. It was obsolete 6 years ago.

    2. Mr_Blister
      Thumb Down

      Re: fools

      There are those like myself who will continue to use Win XP Pro for tasks NOT requiring the internet. I have a few IBM Thinkpad laptops that work extremely well with XP and each laptop performs a separate role to the others; one is a retro gaming machine; one is a music studio sequencing machine; one is a notebook that is taken on holiday or to diagnose my car with and more. However I have a desktop machine that runs Win 7 64-bit and that can download whatever I need, and then be passed to the other laptops.

      Win XP will continue to be used my myself for a good many years to come! However Win 8 can take a running jump!

  15. Avatar of They
    Happy

    I like XP, we need another icon for a gravestone with Xp on it.

    “One customer said if you are going to push a new UI on employees, you might as well go all in and go Windows 8 rather than Windows 7,” Van Heerden said.

    Only if that person is working in a place where walls are padded and everyone has jackets with arap around sleeves.

    I will miss XP, it was a solid dependable workshore and served us well. Windows 7 is doing a good enough job as a replacement, lets hope it lasts well pass the hiccup of windows 8.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Is win 7 or 8 realy secure?

    "Windows XP is the hackers port of call in terms of trying to get a foot hold and establish botnets”

    Windows 7 & 8 can also be hacked and be running botnets.

    MS should have secured the OS long ago. Its their area of expertise and yet nothing of real value has been done since XP in 2001. Security through obfuscation doesnt work.

  17. Lone Gunman
    WTF?

    End of life?

    Seriously, how can any IT manager not know that XP is nearing end of life? I mean its mentioned regularly in the IT press, particularly when MS have launched the next OS (7 and 8) usually in the same sentence as don't forget to get rid of IE6. I find that far more worrying than whether the systems will be left "naked" or not after April 2014.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    XP... and security...

    My take on this is that at the moment most remotely exploitable vulnerabilities are found in the evil triplets (Java, Flash, Adode Reader)... and to a lesser extent browser vulnerabilities.

    If a Windows machine is firewalled to block all incoming connections, the evil triplets and browser are fully patched, to what extent is that system vulnerable? This is a serious question... for several years now we have not had malware problems on machines where users cannot install software, so we have no experience to tell us where the real risks lie.

    Obviously the risk with XP end-of-support is going to be non-updating of IE (users are all on the FF treadmill at our site, so not that much of an issue), but the little devil on my left shoulder is saying that the time and money might be better spent on a comprehensive IPS solution that has the potential to catch malware infestations regardless of the state of the client. As I was writing that there was a little demonic whisper "...not to mention that many of the leaders are using their own machines that the IT dept is not permitted to access".

  19. Michael Habel Silver badge
    Linux

    If the fabled "Year of the Linux" is ever able to come true then the MOMENT IS NOW!

    I think Mr. Shuttleworth knows this. I might not care for his methods but, I for One agree with his reasoning. Linux needs to get into the mainstream NOW! Before Microsoft can be made to see reason and chuck Ballmers sorry rump on the the Street and fix that shambolic disaster a.k.a Windows 8.

    If a few Websites (like this One), could help tear down an otherwise good os like Vista back in 2006/7 'cause the OEMs played to fast & loose with the minimum specs. Then what chance does Windows 8 have? No sane person would go near it on the PC, and well the success that has been Windows Phone 7 & 8, plus Surface Pro & RT. Just speak for themselves.

    If jobs were still 'round I bet he'd use this to start propping up the PC side of Apple. But, hes not and I think they may have forgotten that they were in the market to sell Computers to begin with. So that leaves a huge vacuum for the likes of Ubuntu to fill.

    The chance is there and, its ripe for the taking, but will they pull it off?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      No, they won't.

      IT departments don't actually have any loyalty to Microsoft. This is important, but ignored by linux zealots who simply don't understand the issues facing IT Professionals. In theory from a certain point of view, there is a window to replace Windows XP with some variety of Linux.

      In practice this will not happen. Here's why.

      Companies do not run on "Windows", be that XP or whatever.

      Companies generally run on two or three applications. First is the word processor, which is not longer an obstacle. Yeah, LibreOffice is perfectly good enough for word processing and it's actually easier to convert users from legacy versions of office to it than it is to Microsoft offerings. (and good job on that, by the way)

      Second is an industry specific piece of software, basically CRM or CMS. These are typically tied to word for generating word documents, however it's not so much of an issue as in the past as quite a few are moving towards being web based apps and so therefore platform independent.

      Thirdly is Exchange/Outlook, the formidable obstacle that will prevent pretty much any migrations. It's used everywhere, and the integrated mail/calendar is the killer. Before someone says that you can add lighting to thunderbird, I shall point out that outlook allows a delegated user (such as a seceratry) to take a phone call from Mr X, check her principals mailbox to see if he has actioned it and then book an appointment in for that client. This is important, regardless of if that principal is a Doctor, CEO, Solicitor or whatever.

      If I was so incautious as to ignore the users wishes on this little issue then I would be seeking employment elseware and my successor would be reimplementing Exchange/Outlook. So, when there is a *working* alternative to Exchange and outlook out there then you can expect to see a huge tidal wave of companies moving away from windows server and Exchange. It's not happened yet, although openchange is getting to within shelling distance of being able to replace an exchange server.

      "Working" needs to be defined as gaining user acceptance by being suitable for doing their job, as well as technically operational. If it sort of technically works but the users demand the severed head of the person deploying it then it doesn't work.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        It's not really the MS software.

        As for Exchange, look into SOGo. (Yes that's how the capitalize it.) I find it's usually some other legacy piece of software that keep companies using Windows. In SMB's, more often than not, it's the "must have MS Office to be compatible with all the other companies" FUD.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: It's not really the MS software.

          Yes, it really is the Microsoft Software. I *could* just leave the windows servers running for exchange, and then replace the desktops.

          However that still hasn't addressed the problem of not being able to run outlook on linux, and there not being a user acceptable piece of software to replace it.

  20. Longrod_von_Hugendong
    FAIL

    naked???

    'meaning customers will be naked and vulnerable to hackers and viruses'

    How is that different to running Vista, windoze 7 or 8???

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Natwest ...

    still running XP as per this Saturday. How is this not surprising?

    1. P. Lee

      Re: Natwest ...

      Banks tend to have very controlled environments - probably much safer running xp there than running W8 in an SMB.

      Its about risk, if you can control the environment, the risk/cost to upgrading looks completely different from someone using it to browse porn at home with no a/v or anti-malware installed.

      It should be noted that even linux is dropping support for 386 architectures. Its causing problems for me with a pentium m laptop and a nice 4:3 screen!

      When MS' marginal cost to supply an OS is almost zero, I consider all acquisition costs to be "up-front support." I don't expect them to support binaries forever, but the decision to go with any OS-specific software must include an attribution for OS costs and any other costs incurred because of that OS decision. So redevelopment costs of software go against a new OS, recurring support/re-purchase goes against the incumbent.

      Likewise for Office software, which makes life interesting... If you actually get involved with supporting free software, you can do things such as put up bounties for features you want and pay for them out of reduced commercial software costs.

  22. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  23. SeymourHolz

    Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

    Seriously, what is the negative outcome? Why is there any reason to think an XP virtual desktop that ran fine in 2013 will have any problem running in 2033?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

      1 in 7 stuck on legacy hardware do...

      Food for thought. Who is to say XP won't become less exposed to future vulnerabilities? For instance what if XP becomes less attractive to Bot-Net architects as fewer XP boxes remain in the wild? What then? Vulnerabilities often favour the new over the old, so as fewer firms remain on XP or for those surgically attached to it, the security risk might be different that we expect. How can we say for sure that these customers will be more compromised? Traditionally, the greatest risks weren't XP per se anyway, but were Java, Flash, Adobe Reader etc...

      So who are stuck on XP?

      A vastly understated risk to firms bottom line IMHO is legacy hardware: i.e. Companies stuck with old devices interfaced to XP, that can't be inter-connected via Win7 or Win8 or Win9. This includes CUSTOM software written specifically for these devices where the developer is no longer around. XP is just so old now, this is a real problem is places I've worked from restaurant and hotel chains, to hospitals and clinics, and even some engineering firms!

      1. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
        Windows

        Re: Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

        Naaw us engineering firms wont touch Xp with a barge pole , still too new and unproven, especially with all the patches coming out every month

        Come to think of it, the only reason we update our windows machines is because the things are broken and cant be cheaply fixed.

        So long as they run the accounting and inventory software in the office, and the isolated laptops(the ones with a the "you will be sacked if you turn on the wireless networking" notices) run the CAD/CAM software, we see now reason to upgrade.

        But given just how much Linux has come on, if the CAD people made a linux version we'd dump windows in an instant...after all, if Linux is good enough to run the actual robots, its good enough to run the programming software

      2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        1. FrankAlphaXII

          Re: Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

          >>XP before SP2 was a train wreck

          It really was. Though in my experience not for anything malware related if you had an iota of sense about setting up security policies, limiting the attack footprint, and had a decently configured firewall. Drivers and software compatibility were my main issues with it. I recall that I wound up installing Windows 2000 on so many Windows XP boxes when it first came out because it would not play nice with a client's configuration that I lost count.

          I remember calling XP "eXtra Problems" because it was a gigantic headache until about SP 2, though it made me quite a bit of quick and (fairly) easy cash.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

          @Eadon 23:16

          #1. We're on SP3 now!

          #2. XP was improved over its 12 year lifetime... Extracts from the link posted by elhvb @ 17:13:-

          "XP will probably be safe for a long time after Microsoft stops issuing security updates.

          First of all, it will have had more than 12 years of updates and security patches by then. That will almost certainly make it more secure and stable than whatever version of Windows is the current new thing."

          ...and...

          "...the active malware threats of 2014 will probably not be targeting an old and out-of-date operating system."

          1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

            Re: Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

            The problem from Microsoft's side is that XP is just about very good. That is the advantage of having something that has developed and responded to changes over time. People have had the chance to get to know it, discover the problems, and take them out. XP is probably one of the best OSes out there because of this (leaving aside the argument about whether it is inherently flawed because of admin/root access - that's a different thing for another day).

            Look, I don't go for the new shiny-shiny ever. I changed to XP from WIn98 only after it had been out for several years (sometime after SP2, but before SP3), and I think that's because I bought a computer with it on. I have only just moved from XP on one of my machines because it came with Vista (and what a heap of shit that is!) I may try finding an evaluation copy of Win7 to see if that is better, but I may well go back to XP, if the drivers are available (ThinkPad X61). What I won't do is run Linux - MS Word is the de facto standard for my bit of work, and I cannot have formatting and word-counts fucked up by the FOSS offerings (OK, I know - technically, it is Word that does the fucking up, but whatever).

            Oh, and cars - I've never bought one new even when I could have afforded it. The newest I've ever bought was six years old, because I want to know what the problems are and how to fix them. I'm currently running a car that is closer to twenty years old than ten, and which I've had for 7 years old. Reliability counts to some people, and that is why XP will be around for a long time.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Who needs Microsoft Support for XP anyway?

              With a ThinkPad you should have a Vista Business that allows downgrade to XP Pro. I've been very happy with a 2nd hand T61p running XP, with the spinning rust upgraded to an SSD. W7 is OK, just has different frustrations.

              And BTW the admin/root thing is not that big a deal, you can create a non-admin account for normal use and perform privilege escalations manually by right-clicking on an installer and selecting "Run As..." which gives the same effect as UAC.

  24. Big_Boomer Bronze badge
    Facepalm

    XP is DEAD

    Anyone who wants to continue running XP, go for it. Just don't expect Microsoft to help you out of a hole. And please don't come whining on here about how unfair it all is. Companies have had plenty of warning that XP is a dead duck. Any IT bod with any sense would leave a company that insists on staying with XP.

    Remember, when threatened by a wild animal, you don't have to run faster than the animal, just faster than the other people around you.

    1. Snake

      Re: XP is DEAD

      "Anyone who wants to continue running XP, go for it. Just don't expect Microsoft to help you out of a hole."

      What hole?! The OS is EIGHT YEARS OLD. If you're still dealing with "holes"...you're doing something very, very, VERY wrong.

      XP has been patched, poked, altered, tweaked and run TOO DEATH. What kind of "holes" will a typical user be forced to deal with at this stage of life, after 3 Service Packs and several hundred upgrade patches?

      Is that really a sound argument to stand upon?!

    2. Pirate Dave Silver badge
      Pirate

      Re: XP is DEAD

      I'm trying to think of when the last time was that Microsoft helped me "out of a hole" in regards to one of their OSes.

      Nope, can't think of one. No, wait, I think back in '93 I had an issue with Windows 3.1 and called and they did help me out. Back when their telephone tech support was still free because they were still a hungry company. They're all fat and well-fed now.

      Although I could be wrong, maybe the problem was in VB 3, not Windows. It sucks getting old...

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have a low(ish) spec laptop still running XP. It still works and does everything I need. It runs Libre/Open Office just fine, handles video and mp3 playback without difficulty.

    So which bod at MS will re-imburse me for having to buy a new laptop JUST so I can run their latest OS? From what I've seen, neither Win7 nor Win8 offer me anything I need/want that my current setup doesn't already provide.

    If it works, don't fix it...

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. Michael Habel Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: @AC - 17:51

        Your bang on Eadon FULL MARKS!!

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Y2K -REMEMBER ??

    NO one die of Y2K ?

    SO will .. winXP ! ! !

    perhaps just the Microsoft shareholders

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Y2K -REMEMBER ??

      No one died of Y2K because billions were spent around the world preparing for it.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Y2K -REMEMBER ??

        "billions were spent around the world preparing"

        You mean billions were BILLED...!

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    I just purchased...

    ... and installed windows 8.

    Please mod me down thoroughly, I want to see nothing less than 10 down votes.

    XP - yep, still works, but with my vast experience at benchmarking windows using nothing more than intuition & notepad, windows 8 is faster, by at least enough that I can almost notice it.

    I think I can also get at least an extra 1fps in Portal 2 - money well spent then!

    But the truth is, I have to stay with the curve, my job demands it. Honest.

    And jokes aside, I've made my windows 8 install, erm, well exactly like windows 7, minus the gradients. TIKFAM has been shunned, classic shell embraced. Oddly enough, I made windows 7 look exactly like windows XP. Wait!

    Windows 8, without all that pesky TIKFAM madness, is XP SP5 - and windows 7 iss XP SP4.

    Kinda says it all really ... now where did I put that copy of XP SP3 ...

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  28. GreyWolf
    Alien

    We'll be celebrating on 8 Apri 2014..

    ...that Mickey-Mouse-rosoft has finally stopped screwing around with XP. Every time they touch it, they put more bugs in. Now, at long last, it will be stable.

    If you don't understand what I'm saying, lend me your ears...

    Q: What do you call removing removing bugs from software?

    A: Debugging.

    Q: What do you call putting bugs into software?

    A: Programming.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  29. LaeMing Silver badge
    Happy

    Some people. Sheesh!

    We upgraded to Win7 months ago!

  30. dave 93
    Meh

    Most XP machines would choke on 7 or 8

    2GHz or less CPU, with 1G or less of RAM is a functional XP machine.

    You are entering a world of pain trying to run 7 or 8 on that spec.

    You could always get a nice new Windows 8 box and run XP as a virtual machine cloned from your old system! :D

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    2. Michael Habel Silver badge

      Re: Most XP machines would choke on 7 or 8

      Funny that I have Windows 7 Ultimate on my Samsung Netbook, Atom Single Core @ 1.67Ghz w/2GiB of RAM.

      Now it takes an age of the World to boot into. Otherwise its quite happy otherwise.

      I'm just patiently waiting for the time when I'll have to strip it (i.e. format C:\ /s), and rebuild it again.

      Only this time with Mint!

      1. dave 93
        Happy

        Re: Most XP machines would choke on 7 or 8

        I just got rid of a trolley full of Dell Mini 10s with 1G RAM running Windows 7 Pro. 10 minutes to boot and load Firefox and Word - 10 minutes! If it were my decision, I would have downgraded them to XP (not allowed), or put Linux on them (nobody wanted that). Replaced them with 5 year old Intel Macbooks - everyone is happy now.

        Wintards commence your trolling!

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I work in the real-world and the real-world is messy...

    There is a still a boat load of LEGACY HARDWARE in particular at SMB's, that won't work on 7 or 8...

    This legacy hardware is at surprising places from HOSPITALS to HOTEL chains, where the systems are so old, that porting isn't an option as the developer has long moved on. Therefore the customer is in limbo!

    Its very easy for management i.e. Head of Software, to stick their head in the sand and dismiss these concerns, stating that the customer will just have to upgrade! The customer simply won't bother. The real world is a lot more messy than management ever appreciates!

    1. ecofeco Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: I work in the real-world and the real-world is messy...

      Then they need to upgrade.

      No one in their right mind would trust their life to old equipment!

  32. CGS

    dead printer?

    OK, so they allow WinXP to die. What about things like my still functional Dell 946 printer which doesn't have a driver for anything past XP? Do I get a refund or replacement from Dell?

    1. GBL Initialiser

      This is why the term 'die' isn't valid for this situation. Your XP install will still work and as such so will your printer.

      If you were forced to stop using XP then you may have had a point.

    2. EvilGav 1
      FAIL

      Re: dead printer?

      You're halfway there.

      The problem isn't MS here, the problem is Dell no longer supporting the hardware/releasing drivers. Point your ire at the right company.

    3. Not That Andrew

      Re: dead printer?

      Here you go: http://www.dell.com/support/drivers/us/en/19/driverdetails?driverid=R145315 works on Vista so will work on Win7.

      Isn't it a pity there insn't some website that attempts to index the Internet, where you can enter a query and it will immediately give you pages of results, many invalid but many relevant. A fool's dream I know, but one lives in hope.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: dead printer?

        "Isn't it a pity there insn't some website that attempts to index the Internet, where you can enter a query and it will immediately give you pages of results, many invalid but many relevant. A fool's dream I know, but one lives in hope."

        I found exactly what you're looking for.

        http://www.baidu.com/

        Now all you need is a language course.

        1. Not That Andrew

          Re: dead printer?

          Surely you mean a spelling course, not language? My prose is purple, but valid.

  33. Fihart

    If it ain't broke, don't fix it....

    ....unless you're Microsoft and need another cash transfusion for your shareholders.

    XP works well on older equipment and, right now, many of us (most of us if you count developing countries) are stuck with that.

  34. Roland6 Silver badge

    Now what would you say?

    "The findings come from a survey of 250 strategic IT types by application migration specialist Camwood, which polled chief information officers, technology officers and IT directors at organisations that run more than 2,000 PCs."

    So if I was in one of these companies and still running XP desktops wall-to-wall and was asked about my opinion, I basically have two choices:

    1. Claim you know all about it and are upgrading.

    or

    2. Claim no knowledge or forgetfulness in the hope that sufficient other respondents do likewise and give MS food for thought.

    I supsect that like Windows 98, MS will (at the last minute) extend support for XP because it needs it's big business customers to keep paying their volume license fee's...

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Considering most corporate environments depend upon Java, I suspect XP being unsupported is the least of their security concerns at the moment.

  36. xj25vm

    Underhand marketing much

    Who got a back hander for posting this thinly disguised piece of marketing, erm, infomercial on The Reg - that's what I want to know. Biting the hands that feeds it - my a$$e!

  37. JaitcH
    Unhappy

    It doesn't seem to matter to MS

    as you are still able to buy XP original software, i.e. not copied, from MS who are quite happy to charge an exorbitant price for it.

  38. lunatik96
    Coat

    Run Linux and get out of MS handcuffs

    I have a new motherboard that despite numerous attempts to install a legal licensed version of Windows 7, it refuses to get past the other disk driver screen. Linux offers no such impedance. So my AMD quad core 8GB box runs linux with Windows in a VM. I have used both KVM and virtual box.

    Windows is almost a joke for me. It is there just in case. 90% of what I do is done via Linux. Programming in C+, surfing the web (securely), and the frequent WORD or Excel document via Libre Office.

    VISTA Sucked. MS is more worried about piracy than usability. Once WIN 7 is installed, it is alright as long as u got a boat load of RAM. Governments of the world, switch and save (I feel like a Geicco Commercial)

  39. janusz

    no updates from MS necessary

    For the most part, receiving patches from MS is just annoying, if not outright disrupting - destabilising the system and slowing it down. Given the very nature of this software, i.e.the built-in universal open-backdoor architecture, that allows anyone privi to the right info a totally open access to the target system - why even bother with MS? If you patch one vulnerability, rest assured there are still hundreds that wait for discovery by all those who do not know about them yet. What you can really do is to first of all get yourself a good anti-virus, firewall at home and a good security framework for the enterprise. If you don't have that, MS patches are as good as medicine for a dead body.

    1. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: no updates from MS necessary

      If you can't configure an XP box to be secure then tbh your in the wrong line of work mate.

  40. ecofeco Silver badge
    WTF?

    Half Wits

    I had no idea there were so many stuck-in-the-past Rip Van Winkles still alive in the computing world, which explains a lot today's FAIL in the industry.

    XP is bollocks and always was. Its saving grace was that it was better than what came before.

    Win 7 is FAR superior to XP.

    Now you kids off my lawn!!

  41. /tmp
    Joke

    if you are going to push a new UI on employees, you might as well go all in and go ...

    ... with the Ubuntu's Unity interface.

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