No security upgrades for the OS, and it not exactly secure to start with (compared to anything more recent) so it is a bad idea to keep using it.
Using an OS this old is just bizarre. To put it in context, at the time XP was released:
1) The current MacOS X version was 10.1 and it ran on PowerPC.
2) Ubuntu did not exist.
3) The most powerful desktop processor Intel supplied was a P4.
4) Blackberry had just launched their first phone
5) A state of the are smartphone would have been something like the Nokia 9210.
Debian, known for its slow release cycle, has released four major versions since Windows XP was launched!
In other words, MS is cutting expenses and delaying the end of an apparently good and still viable source of income.
Nobody should still support XP, it's way past it's prime and primarily botnet fodder.
The real security essential here is called UPGRADE to Win 7 or 8 which us heads and shoulders better than XP in security, device drivers, etc.
I like XP, and it's the best OS they have made, IMO.
A number of my programs won't work on Vista, and I've not tried to install them on later versions. I don't want, or need, touch screen either.
I bought XP in 2010 to run as a virtual machine because it runs legacy programs. I am a Mac user and though I did buy two upgrades for XP I'll not install any until I NEED to. I do not use it online, do not use it for the latest Windows software and do not intend to stop using it any time soon. At least it is more reliable, less bloated than current versions. I would not dream of using it for my only OS, nooooooo. It is not THAT wonderful, but it does have a useful purpose for me.
I know some shops that have expensive CAD and CNC equipment designed to be automated with Win98 software that won't run on newer versions. They don't use those old versions in their offices either, but they rely on them because it is far more expensive to buy new hardware - and it ain't broke, for their purposes.
Lots of new computers with new hardware don't have drivers for XP, I take it as a sign that many are not upgrading their OS because they don't need to upgrade their computer hardware. I'm one of them, my desktop is very powerful, bought still in the time of XP while Vista sucked, so I never upgraded the machine with new hardware or OS.
I have two laptops with Windows 7 and Xubuntu, it's all I need, it was fantastic not having to look for drivers on both systems, just install and done! but I still don't see why I would have to update my desktop, specially having all that data inside.
I only care about this because I want XP to die which will be the death knell for IE8.
It's not so much that people want to run an old OS - more power to them. The bad part is MS has not put out a modern browser that runs on XP and even if they did, IE8 doesn't autoupdate, so that wouldn't help. Once XP goes, we'll only be stuck with a tiny number of IE8 holdouts on Win 7.
This will actually bring down development costs and have a ripple effect through the economy... maybe ;-)
Hmmm ... What is it with some of you?
Nothing wrong with XP, I have it purring beautifully on a 10 year old Sony Vaio with a genuine black screen, never, ever a problem, always up-to-date and the images are still far superior than on 90%+ of the crappy screens supplied today.
Vista - I stayed away from Vista for ages but once installed I loved it, it is still my main office PC OS and on several other machines, rock solid, very easy to work with therefore why all the complaints ... oh ... I use Basic.
Win7 I have on a couple of laptops, a PC and a touchscreen PC ... I hate the damn thing other than the easier way to close folders, I HATE so many things 7 does with an intensity that I'll never migrate to it fully.
Win8, interesting, I have two Nokia Lumias running this and I love them, I've never justified the VERY expensive purchase price of a slate running 8 and do not need any PC upgrade ... crap ... what's gonna blow-up tomorrow?
At the end of the day if one has enough computing power for one's need why change? 20 years ago we were buying new PCs every few months, they crashed, they burned, they failed, now they last years ... and they wonder why people don't change or replace ... why should they?
As a long time Windows programmer I can dispute that statement.
Windows never really reached it's pinnacle until Windows 7.
Then they screwed it all up with Windows 8.
I think it's the worst move by MSFT in this whole story.
They are sending a mixed signal now. Those (and some fine examples above) that willingly stick to XP will see it as a confirmation that they do not *NEED* to upgrade away from XP.
Yet they still absolutely need to do it ASAP:
- The swiss cheese that is XP security wise will NOT get any security updates anymore come April. NONE!
- More recent versions that share vulnerabilities with it will get public descriptions of the problems in detail with fixes that allow reverse engineering to find the exact problem (it takes mere days for the bad guys to figure it out once they commit themselves).
- The bad guys have been rumored to be hoarding exploits for XP for months now: they do not expose the malware to anybody but it's ready to roll once April 8th ticks away (or better said: once April 8th is close enough (I guess early March is when the landrush will start): they are now assured their malware will work forever on the millions of suborn holdouts who refuse to switch away from XP. Shelf life of an exploit is important in how the bad guys operate these days. By running XP you give them infinite shelflife - that's like painting a target on your back and standing on the wrong side in the gun range.
- The mainstream AV vendors will drop XP just like they always do with unsupported software maybe not on April8th, but they will as the efforts will continue to mount with an ever decreasing population to pay for it. Moreover the last holdouts won't pay for AV anyway.
- Microsoft's offering is the weakest AV solution out there and it won't improve - moreover it can't as the OS can't update anymore so it'll aways be far too little and far too late.
The XP systems will hence be scooped up in botnets real soon now, those planning to do this have had ample time and resources to do so. So I'd expect it'll be swift and a race once they feel April 8th is close enough for MSFT not to have the time to react to their malware anymore.
After that we ALL will suffer from more massive botnets than ever before. Botnets used to send spam (forum, email, ...), to attack our servers, to attack our livelihood as webmasters.
Then there is the obsolete IE versions we're stuck with as webmasters - IE 10 and 11: ok-ish: but IE8 it can't die soon enough in my book. And the crippled IE9 can follow RSN for all I care.
I'm not a fan of chrome - but at least they got one thing right: average chrome users will not be years behind in versions. SO it's easy to expect them to be up to date with all features you need in a browser.
As to alternative OSes: is you dislike the more recent windows versions, don't want to upgrade the 12 year old hardware, there's plenty of other choices not coming from MSFT. They work better, are easier to maintain and are far less of a risk (nor target).
If you still run XP:
The risk to yourself: Nah, I don't care anymore - you had ample warning.
I care about the other that will be victims to your foolish stubbornness.
[FWIW: yes, I do have a few copies of XP that I occasionally start (to get IE6 - IE8 etc. for testing purposes - but those are virtual machines that I clone before use and wipe afterward - nor wil they visit anything that I did not create myself.) - I wish I can nuke these - but the holdouts prevent me from doing that just yet]
|IE8 it can't die soon enough in my book |
Exactly. I don't mind if you keep using XP with all it's security problem. Just so long as you don't expect to use the web.
Anyone who needs to be compliant with PCI-DSS, HIPAA or Sarbanes-Oxley (and that's just for the US) will have to get off XP by April either way.
|Then they screwed it all up with Windows 8 |
Honestly, Win8 made a few high-profile bad UI choices, but many small UI improvements. I had to use XP the other day and found it frustrating. There is very little new over Win7, but once you turn off Metro for most things, I actually like the Win8 UI improvements.
Overheard a Funny story the other day. Guy interviewed for Web Developer/UI/UX position at Fortune 1000 company. He walked out of interview after finding out that more than 30% of employees were still running IE7/IE8/XP on in-house built intranet web apps.
I am currently stuck with XP myself at work, but no IE.
|He walked out of interview after finding out... |
Yeah, I should've done the same back in the day when I did a stint at a major company doing Windows development. I was hired in as the hot shot Windows guy to fix some serious crashes they were having that their developers couldn't figure out. I soon discover they're still mostly on Win 3.1 and had yet to upgrade to Win 95.
I was floored and explained to them Win 3.1's memory management was so fragile that some of their problems might go away by simply upgrading Windows and they would be wasting a lot of time and money chasing phantoms in Win 3.1. It wasn't a matter of whether Win 3.1 would crash, just a matter of when.
Back then anyone using MS's LanMan put Windows even at more risk as it was very unstable and would crack up at the most inopportune times and there was no way to recover except reboot.
We've come a long way baby.
Except those still clinging to XP, sheesh.
I still use it in a virtual machine on my mac. I used it only for quicken and Bing Ads tool about once a month. I guess it is mainly because I am too cheap to buy 7 or 8.