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Set Your Watches For the End of Windows XP 712

Posted by timothy
from the why-don't-they-just-apt-get-the-next-version? dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In one year today exactly, Microsoft will shut down support for Windows XP. The deadline will prove a challenge for many of Australia's largest users of IT, all struggling to migrate to new Microsoft environments." Net Applications' chart of current OS market share figures shows XP only slightly behind Windows 7, even now.
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Set Your Watches For the End of Windows XP

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  • by OhANameWhatName (2688401) on Sunday April 07, 2013 @11:38PM (#43387909)
    .. where people finally say:

    "I'd rather have software that works than software that's supported?"

    Because it's about time.
    • by TubeSteak (669689) on Sunday April 07, 2013 @11:50PM (#43387959) Journal

      It's not going to work when it gets riddled with malware because of unpatched remote exploits.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by guruevi (827432)

        It already is riddled with malware. Windows 7 and 8 still struggle with it. It's time to simply throw the entire thing out and start over with a more secure base (such as BSD/Linux)

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Antarell (930241)

          Yeah cause that's working so well for Apple. Oh hang on...

          • by Penguinisto (415985) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:04AM (#43388337) Journal

            Actually, outside of a couple of incidents and a parade of trojans (most of which require astounding stupidity to install, give admin password, then run)?

            So yeah - I'd say OSX has a better record over its 12-year lifespan than Windows has had over that exact same lifespan.

            OTOH, Linux beats 'em both.

            • by kenh (9056) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:45AM (#43388517) Homepage Journal

              Maybe, just maybe, the MS user base (at around 94%) is a bit more appealing to malware/virus writers than OS X (at around 5%) or Linux (at 1%)...

        • by siride (974284) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:06AM (#43388021)

          lol

          Yet another Linux fanboi who doesn't really know anything about security or security models assuming that the Unix model is ipso facto better. Sure, the Windows shell has promoted a culture of insecurity, but the underlying model is far more advanced than what traditional Unix has to offer. Linux still has plenty of security exploits, but they aren't often well publicized because of the heterogeneous nature of Linux distributions and the fact that these exploits generally affect a smaller number of people (because so few people use Linux in the same environments that Windows is used).

          FWIW, in 2013, there have been 73 CVEs for Linux, 41 for Windows XP and 47 for Windows 7.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by 0123456 (636235)

            FWIW, in 2013, there have been 73 CVEs for Linux, 41 for Windows XP and 47 for Windows 7.

            Meanwhile, almost every non-technical Windows user I know has been hit by malware of some kind, while no Linux user I know ever has.

            • by Chris Flores (2890687) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:20AM (#43388097)
              Now imagine that non-technical user on a different OS. Probably would get the same results....it's a user problem, not an OS problem. They are the ones that click on the African prince email links.
              • by 0123456 (636235) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:23AM (#43388119)

                Now imagine that non-technical user on a different OS. Probably would get the same results....it's a user problem, not an OS problem.

                While that's true to an extent, most of them aren't installing 'Nigerian Kitty Screen Savers', they're just browsing the web and ending up infected through some remote Windows exploit.

                • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                  by Anonymous Coward

                  ...no, the vast majority of malware for a very long time on all OSes has been through social engineering.

                  • by jandjmh (66714) on Monday April 08, 2013 @02:39AM (#43388749) Homepage

                    I clean up PCs for my clients pretty often - 1 or 2 malware infections per week. These are folks using PCs at work, doing their regular job, not downloading games, screen savers or much of anything at all. Because they hire me to keep their systems running they are (usually) fully patched, with working and up to date anti-malware.
                    They do, in fact, mostly get infected by zero day exploits - from compromised web sites. And the compromised sites have been mostly places they go to in the normal course of doing their job. Order entry sites for parts distributors, a web site for booking conference rooms etc. Windows XP and 7 seem about equally vulnerable.
                    When they ask how they could have avoided the problem I don't have any really good answer. Locking the PCs down so tight they can't install anything might help - but that's just not practical.
                    I have them keep regular system image backups so it's easy to clean up ...

                    • by tehcyder (746570)

                      Locking the PCs down so tight they can't install anything might help - but that's just not practical.

                      I think you just undermined your own argument there. It is precisely because people can and do install things that they get infected. If you made them run as non-root/administrator and didn't allow them to install anything themselves (which they really shouldn't need to do on a work machine) would they really still get so regularly infected?

                • by smash (1351) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:45AM (#43388519) Homepage Journal
                  No they're not. They might claim "oh i didn't do anything!" when bringing you their PC for repair, but more often than not they've been attempting to get "free shit" which isn't "free".
              • by dropadrop (1057046) on Monday April 08, 2013 @02:26AM (#43388693)

                Now imagine that non-technical user on a different OS. Probably would get the same results....it's a user problem, not an OS problem. They are the ones that click on the African prince email links.

                It's not just a user problem. In Linux updates are channeled through a central repository so when a user is prompted to update he will do it to pretty much everything in one go. In Windows he will only be updating system files which have not been the target of exploits lately.

                If you look at the last few years of common Windows exploits they have been deployed via bugs in 3'rd party applications, mainly Flash, Java and PDF. It's a user problem that they don't keep those applications up to date, but a system problem that keeping them up to date is too difficult for the average Joe.

                OS X is closer to Windows in this regard. They don't have a problem with PDF since the native reader works well and has not contained meaningful exploit vectors, but in regards to Flash and Java the situation has been even worse then Windows. Java updates have lagged badly, and there has been no update mechanism for Sun / Oracle Java. Flash updates have been issued at the same time as Windows but it took ages to have an update mechanism and when it arrived it was flaky and looked so dodgy that I would not dare use it. App store could have offered a central repository like it does for Windows, but none of the vulnerable apps are there, so it does not help.

                The user is just one part of the equation. You can of course blame him, but there are some realities you have to accept such as the fact that the user does not understand what's going on with the computer, does not have the patience to read the dialogues etc. With Linux updating is simple enough that even an average user can understand it, but there are other areas where the user will be in trouble.

          • by Runaway1956 (1322357) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:42AM (#43388225) Homepage Journal

            Ipso facto? You want an ipso facto? For a few years prior to, and after the release of XP, I tried to keep three sons and a wife on computers. It proved to be nearly impossible. There were constant problems with viruses. Tons of malware, some of it installed by the likes of Compaq.

            I finally converted the wife to Linux. My "service calls" to her computer have been for things like failed hard drives, and "Where can I find an application to do blah blah?" Not a single virus. Not one malware. One scare involving Wine, but no lost or corrupted data, no infestations.

            Did the wife suddenly grow technically savvy, overnight? Hardly.

            Despite the claimed superiority of Windows security - only the tech savvy seem to maintain a healthy Windows environment. But, a housewife who doesn't understand the differences between file systems can keep a Linux installation running for years, with very little technical support from anyone else.

            Ipso facto - Linux has done something better than Windows. I think it's due to diversity, as much as anything. You may believe it's due to relatively low numbers of users. Whatever - Windows is ultimately less secure than any Unix-like which I'm aware of.

            When XP has become history, then we'll see how the numbers stack up.

            • by nabsltd (1313397)

              Despite the claimed superiority of Windows security - only the tech savvy seem to maintain a healthy Windows environment.

              You could have just not let her run as a user that was a local adminstrator. Doing that results a similar level of security as running on Linux as a non-root user.

              This does make it harder to do some things, but the vast majority of users where I have worked are not admins on their local systems and do just fine at their everyday tasks (e-mail, browsing the web, creating PowerPoint presentations, etc.). Unless your "non technically savvy" wife is doing some things that require some actual technical savvy,

              • by whoever57 (658626) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:59AM (#43388585) Journal

                You could have just not let her run as a user that was a local adminstrator. Doing that results a similar level of security as running on Linux as a non-root user.

                And how does she get updates to Flash, Java and other programs that have their own updater program that require intervention by a user with and Administrator login?

                I'm sorry, but no. Running as a non-administrator only works if you have someone else who keeps the system updated.

              • A generous person would call it "bloatware". A less generous person calls it malware.

                A game icon was installed on the system, you click the icon, it connected to the internet, and offered you a bunch of games. The server that the games came from was a known advert and tracking server. I don't think ANYTHING that happened on that computer was NOT monitored.

                Spyware, malware, trojan, whatever you want to call it - it was installed because someone paid Compaq to install it on end user's computers. It was su

          • by mysidia (191772)

            the underlying model is far more advanced than what traditional Unix has to offer.

            No. That's exactly what part of makes Windows so insecure.

            The security model is so "advanced", convoluted, and complicated, that the implementation cannot possibly be correct in any realistic universe.

            There are so many errors and holes in Windows' implementation of security, AND holes in administrator practices, that you are pretty much guaranteed things will be insecure.

            Yeah, you can do fancy things like run d

            • by Bert64 (520050)

              Running services as different users is even implemented poorly on windows...
              On unix, the root user can simply setuid() to another userid, so it is extremely common and most server processes do exactly this to run with the lowest level of privileges they can.
              On windows if you go through the official API you must "authenticate" as the user to run the service, which means storing the plaintext password for that account on the box (you can extract it using gsecdump). While the idea of having to authenticate as

          • Well, perhaps the problem is that the Windows security model is too advanced? I have yet to meet a Windows administrator that really understood those models, while I am fairly certain that any UNIX/Linux admin understand the OS security models in-depth.

        • by rickb928 (945187)

          I'll probably upgrade my last XP machine.

          Probably to Ubuntu. The X41 Tablet is not worthy of Windows 7 or 8. And Ubuntu will be an upgrade.

          THAT is starting over with a more secure base. See how easy that is.

        • It already is riddled with malware. Windows 7 and 8 still struggle with it. It's time to simply throw the entire thing out and start over with a more secure base (such as BSD/Linux)

          So throw the old crap away and build it again upon old crap?

      • by linebackn (131821) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:14AM (#43388063)

        > It's not going to work when it gets riddled with malware because of unpatched remote exploits.

        Take a look at whatever latest OS you are currently running. Is it bug and exploit free? If you think it is, then come back in a year and there likely will be a long list of vulnerabilities found during that time. And they didn't just magically appear, most of these vulnerabilities are in your OS RIGHT NOW and there is a good chance the bad guys have known about them for quite a while too.

        Even a brand new Windows 7/8/Blue or Mac or Linux shouldn't just be thrown on the net without some extra precautions.

        With good practices, and and extra precautions, even Windows 95 can be "secure". Many people will choose to take this path, manage security themselves, and continue to happily run Windows XP.

        • Re:Windows 95 (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Technician (215283) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:30AM (#43388163)

          Actually Windows 95 is becomming secure because it is so obscure and limited that most current attacks are unable to run on it. Attacks that used to run on it are pretty much dead, much like Stoned for DOS is now officially no longer a threat to anyone. I remember seeing the article about a year ago, so sorry no current link to the story.

          • Re:Windows 95 (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Spy Handler (822350) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:36AM (#43388195) Homepage Journal

            ^^this.

            If you're still running 16bit DOS, your machines are highly malware resistant today. I know of no virus or malware circulating currently that will infect your machine.

            • by tehcyder (746570)

              ^^this.

              If you're still running 16bit DOS, your machines are highly malware resistant today. I know of no virus or malware circulating currently that will infect your machine.

              If you're running DOS you're not going to be connected to the internet, so unless a Russian cybermastermind sends you a free floppy disk full of ASCII porn in the post, how are you going to get infected anyway?

          • Re:Windows 95 (Score:4, Informative)

            by pwizard2 (920421) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:53AM (#43388287)
            Does Windows 95 even run on modern hardware? I remember that getting Windows 98 SE to work in a virtual machine was a pain in the ass even after I found a floppy image that worked (b/c Microsoft in their infinite wisdom didn't or couldn't make a bootable CD image back in the day) because it didn't recognize any of the VM hardware and everything barely worked at the lowest-common-denominator level. For instance, the best video support I could get was 16-color 640x480 (i.e. absolute shit). Forget about sound or network access. I'm guessing the only reason why the Win98 installer found the blank hard disk file at all is because VMware was propping everything up and making it work behind the scenes. Hell, you couldn't install Win95 on a brand new PC without resorting to some kind of USB boot disk trickery because most new machines don't even have floppy drives anymore.
            • by smash (1351)
              Windows 98 does. I have one for running OLD games, under VMware Fusion.
    • by rsmith-mac (639075) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:40AM (#43388483)

      That's the thing though, it doesn't work. At least not particularly well.

      XP was fundamentally a transitional OS. It's half-way between the bad old days of Win9x/DOS where there was no security and practically everything ran in the kernel, and Win Vista which institutes a proper security model along with evicting most drivers to the user-mode. The stability improvements alone made XP a vast improvement over Win9x, but it's still not a secure operating system.

      The reality of the situation is that users (business and consumer alike) need to suck it up one more time and move to Win6.x. Yes it's painful, yes it's expensive, and yes, learning is hard. But Win6.x is the first Windows OS that implements a modern (and dare I say *nixy) security model. It's the first Windows OS with good 64bit CPU support. It's the first Windows OS with a graphics stack worth half a damn. Heck, it's the first Windows OS that doesn't run IE as Admin.

      We must make the transition now, just one more time. After that, if users want to stop on Win6.x, that's okay. Even Vista perfectly fine since it implements all the major security features that make Win6.x necessary. Like any other OS there will come a time when Win6.x grows old and tired, but unlike XP Win6.x was built to last. It was built to be secure and even now, more than 6 years after its launch it doesn't have any significant faults. It's built to withstand the world that comes with the age of the always-on Internet.

      But we can't stop on XP. XP is fundamentally broken and was never meant to be used like this for this long. Use Win 8, use Win 7, hell, use Vista, but please don't stop on XP.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        How is this +5 insightful? Windows XP is Windows NT 5.1. It is not half-way to Win9x/DOS, and Microsoft had a proper security model for ages even before it was released.

        Yes, it's outdated in many other ways, and it would be nice if the default security settings were even more aggressive, but it is not fundamentally broken.

        • UAC == sudo (Score:5, Informative)

          by tepples (727027) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .selppet.> on Monday April 08, 2013 @09:13AM (#43390357) Homepage Journal

          Microsoft had a proper security model for ages even before [Windows XP] was released.

          Except this proper security model wasn't enabled by default. New accounts defaulted to administrator, not limited user, and there was no concept of a "sudoer", or a limited user who can gain permission to perform an action through a relatively secure user interface. Windows Vista introduced UAC, which emulated sudo, and Windows 7 refined it.

      • As a Linux user for nearly a decade, this is one arguement that at least is reasonable from the Windows side. WinXP isn't made to be secure. Windows Vista+ is. I probably should get a copy of Windows 7 to keep around... ...but Metro??? I truley hope that Microsoft can backpeddle on that UI. (Though my guess is that they can't because that would mean they no longer support their newest design interface.)

    • by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@gma i l . com> on Monday April 08, 2013 @04:04AM (#43389047) Journal

      More like "I'd rather not have software that hates me" because lets be honest folks, if you are not on a tablet or thrown out your nice LCD for some little touchscreen? Then Win 8 is NOT FOR YOU and neither will Windows Blue be for you because guess what a good 90% of the talk coming out about it from Redmond is? If you said "Shit nobody owns nor cares about" then you'd be right.

      I have a feeling you'll see a lot moving up but NOT to Windows "LOL We're a hip cellphone company yo!" 8 but to Windows 7. The rest? Well if it ain't broke, not like MSFT has been worth a piss when it comes to timely security patches anyway, you are better off with a firewall and decent AV. You can download a browser right now that still runs on Win98 (Kmeleon) so considering how many XP systems there are out there I doubt finding software that will run will be a problem.

      I don't get MSFT right now folks, I really don't. Its not like Nokia where years of infighting had left them without a viable OS so their backs was against the wall, they are still making pretty damned good money. Its not like Apple where they had painted themselves into a corner and ended up with an OS so damned old and creaky they had no choice but to buy out NeXT, Windows 7 is a damned good product, good enough I think it belongs right beside XP X64 and Win2K on any best of list, and its not like their market has disappeared, despite the horseshit that the press shovels (who all seem to sleep with their iPhones) there are still hundreds of millions of PCs being sold and still a LOT of room for growth...what the fuck?

      I swear the new attitude at MSFT seems to be just giving the finger, from Windows 8 to the X720 supposedly being online only and banning used games it seems like Ballmer thinks if he burns the company to the ground and says "No we ONLY are a premium brand like Apple" that this will magically give them Apple's market...which just ain't happening folks, it took Jobs 20+ years to build the Apple name into a premium brand, whereas Ballmer is sticking a new paintjob on a Pinto and expecting it to beat Porsche in sales, just complete fucking reality disconnect.

      The sad part is it would be crazy simple to make PCs explode again, all it takes is a teeny tiny bit of common sense which sadly seems to be lacking at Redmond. Never before has it been easier to plug a PC into a TV, damned near every desktop and laptop coming out today has HDMI which is piss easy to set up and never before has 1080P capable computers been so damned cheap, so why the fuck aren't you promoting that MSFT? Hell you could even use it to get your foot in the door of mobile by adding cool features that make the WinPhone easy peasy to use as everything from a remote to a streaming media player with the PC as the central hub, you could then make deals with the media companies to make any PC, Vista-9 that has WMC into a powerhouse that is soooo simple to work it isn't even funny.

      In a way I find it kinda sad, I really do. they could make something truly fucking awesome, you have all this power with the desktop PC that when tied together with the X720 and the WinPhone/WinTab could do some truly incredible stuff, but because Steve Ballmer is such a shitty CEO and has such an Ahab like focus on being just like Apple they are just pissing it all away. The death of XP will be IMHO a milestone worth noting as MSFT will NEVER have those kinds of numbers again, not because they didn't jump into the "ZOMFG smartphone!" market in the right way, not because they can't make a decent product, but because the company ONLY cares about a single niche that frankly will never ever EVER be a big deal on X86. Touchscreens on laptops and desktops is like putting handlebars on a pickup truck, while handlebars may be great for biking it just doesn't translate to anything with wheels and is worse than what we had before...too bad MSFT is too blinded by iMoney to see that.

  • Perhaps some will struggle to migrate to a non-Microsoft environment and avoid the recurrence of this particular struggle next time.
  • Not Supported ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 07, 2013 @11:42PM (#43387923)

    XP will no longer be "supported" but it will certainly still be used by 10's of millions of computers a year from now (and two, and three, and more). It's also a certainty that a stationary "unsupported" target will get a lot of attention by exploits and black hats.

  • It's easy! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Moppusan (2837753) on Sunday April 07, 2013 @11:43PM (#43387927)
    XP -> 7 is entirely worth it. I'm no IT professional and don't know the logistics of it all but when I upgraded it was like day and night. I really don't understand the slow uptake to 7. Laziness? XP to Vista I understand, Vista was a pile of poopy fart poops. But 7 is a breeze and if I may boldly say in my experience even more reliable than XP. Of course, I could be letting the odd obscure legacy program go over my head but still... 7. 7 7 7 7 7. Did I mention 7?
    • Re:It's easy! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by 0123456 (636235) on Sunday April 07, 2013 @11:46PM (#43387935)

      I really don't understand the slow uptake to 7.

      Because XP does everything most people want and there's no compelling reason to switch?

      • Re:It's easy! (Score:4, Informative)

        by Waccoon (1186667) on Monday April 08, 2013 @04:15AM (#43389093)

        Compelling reason my ass. Stop being cheapskates.

        My reason for using XP for my main workstation is because I really hate a lot of the interface changes in newer versions. The file requesters are different for little good reason, and the root directory is no longer the desktop. Lots of new, useless rubbish pollutes the GUI and much of it can't be removed. Everything is dumbed down. I couldn't care less about the Start menu, but the actual taskbar and pinned icons drive me nuts. The composited video system for the new GUI works MUCH more slowly, so most of my windowed multimedia and video software runs slower on Win7. It constantly thrashes the hard drive just as hard as Win95 did. The toolbars aren't as configurable. Selecting default colors is a pain (I do sensitive color work, so I want my desktop and taskbar to be neutral grey).

        Everybody tells me I'm nuts for not loving Win7, but that's because they don't know what I do. If I just surfed the web, Win7 would be fine. As it stands, I can only use Win7 on my laptop, and I need XP to get real work done. I put off upgrading from Win2K to XP because XP was slower and I didn't really "need" it. I'm avoiding Win7/8 because those OSes are actually a downgrade for my requirements.

    • Not so easy when it's an entire company with no real IT planning and everyone has random programs and random data that all needs to work for everyone to do their job.

    • Because it breaks a bunch of stuff.

    • Re:It's easy! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by n3r0.m4dski11z (447312) on Monday April 08, 2013 @12:04AM (#43388011) Homepage Journal

      " I'm no IT professional and don't know the logistics of it all but when I upgraded it was like day and night. I really don't understand the slow uptake to 7. Laziness?"

      Core 2 duo computers are the oldest pc that can run windows 7 with any sort of acceptable slowness. Computers cost money. You do not have to be an IT professional to do the math here. We have plenty of pentium 4s in my environment still. No one wants to buy a brand new pc for some intern or browsing the web and basic word processing when XP runs perfectly well on those same p4s.

    • by nametaken (610866)

      Laziness? XP to Vista I understand, Vista was a pile of poopy fart poops. But 7 [is] even more reliable than XP.

      You don't have to qualify your impressions like you did... that's pretty much what everyone would say in IT department too. Verbatim.

    • I will upgrade to 7 (because Bioshock Infinite does not run on XP), but first I will upgrade my PC, even though the old one would be able to run the game. The reason is that it will be really inconvenient to move to another OS (because over the 5 years I have used this PC I made many little settings I forgot about, installed a lot of little programs) and for that I need to have the old and new OS running at the same time so I can use the new OS, but if I have some problem and am in a hurry I can just use th

    • XP -> 7 is entirely worth it. I'm no IT professional

      You didn't have to mention that 2nd assertion

    • Re:It's easy! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by girlintraining (1395911) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:40AM (#43388481)

      I'm no IT professional and don't know the logistics of it all but when I upgraded it was like day and night.

      Hi. I am. I am right now on a team migrating a 140,000 desktops and laptops from XP to Windows 7. I do know the logistics. Those logistics is what is holding up the switch over, not the arguments for upgrading from XP. As it turns out, a lot of businesses don't have the deployment infrastructure to do this quickly. Despite tools having been on the market capable of this for a decade, it turns out that it's not a simple matter of "flip the switch. Eat bacon."

      With our own rollout at about 56% and about 38 weeks minimum to completion, even corporations with a lot of extra cash (I work for a financial company. A big one.) have run into significant logistical problems switching to the new operating system. Internal meetings are already being held in board rooms about how to manage the switch from 7 to "another" operating system; Reluctant to jump to Windows 8, but cognizant of the fact that this process will have to be repeatable and successful. We aren't even done with this project yet.

      This right here is the real story about the "End of XP"; It simply can't be switched off that fast by corporations. The technology, shockingly, moves faster than bureaucratic change. And that's all it is. That's what's keeping XP sitting in your rearview mirror with it's middle finger stuck out like it's an upset teenager in mom's minivan. Logistics. Pure, simple, logistics.

      "We here in IT know you love Windows 7. I apologize for the delay. As soon as I'm done taking the burned out husk of my last attempt to get this to you on a shoestring budget out of the oven, I'll get right on to the next one." Meanwhile, at Microsoft Headquarters...

    • by nabsltd (1313397)

      XP -> 7 is entirely worth it. I'm no IT professional and don't know the logistics of it all but when I upgraded it was like day and night. I really don't understand the slow uptake to 7.

      If I have a machine running XP just fine, why should I spend money to upgrade to Windows 7? What "got to have it" feature is included in Windows 7 that isn't in XP?

      The only reason some of my machines are running Windows 7 is because of DirectX 11. If you don't need that, there really isn't anything that Windows 7 offers that can't be done in XP.

    • You admit that you are no IT professional; so as I am one that is currently involved in a project to migrate my company to Windows 7, I'll try to explain it:

      You can upgrade one system to Windows 7 by jamming in a DVD and probably be fine, given that you are the administrator of your machine and can fix any prompt issues that may occur, install drivers to fix any issues that arise with those, and update any applications that are stubborn and don't want to run.

      I cannot upgrade 80,000 systems at over 2,600 phy

  • by AmazingRuss (555076) on Sunday April 07, 2013 @11:44PM (#43387929)

    I have never heard of anyone doing this.

    • by CAIMLAS (41445)

      The only people who call MS support are MSPs and shops which depend on Microsoft's products working on their servers. They don't call for support on desktop issues, usually - it's usually more cost effective to just wipe it and put a newly imaged system out. No, it's the 'big ticket' systems - mail, DNS, web servers, etc. - that get all the support calls to MS.

    • by FuzzNugget (2840687) on Monday April 08, 2013 @01:40AM (#43388487)

      Nobody. They call you.

      This is Windows support calling, your system has an infection.

  • OK, it's become a joke now, but seriously, if we get our act together, we can have a viable replacement for XP for people who just want to browse, email, skype, google, play music, and the like. That's 90% of what people do.

    Yeah, line-of-business apps. Except that people don't run those at home.

    Even though I like Unity (the LTS version, not the braindead initial versions), I'd have to say a classic Mint desktop is likely to be more familiar to an XP refugee.

    • by guruevi (827432)

      Anything is good enough for that, people are buying tablets for that reason which 99% of them run a *nix version at the core anyway.

      • Indeed, the year of the Linux desktop was 2011/2012. Some of us just didn't notice because the GUI was neither Gnome nor KDE, but Android. By 1014 people will be buying more Android devices than Windows devices.

        "Is an Android device a computer?", you might ask. An Vista machine with a dual core 1.3 GHz processor and a GB of RAM is always counted as a computer, so I see no reason why a machine with the same specs running Linux, Android or any other distribution, isn't also a computer. So the way I see
  • It strikes me that there's a niche here for someone to offer similar support once MS drops XP. Just as there are any number of aftermarket suppliers for auto parts, I can imagine companies that will serve up regular security updates, compatibility patches, and similar goodies for a price.

    If your company runs a couple thousand XP boxes, what kind of annual subscription would you be willing to pay to keep them going?
  • ...to set my clock back to when XP was ended on my side
  • Well, I don't think our work site will be ready. We haven't started migrating off of XP yet and we still have systems running NT 4. I wonder how this matches up with our government mandate that we be moving to IPv6. HA!
  • Wait until Microsoft tries to force everyone to move to Windows 8.

    Cheers,
    Dave

  • by Animats (122034) on Monday April 08, 2013 @02:08AM (#43388633) Homepage

    With Windows 7, Microsoft finally made it work. They developed the Static Driver Verifier [microsoft.com], which uses proof of correctness techniques to insure that drivers won't crash the operating system, and made everybody run their drivers through it before they were signed. That eliminated about half of all crashes. Anything else was Microsoft's fault, and they knew it.

    Microsoft also developed an internal tool that takes in crash dumps and matches them to other crash dumps. This made it possible to digest a huge number of crash dumps and tie them back to the cause.

    With those tools, Microsoft finally had the ability to make the thing work. And they did. Windows 7 is much more reliable than previous versions of Windows.

    Then, having finally produced a solid desktop system, they found they were being clobbered by the tablet industry, and came out with a desktop interface borrowed from a phone. Sigh.

  • by mysidia (191772) on Monday April 08, 2013 @04:18AM (#43389113)

    for January 19, 2038. Because that's when Windows XP stops working

  • by Skapare (16644) on Monday April 08, 2013 @09:31AM (#43390533) Homepage

    But that also means that all those insecure apps they are using on XP won't be allowed to work the way they expect to when they move to WIndows 7.

Passwords are implemented as a result of insecurity.

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