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Microsoft Says Patching Windows XP Was an Exception

By - Source: Microsoft | B 34 comments

Microsoft is saying again that it's no longer patching Windows XP.

Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc posted a notice on the Windows Experience Blog reporting that Windows XP customers will no longer receive security or non-security updates through Windows Update or Microsoft Update. He likely made this clarification due to Microsoft patching Windows XP at the beginning of May, just weeks after Microsoft pulled the plug on the Windows XP platform, and outside the company's typical Patch Tuesday schedule.

"Last week, we released a security update outside of our normal Update Tuesday cycle that fixes a critical vulnerability in Internet Explorer for Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 as well as Windows XP," LeBlanc writes. "We made the decision to extend the update to all Windows XP customers based on the proximity to the established end of support date of April 8th for Windows XP. This was an exception, however, the Windows XP end of support policy still remains in place moving forward."

He goes on to admit that Microsoft has set up custom support agreements with some enterprise customers. These customers will temporarily receive security updates for Windows XP to help keep the platform safe and secure while they migrate to a newer platform such as Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Everyone else is essentially out of luck and need to jump off the Windows XP train soon.

"Because support has ended for Windows XP, we are no longer releasing updates to the general public for Windows XP going forward," LeBlanc writes. "If you continue to use Windows XP without support, your computer will still likely work but will become vulnerable to security risks and over time its performance will be affected."

He concluded the blog by explaining why Microsoft no longer supports the platform with security patches. Basically, he says that Windows XP is over ten years old. The days when it ruled the PC market are long gone, replaced by Windows 8.1 Update.

"The threats that we face today from a security standpoint outpace our ability to protect our customers still on Windows XP," he writes. "Our modern operating systems today provide more safety and security than ever before."

Security experts have said over the past several years that hackers will likely study the patches Microsoft dishes out each month to see what was fixed in the newer platforms. They'll likely attempt to take advantage of those vulnerabilities that may also be lurking in Windows XP and Office 2003. However, the install base is slowly shrinking, but is it shrinking fast enough?

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  • -1 Hide
    ubercake , May 16, 2014 8:37 AM
    Except for next time, they aren't patching XP any longer. Ha! ;) 
  • 6 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , May 16, 2014 9:16 AM
    i dont' side with microsoft much but i will side with them on killing off windows xp support. the os is almost 13 years old, they didn't have to support it for this long they could have killed support for it years ago but didn't. they have done more then enough for windows xp.
  • 5 Hide
    canadianvice , May 16, 2014 9:38 AM
    Please stick to your guns this time microsoft!

    XP needs to die. I'd offer the coup de gras, but it's not in my power. For god's sake, euthanize it.
  • Display all 34 comments.
  • -7 Hide
    MidnightDistort , May 16, 2014 9:54 AM
    There's a link going around about XP users still able to get updates through a workaround. I have no idea how it's implemented or whether it's legal so i won't post the link but the way it sounds, MS rolls out the same updates to every system, i think they do some separate ones, but again i don't know if that link that is going around is really trustworthy anyway. But if MS does do roll the same updates for every system it would make XP planned obsolescence which i don't stand for. People should be able to use their investment they paid for and not have to throw away perfectly good hardware because the last several OS's won't support old hardware anymore.

    However not even lack of security will move people off of XP. I don't know why MS wouldn't have seen this day coming, after all there's still people out there who use archaic OS's due to money constraints and other reasons. There is a reason that newer OS's don't support older hardware and vise versa. Technology advances and it's only fair to let technology evolve, but it shouldn't be forced upon when you have a perfectly working PC that you have maintained over the years. If the motherboard is shot, time for a new PC or whenever you are unable to find the parts you need for cheap or utilize new technology. Microsoft is really the only entity that can either drop or continue support, they have that right but people do have a right to use the OS, even though they might not last very long with using it due to hackers. I've been on the fence for long with whether people should use XP or not and really i don't use XP much anyway, nor does my bank and credit card companies they all upgraded and since i have been using Linux it's a nice bridge in between when i need to be secure and functional at the same time. Meanwhile, XP users boast that their machines have been unaffected since support was dropped and some even say they don't bother with updating and are fine. So it's really more of a 'if it will happen' rather then 'when it will happen' scenario and it's like driving a car without an airbag. You think you don't need it because you're a good driver but accidents do happen and some people that don't use airbags are lucky if they have never been in an accident.
  • 0 Hide
    Christopher1 , May 16, 2014 10:14 AM
    More like, replaced by Windows 7 SP1. That is the one that you should be going to at this point if you are a big corporation, in order to get around the whole "Where is the start menu?" bunkus that is being spouted by various old fogies.
    If I sound bitter, that is because I am. The full-screen Start Menu was a huge advancement for Windows and something that I had been dreaming of for years.
  • 0 Hide
    dwarrior , May 16, 2014 11:28 AM
    Lol u know why haters hate xp much? Because it's the most successful OS M$ ever ever. Successful as in causing people not to upgrade. Have you ever heard of "windows 7 forever!" Can windows 7 convince users "I will never upgrade". Never. Lol. So I think haters are just jealous of XP's success. XP will never die lol.
  • 1 Hide
    canadianvice , May 16, 2014 11:42 AM
    People throw out that term "planned obsolescence" without making any effort whatsoever to differentiate it from technological depreciation.
    An iPhone is planned obsolescence. Windows XP is a case of an operating system that is no longer up to snuff and has been supported far longer than it should be. It can't be made up to snuff because it was built for a time before much of this was even a consideration. To take advantage of it, you'd almost have to go and rewrite the entire operating system into a newer, more up-to-date versi- oh. Wait.

    Can we please just agree to be careful with that term? It's like using "3.5" thin" on a tablet ad or a "sandwhich" at McDonald's. You're not fooling anybody.

    There's a reason MS is charging a hefty fee for extended support to governments, and only then on the condition they can supply an adequate transition plan.

    As for security, true, but it's not really fair to make the rest of us suffer for it. I paid good money so I can use my computer, sorry if you're poor, lazy, stupid, or some peasant some place, but I don't think it's fair I should have to deal with DDOS and spambots simply for that reason. It's not independent - you can cause harm to others and that's where the problem is.

    Anyone still using XP deserves to reap what they sow, it just sucks that I may be the worse of for it. Companies and whatnot should be held liable for any breaches due to unpatched OS issues if they still run XP. The people running XP are almost certainly not the computer savvy ones at this point. Some corps, maybe, but that's about it otherwise. The tech savvy ones aren't the problem anyway, so there's that.

    I'm confident XPocalypse will slowly dawn as reality on individuals. I guarantee that I will see a trickle of people into my store in the coming months to get their computer fixed or a new one on account of XP issues. It's not going to be some massive event like Y2K or Skynet, but it'll happen, and it's a personal problem for personal idiocy.

    @Christopher1: Speak for yourself. It's great on a touch screen, but for desktop use it's a fairly miserable way to organize things. It took me installing my steam games to figure out how abysmal it is. Ever pecked through a menu to find one item out of a hundred? I can fill the screen or "all apps" but both end up burying what I want in massive lists or 2d space. Blegh.
  • 2 Hide
    canadianvice , May 16, 2014 11:45 AM
    Quote:
    Lol u know why haters hate xp much? Because it's the most successful OS M$ ever ever. Successful as in causing people not to upgrade. Have you ever heard of "windows 7 forever!" Can windows 7 convince users "I will never upgrade". Never. Lol. So I think haters are just jealous of XP's success. XP will never die lol.


    I am quite confident judging by your use of "lol" and poor sentence structure that you're going to be a part of the problem. XP is brain-dead. All people are seeing is the nervous twitches and think it's waking up. XP will be the greatest OS ever until it gets its due.

    I personally find XP painful to use now that I've been blessed by Windows 7 - if any OS should be put upon the pedestal, it should be Windows 7.
  • -1 Hide
    StarBound , May 16, 2014 11:51 AM
    I don't get it. Why keep on saying it and just not do it? I mean "support has ended". It is said, it is over, it is done. The safest thing MS can do is to disconnect XP features from the net. Allow programs only to access the internet when the program requests it. Or am I missing something in that if you are online anyone from the out side can tell your pc what to do?
  • 2 Hide
    Emanuel Elmo , May 16, 2014 12:28 PM
    Quote:
    There's a link going around about XP users still able to get updates through a workaround. I have no idea how it's implemented or whether it's legal so i won't post the link but the way it sounds, MS rolls out the same updates to every system, i think they do some separate ones, but again i don't know if that link that is going around is really trustworthy anyway. But if MS does do roll the same updates for every system it would make XP planned obsolescence which i don't stand for. People should be able to use their investment they paid for and not have to throw away perfectly good hardware because the last several OS's won't support old hardware anymore.

    However not even lack of security will move people off of XP. I don't know why MS wouldn't have seen this day coming, after all there's still people out there who use archaic OS's due to money constraints and other reasons. There is a reason that newer OS's don't support older hardware and vise versa. Technology advances and it's only fair to let technology evolve, but it shouldn't be forced upon when you have a perfectly working PC that you have maintained over the years. If the motherboard is shot, time for a new PC or whenever you are unable to find the parts you need for cheap or utilize new technology. Microsoft is really the only entity that can either drop or continue support, they have that right but people do have a right to use the OS, even though they might not last very long with using it due to hackers. I've been on the fence for long with whether people should use XP or not and really i don't use XP much anyway, nor does my bank and credit card companies they all upgraded and since i have been using Linux it's a nice bridge in between when i need to be secure and functional at the same time. Meanwhile, XP users boast that their machines have been unaffected since support was dropped and some even say they don't bother with updating and are fine. So it's really more of a 'if it will happen' rather then 'when it will happen' scenario and it's like driving a car without an airbag. You think you don't need it because you're a good driver but accidents do happen and some people that don't use airbags are lucky if they have never been in an accident.



    Have you heard of apple. Stop your bitching. Why are you not bitching at apple for doing the same thing for years. Why isn't anyone bitching at apple for pulling this crap. The moment Microsoft does it, all of a sudden it is high and hell water.

    I guess if it were up to you, we would still be drinking from wells cause their are people that can not even afford a bottle of water.
  • 0 Hide
    danwat1234 , May 16, 2014 12:37 PM
    If the patches from these enterprise customers are leaked on the internet then XP can stay patched for now. But if you aren't a newbie and have a security suite installed I wouldn't worry about not getting any more updates to be honest. Just be smart that's all
  • 0 Hide
    antilycus , May 16, 2014 1:37 PM
    nobody...i mean NOBODY replaced WIndows XP w/ Windows 8.1 Update 1. If they did, I am sure they returned it and got an Apple Macintosh instead. I've been doing computers for 25 years and WIndows 8.x Update x drives me insane. It's COMPLETELY backwars. I can switch between GNOME, LXDE, MAC OS X, WINDOWS 7, BeOS, OS/2 WARP, AS/400 (gui less of course) without a singple problem, but you put in me in front of Win 8 box and my anger increases due to how poorly designed the GUI is.
  • 0 Hide
    canadianvice , May 16, 2014 2:13 PM
    Quote:
    I don't get it. Why keep on saying it and just not do it? I mean "support has ended". It is said, it is over, it is done. The safest thing MS can do is to disconnect XP features from the net. Allow programs only to access the internet when the program requests it. Or am I missing something in that if you are online anyone from the out side can tell your pc what to do?


    The problem is that it would violate several laws to retroactively disable XP's online capability. Therefore, Microsoft has to honour that people might want to keep these systems connected to the net, as terrible an idea as that is. One thing they'd have to turn off is browsing, or there's not much of a point to it.

    Many individuals scan computers for any open ports they can find, and they seem to do quite nicely finding systems connected to the net. I would think it's not a far cry for them to be able to locate XP systems. A simple php or some sort of cross script that stored user IP and system host would do the trick on a web server. No adverse affects and easily embedded into an "innocent" webpage (with or without consent). Once you have that, I would imagine someone with better capabilities than my own would easily be able to make use of the information.
  • 0 Hide
    danwat1234 , May 16, 2014 2:17 PM
    @antilycus, install Start8 or another program to make win8 look like win7..
  • -2 Hide
    bryonhowley , May 16, 2014 6:25 PM
    Microsoft should stop all patching and support for any OS older than Windows 8/8.1. There is no reason to support even Windows 7 any more people need to update or just loose out on any more updates period.
  • 0 Hide
    knowom , May 16, 2014 7:12 PM
    Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 Based on Windows XP Service Pack 3 has extended support until April 2019.

    Sorry, but XP isn't going anywhere anytime soon. In fact those updates are compatible with other XP versions from what I read.

    Perhaps by 2019 Microsoft will actually have a compelling enough reason to switch to a new OS, but I wouldn't hold my breath.

    On the other hand Linux is more likely to if anything and who knows where Android will be by then with ARM. In summary Microsoft should have listened to more of the Beetles "you can't buy me love" simple as that!
  • -1 Hide
    epsiloneri , May 16, 2014 9:57 PM
    What is it with software nowadays, XP has been patched for 13 years and is still not secure? You would have thought bugs should have been weeded out by now.
  • 2 Hide
    canadianvice , May 16, 2014 10:17 PM
    Quote:
    Microsoft should stop all patching and support for any OS older than Windows 8/8.1. There is no reason to support even Windows 7 any more people need to update or just loose out on any more updates period.


    Argument based on hyperbole is stupid. XP is ancient, and not even compatible with most modern hardware expectations. It doesn't even know there's a world out there beyond 3GB of RAM...
  • 0 Hide
    canadianvice , May 16, 2014 10:17 PM
    Quote:
    What is it with software nowadays, XP has been patched for 13 years and is still not secure? You would have thought bugs should have been weeded out by now.


    You write 13 million lines of code and find the bugs in 13 years - unless people bring them to light, MS rarely is able to tromp down the paths less taken and dig some up.
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