IRS is paying Microsoft to recieve custom XP patches after failing to upgrade in time
Microsoft put the whole world on notice that it intended to end support for Windows XP, and as the deadline came closer into view, Redmond's attempt to get users to upgrade intensified. Unfortunately for taxpayers, the U.S. Internal Revenue Service ignored the warnings and watched the deadline come and go. As a result, the IRS will pay Microsoft hundreds of thousands of dollars to continue receiving out-of-retirement security patches for another year.
Well, that's it folks. Support for Windows XP officially ended on Tuesday, marking the end of a run that lasted nearly 13 years. Some will inevitably cling to the dead operating system, though as PC shipment data shows, many have also chosen to migrate rather than risk running an abandoned OS. As a final reminder to those who have yet to upgrade -- and perhaps as a fitting homage -- Microsoft created "Escape from XP," a fun (and free) time waster that's available to play on modern browsers.
With yet another month's worth of data to digest, it's becoming increasingly clear that Windows 8 might never catch up to Windows 7. How you want to view that is up to you -- it could mean that Microsoft hit it out of the park with Windows 7, making it exceedingly difficult on itself to duplicate that kind of success, or that Windows 8 is a foul ball off of a broken bat. Let's look at some numbers.
Don't be surprised if there's a surge in Chromebook sales
Windows XP is a dead OS walking and it's highly unlikely to get a last second reprieve. Instead, Microsoft is anxious to bury the legacy OS in the backyard in hopes that those still clinging to XP will opt for a newer, more secure version of Windows. Some inevitably will, but one thing that will be interesting to keep an eye on is how many users replace their aging XP machines with a Chromebook.
Support for XP might be ending, but the world is not
Security outfit F-Secure has published its Threat Report for the second half of 2013, which provides a detailed look at the threat landscape as well as trends in malware. It also contains some advice for Windows XP users who aren't planning to upgrade to a newer OS once support ends on April 8, 2014. Whether the decision to stick with XP is based on contractual obligations or other reasons, F-Secure says "all is not lost" for businesses and users who ride it out.
Microsoft is making a mistake to hang XP out to dry, Avast says
Avast COO Ondrej Vlcek doesn't think Microsoft is doing Windows users a solid by discontinuing support for Windows XP next month. Vlcek digitally inked a cautionary blog post warning Microsoft that turning its back on XP is a "big mistake" that will have negative repercussions not only for XP users, but for the "whole ecosystem." As it stands, Microsoft is planning to end support for XP on April 8, 2014.
Windows XP support is entering its final stages. This coming Tuesday will see the release of some of the last security patches for the operating system which, despite its advanced age, still commands a sizable share of the PC market and simply refuses to die.
Free access to Laplink's PCmover Express as Windows XP's support deadline looms
Every indication up to this point suggests there will be no last second call by the governor to stop the execution of Windows XP, a dead OS walking. Well, sort of. Windows XP will still exist after its support deadline comes and goes next month, but it won't receive any additional security updates or be eligible for technical support. In an attempt to help the holdouts let go of the legacy OS, Microsoft has partnered with Laplink to offer Windows XP users free access to the latter's PCmover Express, a data migration tool.
A couple of last minute additions to Patch Tuesday address security holes in Windows XP
Today is the second Tuesday of the month, which means it's time to download a collection of security fixes from Microsoft. Otherwise known as Patch Tuesday, today's collection includes seven security bulletins, including two late additions that fill up patch remote code execution holes in Windows XP. These are some of the last updates Windows XP will ever receive, as Microsoft plans to stop supporting the legacy OS on April 8, 2014.
Support for Windows XP will end in less than two months, and if you know of family members or friends who are still running the legacy operating system, Microsoft has some tips. In a recent blog post, Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc suggested ways you can help your loved ones rid themselves of Windows XP before support officially ends on April 8, 2014. One of those ways is to upgrade their PCs to Windows 8.1.