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Meet the Diehards Who Refuse To Move On From Windows XP

timothy posted about 4 months ago | from the come-the-revolution dept.

Windows 641

Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "Nearly every longtime Windows user looks back on Windows XP with a certain fondness, but the party's over according to Microsoft. 'It's time to move on,' says Tom Murphy, Microsoft's director of communications for Windows. 'XP was designed for a different era.' But Ian Paul writes in PC World that many people around the world refuse to give up on XP. But why? What's so great about an operating system that was invented before the age of Dropbox and Facebook, an OS that's almost as old as the original Google search engine? Bob Appel, a retiree based in Toronto, says he uses 12 PCs in a personal Dropbox-like network—10 of which are running XP. 'I use a third-party firewall, a free virus checker, and run Housecall periodically,' says Appel. 'My Firefox browser uses Keyscrambler, HTTPS Anywhere, Ghostery, and Disconnect. I also have a VPN account (PIA) when traveling. For suspicious email attachments, I deploy private proprietary bioware (me!) to analyze before opening. All the "experts" say I am crazy. Thing is, I stopped the security updates in XP years ago after a bad update trashed my system, and yet I have never been infected, although online for hours each day. So, crazy though I be, I am sticking with XP.'" (Read more, below.)More from Pickens: "Mike Merritt uses an XP PC to run his online business in rural Ontario and cites Outlook Express as one of his major reasons for sticking with XP. The once-popular email client isn't available with Windows 7 or 8.1, and for Merritt, alternatives such as Thunderbird or webmail clients like Outlook.com are a non-starter. 'Webmails have a slower load time than a desktop app like Outlook Express and they would have their own learning curve and modification to my current workflow,' says Merritt. 'The upgrade path for me would require replacing a bunch of things that work just fine as far as I'm concerned.'

The same day that Windows XP reaches its end of support on April 8, Microsoft will roll out a major update to Windows 8.1 that will make it easier for traditional desktop users and the company recently announced that the Start menu will return to Windows sometime in the coming months. Mike Eldridge says that since his computer is currently on its last legs, he's going to cross his fingers and hope for the best until it finally dies. 'I am worried about security threats, but I'd rather have my identity stolen than put up with Windows 8.'"

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Viva La XP! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692789)

This should be a golden age for the antivirus companies.

I still have a machine from 2002 that I sometimes use that has XP Pro on it. 900MHz and 512MB of RAM. Enough said.

Re:Viva La XP! (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 4 months ago | (#46693043)

I still use a 1995 ThinkPad that has a 233MHz CPU and 64MB RAM, it runs Windows 98SE and does exactly what I need it to do, which is to control a specialized piece of hardware.

Re:Viva La XP! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693215)

I have a 1987 BBC Micro in my sitting room which does everything I need it to do, which is be a 1987 BBC Micro in my sitting room.

Re:Viva La XP! (5, Funny)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693125)

I have a 1984 Tandy 1000 that does exactly what I need it to do - give me bragging rights in Internet threads about how my niche usage case is relevant to all users, everywhere.

Re:Viva La XP! (5, Funny)

Trashcan Romeo (2675341) | about 4 months ago | (#46693191)

I have an ENIAC that does exactly what I need it to do - use up all these goddamned vacuum tubes I've got laying around.

VirtualBox (4, Interesting)

taiwanjohn (103839) | about 4 months ago | (#46692791)

I still have an XP installation running in a vbox, just because it's easier than trying to get SlingBox to run under wine.

Re:VirtualBox (1)

rvw (755107) | about 4 months ago | (#46692939)

I still have an XP installation running in a vbox, just because it's easier than trying to get SlingBox to run under wine.

Me as well. I have the internet connection disabled however, only run Photoshop in it with a shared local folder. I revert to the snapshot everytime - no updates, no AV, a lot faster, works for me!

Re:VirtualBox (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693107)

Me too, i run some software, which would work on win7 too, on VB just because i don't want to install it on the host OS and i need it. I'll probably have to change it to W7 at some point, but now i can't change, cause i'm using it daily. I just don't want to install W7 on a VM, because it'd multiply the disk waste with no advances. I don't need the stupid eye candy and fubared menus especially in my VM environment.

Philistines (0)

Highland Deck Box (2786087) | about 4 months ago | (#46692795)

Everyone knows the only true OS is Windows 3.1, I see no reason to upgrade from that.

Hittites (2)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about 4 months ago | (#46692841)

Real men run DOS3.3

Re:Hittites (1)

jfdavis668 (1414919) | about 4 months ago | (#46692929)

Real men run Apple DOS 3.3. Apple II forever!

Re:Hittites (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 4 months ago | (#46693027)

I used to run DOS3.3 on an Apple ][+

I got that in '81

PR#6

Re:Philistines (1)

TomGreenhaw (929233) | about 4 months ago | (#46693075)

LOL - good one. Everybody knows the real OS is CP/M.

Re:Philistines (1)

Wycliffe (116160) | about 4 months ago | (#46693157)

I preferred Windows 3.11 workgroup edition.
I skipped from that to windows 98SE
and then to windows XP (with a short detour to OS/2 Warp)
I still use windows 98SE in virtualbox and windows XP as dualboot.
I've seen no reason to move to something newer yet.

Good for you. (3, Insightful)

richy freeway (623503) | about 4 months ago | (#46692799)

But 99% of Windows users can't/won't go to those lengths to stay secure. But congratulations on making life hard for yourself.

Re:Good for you. (5, Insightful)

dougmc (70836) | about 4 months ago | (#46692825)

... and yet his efforts will probably stop 99.9% of the crap that affects "modern" Windows versions with their clueless users.

Installing Windows 7 or 8 wouldn't make his job much easier or make his computer much more secure.

Re:Good for you. (1)

N1AK (864906) | about 4 months ago | (#46693053)

Not turning the box on would protect 100% of users but that doesn't make it a viable solution. He thinks his setup is preferable even without MS updates, in fact he doesn't want windows updates. I don't agree with him but it's irrelevant because his situation isn't one that supports ongoing support from MS or upgrading because of the lack of it.

Re:Good for you. (1, Insightful)

dougmc (70836) | about 4 months ago | (#46693133)

Not turning the box on would protect 100% of users but that doesn't make it a viable solution

So what?

That may not be a viable solution, but what he's doing is. He has a usable computer, more secure than most, that does what he needs it to do.

You aren't trying to claim that what he's doing isn't a "viable solution", are you?

And even if he did upgrade ... he'd probably still want to do all that stuff.

Re:Good for you. (1, Interesting)

pla (258480) | about 4 months ago | (#46693115)

and yet his efforts will probably stop 99.9% of the crap that affects "modern" Windows versions with their clueless users.

99% of the crap that affects "modern" versions of windows makes use of bugs that date back to the days of XP and older. And as these long-standing bugs get discovered and patched, effectively the very act of MS releasing a patch will serve as an advertisement to the world of malware about the existence of a new XP exploit that will never get closed.

Continuing to use XP for any box either connected to the network or publicly-accessible (ie, kiosks) at this point amounts to begging the world to hack you - Nothing short of willful negligence.

Re:Good for you. (3, Informative)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 4 months ago | (#46693017)

*Real* security is *always* inconvenient. That almost seems to be a law of nature. As in, whenever something supposedly secure feels too convenient, question your assumptions.

Re:Good for you. (2)

N1AK (864906) | about 4 months ago | (#46693081)

Possibly true (certainly true in all examples I can think of), however inconvenience doesn't automatically mean security. An informed user can likely run a secure Win7/8 enviroment with considerably less inconvenience than running an equally secure Win XP enviroment especially once MS drop security updates.

Re:Good for you. (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | about 4 months ago | (#46693047)

Agreed.

'I use a third-party firewall, a free virus checker, and run Housecall periodically,' says Appel. 'My Firefox browser uses Keyscrambler, HTTPS Anywhere, Ghostery, and Disconnect. I also have a VPN account (PIA) when traveling. For suspicious email attachments, I deploy private proprietary bioware (me!) to analyze before opening. All the "experts" say I am crazy. Thing is, I stopped the security updates in XP years ago after a bad update trashed my system, and yet I have never been infected, although online for hours each day...

Thing is, that does sound crazy to me. It sounds compulsive and anal retentive. I wouldn't be surprised if he also only operates his computers while wearing a tinfoil hat inside a Faraday cage that he built in his basement.

You know what I do? I install a modern operating system and pretty much leave it alone. I have never been infected, simply by keeping up to date and not engaging in high-risk behavior. I'd rather spend a few dollars now and then than sit around re-running security checks, but I guess I'm not retired and I don't have the time to be a kooky security nut. I know, someone is going to bash this post because Slashdot has a lot of kooky security nuts, as well as a strong contingent of people who like to hack together weird solutions for what may be non-existent problems. And that's fine as long as you're doing that because you like doing it. Just don't go pushing it as a good idea. You're making everything more difficult for those of us who have to support these things for a living.

The best strategy for most people, especially in terms of doing work for your business, is to stay relatively up-to-date with supported hardware and software.

Re:Good for you. (4, Interesting)

Wycliffe (116160) | about 4 months ago | (#46693187)

My father in law runs windows 98SE. He says he doesn't have problems with viruses anymore
as all the viruses are written for the newer systems. It's not worth people's time to infect an OS
with a small userbase.

Energy Usage of 12 PCs per Person Adds Up (1, Insightful)

glennrrr (592457) | about 4 months ago | (#46692807)

That's just wasteful. At least while doing things in the Cloud, there are efficiencies of shared resources.

Re:Energy Usage of 12 PCs per Person Adds Up (4, Interesting)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 4 months ago | (#46692999)

That's just wasteful. At least while doing things in the Cloud, there are efficiencies of shared resources.

I have my own cloud. My home network of machines have had Wake On Lan support since the 90's. When I get updates, I download the data ONCE than mirrors it to the others internally.

You can run a computer efficiently or not, just as you can run a cloud efficiently or not.

IMO, that we do not have OSs inherently focused on decentralization and interoperability is the primary reason both "upgrades" and management of our multi-device lives is needlessly painful.

Re:Energy Usage of 12 PCs per Person Adds Up (1, Informative)

Narcocide (102829) | about 4 months ago | (#46693003)

Its for his business, you douchebag shill.

Software doesn't wear out. (5, Interesting)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 4 months ago | (#46692815)

Software doesn't wear out. I'm still running XP on an old desktop in my basement. It works fine for what I need it for. Upgrading to a new version of Windows would cost more than what the machine is worth, and I'm reasonably sure that all the hardware wouldn't have proper drivers because the machine is so old. I have no problem getting Windows 8.1 (or whatever the current version is) when I replace the computer, but there's nothing wrong with the machine right now. It's behind a router with NAT turned on, so there's little chance of attack from the outside, and I can still use updated versions of Firefox or Chrome for browsing the web, so there's not many security problems there.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (1)

B33rNinj4 (666756) | about 4 months ago | (#46692849)

Same here. I'm running my media and my children's WoW server from an XP box in my office. So far, I haven't had a real need to upgrade it.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (4, Interesting)

sandytaru (1158959) | about 4 months ago | (#46692951)

The hardware eventually will, though. As long as you've taken reasonable backup precautions you'll be fine, but the average user out there isn't running a good antivirus, let alone a weekly backup of personal files.

I'm not worried about the folks on Slashdot. I'm worried about the Maaco shop up the road, which had an XP computer the last I checked. I'm worried about my husband's aunt and the photos of her grandkids. I'm worried about the ATM in the gas station.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (3, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 4 months ago | (#46693057)

But that's true regardless of the operating system being run. I could be running the newest version of Windows, and still be, even on a relatively new computer, and a hard drive dying still isn't that unlikely. You can get a 1 TB drive for $60. I don't know why you don't see more machines coming with 2 drives in RAID 1 for reliability reasons. At least a somewhat common hardware failure won't cause grandma to lose all here photos.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (0)

callmetheraven (711291) | about 4 months ago | (#46693077)

Worried about what? Have you ever known a patched XP machine to be any less vulnerable? Any stock windows box is a honeypot, xp or otherwise.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693001)

and I can still use updated versions of Firefox or Chrome for browsing the web

For now. Many open source projects are starting to drop XP support. For example XBMC just dropped it for their next version. I expect vista is up next. It is 8 less combinations to test for as XP had a few flavors out there. Most acted the same but some had a quirk or two.

Look its ok you run an old OS. No really it is. But do not plan on the open source guys to have your back. They will get bored or will not be able to find anyone who will support it.

You probably have 1-2 years left out of it. Just start thinking of upgrading.

For me the upgrade was worth it for the power bill and paid for itself in under a year. I went from a machine that added 20 dollars a month to my power bill to one that can barely get over 7w-10w and blows it away performance wise. It was a beast when I first bought it. But its time has come...

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693189)

Software doesn't wear out.

Yes it does, or are you still able to find new software for your copy of DOS 6? Old OS' will not support newer hardware or new software, keeping an antique car operational is possible but generally a waste of time and money.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693209)

I agree. I have a small laptop, can't be upgraded so would have to replace, which I don't want to do.
I use chrome and firefox and have a secure wifi. I've got zone alarm and avast and can scan with malwarebytes.
Is loss of micrsoft support going to make any difference?
All docs are on an external hard drive.
All I've done is download Ubunto as a secondary os but I'm not sure that was necessary.

Re:Software doesn't wear out. (1)

dysmal (3361085) | about 4 months ago | (#46693235)

That's all fine and dandy but you're relying on Chrome and FF to keep XP support? FF which has a great track record for stability and consistency while never changing things for the sake of changing things *cough* PDF viewer *cough*? Chrome which is from Google who has a great track record of keeping products around?

Security depends on behavior (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692819)

If you don't want to think (like most people) it's safer to always update. But this guy is obviously much safer than anyone with just the newest software. Because he thinks about security and has taken measures to protect against every threat to him.

My grandpappy done left me this XP (5, Funny)

NotDrWho (3543773) | about 4 months ago | (#46692839)

And I ain't leavin'!!! Ya hear that gubmint?!?

Moving on costs money. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692851)

Well not for me, Microsoft software is the easiest software to pirate in the world.

But for the Fortune 500 company I work for, we have hundreds of PCs running critical operations and it's not worth the hassle and expense of upgrading them.

Hardware requirements (5, Informative)

geogob (569250) | about 4 months ago | (#46692867)

Everyone running old specfialized hardware which is not compatible with windows 7 or later feel the pain of the XP end of life.
Its not about refusing or not. Some simply don't have the choice and must stick with XP.

We migrated 100% of our windows-based computers used for typical applications (office work, CAD, data analysis, etc.) to windows 7 or 8. But some machines working with specialized hardware, that is either too expensive to replace or for which simply no replacement exist, can't be migrated. They must remain with XP.

This actually creates a lot of frustration and administrative problems, as after the end of the XP support, those computers are not allowed to remain on the institution network anymore. A clear solution has still to be found (hint: ghostery and co. are not part of the solution).

Re:Hardware requirements (3, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46692891)

This isn't a new problem. We still have Windows 95 and OS/2 boxes that can't be upgraded. The only difference with the XP end of life is that XP is easier to continue to support yourself.

Re:Hardware requirements (2, Interesting)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 4 months ago | (#46693025)

Everyone running old specfialized hardware which is not compatible with windows 7 or later feel the pain of the XP end of life.

That is not the pain of XP EoL, it is the self inflicted torture by those who refuse to use free and open source software.

It is a shame, but I have no sympathy for those who embrace planned obsolescence. [archive.org]

Re:Hardware requirements (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 4 months ago | (#46693135)

A lot of that hardware does not have Linux drivers either.

Re:Hardware requirements (4, Insightful)

geogob (569250) | about 4 months ago | (#46693173)

Yes! I'll make sure to pass on the message to that company that closed down 3 years ago and to the guy who retired 8 years ago.
Its a shame indeed, all the self inflicted toture they are causing me.

But I'll bet they answer that themselves find it a shame that non of the companies producing the hardware respecting the requirements for the sub-components themselves only supported windows. In that sence, I guess on could say it's a second level indirectly self inflicted toture.

Or they will remind me how there is a real world, with real problems, real limations and where you do not have the control on everything.

Re:Hardware requirements (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693241)

I'm all for using free and open source, but when you have manufacturers making things only to work for windows, and then do not support or charge more money for new version, which supports new version of OS, then you have to figure out, if you can afford it and if it makes sense, cause sooner or later the same thing will happen again. If there is no free or open source alternative, your comment is unfair.

I have to use windows at work, because pretty much no one releases software for other than windows in my industry and i have to use the software for that particular HW that uses the software created with the environment, but whatever supporting software i can use, where there is an alternative open source software, i use that e.g. libre office.

WTF?? (1)

CajunArson (465943) | about 4 months ago | (#46692871)

Premise of the Story: XP is older than Dropbox and therefore is useless. Let's go find some people who use XP and then talk about Dropbox.

In other news: This so-called story is a thinly veiled ad for Dropbox that finds interesting ways to drop the word Dropbox into a completely unrelated story!!

P.S. --> DROPBOX BITCHEZ!!

Re:WTF?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693139)

Seriously you're putting too much thought into a Hugh Pickens DOT Com article. I swear it must be a bot.

Outlook Express? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692875)

If you are so in love with Outlook Express and your "workflow" that you cannot upgrade your operating system to something from this century then you have bigger problems then having XP on your desktop. If that kind of minor change is too upsetting for you then you will probably have difficulty if your toaster gives out, and you have to get a new one with a different dial for setting how done your bagel is. Breakfast is a bitch, baby.

Re:Outlook Express? (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 4 months ago | (#46692987)

I use Thunderbird for Email, I have never used Outlook, Express or otherwise

Email, online banking, and some games that won't run on 7 are mainly all I use my XP box for these days.

Re:Outlook Express? (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 4 months ago | (#46693201)

Most people who use that piece of garbage are too used to its integrated calendaring facility to give it up. I knew someone who only used it to schedule meetings and more meetings.

Difference (2, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46692879)

"and yet I have never been infected, although online for hours each day."

There is a great, big difference between "have never been infected" and "have never been infected that I know of"

Not about greatness (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692887)

This topic has been beaten to death but if Hugh Pickens wants us to talk about it, I guess we have to.

The XP machines that are still around aren't here because they are great. They are still used because their life cycle has not expired. We tend to keep computers for about five years. So when we were buying computers 4.5 years ago, our choice was XP or Vista. Obviously, we weren't going with Vista.

So now Microsoft is punishing us for their fuck-up. They are trying to force us to buy a new version of Windows before the current equipment is due for replacement.

I expect to have the same issue in a few years because I'm still buying Windows 7 and they think I should be buying 8.

Re:Not about greatness (0)

glasshole (3569269) | about 4 months ago | (#46693153)

Is there a way filter Hugh Pickens DOT Com articles? They're usually just a rehash of something discussed to death, and rarely bring a new point of view. Does nobody else submit content or is Hugh Pickens a slashcode bot...

Re:Not about greatness (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693211)

Windows 7 was released in July 2009, why didn't you wait the month before purchasing your new computer?

It's not that complicated (0)

misfit815 (875442) | about 4 months ago | (#46692905)

I use Windows XP for playing my crusty old games (e.g. Rainbow Six 3, Falcon 4 Allied Force, Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights). I use Lubuntu for development, productivity, surfing - basically everything else.

Re:It's not that complicated (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 4 months ago | (#46693105)

Mixing development with browsing...
But, that's how all viruses spread!

Sigh, XP support is NOT ending. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692909)

It's just that Microsoft is no longer delivering most updates directly to anyone who asks.

Many public and private sector organisations will continue receiving updates. For those who aren't involved with any of them, rest assured that patches will be made available by good citizens.

Re:Sigh, XP support is NOT ending. (2)

geogob (569250) | about 4 months ago | (#46693063)

Would like some of that malware with sprinkle of virus with that XP patch from best-patch-torrent.ro?

Re:Sigh, XP support is NOT ending. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693101)

If only there were some way of verifying the integrity of files.

Re:Sigh, XP support is NOT ending. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693147)

Is Microsoft going to publish good hashes of files you're supposed to pay them to download?

Re:Sigh, XP support is NOT ending. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693233)

Yes - just like it did before today in its advisories. It won't e-mail them directly to you anymore, but one or more of the usual sites will start/continue republishing them.

"Normal" People (4, Insightful)

VorpalRodent (964940) | about 4 months ago | (#46692911)

The person quoted in the summary appears to have a relatively solid grasp on how to go about being safe on the internet. By that same metric, a large percentage of Slashdot could also be just fine using XP. The problem is that everyone _else_ keeps using XP, and they _don't_ have that same skillset.

I'm happy that Microsoft finally pulled the plug. My goal is that things get bad enough for the small office that I provide support to on a volunteer basis requires them to upgrade. I've had to re-image a bunch of computers already this year because people click things, and companies are taking XP drivers away. Soon enough, I'll be able to say "Too bad, you have to upgrade this time".

Personally (3, Informative)

jez9999 (618189) | about 4 months ago | (#46692917)

I stick with XP for one of my desktops because I put my own hardware together (no OS preinstalled), and I don't want to pay horrific sums of money [dabs.com] (£135) for a new operating system - Windows 8 is even more expensive to buy a worthwhile edition of. It's behind my free Debian install which acts as a router+firewall. Works for me.

Re:Personally (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693015)

If you consider that a horrific sum of money, I'd hate to see what you think of my monthly grocery bill, or gas for two weeks. I paid $35 for a Windows 8 license when it first came out... I still use Windows 7 for now, but I have the license to upgrade to once I'm convinced 8.1 has the bugs shaken out.

Re:Personally (1)

jez9999 (618189) | about 4 months ago | (#46693061)

Well there's also the issue of having to "activate" Windows now. What happens if I build a new PC? I have to go through some crappy procedure to "transfer" my licence onto the new machine... or maybe MS don't even allow that?

Re:Personally (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 4 months ago | (#46693237)

$35 for a Windows 8 license? Is that Windows RT or what? That is not a regular consumer retail price for Windows. Even OEM prices for Windows when you are assembling a new computer are higher than that.

Who is this clown Ian Paul? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692919)

I bet the NHS is really upset that it isn't upgrading its 10's of 1000's of computers just so that it's staff can use Facebook or Dropbox.

Why do we want to keep using Windows XP? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692931)

Because it does what we want.

Also, we stole it. We stole it a lot.

-=The Dissenters

If only there was an update tool from xp to win 7 (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692937)

I am the IT guy in our family, and currently have 8 family members on a waiting list, who wants to upgrade to windows 7 or 8, but since there is no upgrade tool, I have to make full reinstalls and find all the software that was installed over the years etc.. which means that each machine takes days to upgrade..

If MS truly want us to move to a new OS, they should have made it easy, it it was just an hour or twos work, there would be 8 xp boxes less in the world already ;-)

What DOESN'T run on WindowsXP? (1)

erroneus (253617) | about 4 months ago | (#46692943)

While Microsoft has unquestionably slowed XP down over the years, it still runs on machines which compensate for the software's lack of performance.

When there is software which "only runs on Windows 7" then people might give additional pause. But right now, there just isn't that much incentive. And Microsft has clearly painted itself into a corner by supporting legacy code for extremely aged software.

Microsoft should have done what Apple did when moving from OS9 to OSX. Provide some flakey compatibility kludge to encourage people to run OSX native software and then drop support for 9. People were angry at Apple and eventually got over it. Microsoft could have invested its billions and billions into a whole new OS and then assigned a VM to run old Windows apps until things are ported. People would have done it 15 years ago. They would have done it 10 years ago. But the longer they wait, the more other alternatives become valued. And WINE is impressively advanced these days. If forced into it today, business just might adopt Linux and WINE to run their apps and find out they are safer and more stable because of it. Microsoft has hesitated for more than a decade, arguably two decades, before doing what they know they should have done. Now it can be argued that it's too late for that now.

Would it surprise anyone to know that banking still runs LOTS of *NIX based systems? Sure, desktop consoles are running Windows. But that's just the user interface systems.

Re:What DOESN'T run on WindowsXP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693093)

Microsoft should have done what Apple did when moving from OS9 to OSX.

They did. See Windows on Windows and WoW64. See also the Win7 'XP mode'. You're thinking that XP apps are the anchor dragging down Microsoft; you forget that they have a long history. We're just reaching the (final, drawn-out) end of the 16-bit era.

I think you're overly optimistic about WINE and Linux.

Re:What DOESN'T run on WindowsXP? (1)

RuaisLampSilog (2646223) | about 4 months ago | (#46693207)

Same strategy was used by Sun to help legacy Solaris 8 and 9 programs run on Solaris 10. THey provided branded zones, also known as chroot in the real world. You could and still can install a single kernel instance of Solaris 10 or 11, and define a mountpoint that will become a root for a solaris 8 or 9. The real virtualizacion is called LDOMs that also allows to run Solaris 8 or 9 in their own kernel instance. And of course, there is also VirtualBox.

Re:What DOESN'T run on WindowsXP? (2)

Spad (470073) | about 4 months ago | (#46693219)

Anything that requires a 64-bit OS and, by extension, anything that needs more than ~3.5Gb of RAM to run (well) as well as anything that needs DX10+ and any new hardware that doesn't ship with XP drivers. This might not be that much now, but it will start to increase dramatically from today onwards.

And no, XP 64-bit does not count, it's a bastard hybrid of XP & 2003 Server and nothing really supports it properly.

If forced into it today, business just might adopt Linux and WINE to run their apps and find out they are safer and more stable because of it

No, they won't, at least not in statistically significant numbers. The cost and hassle of an XP->7 upgrade is much less than the cost and hassle of an XP->Linux upgrade due mostly to the retraining costs for both IT and users (deny it all you like but Linux is not similar enough to Windows that average users will just be able to run with it, most of them panic & phone support when one of their desktop shortcuts disappears) as well as the fact that most of the desktop hardware currently running XP is too old to run a modern Linux distro comfortably - a bunch of Celerons with 256Mb of RAM might be fine if you're running a stripped down install with XFCE and don't want to run any intensive applications, but Linux is not a magic bullet that makes old PCs run like new ones.

On top of all that, you lose integration with all the Windows-based server side systems you already have in place, which leads to either whole-sale replacement or lots of fudging things so they sort of work like before.

I honestly don't think most people advocating businesses should switch all their machines to Linux instead of upgrading from XP really appreciate just how much work would be involved in doing so. Home users are a different matter and it's much more practical for them to take that route, in theory.

What a waste of time (4, Insightful)

HnT (306652) | about 4 months ago | (#46692949)

I prefer to use my computer for actually DOING something else than spending all that effort on just keeping it running.

Re:What a waste of time (1)

RuaisLampSilog (2646223) | about 4 months ago | (#46693229)

Yes and no. I prefer to know my setup, know what the OS is doing, and so forth. Installing W7 or whatever version is fashionable now expecting it to run your "security", is like praying.

Invented before the age of Dropbox and Facebook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46692969)

That's an OS that doesn't come with an online habit. It doesn't have an "app-store". It doesn't upload everything if you just look at it wrong. It doesn't foist a "touch UI" on mouse-and-keyboard users.

The Windows 7 UI was a step back from XP, which was the last OS that can be configured to properly use the Windows NT window decorations. The Windows 7 start menu is a bleak shadow of the Windows XP start menu. Windows 8 is much much worse. I don't want a 23" phone. It's a desktop computer. I will not touch the screen. Microsoft can suck it. I am seriously considering Linux on the desktop.

Re:Invented before the age of Dropbox and Facebook (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693037)

How exactly is the Win 7 Start menu a shadow of XP's? Personally, I thought the search box in 7's Start menu blew away anything it's predecessors had going for them.

Re:Invented before the age of Dropbox and Facebook (1)

N1AK (864906) | about 4 months ago | (#46693151)

Pretty much my opinion. I've been using Win 8 on my home pc since release and to be honest the minor irritations would seem irrelevant if Win 7 hadn't been a very well designed OS. If I'd gone straight from XP/Vista to Win 8 then I'd have seen it as a definite improvement.

Re:Invented before the age of Dropbox and Facebook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693183)

If I wanted to type, I wouldn't be using a graphical menu, would I? Searching for applications is the same flawed concept that scares people away from the command line: You have to remember the names of programs. Apparently programmers only come in two varieties: Totally unimaginative, in which case they give their programs undistinctive names, or totally bonkers, and then they invent names which nobody can remember unless they're using the program every day.

The Windows XP start menu is a menu, with popup submenus. I have hundreds of applications sorted into categories. Everything that can be configured to be a submenu is. All "last used", "most used", "never used" features are turned off and respective menu items hidden. I don't need my OS to handhold me through my data or applications.

Microsoft needs to get their act together and release Windows 9 with the XP shell already, and drop the online habit.

Didn't we used to call this "speed reading"? (-1, Offtopic)

urbanriot (924981) | about 4 months ago | (#46692971)

This article talks more about the feelings and emotions of experts rather than referring to any changes that have occurred physically with the brain so I categorize this into whatever mental file folder I archive topics concerning 'exaggerated digital age hysteria' as I was always a skimmer just like this woman, and when I say always it means the majority of my life that was pre-internet. Just like this woman, I had difficulty immersing myself into a book as I defaulted to skimming. This wasn't an adaptation caused by the internet, this was how my brain always worked.

Certainly I utilize this now to skim Slashdot in seconds to determine if I want to click further, just as I'm sure plenty of other higher functioning readers do, and as such I don't see this as a detriment or a negative byproduct of the internet.

Stop making it difficult then (1)

cyber-vandal (148830) | about 4 months ago | (#46692983)

Offer a free upgrade and a reliable compatibility layer for stuff that won't work on NT6.x and XP will be gone within the year.

Why should they upgrade ? (1)

IQzeroIThero (978481) | about 4 months ago | (#46692991)

Many companies are still using Windows XP because they have very basic needs. A Windows XP PC with barcode scanner, scanning data and sending the data to the database server. These PC are not connected to internet so they are quite safe from malwares. There are also many VB6 programs that run on XP. It is difficult to convince the management to spent money to upgrade the system since it doesn't really improve productivity or help the company save cost.

Good today, crap tomorrow. (1)

grub (11606) | about 4 months ago | (#46693009)


I don't buy the "good today, crap tomorrow" mentality. XP still has a massive installed base. This will open the door for entrepreneurial geeks to create their own security and stability patches.

Diid Symantec or Macafee say they were dropping XP support? Nope, it's a huge cash cow for them.

Re:Good today, crap tomorrow. (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693051)

In the opinion of Microsoft, and many IT workers, XP has been in the crap heap for a couple years now when compared to Windows 7.

what a clueless idiot (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 4 months ago | (#46693019)

None of those steps are good enough and he's going to get absolutely destroyed.

bullshit (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 4 months ago | (#46693021)

Everything in this is bullshit. Webmail loads slower? You've never been infected? Really? If you're running XP you could have all sorts of malware and not have a clue. Notice linux clients aren't even mentioned.

Re:bullshit (4, Funny)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | about 4 months ago | (#46693073)

Webmail loads slower?

Not that I am aware of. From the summary:

the Start menu will return to Windows sometime in the coming months

It appears that they tested it on a really slow computer. On my computer, the start menu appears just after I have clicked the button...

I have never been infected (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693029)

"...I stopped the security updates in XP years ago after a bad update trashed my system, and yet I have never been infected..."

That he knows of!

Re:I have never been infected (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693071)

"It's supposed to pop-up a dozen midget goat porn ads every time you open IE!"

I loved WinXP (1, Interesting)

Ozoner (1406169) | about 4 months ago | (#46693035)

I've been with Windows since the start and ended up loving WinXP.
I was forced to move on to Win7 64 bit for the extra memory, but after a couple of years I still hate it.

It's just so full of irritating little bugs which catch me out every day. And M/S shows no interest in fixing them.
I swear I'll never buy another M/S product.

If only Linux wasn't worse.

Re:I loved WinXP (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693087)

So what kept you from just using XP x64, if 64bit was your only reason to upgrade?

Obligatory (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693045)

If it isn't broken--Don't fix it.

Why change what already works?

Despite what 99.9999999% of the assholes on /. think, civilians aren't going to "change their lives" because a computer product is obsolete.

Nothing new.... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about 4 months ago | (#46693085)

"Experts" are shown to be alarmists, news at 11.

Honestly if the computer is used by someone that has at least some REAL knowlege about computer operation and safety it really is not a problem.

Sadly this does not help "experts" get paid, so spreading fear is far more profitable.

It's Simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693121)

... many people around the world refuse to give up on XP. But why?

"If it ain't broke why fix it?"

Win8 is pure crapware and Win7 is buggier and more bloated than XP. My roommate runs Win7, it almost always crashes on searching (it's also MUCH slower searching local files than XP) and it won't run some older programs I still use (games mainly). The one time I got hit by a virus was my own fault. I have no intention of upgrading until XP no longer works for me.

Re:It's Simple (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#46693155)

If it won't run older programs, it's probably because you're comparing Win7 x64 to WinXP x86. I have Win7 x86 on my old Thinkpad T60 and it will run anything that XP x86 ran on that box, including many 16 bit games. As for the bugginess, that probably has more to do with his porn habits - you'd likely see even worse problems if he did the same things on an XP box.

Flat out lie (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693127)

"I'd rather have my identity stolen than put up with Windows 8."
Any victim of identity theft will deny this.

Why is it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693161)

Why is it that people seem to think when the support runs out, the viruses and hackers have a free access to any XP box?

Do they think, that XP updates have been the only line of defense?

I'm confused!

I have been moving to VMs (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 4 months ago | (#46693165)

I have VMs of windows XP which I use to access legacy hardware and software.

Best of both worlds.

Outlook Express (1)

Frankie70 (803801) | about 4 months ago | (#46693167)

I used to love Outlook Express for usenet (NNTP). I preferred to every other newsreader I have tried. Thunderbird even today is terrible for NNTP. The only problem with OE was that it didn't do quoting correctly. But there was a free 3rd party fix available for that. The Outlook Express Live (or whatever else it's called) which is available with Windows Live Essentials is just not as good as Outlook Express.

BTW, I used XP till March 2011 before moving to Windows 7.

Goldend Goose (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#46693203)

Appease the masses and release Windows 2014-XP, a light weight, backwards compatible operating system with a fucking start menu. Not because start menus are important, but because it's part of your brand. Vanilla ice cream is boring, but if you take away the vanilla, you have frozen milk flavor, which is worse.

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