Quite literally as a matter of fact- April 8th is when Microsoft will no longer support XP via technical or software updates. 😦 This means XP systems become increasingly vulnerable to internet attacks by hackers.
Despite XP’s age (introduced in 2001), and the introduction of newer operating systems (MS Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8), it’s believed that over 30% of the systems worldwide are still configured with XP. It seems strange that Microsoft would be willing to turn it’s back on such a large portion of remaining users out there- perhaps not the best business move on their part.
The problem is upgrading to a new OS isn’t so simple. The older machines that run XP may not be compatible – no to mention the apps that are running on XP. In many cases the less painful solution is buying a new computer- but that does cost money.
Many folks resent MS for this move because they were perfectly happy with XP and feel no need to upgrade- a group which includes myself. I build my own computers and I have a customized XP system that does everything I want. My XP system has served me well, and it was only my need for a more robust computer to handle my trading software needs that led me to building another computer with a new OS. My problem is my trading computer only has trading software and my XP computer is the one with most of the apps.
This leaves me with three choices for what to do with my XP machine:
1) Do Nothing.
2) Upgrade to a newer OS.
3) Take my system offline.
Option 1 leaves my system open to attack and I have no desire for identify theft so that’s a no go. Option 2 will no doubt break many of my HW upgrades that were made specifically for XP and troubleshooting compatibility issues will likely be a new level of hellish nightmare I have no desire to experience. That leaves option 3 as the best alternative at this point.
So for those going that route, we have a month to get our systems configured the way we want before MS turns out the lights on XP and no longer sees if your equipment needs a patch or security update.
The funny thing is a few years back I was thinking of taking my XP system offline for protection and just having a computer that wasn’t storing tons of personal data as the gateway. I never got around to doing it, but MS is forcing me to make my thoughts a reality.