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Windows XP: The End of an Era


Resistance to change is universal, with even the most innovative among us determined – at some point – to maintain the status quo. This resistance is especially evident in users’ loyalty to the Windows XP operating system. Released in October 2001, XP became – by September 2003 – the most widely used Windows OS, and remained in the lead until July 2011, when it was finally overtaken by Windows 7 (released October 2009). The long-anticipated – but wildly unpopular – Vista (released in 2006) barely registers in usage statistics.

However, as of April 2014, Microsoft will discontinue XP support. What this means, according to Microsoft, is “…there will be no new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options or online technical content updates.” There has also been, and will likely continue to be, a lack of XP support from independent software and hardware manufacturers.

So, while an unsupported Windows version will continue to function, in the increasingly dangerous and complex world of technology, in order to remain safe, it may be time to prepare for the inevitable, and consider other options. One of them is to upgrade an existing system. To determine whether your system will support Windows 7, Microsoft offers the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor [1], which scans for compatibility issues and offers recommendations. Of course, another option is to purchase a Windows 7 computer, or wait for the release of Windows 8 [2].

For an interesting view of the history of Windows, click here [3].