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XP – Don’t Shoot The Messenger

Monday, March 24th, 2014 by | Filed Under: Quick Tips, Security Help

So I get a lot of letters about the end of security support for Windows XP that are similar to this one from Tex:

Your website seems to have an obsession with trying to get people off XP, almost as if you have stock in MackerelSoft. The End of support Panic articles are comical almost beyond belief. I run XP SP2 Home 2002 version. NO updates, patches etc. Autoupdate turned OFF. MackerelSoft is sorry they ever let SP2 get in the hands of consumers. I’ve been running it for about 8 years and have no intention of upgrading. How much stock DO you and Steve have in EmEsss?

 I would like to point out it’s not just me sounding the XP warning. And if you want to keep XP, that’s certainly your choice. As I’ve said, it’s a lot like leaving your doors unlocked when you know there are thieves prowling the neighborhood who know you don’t have locks.  My great-uncle once went to Florida for two years and left his house in Kentucky unlocked in case anyone in the family needed to get in. Nothing was stolen. But it’s not something I’d recommend.

For the more cautious among us – learn more about the end of XP support here.

~ Cynthia

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8 Responses to “XP – Don’t Shoot The Messenger”

  1. Tom McGonegal says:

    Oh please! On April 9 the doors of my 2 XP laptops will not be left unlocked. I think yours is a very exaggerated analogy.

    There is no reason to suspect that the usual good tools, anti-virus, malware detector and removal tools, etc. will not work. On the other hand, there is every reason to expect them to perform just fine. For how long? My guess is folks like you will be warning us to get rid of XP a year from now. In most cases I expect the hardware to fail before XP does.


    • cynthia says:

      The usual tools will continue to work well to remove known threats. The difficulty is new threats that require access to information about Windows XP on its basic operating level to remove them. Microsoft will no longer be providing that information to 3rd party security companies.

  2. Joy H says:

    I finally decided not to risk it and made the move to a new laptop last week. I realized that since I wanted Windows 7 and not 8.1, my options would continue to be less and more expensive the longer I put it off. As far as I know, only two companies are giving us the Windows 7 option. It’s hard to say goodbye to a perfectly good laptop, but I must say that using the free Laplink mover that Microsoft has provided made the transition painless and all my files were moved overnight. So, here I am $450 poorer but no longer sweating the demise of XP.

  3. Jon Freeman says:

    Thank you for your persistence in attempting to wake everyone up to the dangers of unprotected computing. I switched to 8.0 and then 8.1 because my old computer was about to expire. I was apprehensive but within a few weeks (with the help of Classicshell) I was rolling right along.

    I helped a friend of mine make the switch and expected that she would be calling every five minuted for help. That didn’t happen. She is doing just fine.

    I am 80 years old and my computer is great company. I wouldn’t be without it and I wouldn’t take a chance on problems when I have been warned. Again, keep up the good work.

  4. Regina Clay says:

    May I add my appreciation for your efforts of attempting to increase awareness to the dangers of unprotected computing. It seems it is in the human condition to “shoot the messenger” — it saddens me that you are on the receiving end of such behavior. You do such a fine job of providing computing information. Please keep up the excellent work and keep in mind there are those of us who recognize your skill and are grateful for your efforts.

  5. Don Sagar says:

    As a mechanical/electrical engineer who has been engaged in the development of some of the most advanced main frame computers in the World, for IBM, I whole hardheartedly agree with Tom. Enough already with the constant stream of scare tactics. Simply secure another cheap computer with whatever operating system you feel comfortable with (I use Win 2000 Pro) and use that computer exclusively for the internet. Use your 2nd system (again, with whatever operating system you feel comfortable with) for all personal and “work” related materials and keep it OFF the Internet. Both should be backed up to an off computer source for optimum safety. If someone with sufficient talent decides they want on to a machine connected to the web, there is no one or no organization on this earth (including “slezzyfish”) that can prevent it, regardless of all the hype. A recent meeting with top security personnel at the The Pentagon revealed that they are unable to keep people out of their systems. This need for constant change is all about the money, and little more.

  6. jim says:

    HEAVENS !!!!!!!!!!! I can’t believe the abuse that’s being heaped upon those who are trying to warn people about the potential dangers of continuing to use XP to connect to the internet. If these people don’t believe you, or think you’re somehow going to make money from switching away from XP, then they should learn how to do a google search and do some research on their own. Ah, but that would require some work on their part, so that’s not going to happen.

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