Microsoft Extends Support Life of Windows XP until 2014
In an unprecedented move Microsoft has promised to provide support services for its
soon-to-be-retired Windows XP until 2014 because too many of its key business users
are still running the ageing OS.
In a letter sent to customers this week, Microsoft senior VP Bill Veghte said the
software maker will provide security patches "and other critical updates" for
Windows XP until April, 2014 (a full 13 years after the operating system was
originally released): "Our ongoing support for Windows XP is the result of our
recognition that people keep their Windows-based PCs for many years," Veghte wrote.
That may be, but Microsoft normally terminates support for an OS within ten years of
its release — at the latest. For instance, it plans to end support for Windows 2000
in 2010. Microsoft may have little choice but to support Windows XP for an extended
period, given that the majority of its large business customers have not upgraded
their personal computers and laptops to the newer, Windows Vista operating system.
Many companies have balked at Vista's cost, resource requirements, and lack of
compatibility with older applications.
Microsoft released Vista in January of last year. But the company has apparently
accepted the fact that many of its largest customers will skip Vista altogether and
will continue using XP at least until Windows 7 becomes available three years from
now, and possibly longer.
In addition to supporting XP through 2014, Microsoft is now actively promoting a
program that allows customers to downgrade Vista systems to XP through a loophole
in the company's licensing terms. Microsoft's software license allows customers who
purchase a copy of Windows to install and run a previous version of the OS at no
why? because vista is a piece of crap. XP will live forever.