Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Microsoft helps Windows XP One last Time


Microsoft made the decision to patch Windows XP one last time.  A serious Internet Explorer flaw has caught the attention of Microsoft as they worked on security issues for XP.

Industry observers were shocked when Microsoft issued the Internet Explorer zero-day browser vulnerability patch.

Microsoft made an exception last week after support for Windows XP ended on April 8, 2014.

Fighting a Good Fight

Even though Microsoft issued the patch after the end of their support, Microsoft seriously urges Windows XP users to upgrade to a newer operating system such as Windows 7 or Windows 8.1.
“Just because this update is out now doesn’t mean you should stop thinking about getting off Windows XP and moving to a newer version of Windows and the latest version of Internet Explorer,” Adrienne Hall wrote, the General Manager of Trustworthy Computing.
The latest version of Internet Explorer, “has increased support for modern web standards, better performance, and expanded the ability to deliver an immersive experience from within the web browser.  In other words, cool stuff that you need even if you didn’t know you need it, ” Hall proclaimed.


Windows XP is a widely used OS that has proven to be resilient, possibly the reason why people are sticking by XP even after the discontinued support.

Windows 7 had nearly 50% of the desktop operating system market in April.  Windows XP had more than 26% of users, that is more than all the players put together.

Senior security researcher for Malwarebytes, Jerome Segura told TechNewsWorld, “It somehow shoots itself in the foot by encouraging users to stick with [that OS] for at least a little longer.”

What’s the Risk

“The financial services and healthcare industries may have the most to lose if XP remains unsupported,” Darren Hayes, a professor at Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems, told TechNewsWorld.

Utility companies, ATM’s, and many medical devices are still running on Windows XP.

The move toward cloud computing will make things worse, warned Eric Chiu, president and co-founder of HyTrust.

With the cloud, virtualization will just about let the OS live forever.  The technology runs on 70% of the data center by removing the hardware dependence of the operating system.  The older operating systems like XP can run on the cloud easily for 20 years.

 Possible Outcome

Malwarebytes and many antivirus vendors, that include Kaspersky, Avira, Symantec and Trend Micro, are the companies that will continue to support XP.

The antivirus software will not resolve the underlying vulnerabilities cyber-criminals are likely to discover.
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Microsoft Gives XP One last Hug – TechNewsWorld
Published: May 3, 2014

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