Excerpt from Microsoft Website

Support is ending soon

On April 8, 2014, support and updates for Windows XP will no longer be available. Don't let your PC go unprotected.

What is Windows XP end of support?

Microsoft has provided support for Windows XP for the past 12 years. But now the time has come for us, along with our hardware and software partners, to invest our resources toward supporting more recent technologies so that we can continue to deliver great new experiences. 

As a result, after April 8, 2014, technical assistance for Windows XP will no longer be available, including automatic updates that help protect your PC. Microsoft will also stop providing Microsoft Security Essentials for download on Windows XP on this date. (If you already have Microsoft Security Essentials installed, you will continue to receive antimalware signature updates for a limited time, but this does not mean that your PC will be secure because Microsoft will no longer be providing security updates to help protect your PC.)

If you continue to use Windows XP after support ends, your computer will still work but it might become more vulnerable to security risks and viruses. Also, as more software and hardware manufacturers continue to optimize for more recent versions of Windows, you can expect to encounter greater numbers of apps and devices that do not work with Windows XP.

So What do I do Now?

The easiest option is to bite the bullet and purchase a new computer then run the Windows Easy Transfer Wizard to copy your Documents, images, music, internet favourites etc. from your old computer to your new one.

Not everyone likes the new Windows 8 interface but within a couple of days most users get to grips with it fairly well and we have to move with the times. However if you are set againt Windows 8 then finding a computer with Windows 7 installed is another option.

If you want to use your existing hardware

Newer operating systems usually require more system resources. If your lucky your existing Windows XP hardware may meet the minimum system requirements for Windows 7 or Windows 8, but it won’t be optimal. You may require RAM upgrades or a larger hard drive etc. and need to be confident to install the new version of Windows after having backed up your data.

The best option for making use of your existing hardware is to install some version of Linux. Generally Linux requires a fraction of the CPU, memory, hard drive space and other resources that Windows needs and will work just fine on your old XP hardware. Linux can seem overwhelming to average users, but some versions like Ubuntu are very user-friendly with plenty of online help and often install with many of the same Programs that you are used to using with Windows such as Mozilla Firefox, Open Office etc.

Don`t want to learn something new.

Then that rules out Mac OS X and Linux for sure. It also probably Windows 8 for some tasks.

The best option if you want to upgrade but want an OS that most closely matches what you’re used to in Windows XP is to upgrade to Windows 7.

If you’re going to upgrade to a new version of Windows, just go to Windows 8. Yes, it has a dramatically different look and feel with the Modern User Interface and Start screen. However, it can be easily configured to go straight to the desktop and all of your usual Windows XP software runs on the desktop anyway. As long as you’re using the desktop on Windows 8 there's no difference from Windows 7, but you do get a number of performance and security improvements that don’t exist in Windows 7.

The Mac Route

Mac OS X is a good operating system and it has a number of unique features and it's simple to use. There are many things about Mac OS X that are quite intuitive if you don’t know any other way but seem counter-intuitive to someone who has used Windows for years. 

Mac OS X will require buying a new computer. Although Mac laptops and PCs run on the same Intel-based hardware as most Windows machines, Mac OS X can only be installed and run on genuine Apple hardware. 

Microsoft is going to stop supporting Windows XP but it has supported the OS for 13 years. It still supports Windows Vista and will provide extended support for Windows 7 through 2020.

You could just keep using Windows XP, but at your own risk, and Microsoft and other IT professionals won’t be there to throw you a rope when you start getting security exploits.

If you must use Windows XP for some piece of software then disconnect it from the Internet and if you can`t do that, then on no account do any Internet Banking or Financial transactions on the internet. If you must buy a 2nd PC or get a Tablet.

I recommend moving to Windows 8 and spending the time to get used to the new OS. 




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