UK & World News

  • 8 April 2014, 9:57

Hacker's Delight: Support For Windows XP Ends

Some 13 years after it launched, Microsoft's support for Windows XP finally ends today.

It means there will be no more official security updates or bug fixes for the operating system.

Analysts say anyone still using the software is now more at risk of having their computer compromised by hackers.

There have been three major releases of Windows since it debuted in 2001, but around a fifth of all XP users have yet to upgrade.

The UK Government has signed a 5.5m deal for continued support while it completes a migration away from the operating system.

The Dutch government has signed a similar deal.

Many banks are also paying for extended support, with the majority of the world's cash point machines using XP.

Sky News' technology correspondent Tom Cheshire said the system was "solid" which meant many businesses and organisations had chosen to keep it rather than upgrade.

He said: "If anything, XP was perhaps too solid.

"Businesses and users chose to stick with what they knew rather than upgrade to systems like Vista, 7 and 8, which had much publicised teething problems.

"Organisations that can't risk their systems going down - in finance, or government, for example - stuck with XP."

A message on Windows' website said: "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."