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goretsky

Are you still using Windows XP?

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Hello,

 

So, I am a little curious… how many of you still having a computer running Windows XP somewhere, and what does it get used for?

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

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I sure hope no one is - at least not in a computer that has Internet access for then it is a threat to the rest of us and IMO, that user is not being a responsible "netizen".

 

That said, I still have my old XP system that simply refuses to die. So I have re-purposed it into an off-line NAS and blocked Internet access to/from it in my router. It will be completely retired soon - though it may get wiped and have Linux put on it for a learning experience for my grandson.

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The only XP system I have seen lately was one that was powering an eye measurement apparatus. You need to have your eyes measured prior to cataract surgery. I would assume it is a standalone program. Hope so at least.

 

Isn't Vista in the same situation? No support. Of course much smaller user base.

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Vista is inherently more secure than XP so not quite the same situation. But also, as you noted, it has a much smaller user base therefore a much smaller target on its back. There just is not that much malicious code out there for Vista and I doubt not much, if any, still being written for it.

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Two in the house. My husband's has no internet access and he uses it to print database labels. He prefers the old 722 printer attached to it rather than the newer ones he has.

Mine runs Office 2007; I installed it to test it for my husband. He didn't like Office 2007. Mine went on the internet about once a month, if there were Office 2007 updates. Since Oct. was the end, it will no longer go on for updates.

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Hello,

 

Yes, Microsoft Windows Vista reached EOL status in April of this year (2017).

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

 

 

 

The only XP system I have seen lately was one that was powering an eye measurement apparatus. You need to have your eyes measured prior to cataract surgery. I would assume it is a standalone program. Hope so at least.

 

Isn't Vista in the same situation? No support. Of course much smaller user base.

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Yes, I've got a netbook with XP. However, I don't use it, because it's too slow, and very frustrating to use.

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Yeah, I am running Office 2007 Pro (Pro includes Outlook) myself. I need to upgrade but am hesitant - not sure I want to spend the money, but security will soon force my hand. Deciding now if I want to get Open or Libre Office and purchase Outlook 2016, or just go all the way with Office Home and Business 2016. I have been dependent on Outlook since Outlook 97 as my email client, contacts manager, and calander/appointment scheduler - not sure I can live with something else. It sucks to get old and set in your ways and try to keep up with the times at the same time! >_<

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It sucks to get old and set in your ways
I know first hand. That's one of the reason I decided to figure out android in 2014; looking ahead to the time that none of our Windows computers will be on the internet. I wanted to see if I'd prefer to surf in linux or android.

 

Fortunately I gave up on a mail program years ago. So I don't have that to worry about. My Office is the Home and Student edition that came with 3 licenses. I only ever used 1 of the licenses. My husband only uses Word and Excel and my newer Samsung tablet came with them so I might pass that on to him to use in a few years.

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My Office is the Home and Student edition that came with 3 licenses
I was wrong. I am not using pro (did with 2003). I am also using Home and Student Office 2007, plus Outlook 2007.

 

I use Outlook because I have 7 email accounts I still use and I get about 40 - 60 emails a day with the majority being forum notifications. I manage them with MailWasher Pro which allows me to view and process all emails from all accounts in one open window without having to individually log into each account - very handy. Then for the small handful of "keepers", I pull them down into Outlook. Works great for me. Plus, like I said, I use Outlook for all my email contacts (don't want that out in "the cloud") and Outlook yells at me when there's a birthday or doctor's appointment coming up.

 

That said, this thread is about XP, not Office. Didn't mean to drag it OT. Sorry about that.

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...... It sucks to get old and set in your ways and try to keep up with the times at the same time! >_<

I was over 70 when I switched away from MS Office, to Open Office, and a couple years older when I switched to Libre Office.

Having said that, I only use the word processor and the spreadsheet, which behave similarly to Word & Excel... The only thing I haven't figured out yet, and miss, is putting bar codes on the envelopes.

 

I used Outlook Express for years to cope with too many email accounts to deal with via webmail... Again, I was over 70 when I switched to Thunderbird, once you go through setting it up, the rest is easy.

 

The thing that took me longest (still adjusting) was going from the traditional Windows Start Menu to the Windows 8 & 10 interfaces. I still use the "Classic Shell" menu, and only use the Win 10 menu for certain tasks.

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Well, despite there similar names Outlook Express and Outlook are totally different.

 

I use Start10 which works similar to ClassicShell on my main computer. But standard W10 on my other computers.

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Well, despite there similar names Outlook Express and Outlook are totally different......

I've used both but it's been ages since Outlook.

But that wasn't the point.

Being an old phart wasn't an insurmountable obstacle to changing mail clients.

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The last time I ran Windows XP here was on a 2005 Dell Optiplex GX620 that got replaced in 2012 by a Windows 7 desktop. The Dell is still running Linux Mint Xfce for one of my daughter's friends.

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hmm, 5 at work. still have 2 users that are in the queue , couple of pc's with software issues.

better - we have a W2K pc still in use.

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Hello,

 

If you don't mind my asking, are the computers used to run special purpose software or hardware? Also, are they networked, and if so, are they allowed to access the Internet?

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

hmm, 5 at work. still have 2 users that are in the queue , couple of pc's with software issues.

better - we have a W2K pc still in use.

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Being an old phart wasn't an insurmountable obstacle to changing mail clients.
LOL. It really never is. It is the Luddite-based resistance to change. I mean why are people still using XP? In most cases, it is not due to the budget, but rather the resistance to dumping/replacing something that is still working.

 

My problem is that I use Outlook for so much more than just an email client.

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...... the resistance to dumping/replacing something that is still working.

That I can relate to...

At the age of 74, I'm on my third motor vehicle.

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Hello,

 

If you don't mind my asking, are the computers used to run special purpose software or hardware? Also, are they networked, and if so, are they allowed to access the Internet?

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

hmm, 5 at work. still have 2 users that are in the queue , couple of pc's with software issues.

better - we have a W2K pc still in use.

The XP pc's are either severely limited in access the LAN or heavily protected against rootkits, virus and malware (to the extent that performance is hindered), not allowed for browsing the internet. There are software issues at play and one hardware issue.

 

The W2K is not really limited except by its own failings. I think i told the story here before , but W2K is so old that viruses and malware fail due to not finding the OS hooks. The machine does have an anti-virus and intrusion detection running.

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At the age of 74, I'm on my third motor vehicle.
Third? Wow. I tend to keep my vehicles for a long time, but at 65, I've had more than 3, 8 actually - at least as my primary vehicle. My current is a 2010 F150 I just put new tires on and hope to keep for another 7+ years.
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At 70, my current car is a 2001 Chrysler PTCruiser. Barring an accident that destroys it completely, I will probably have it til I stop driving. It only has a bit more than 57,000 miles for the over 16 years I've owned it. I used to drive it to visit my mom who lived 48 miles away. Since she's died, I no longer make that weekly trip so I probably won't put 57,000 more miles on it for the next 16 years.

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Hello,

 

As kind of a follow-up to my line of questions, here's a blog post (and accompanying paper) I've written for, somewhat-unironically titled The Last Windows XP Security White Paper: welivesecurity.com/2018/03/27/last-windows-xp-security-white-paper/

 

The link to the paper (actually a 48-page PDF) file is at the end of the first paragraph.

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

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Well, I just read through that 48 page PDF! I have a love/hate opinion of it.

 

First, I feel it was an extremely well written, thorough and professionally produced product! :) That's the love part. I also did not get the impression it was written with the hidden agenda of promoting ESET products.

 

What I don't like is, despite the claims to the contrary, that it will be used as justification or an excuse for the remaining stubborn hold-outs to keep using XP. Because regardless how secure XP can be made today, a new vulnerability that will not be patched may come tomorrow. :(

 

I wish the following from page 38 was printed in bold, flashing, underlined, italicized, in your face, large font, and way at the very beginning as well as throughout the paper! Instead its almost as an afterthought so near the end. And context should have been added, IMO, to point out no direct access to the Internet is for everybody else's safety and security - not just XPs or that one machine. Connected infected XP systems are regularly used by the bad guys to attack the rest of us - to distribute spam and malware, or as zombies in bot armies in DDoS attacks.

Although no computer running Microsoft Windows XP should ever have

direct access to the Internet for its own safety and security

 

****

 

Bad timing about Secunia PSI as they just announced it will no longer be available after April 20, 2018

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I have an XP computer from 2008 with a Geovision video camera surveillance card that was upgraded to Windows 8.1 and later Windows 10, which the software was not certified to work with, but did. Then one day after a Windows update the software no longer worked and reinstalling did not work, so it is back running XP. It runs 24/7. The network connection is turned off.

 

I still have multiple XP computers that were for personal use, video editing, genealogy, and office use. No reason to get rid of something that still turns on, even though they are not useful for the modern internet. Occasionally I use them to open old word processing files, genealogy files, genealogy disks, or whatever was saved on an old floppy.

 

Last year I used my old Windows 98 computer to run an old genealogy program that didn't like 32 bit Windows XP. Windows 98 did not communicate properly on the home network and required a little upgrading in order to get a USB stick to work so I could save some files. Sometimes the only compatible computer is an original.

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Strangely enough I have found that old genealogy programs like Family Tree Maker run well using Linux and Wine. Even stuff that is incompatible with Windows 7 will work.

I don't do a lot of genealogy off the Internet though. It seems to me that genealogy is something where your info should be shared with friends relatives and other researchers. It has become a definitive Web-based activity for me. I spent a lot of time getting some paper-based genealogy my great aunts did in the 1940s onto the Internet.

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No reason to get rid of something that still turns on' date=' even though they are not useful for the modern internet.[/quote']Except when they become a threat to you, your family/other users of the computer, and to the rest of us - as XP systems connected to the Internet have the very real potential to be. You still don't have to get rid of the hardware, just XP. Or at lease make sure it is, and stays totally isolated from the Internet.

 

Sometimes the only compatible computer is an original.
This is true. But then again, there is the option of buying new, secure and compatible software designed to run on under modern, secure operating systems too. Even if that means buying new hardware to support eh new OS and manually migrating the legacy data to the new software.

 

Nobody likes to throw out perfectly good and still totally functional things. But that's just a fact of life - especially in ever-advancing technologies. We all have done it with CRT TVs and monitors, 8-tracks, cassettes, VCRs, 4:3 monitors, PDAs, cell phones, and more. It is time to do the same with XP too. Or at the very least, make sure it stays disconnected from any network that has Internet access so it does not become a threat to the rest of us.

 

At some point (which has long passed) XP users must accept their responsibility as "netizens" and be concerned about the well being of our fellow Internet users - just as we all must be responsible drivers. If not for our own personal safety, but for the safety and security of our fellow netizens.

 

Bottom line: it is not just that XP has been superseded 4 times over. It is not even that XP is potentially unsafe for the XP user. It is because XP has become a threat to the rest of us that XP must go away!

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Hello,

 

Research does research, and, well, that's it. The goal of the WLS blog is to share findings, educate and provide nuanced commentary on news story (what is the real-world impact/does this really affect you/what should you do). Occasionally there might be mention of our software, but it is usually in the context of "Detection of threat XYZ was added in version 123456 on $DATE." There's a strong attitude against pushing product. It hasn't always been that way--there was a period when a lot of what was published seemed like "ambulance chasing," e.g., parroting anything security-related that came out. But in the end, quality won over quantity. Now, bear in mind, there is a corporate blog that is focused on the corporate side of things.

 

There are numerous places where I suggest getting off of Windows XP as soon as possible, starting with a boxed notation right after the table of contents. But, again, this is for folks who are unable or unwilling to upgrade, so their options are going to be limited.

 

At this point, I think that everyone who has upgraded is going to, and what's left is a small (but still large in terms of absolute numbers) pool of computers left running it that are going to stay running it bar what insurance companies call "life-changing events." So, the goal here was to get those systems into a state where some security controls and resiliency are in place.

 

I'm going to add an update to the blog post (but not the paper) about Secunia PSI being discontinued. That should appear sometime on Monday.

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

 

Well, I just read through that 48 page PDF! I have a love/hate opinion of it.

 

First, I feel it was an extremely well written, thorough and professionally produced product! :) That's the love part. I also did not get the impression it was written with the hidden agenda of promoting ESET products.

 

What I don't like is, despite the claims to the contrary, that it will be used as justification or an excuse for the remaining stubborn hold-outs to keep using XP. Because regardless how secure XP can be made today, a new vulnerability that will not be patched may come tomorrow. :(

 

I wish the following from page 38 was printed in bold, flashing, underlined, italicized, in your face, large font, and way at the very beginning as well as throughout the paper! Instead its almost as an afterthought so near the end. And context should have been added, IMO, to point out no direct access to the Internet is for everybody else's safety and security - not just XPs or that one machine. Connected infected XP systems are regularly used by the bad guys to attack the rest of us - to distribute spam and malware, or as zombies in bot armies in DDoS attacks.

Although no computer running Microsoft Windows XP should ever have

direct access to the Internet for its own safety and security

 

****

 

Bad timing about Secunia PSI as they just announced it will no longer be available after April 20, 2018

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Hello,

 

I think the video camera issue might be related to the issue discussed here, here and here. There may be a fix, or at least a workaround, available for this. I actually wrote about this in my last white paper, which would be available for download from this blog article, if the link weren't broken (should be fixed on Monday).

 

I'm curious: How much, if any, of the data on the old Windows XP and Windows 98 computers have you migrated to modern, supported operating systems? Does some of it only reside on those EOL operating systems?

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

 

I have an XP computer from 2008 with a Geovision video camera surveillance card that was upgraded to Windows 8.1 and later Windows 10, which the software was not certified to work with, but did. Then one day after a Windows update the software no longer worked and reinstalling did not work, so it is back running XP. It runs 24/7. The network connection is turned off.

 

I still have multiple XP computers that were for personal use, video editing, genealogy, and office use. No reason to get rid of something that still turns on, even though they are not useful for the modern internet. Occasionally I use them to open old word processing files, genealogy files, genealogy disks, or whatever was saved on an old floppy.

 

Last year I used my old Windows 98 computer to run an old genealogy program that didn't like 32 bit Windows XP. Windows 98 did not communicate properly on the home network and required a little upgrading in order to get a USB stick to work so I could save some files. Sometimes the only compatible computer is an original.

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this is for folks who are unable or unwilling to upgrade, so their options are going to be limited.
I guess this is my problem when looking at this issue. Being "unable" is an entirely different category than those who are "unwilling".

 

Those who are unwilling, that is they refuse to migrate though able and who still connect these systems to the Internet (thus putting the rest of us at risk) should be taken out back and shot - or at least publicly flogged until they accept the reality that they are a danger to themselves, their families, and to society and, frankly, that they are reckless and rude. :angry:

 

They should not be lumped with those who are truly "unable".

 

Let's not forget that (1) Linux is totally free and supports virtually all types of "productivity" software out there. (2) Gaming is NOT a necessity. And (3), money is not really an obstacle considering Windows 10 refurbished systems are available dirt cheap from Best Buy, Walmart and other outlets. And note many of these under $200 systems will likely run circles around most of those legacy XP systems too.

 

So frankly, I really find it hard to believe most of the home users who are XP hold-outs are really "unable" to give up their XP systems for a secure W10 system that is not a threat to the rest of us.

 

That really only leaves the desperately poor individuals, companies on the verge of bankruptcy, and those systems running proprietary software where the developer is no where to be found. And that, I believe, leaves a much smaller number who truly are "unable" than we are led to believe.

 

To be sure, IF XP was not still a target of bad guys to use as weapons against the rest of us, I would not care one bit about this. But the fact of the matter is that XP is still a primary target and those compromised XP systems are being used to distribute spam and malware and as zombies in bot armies in DDoS attacks.

 

I do not live in an affluent school district. But even here there are programs available for underprivileged families with school-age kids to get computers, or ready access to computers.

 

And if someone is carrying around a $500 (or even a $1000 :blink:) smart phone claiming they cannot afford a W10 computer, I say BS!

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