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Windows XP turns 20: Why it’s time to say goodbye

Monday October 25th marks the 20th anniversary of Windows XP, the first operating system launched by Microsoft in the 21st century. Codenamed “Neptune” during development, Windows XP was originally just intended for the consumer market. However, an update to Windows 2000 for the business market was scrapped and the two projects merged. Windows XP was launched to great acclaim and received positive reviews for its performance and stability, a more intuitive user interface, improved hardware support, and its expanded multimedia capabilities. It was famed for its green start button and blue task bar.

About the author

Jake Moore, Cybersecurity Specialist at ESET.

Whilst Microsoft recently launched Windows 11 (codenamed “Sun Valley”) to much fanfare, several critical PCs still run on Windows XP. In fact, it is thought that 0.6% of the 1.3 billion Windows PCs worldwide still rely on the aging operating system. This is despite Microsoft ending mainstream support for Windows XP back in 2009 followed by extended support in 2014. That means 8 million PCs around the globe are currently out-of-date and unprotected to the latest breed of cyberattacks. 

Legacy critical infrastructure deployments

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