End of XP Support is Y2K All Over Again

End of XP Support is Y2K All Over Again

By Richard Hay for Windows Observer

Our good friend Richard Hay at Windows Observer says the buzz over the end of Windows XP support – feels oddly familiar.–PC Pitstop

The last few weeks have really felt like déjà vu.

If you were around in the waning years of the 1990’s you will remember the discussion, hype, fear and general confusion that reigned concerning what would happen at midnight on 31 December 1999.

The Year 2000 Problem, Y2K for short, was creating concern because historically we had always abbreviated the current year from 4 to 2 digits to save space in software programs, forms, etc.

As New Year’s Day 01 January 2000 approached the concern was that electronic programs and equipment would either cease to function gracefully or catastrophically. Either way a significant amount of money was poured into efforts to correct these problems and upgrade both the software and hardware components of systems to prevent everything electronic failing as the clock struck midnight.

According to sources referenced on the Y2K WikiPedia article here is what it cost the US alone:

The total cost of the work done in preparation for Y2K is estimated at over US$300 billion ($400 billion in 2013 US dollars. IDC calculated that the U.S. spent an estimated $134 billion ($179 billion) preparing for Y2K, and another $13 billion ($17 billion) fixing problems in 2000 and 2001. Worldwide, $308 billion ($411 billion) was estimated to have been spent on Y2K remediation.

I was in the Navy during that time and was stationed overseas in Italy. Our concerns were doubled because we not only had our US based communications systems but also depended upon the local Italian infrastructure and there were concerns on how things would go at the shift from 1999 to 2000 all across Italy.

Article continued here

This excerpt appears with permission from Windows Observer.

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54 thoughts on “End of XP Support is Y2K All Over Again


  2. When netbooks first came out, I wondered what all the fuss was about. I sized them up as minicomputers that wouldn’t do as much as a full computer. They would fill a niche market and make the manufacturers another batch of money. Then came little phones that claimed to be computers, and tablets that could do a little more, but they still aren’t computers. They’re entertainment devices with some extras tossed in. Now they call them apps instead of programs. It’s all a scam to make money for the biggies. And boy, do they make money!

    You’er right, I don’t stay on the leading edge of computer technology. I stay with functional older computers that do exactly what I want them to do. I’ll put a system together from spare parts and it runs just fine. I have two main computers and several less used machines. My main one runs XP and that ain’t gonna change. My second, and just as much used one, runs Linux Mint (no Ubuntu for me). Ubuntu is right in there with Win 8–another dog’s breakfast. Vista functions, but it’s a dog. Win 7 isn’t bad, but I certainly suggest that anyone who wants an alternative to Win XP, switch to Linux. Linux isn’t one OS, there are over 350 versions, but there are a few very good desktop distros that work wonderfully! If you can use XP, you can use Linux. There’s less of a learning curve than there is for smart phones or tablets.

    Once you’ve cut the unbilical cords with the big corporations, you’ll know what computer freedom is all about. Your machine now belongs to you, instead of to them. It does what you want, not what they want you to want. And guess what, your money stays in your pocket. There are top of the line Linux distros that are totally free of cost. When you consider that 90-95% of computers belong to individuals, not businesses, that’s a lot of hostages that M$, Mac, Google etc. have captured. There are alternatives, but if you like wearing shackles, go ahead. It’s your computer.

  3. Read the comments above. A lot of personal opinion. I can’t imagine that a good company won’t take on the WIN XP challenge. In fact, they could likely buy the license and do an upgrade. But, I tried both WIN 7 and Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and the Ubuntu won. The WIN 7 is kind of a scatter brained thing with screens that are inferior to XP, by my analysis. Yes, it is quicker and somewhat more stable, but less intuitive for normal day-to-day use. Geeks have their own world/needs but WIN XP is hard to beat for simple, everyday use.

  4. I’m a retired system builder.

    Every time Microsoft releases a new operating system, we decide whether it fails or succeeds by how we spend or don’t spend our money. It’s too late for XP users because the vast majority of us have already upgraded. Vista wasn’t enough to force the change and has a well deserved and poor reputation. Windows 7 was enough to force the change. It’s just plain better and the public voted with their wallets. Windows 8 is currently suffering from the same poor sales that Vista did. If it wasn’t for the fact that many manufacturers preinstall Windows 8, the sales would be nonexistent. I expect Windows 7 support to remain until another operating system is accepted by the public in the same way.

    I loved Windows 2000. It was a stripped down version of XP and as stable – if not more so. When XP SP2 was released, I wasn’t happy about being forced to switch (support for Win2k was stopping) but I was happy for a decade.
    I tested Vista and decided to bypass it for us, but a few customers wanted the “the latest and greatest”. We’ve had to replace the hard drive in most of those systems as Vista’s cache would thrash hard drives constantly. That’s been addressed through Windows Updates now. Then came Windows 7, and from the 1st release I knew it was better than anything prior to it – in almost every way.

    I can understand the reservations people have about upgrading, but the evidence is there to support both Windows 7 and Windows 8. It’s highly unlikely that any software which worked on XP won’t work on Win 7/8 since both have XP compatibility built into them. There is a learning curve. Both are locked down more than XP was and for good reason in my opinion (if you can’t figure out how to manipulate settings, you shouldn’t be manipulating settings).

    Now it boils down to the people who refuse to upgrade their XP systems could cause grief for the rest of us when they become infected – and they will. I’d like to see some worldwide regulation in place. Either the manufacturer must maintain the security of their product, or pull it from systems completely. We basically have that system now as Microsoft stops support, most of us know enough to upgrade to be safe and keep others safe. Regulation would make a (for example) 10 year license which at the end of term forced an upgrade or shut down completely.

  5. Just an excuse for these pirates/bankstergangsters/billionaires to SQUEEZE MORE MONIES out of the world population, it's the worlds ruling-class family tradition to do so. They will try to do a way with it then give it back to you for a price so that you are actually paying twice or thrice for it, it's a money-game thing for these parasitical nitwits.

  6. I have a dell sysem with XP. I would have switched to 7 but the dell printer does not have a driver that will work with 7. Does anyone know of a driver for the Photo 944 from dell for the 7 system? If you do, pls e-mail me, thanks.

    • @Rich:
      Rich you could try http://catalog.update.microsoft.com/
      Note this website installs an activex control so Internet Explorer will have to be used to access it. Once the activex control has installed you can to a search for the required driver, in your case Photo 944. Got four hits for your printer. Has windows 7 drivers and then some. Just download the reqiured version as they come in either 32 bit version or 64 bit. Hope that help you. Good luck!

      • @Kenneth: I like to tahank you for the information given, I do have an windows xp and was haveing problems to update my PC after i did a total System Restore, and some how the sp2 was not recharged back into the restoration, I will continue using my windows ex until it dies or microsft kills it.

  7. Support ending for Windows XP is really simple. You can upgrade XP to Win7, or Win8. You can switch to a Linux OS, and use VirtualBox for XP-only applications. For those who do not want to buy or can’t buy a modern computer, will have to use Linux. The security risk of not upgrading or changing from XP is simply to great, unless you want your data to be stolen, manipulated, or destroyed. For those who know and love Windows XP, Ubuntu or Windows 7 is your best option. Learning a new OS is easy, get a book at a library, ask a friend or relative, or actually use a computer and Google it! If you aren’t afraid of trying new things, or like a challenge, try Apple’s Mac OSX.

    Again, simple soultion:
    -Upgrade to Windows 7 or 8
    -Change to Linux, and use VirtualBox
    -Buy a new computer with Mac OSX , Linux (rare), Windows 7, or Windows 8

    • BS. It’s all about the MONEY. The hackers are gonna concentrate on the people who have spent the money for new computers with Win8 and Win9 because they’re the one’s with the big bank accounts! Micro$not’s “support” has NEVER spotted any hackers yet for me, so what’s the big deal? Big businesses aren’t gonna throw away trillions of dollars of servers just to keep Micro$not “support”. Doctors HAVE to keep running XP because Medicare is running XP for billing and will be for years (decades?) The IRS is using 1960’s programming still. So sing me another Chicken Little song; I still won’t believe it. A 1932 Model B Ford V-8 will still take you from coast to coast at 75 MPH on Interstates.

  8. Don’t worry, just get yourself a good program that will protect your system from threats, I’m sure that there will be plenty. there are still excellent programmers out there, who can write and support XP as well as older Operating Systems..

  9. "lazy or stupid"… or maybe because they see no reason to throw away perfectly good hardware that's still more-than-sufficiently powered for Internet browsing, word processing, image management, and even some (slightly older) game playing.

  10. Nobody makes you change: there exists tons of support for XP
    Put a hard drive sata caddy for your boot drives-then you can use any system you want-Win 2000′ XP, Win 7 , or Win8 if you,re stupid…

    I only use Win7 for certain program’s-like Sony movie editors…

    Steve Sanford

  11. I have windows XP and have been using it for years even when my hard drive needed to be replaced with a new one the windows OS disk made the new hard drives work,XP is the best OS to have and more relyable when Windows comes out with another OS disk that is just as good as XP then I will buy it, but until that time I am keeping Windows XP.

  12. Its just like this anything you read on the internet is not always TRUE all the computer companys are trying to do is SELL more computers and software, like others have said you don’t need the support to use the OS system when you feel the time to change your operating system then you will be the one to do that, nothing happened in 2000 and nothing will happen this time its just a bunch of hype and bullshit to get you to buy new computers and software.

  13. Pssch! Why do they feel as if the loss of support for Windows XP is gonna be like Y2K?

    And besides that, the Y2K situation ended up being a flop of a worry (even for those people who didn't fix their systems in time)! So why should this be any different?

    And besides *that,* the loss of support for the previous versions of Windows didn't cause such a big stir-up or other problem. Why should this be any different?

    Bunch of babies!

  14. For all you people hanging on to Windows XP have fun while it lasts. I agree that Windows XP is stable and will do everything you want it to for as many years as you dare to use it.

    Remember that since Windows XP is not going to be supported by the evil Microsoft any more there are people out there who will double their efforts in hacking it to take over your machines and steal your data. There are even reports that some of these wonderful human beings are holding back on these exploits till the fateful day when Microsoft washes their hands of it. That will be an interesting day.

    So, what do you do, keep using it but make sure that you do not connect it to the Internet, that would work but it is getting more difficult to use a computer that is not connected to the Internet as everything seems to have an online component these days.

    Try going to Linux or Mac OS? That would be great but the learning curve will put off most people, also, if you are prepared to learn a completely different OS why not just upgrade to Windows 8 and take the hit; at least there will be much tat you already know and the learning curve will not be as steep.

    The best thing is that you have a choice, Linux, Mac and windows are viable solutions in computing today since most of everything can be done online or with software that is available on many different platforms. Enjoy!

  15. I’m stuck with a 12 yr old laptop that uses XP,SP2. Can’t afford a new pc. Don’t think my pc is capable of being upgraded Does have as much memory as the newer pcs. 🙁

  16. many many scams re yk2 I advanced all settings months before to simulate yk2
    and none ofour business computers failed it so we sailed on merrily while everybody else was paying huge sums for computers and i will carry on using my XP until version 2030 comes in as I shall be gone by then

  17. I am happy with my XP. I do not use a computer a lot since I am mostly retired, so XP fills my needs adequately. In simplistic terms “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, is my attitude.

  18. I'm really going to miss XP. I have tried Vista, Windows 7, and have had a Windows 8 for months, but am still using my XP exclusively. I may be forced to switch of Apple or maybe Linux.

  19. I have multiple, legacy programs which will run on XP but will not run on WIN7, forcing me to maintain several XP machines. If these programs would need to be rewritten, in their entirety, to run on later operating systems, it will be cheaper to move to LINUX for the effort. I DO NOT believe that I am the only person in these circumstances.

    • @Dennis Zabawa:My job required me to make applications work on computers with different operating systems. My experience is that an application can run on any given O/S if the applications source is recompiled on a compiler designed for that O/S. So your XP apps would need to be recompiled on a compiler designed for Windows 7 or 8 or whatever, this would ensure that the proper libraries, math routines and etc are included in the apps executable. The onus rests with the apps originator not Microsoft.

  20. I have to agree with Michael – Windows 7 is comfortable to use – doesn’t eat memory – and is stable – I too suffered with Vista and went back to XP, then I had to bite the bullet and upgrade to Windows 7. I have heard techies say that it is what Vista should have been if they had ironed out the problems properly instead of releasing it prematurely. Of course XP was the best, but time doesn’t stand still and they have to make money and they are the R&D guys.

    • @Michael Hendriks:
      Yeh really was wondering the same why in the world would any one be using vista with windows 7 and 8 both out and both rock solid compared to vista. I can understand not wanting to go to 8 for preference reasons. But windows 7 looks identical to vista and functions exactly the same as well. But does not crash or slow down etc. There is absolutely no reason to not upgrade to one or the other. Both are cheap if your pc has ram enough for vista it has more than enough for 7 or 8

  21. This time he's way off target. Different problem and different causes. Anybody that's still running XP, is because they're lazy or stupid. There's been plenty of warning. I wrote my first Y2K fix in 1975. Everybody had plenty of notice but the software makers just chose to keep putting off.

    • @Wilson Velazquez: no-most all of everyone’s programs run on xp with NO problems!! Unlike the newer windows version , with which the WILL NOT run on!! If you are gonna make a new windows version, then PLEASE INCLUDE DRIVERS THAT THE OLDER PROGRAMS WILL RUN TO MAKE THEM COMPATIBLE!!! I have several older proams for which there is no new one and I LOVE them and DO NOT won’t to give them up!!
      I think it is wrong that they are making us give up what we like. Kinda like being herded like sheep/cattle etc.!!!

    • @Wilson Velazquez: Thanks for the insults. Now I want to go out and buy another computer, you know the most expensive modern computer that is obsolete even before I finish typing this reply to you.
      I will not purchase a new computer simply because I am retired living on a very limited monthly income. I will not buy a new Iphone just because my old phone is obsolete, but you can if you want. Just don’t throw out insults to justify your ignorance. Now notice, I did not say you are stupid,even though you may be, I simply stated that you are ignorant,not knowing why some people are not able to buy the newest and latest gadgets. Some day you too will be old living on a fixed income,should you live long enough.

  22. I did not check the box below because I missed it, but I would l like responses to my inquires please. I really dont understand what this box is asking.

  23. Is there any way to get an upgrade to windows XP without cost. I am a disable vet and I am on a very limited income. Presently, when I am having problems with my computer, I call microsoft and they remotely access my computer and fix the problem. My computer is custom built and I have had it quite a number of years. I do everything on my computer and I was told by microsoft that support was coming to an end. then I read your article and gloom set in all over again. Any information or advice will be greatly appreciated in advance.

    • @Sunny Curtis: Seriously? XP was marginally better than the older Windows versions, but it still had plenty of issues during its lifetime. I provided Windows support during those years and it was not a trouble-free system. It is long past the time that it was retired.

  24. I would like to know that after I have to ditch XP, and forced to go to windows 8, will I have to re-purchase my programs, that I have bought. I am a scrapper and I use legacy programs like Paint Shop Pro and animation shop and other various programs that I spent good money on. Will I now have to turn around and re-purchase upgraded versions to what I already have? Microsoft is screwing all of us by forcing us to pay big bucks to upgrade our windows, which in turn is forcing us to pay big bucks to use the software we already paid for. Or is there a way to make these programs compatible.

    • @Carrie: It’s a common misperception that programs which ran on XP will no longer work on Windows 7/8. I’ve yet to find a program that doesn’t run on Windows 7, normally or in compatibility mode. I’m not suggesting there aren’t some, but they’re few and far between. Even DOS applications run well on Windows 7/8 with the help of (free) dosbox. I was a die-hard XP fan, but now am a Windows 7 die-hard fan. It just plain works better and faster than XP did.

      • What you are saying simply isn’t true. Even Mirco$not admits that many older programs WILL NOT RUN on Win7 or Win8 or Win9. Read the technical documentation. I’m no tech head, but my best friend is. He keeps the biggest fiber optics provider in the World’s network running with “Francois-ex” that he wrote the base code for. The internet fits between the data streams of the financial and military. I’ve SEEN the switching that he designed to do this. I think he dreams in code…

        • @Ricky Earp:What I said is true based upon my own experience. I specifically said that “I’m not suggesting there aren’t any….” There are exceptions to everything, but you’re overstating the truth.

          I was a system builder for over a decade, so a bit a tech head myself. I’ve built, repaired, trouble shot, and more systems and networks than I care to remember. As I said, I’ve yet to see a program designed for XP that doesn’t work on Windows 7, and have even seen many that were designed for earlier versions (EG: DOS) work fine. If you can name something that you legitimately need, I’d happily try XP software on one of my Win 7 systems to prove my point.

          Drivers for hardware are another story, but that’s more of a money grab for vendors than a problem with Microsoft.

          • @DavidW:

            Hi David.
            I have 2 legacy programs that i have been using since 2000. I am comfortable with these programs. I know there are better and I am criticized by everyone to get with the times. But I am content using what I have. And I am not interested in learning new versions. It’s like making me use CD when I am happy with 8 tracks. Anyway I have 2 programs that I would love for you to test for me. I will feel much better about this PC I am looking at buying. It is win8 touch screen. Talk about drastic. If you want/can test these for me email me. Thanks for replies.

    • @Carrie:

      MS isn’t making anybody do anything. why do you think your programs won’t run on 8?
      did you check the vendors websites ? And why install 8? buy a used PC with 7 installed.

      Do the vendors have discount upgrades if you need them ?

  25. Its not like Y2K as new OS have compatibility options and it is not expected that old program will not work on Windows 8 or Windows 7. From end user perspective it may require a bit of skill upgradation but that is not going to be tough and we will sail over easily.

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