Windows XP, the longest living Windows OS, died over six months ago. Even after the death of Windows XP, the number of users using the software has not decreased to the extent the company would have wished for. There are millions using Windows XP still. Though, a solid operating system software, it is really outdated compared to the operating systems available these days. Using an unsupported system means the operating system users will not receive the official Windows XP help and support, technical assistance, feature updates and security patches from the company, either free or paid.
Actually, since the last month, things are starting to look little different. Agreed, there are many users still clinging on to the old OS, Windows XP market share did take a serious dive – a significant one – during last month, as per the two popular counters of Operating System market share.
According to the statistics provided by Netmarketshare, XP has dropped the market share from 23.97 per cent of Personal Computers to 17.18 per cent during last Month. As per the Statcounter statics, Windows XP has gone from 14.4 per cent to 13.22 per cent, which may not look a hugely dramatic drop, but surely the second-largest in the period.
Now, the thing to analyze is why the huge dip for XP. When asked regarding the matter, the company Netmarketshare is not actually providing any explanation for this change. The end of Windows XP help and support is probably one of the main reasons for the decline. Windows XP users are migrating to newer Operating systems such as Windows 7 and Windows 8/8.1.
Another thing to analyze is whether the big dip for Windows XP and increase in popularity for Windows 8/8.1 is an anomaly? One possible explanation for the Windows 8.1 boost in popularity is that in the first quarter, this year, the software giant Microsoft hauled in US$900 million for Surface devices.
As far as Statcounter stats are concerned, they have placed Windows 8/8.1′s market share ahead of Window XP’s for some time now. This is not the same with Netmarketshare; they have kept Windows XP at 16.8 per cent, just a small 0.38 per cent behind Windows XP. It seems that the latest Microsoft OS has a great opportunity to topple Windows XP’s place as the second most popular Windows OS, a significant milestone for the OS.
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After Microsoft stopped the support for Windows XP operating system, the potential threats of using the operating system was alerted by Microsoft through its official website. Many experts in the industry also warned users about the threats involved in using an outdated operating system. Now, it has been almost eight months since Microsoft ended the support for Windows XP operating system and the figures suggest that 17 percent of the users still use this operating system on their PCs.
According to Windows XP help forums, the major troubles are faced by IT departments in the organizations. Even though many of them have availed the security support from Microsoft, it is to be noted that majority of the computers in these organizations run with Windows XP OS and the steps to upgrading the outdated operating system has not reached anywhere. Keep in mind that we are just four months away from the date when it would be one year since Microsoft officially stopped the support for the operating system. Now, the organizations that have availed the one-year extra support will have to upgrade to a newer operating system as early as possible.
According to Simon Johnson, who is the migration practice director at Xceed, “The thought of introducing a new, potentially destabilizing major operating system into a business is a challenge many businesses are avoiding – not just the small ones.” He further adds, “They may be concerned about the potential risk of a security breach due to running on legacy Windows XP, as well as instability and compatibility issues of upgrading the core business.”
According to Johnson, in the event of failure to upgrade, the companies could face some serious losses that might incur due to security breaches. Johnson says, “The bigger threat is the imminent incompatibility of a software package that gets an ad-hoc upgrade and then fails to work because the operating system is so outdated.” He also adds, “After upgrading the application and its data to the latest version and seeing a dreaded ‘file not found’ message appear, it’s at that point that a small business finds itself having to perform an operating system upgrade just to survive.”
Now, four months may not suffice for large organizations to make an upgrade to any of the newer operating systems. According to Windows XP help forums, it is advisable to start the upgrade as early as possible so that these organizations could avoid some major security concerns that are likely to come up in the future.
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As we know, Windows XP is no longer officially supported by Microsoft. This has come as a boon for PC sales, which were steadily declining over the past months due to influx of powerful tablets. The jump in the sale statistics has been confirmed by global IT research firms IDC and Gartner.
Windows XP operating system is officially in the end-of-support phase. This means, Microsoft will no longer provide security patches for users running Microsoft Windows XP. Because of the immense popularity, the operating system thrived for over 13 years before Microsoft officially pulled its plug. Due to the demise of the XP OS, there is an appreciable increase in PC sales that run the latest operating system. If you require further information about the end-of-support of Windows XP, contact the Windows XP help desk.
The large jump in the PC sale number is said to be the result of migration of enterprise users to newer versions of Windows OS. Earlier, Microsoft Windows XP was the most popular OS and most enterprises used this version of operating system in order to run their computers. Now enterprises are forced to migrate to better and newer versions of Windows OS.
However, Gartner has made it clear that PC sales have not gone up. Despite the boost that Microsoft received, the decline in PC sales has merely decreased by a small margin. According to IDC, in the last quarter of 2014, PC shipments declined by 4.4 percent to merely 76.6 million units worldwide. IDC mentioned, “Similar to the latter part of 2013, the upside in first quarter arose primarily from demand in the mature commercial markets. Commercial refresh projects, which had already been protracted, received a last push from the impending end of Windows XP support, particularly in Japan.”
Moreover, the demands of tablets have decreased, paving way to renewal of notebook sales that were low for a long while until now. Gartner Principal Analyst Mikako Kitagawa said, “All regions indicated a positive effect since end of XP support stimulated the PC refresh of XP systems.” According to the statistics compiled by the PC sales, Japan has shown the highest increase in PC sales. It was also predicted that the boost of PC sales would continue throughout 2014.
With the next version of Windows, Windows 10 scheduled to be released in 2015, it remains to be seen what the PC sales statistics would look this year. To know more about the same, contact the Windows XP help desk.
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It has been many months since Microsoft officially ended all their Windows XP help and support services including the release of regular security updates for the OS. Without the security updates, it is no longer safe to use XP online. This has led to many users abandoning the old operating system for new Windows versions like Windows 7 or Windows 8.1
When making the upgrade from Windows XP
Microsoft has set up a website offering help to Windows XP users, who are looking to make the upgrade to Windows 7 or Windows 8. A free version software called PCMover Express is available in the Windows tech support website online, which you can use to migrate all your old date stored in the Windows XP system.
Such an application will make it easier for the XP users to transfer all their old files to the new system. Here, they will come across some data format problems, mainly because many of the old formats used in the XP OS are now outdated and are replaced with their modern counterparts in Windows 7 and Windows 8.
For example, when you transfer the old backup files created in WindowsXP to the Windows 7 or Windows 8 system, you will find that the new OS does not recognise or read these files. This is because the backup date format has changed in Windows 7 and Windows8. This does not mean that you will lose all your old date stored in the XP backup files. Microsoft has released some Windows XP help tools to deal with such data format issues and many other problems you might have to deal with while making the transition.
If you are upgrading to Windows 8, install the Upgrade Assistant application to make sure that your PC indeed meets the system requirements. The Upgrade Assistant is an app designed to check the hardware and software components in your system to make sure that they meet the minimum system requirements for Windows 8 installation.
In most cases, this might not be necessary, since buying a new Windows 8 PC might be a more viable option than upgrading the hardware in the old XP computer. Most decade old XP systems are not likely to meet the system requirements for new generation Windows operating systems like Windows 7 or Windows8.
Also worth mentioning here is the fact that another new Windows OS is on its way, Windows 10. It might be a good idea to put off your OS upgrade plans for a few more months, if you are keen on making the jump to Windows 10 OS.
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Windows XP user base is now receding fast. The end of Windows XP help and support services was the last straw. The loyal Windows XP users have no choice now, but to abandon the thirteen year-old OS. The OS has now become a soft target for hackers and malware developers.
What about the essential antimalware updates available until July 2015?
After they officially ended the Windows XP support, Microsoft did announce that they would continue providing essential antimalware updates through their Microsoft Security Essentials service. This is set to continue until the deadline announced at that time, July 2015.
However, reports indicate that this antimalware update is no substitute for the regular OS security updates the XP systems used to receive as part of the Windows XP help and support service before April 8, 2014. Without these OS updates, the OS remains vulnerable to all kinds of security attacks from hackers and malware developers.
The antimalware updates will certainly boost the protection against malware attacks. But, the security flaws in the OS would have to rectified, if you want to thwart the sophisticated hacking attacks online. This is especially true in the case of Windows XP, which has an outdated coding.
In other words, even with an up-to-date antivirus and antimalware application running in the system, it is still unsafe to use your old XP OS online. A recent report indicates that the chances of XP systems getting infected online is at least six times higher than a new generation operating system like Windows 7.
Upgrading to Windows 8
The main stumbling block when it comes to upgrading Windows XP systems is that, in most cases, it is not possible to do so that easily. The system configuration in the XP systems is so low that it will not support any of the latest Windows operating systems like Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1.
In other words, you cannot really upgrade your old XP system without changing most of its main hardware. You will be much better off ditching the old computer and buying a new one. This also explains why it took so long for the XP users to finally make the transition to the latest Windows operating systems.
Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 put together now have a higher market share than Windows XP. You can say that XP’s glory days are over. It is high time you upgraded to any of the latest Windows operating systems available in the market.
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