Review

Review: Windows XP, ten years later

Today Microsoft's Windows XP operating system officially turns 10 years old. While PC makers started taking orders for new PCs with Windows XP installed a few weeks prior to October 25, 2001, this was the day that consumers were able to walk into a store and buy a copy of the OS in order to update their current PCs to the new version of Windows.

10 years later, Windows XP is still used on a ton of PCs around the world. This was due in part because Microsoft decided not to release a major new update to Windows until 2007 with Windows Vista. However, Vista never caught on with either businesses nor the public due to bugs and poor hardware driver support. As a result, many people didn't bother upgrading to Windows Vista and waited until Windows 7 was released in 2009 to update to a new version. Windows XP is just starting to lose its grip among PC users, according to recent statistics.

The world has changed a lot in the last decade and certainly the PC business has changed as it faces competition from new smartphones and tablets. But 10 years ago, Microsoft had people standing in line at their local software stores to buy their software. We now know that Windows XP turned out to be the most successful and the longest lasting operating system that Microsoft ever produced. But what were the reviews like at the time of its release.

CNet's review of Windows XP Home Edition, back on September 8, 2001, gave the OS four out of five stars. It said that the new user interface for Windows XP, as compared to Windows 95/98/Me, looked much different. It concluded:

While its new, hand-holding "task-oriented" design may annoy experienced users, Microsoft nevertheless managed to create an OS that works equally well for novices, corporate users, and enthusiasts. Despite hefty system requirements (a Pentium II-300 or faster, 128MB of RAM, and 1.5GB of free disk space), onerous product activation, and some not-so-obvious touting of Microsoft's business partners, you'll want to consider an upgrade--if not immediately, certainly the next time you buy a PC.

It's interesting to read about the "hefty" hardware specs for Windows XP now. Many smartphones that are on the market now easily exceed the processor, RAM and storage space that is needed to run Windows XP.

ActiveWin reviewed the Windows XP Professional Edition 10 years ago. Overall the web site gave the OS a review score of 84.9 (out of 100). It took down some points on its high price and also on its applications support. However, overall it praised Windows XP. The conclusion said:

Microsoft has listened to their customers by adding many new features they were requesting. Not only is Windows XP one of the most reliable operating systems ever released but it also offers an unprecedented level of conviviality thanks to a user friendly interface that includes smart enhancements to adapt the system to the way users work. In fact Windows XP is a treasure combining a marvel of conception, a gorgeous design, and innovative features; in other words: it's worth the wait!

From a PC gaming perspective, the FiringSquad web site posted its review on October 29, 2001. It gave it a grade of 85 (out of 100). Once again, Windows XP was slammed for some high system requirements. The review added, "The question simply comes down to whether or not you need and or want the new features that Windows XP offers. If you're a gamer and are satisfied with Windows 98SE, by all means, don't upgrade and risk losing the ability to play some of your favorite games."

Overall, FiringSquad gave Windows XP high marks, saying:

Overall, Windows XP addresses many issues that users have been asking for and then some. For those lingering on Windows 95, 98 or NT4 machines, Windows XP provides a solid foundation on which to grow on. There's bound to be users who will upgrade no matter what we say, and realistically, Windows XP is a well designed, well implemented and well supported product. For the general population, you can't go wrong by moving to Windows XP, but you can't be 100% satisfied either.

The web site also went further and did a performance test of Windows XP with a number of games and benchmark tools. The final conclusion of those tests was also positive with FiringSquad saying:

After running these tests, and assuming that these benchmarks provide a decent estimate of what to expect, we can conclude that XP does not pose a performance risk. Most of the scores were either on par with Win2K or better than it. Win98SE took some leads in a few of the tests, but stability on that OS is something that is left to be desired.

Windows XP certainly had more than its share of support and popularity. But things are finally changing. Windows 7 is now firmly in place on a small majority of PCs in the world (depending on what statistics you use) Once more, Windows 8's release is on the horizon. Microsoft continues to urge people, especially large businesses, who have yet to upgrade from Windows XP to do so to Windows 7 and not wait until Windows 8 comes out.

Officially, Microsoft will no longer offer technical support nor any software upgrades to Windows XP after April 2014. Even though Microsoft will do its level best to get PC users to switch to Windows 7 or 8, it's more than likely that there will still be a large number of PCs around the world that will still run Windows XP. It just goes to show that if you make a successful and stable operating system, lots of folks don't want to fool around with a major upgrade if they don't need to.

Windows XP wasn't the only major launch for Microsoft. A few weeks later the company launched the original Xbox game console. But that 10th anniversary is the subject for another day.

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Why do so many people say "XP has to die... now" what benefit would it possibly give you? Please don't tell me you believe it would encourage development in other areas - your almost a marketing person's wet dream as it is.

Hefty system requirements? Even at the time Windows XP was released I was running a P4 computer with 1GB of RAM and 40GB HDD......P3 300mHz w/ 128mb of RAM and 1.5GB HDD were hardly hefty even back then. Typical CNET bull****.

As far as hardware requirements go, Windows 7 must be less obnoxious than Vista was, as I tried Vista a couple times on my machines and it ran like absolute dog s**t!! Yes, I KNOW what the official requirements are.

Now have Windows 7 on those same machines and they run absolutely fantastic!!

That last line in the story says it all though:

"It just goes to show that if you make a successful and stable operating system, lots of folks don't want to fool around with a major upgrade if they don't need to."

If it ain't broke...... and not everyone is a keep up with the Jones' person.

All the definitive reasons I gave to some XP fans to upgrade to 7 were useless. They have stupid reason for not upgrading O.o

Compared to Vista/7, it's obvious XP has it's limitations. Just to name one, the headache of resorting to driver floppy disks during Windows Setup if your HD is on a non-native controller is something I'm very grateful that MS banished to hell. There is only one thing about XP that I actually to this day still like better than Win7... the file search layout. It was so basic and straightforward in XP... type the full or partial (using wildcard characters like *) name of the file, select the drive/directory you want to hunt in... hit enter. Now in 7, the results are confusingly illustrated in a bit of a jumbled highlighted mess. It's not easy to look at compared to XP. I wish there was a way to set the file search methodology to look and behave in a more classic sense for the more experienced users who are familiar with the useful function that wildcards provide.

Windows XP Support should have been ending today if Microsoft had stuck with their normal 5 Years of Mainstream Support and their 5 Years of Extended Support Policy. P.S. I am currently running the Windows 8 Developer Preview on 1 Dell Inspiron Zino HD 400 Desktop, 1 Dell Inspiron Mini 1012 Netbook, and 1 Apple Mid Year 2010 Mac Mini, all 3 run just fine except 4 some small issues with High CPU Usage and High Ram Usage on the Netbook PC when opening up things like ITunes, Playing Music, Movies, and TV Shows on it, Just FYI.

smooth3006 said,
There NO excuse for anybody not to be on windows 7.

Do people need an excuse to as why they are using a 10 year old operating system rather than a 2 year old* one?

The excuse for not been on Windows 7 is they are happy using what THEY are wanting to use.

*unsure how Win 7 is so that's just a guess.

johnporter29 said,

Do people need an excuse to as why they are using a 10 year old operating system rather than a 2 year old* one?

The excuse for not been on Windows 7 is they are happy using what THEY are wanting to use.

*unsure how Win 7 is so that's just a guess.

People are generally cheap and have a flawed conservative mentality. Also, being uneducated in regards to a computer plays a role as well. Not having a concept of security / performance they find nothing wrong with keeping a 10 year old O/S. It only takes a few ignorant computer users to spread malware and viruses. By all means, keep supporting this ignorance.

What makes me wonder is why the heck do others care what others use? When you say "XP needs to die" couldn't YOU just stop using it? I personally couldn't care about what OS a person uses on their machine just as much i don't care if they want to wear pink panties and dance around the house naked. If it doesn't affect me, I don't care and you shouldn't either.

All of the machines here where I work still run Windows XP and Internet Explorer 7. Yes, I said 7. </hides in shame>

Ethere said,
All of the machines here where I work still run Windows XP and Internet Explorer 7. Yes, I said 7. </hides in shame>

IE6 where my father works
Do I win?

Panda X said,
August 24th is when it officially turned 10.

RTM and release to the public are very different. For most people the release date is when a product was "born", but I hear your point.

It was a great program.
Remember when you bought Windows XP and installed it and 'messenger' was set as automatic when booting and you got a virus or three?

wahoospa said,
It was a great program.
Remember when you bought Windows XP and installed it and 'messenger' was set as automatic when booting and you got a virus or three?

You must have been very unlucky!

wahoospa said,
It was a great program.
Remember when you bought Windows XP and installed it and 'messenger' was set as automatic when booting and you got a virus or three?

i also got the blaster virus before SP2...good times..NOT

Just when the world forgets XP, some idiot has to exhume it. IT'S DEAD. You want to see how the world has changed post-XP? Go to the store and count how many XP boxes there are. How many? Zero? Job's done! Now back to reality...

bjoswald said,
Just when the world forgets XP, some idiot has to exhume it. IT'S DEAD. You want to see how the world has changed post-XP? Go to the store and count how many XP boxes there are. How many? Zero? Job's done! Now back to reality...

Dude, this is its 10th anniversary. Is it SO wrong to bring that up?

bjoswald said,
Just when the world forgets XP, some idiot has to exhume it. IT'S DEAD. You want to see how the world has changed post-XP? Go to the store and count how many XP boxes there are. How many? Zero? Job's done! Now back to reality...

If people are celebrating the ipod 10th anniversary, they should celebrate windows xp as well. Its impact was much bigger than the mp3 player had.

While its new, hand-holding "task-oriented" design may annoy experienced users

Funny, that's how I feel about Windows 7...

smooth3006 said,

and i think W8 with it's current UI will be a FAIL!

Since forever people have complained about change. And usually the more vocal ones are those with enough skill to be able to adapt easily and embrace such change...

sviola said,

Since forever people have complained about change. And usually the more vocal ones are those with enough skill to be able to adapt easily and embrace such change...


But, what if you only like change in technology instead of, say, life. Cuz that pretty much describes me.

"It just goes to show that if you make a successful and stable operating system, lots of folks don't want to fool around with a major upgrade if they don't need to."

i think that's why XP was really successful, at least in my mind, because prior to XP (i am not counting Win2k as that was never really targeted towards the average user) Windows was not stable for any length of time but with XP you could generally leave it running for many days if not weeks and it was stable as that reason alone made XP a big upgrade over Windows 95/98/ME. those days are gone as while Vista/7 are probably more polished and stable then XP it's not by any large degree as XP 'just worked' in general.

so while i would rather not go back to XP as Vista/7 are overall better nowadays (i got Win 7 x64 home premium) it was still a great OS in it's day but i did hate the default look of XP as i preferred the classic look more on that system. but luckily Vista/7 have good default looks unlike XP.

WinXP was still better than previous Windows versions at the time. Ten years later, **** that POS. It's pretty amazing that aside from under the hood stuff, Win7 is still far from an easy to use OS. Still so much stupidity that could be fixed by doing more bold UI choices and throwing things like the ridiculous installer paradigm out of the window for anything but drivers.

Definitely liked it for it's time but it's time to go

As for System Requirements - what people wanted to do with the PC was changing so fast back then that they had to bump up stuff. People still do tons with their PCs now but the CPU race of 1999-2003 pushed us up to 2Ghz and more RAM and all that that now everything has plateaued. Basically now it's the software that's catching up to the hardware rather than the other way around that was before.

SHoTTa35 said,
Definitely liked it for it's time but it's time to go

As for System Requirements - what people wanted to do with the PC was changing so fast back then that they had to bump up stuff. People still do tons with their PCs now but the CPU race of 1999-2003 pushed us up to 2Ghz and more RAM and all that that now everything has plateaued. Basically now it's the software that's catching up to the hardware rather than the other way around that was before.

good point because my current PC is March 2006 and it's still respectable for general use. a older AMD Athlon 3500+ (Dual Core) and 2GB of RAM and Radeon 5670 512MB. but i have upgraded from a single core to a dual core and my video card from Geforce 7900GT to a Radeon 5670 but other than that i am using same hardware as i did back in March 2006 and over 5 years later it's still not a bad PC for general use even though i am sure if i upgraded i would notice it. i would upgrade my ram from 2Gb to 4GB as that would help but for what that older DDR (400mhz) stuff costs it's not worth it as the new fancy RAM is actually much cheaper than the RAM my PC requires.

Lexcyn said,
Sad thing is I am currently deploying new computers in my organization that still have XP on them.

that's because companies are cheap and lazy.

Lexcyn said,
Sad thing is I am currently deploying new computers in my organization that still have XP on them.

Do you work at my company?

I think people seem to forget that:

1). It was rather insecure. They claimed otherwise upon it's release. By 2004 Microsoft had pretty much realized that their Longhorn dream (like Cairo before) was dying, and that the year spent prior working on the internals of XP needed to come in the form of a SP2. There were a number of changes that came with service release 2 in 2004. This really was not your typical service release.

2). The true adoption rate for XP did not happen until just before 2004. Many individuals including myself had the OS on hardware from the day of release, but that did not mean everyone did. I remember of number of individuals refusing to move from Win2k, and I am sure a number of home users stayed with Win98.

As for system requirements... it really needed 1GHz, at least 256mb of memory and a descent GPU for doing even modest gaming or media work. It of course could boot and run on much, much less (I saw it installed on 64mb of SDram 66). The first computer I installed it on in 2001 was a Dell Dimension 8100 with a P4 1.7GHz, 256mb of memory and an Nvidia GPU (which was upgraded to a ATI Radeon 9700 Pro a year later).

azure.sapphire said,
As for system requirements... it really needed 1GHz, at least 256mb of memory and a descent GPU for doing even modest gaming or media work. It of course could boot and run on much, much less (I saw it installed on 64mb of SDram 66). The first computer I installed it on in 2001 was a Dell Dimension 8100 with a P4 1.7GHz, 256mb of memory and an Nvidia GPU (which was upgraded to a ATI Radeon 9700 Pro a year later).

OF course, I upgraded my Latitude CPi the first month XP was out, and played Diablo II on it religiously. It was a 300mhz machine with 128mb of RAM... and a 2mb video card

imagine how lousy Microsoft has become since people are still using 10 year old software!

Its a mess and MS does not even have the balls to make it right!

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

MS is just a big old company sitting there waiting for the cash to come in

parisp said,
imagine how lousy Microsoft has become since people are still using 10 year old software!

Its a mess and MS does not even have the balls to make it right!

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

MS is just a big old company sitting there waiting for the cash to come in

Eh? They've been pushing hard for people to upgrade from XP and older versions of IE. Windows 7 has had glowing reveiews and is the fastest selling OS in history. Currently, MS is a lot more active and taking riskier bets.

parisp said,
imagine how lousy Microsoft has become since people are still using 10 year old software!

Its a mess and MS does not even have the balls to make it right!

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

MS is just a big old company sitting there waiting for the cash to come in

The majority of people using XP are in the corporate world... it costs millions to roll out upgrades to a new OS like that, not to mention testing of internal custom software and time to adapt that software to the new OS.

parisp said,

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!


Do you really expect anyone to take you seriously with that comment? Troll skills, weak they are.

parisp said,
imagine how lousy Microsoft has become since people are still using 10 year old software!

Its a mess and MS does not even have the balls to make it right!

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

MS is just a big old company sitting there waiting for the cash to come in

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Features_new_to_Windows_7
http://www.howtogeek.com/howto...ct-from-the-windows-7-beta/
http://lifehacker.com/5077690/...-7s-best-features-right-now

Yep, nothing has changed. /s

parisp said,
From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

I'm seriously not sure if you're trolling, or an idiot :-S

greenwizard88 said,

I'm seriously not sure if you're trolling, or an idiot :-S

Indeed... Anyone saying there is no real differences between XP and 7 probably hasn't used 7 more than 10 minutes... Same goes for XP and Vista...

Honestly, since going over to Vista and then 7, I just wont touch a computer running XP (or anything before it) unless I absolutely have to...

Achievement Unlocked: Spot Linux user.

parisp said,
imagine how lousy Microsoft has become since people are still using 10 year old software!

Its a mess and MS does not even have the balls to make it right!

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

MS is just a big old company sitting there waiting for the cash to come in

parisp said,
imagine how lousy Microsoft has become since people are still using 10 year old software!

Its a mess and MS does not even have the balls to make it right!

From XP to 7 there is nothing really groundbreaking! no wonder why people still use XP!

MS is just a big old company sitting there waiting for the cash to come in

Well if you only see Microsoft as 'Windows', you might have this messed up view of reality...

In the same 10 years you talk about them doing 'not much' they redesigned and change the VS/PS GPU architecture in 2001 and added user level shader technology to the world, creating the user level shader language that CL, and OpenGL use in addition to DirectX that it was created for. This extends beyond the software side, as they changed the based PS/VS architecture of GPU designs when developing the original XBox, giving people PS 1.1 and PS 2.0 technologies for gaming and hardware designs for GPUs to make it happen.

Then move on to the XBox 360, where they developed the Xenos GPU, that ALL modern GPUs are based on, even the GPUs in Macs. It brought drastic new GPU technologies that your iPhone, Mac, and Linux computers are using everyday. Things like unified shaders, news ways of handling streams, onboard DMA, bus transfer, VRAM virtualization/sharing, and on and on.

This one is important, as Microsoft engineered the entire GPU architecture and also built the hardware specifications with ATI implementing them, and have changed the world in the past 6 years with regard to GPUs entirely. (OpenCL from Apple would not exist as it does today, because the GP-GPU mechanisms it depends on, REQUIRE the Microsoft GPU architecture technologies.)

Microsoft also created a few 1000 major ideas and technologies, that also were shared freely with the world, as the GPU architectures were.

Microsoft isn't traditional 'open source' but to keep a healthy hardware ecosystem, they are an open 'ideas' company and are advancing hardware to support what they want to do with Windows at amazing levels. Even the freaking Cortex CPU/GPU in the iPHone is based on Microsoft technologies and designs.

Oh, and ya saw the new AMD APU, right? Guess what company built the first desktop class APU/SoC? Yep Microsoft, and AMD and others have benefited from this work, as the newer XBox 360s are a single CPU/GPU design. (Intel was POed Microsoft pulled this off, and IBM and AMD were amazed, as they had worked with the PowerPC/Xenos and failed in trying to integrated them into an APU.)


If we listed all the stuff Microsoft created that you are using in your iPhone or Mac alone in the last 10 years, it would be a small book, and yet people act like Microosft is the dumb and inept company on the block, and they keep going making the technology for Apple and people like you to bash them. (Enjoy your Video card and Cell Phone, and then thank Microsoft, as they wouldn't exist without them.)

Oh, and dismissing Win7 to XP would be like dismissing OS X compared to System 6.x, as Win7 has several generations of jumps that beyond what OS X or Linux can do, and maybe in the time it took Apple to get from System 6.x to OS X 10.6 you will see them on Macs too.

Most high level engineer techs don't even realize Win7 can pre-emptively mulit-task GPU threads, and has inherent GPU SMP support.. (This is why RemoteFX on 2008 Server works with one GPU shared with several users, and Linux and OS X can't even get close to do handling this level of technology.)

So ya, Microsoft is rather sad, if you are a fool or a tech wannabe...

It was easy to slam stuff back then due to hardware requirements, due to the steep hardware prices back then. Now since PC's are more or less everywhere, supply/demand has driven down the cost of mid/high level components so that most anyone can afford them.

xendrome said,
It was easy to slam stuff back then due to hardware requirements, due to the steep hardware prices back then. Now since PC's are more or less everywhere, supply/demand has driven down the cost of mid/high level components so that most anyone can afford them.

Plus the fact that system requirements for Windows 7 haven't changed since Vista, and probably neither are going to change for Windows 8.

The requirements difference between 9x and XP was in fact quite big.

Kuraj said,

Plus the fact that system requirements for Windows 7 haven't changed since Vista, and probably neither are going to change for Windows 8.

The requirements difference between 9x and XP was in fact quite big.

But 95 came out in what 1995? And XP came out in 2001, so that isn't really a surprise.

xendrome said,

But 95 came out in what 1995? And XP came out in 2001, so that isn't really a surprise.


Yet vista came out 2007, if i'm correct. and Win8 is shooting for 2012 and still no or minimal requirement changes. hmmm

DerekMorgan said,

Yet vista came out 2007, if i'm correct. and Win8 is shooting for 2012 and still no or minimal requirement changes. hmmm

But Windows Vista came out in 2007, and it's requirements were quite significantly different from those of Windows XP . Major architectural upgrades are always going to cause a change in system requirements. Windows 7 and 8 are both based on Vista, and as such will not change significantly, but they will change again eventually.

DerekMorgan said,

Yet vista came out 2007, if i'm correct. and Win8 is shooting for 2012 and still no or minimal requirement changes. hmmm

I think your trying to make an arguement out of something that is not there.

Keep in mind the common components in 2007 and components now in 2011 likely only yield a 10-15% increase in performance if that in equally compared components between the years.

When a CPU in 2001, say a 1.2GHZ Pentium III vs a 1995 P54CS at 200mhz.... is a HUGE difference... especially considering the memory technology and hard-drive technology for those times as well. The gap is smaller these days.

xendrome said,

Keep in mind the common components in 2007 and components now in 2011 likely only yield a 10-15% increase in performance if that in equally compared components between the years.

The average CPU in 2011 is WAY faster than the average CPU in 2007. They benchmark around 4x faster.

xendrome said,

I think your trying to make an arguement out of something that is not there.

Keep in mind the common components in 2007 and components now in 2011 likely only yield a 10-15% increase in performance if that in equally compared components between the years.

When a CPU in 2001, say a 1.2GHZ Pentium III vs a 1995 P54CS at 200mhz.... is a HUGE difference... especially considering the memory technology and hard-drive technology for those times as well. The gap is smaller these days.

The gap isn't as small these days as you might realize. In just your example, there is more contrast with base CPU and GPU power available today than was available in 2007.

However, we don't always see this power truly used, especially browsing the web and running basic applications.

The problem is that we are heading towards Async AND parallel transitions, and a lot of base Application software doesn't handle SMP technologies as well as OSes do. In fact, some OSes have issues with SMP and getting raw performance out of all cores.

OS Examples:

OS X still has queue and lock issues, reducing an 8 core Mac Pro to using 2 cores a majority of the time, even with the new APIs Apple had to add to compensate for butchering the SMP speed to get better single core multi-taking with the original OS X release.

Linux hits management overhead when you get past 8 CPUs/core, and hits a really hard smack around 16CPUs/Cores as the thread/process management start to consume the additional performance of the extra CPUs/Cores.

Neither OS X or Linux have any kernel or OS level support for multi-GPU technologies, relying on crossfire/SLI technologies and video card onboard handling.

Windows Vista/7 created the WDDM/WDM which is a generation ahead of Linux and OS X, as it can manages GPU threads and multiple GPUs in ways OS X an Linux will not be capable of doing in the near future. (This is also a 'cool' thing about NT in general, as this deep level of changes were added easily, and gave Windows a massive leap ahead of other OSes.)

The trick is in getting single applications and things we notice to tap into the power available, even if you look at demanding things like games, they are not hitting the potential of the hardware, as most maintain cross platform needs, and can't push the hardware if they were designed around Windows NT, the WDDM/WDM and DX10/DX11 technologies (which also works on the XBox 360). Even 'exclusive' titles don't start with a Windows DX11 only engine for example.

So we have a massive amount of power compared to even 2007, but as long as single applications don't use async and parallel threading principles well, it is lost. Also while game engines are designed to work beyond just Windows NT technologies, they will not be even close to their full performance potential.

(DX10's main technology was to increase speed while increasing graphical quality, yet there isn't a DX10 base native general game engine yet, let alone a DX11 based engine. Most start with DX9 level features and add in pieces of DX10 and DX11 as afterthoughts, which don't get the general DX10/11 computing concepts in the base engine for the extra performance they can offer, as OpenGL and other other platforms can't do them, even as OpenGL is now adding in DX11 level features, without an OS that is doing GPU scheduling, and virtualization, and other technologies from Windows NT, OpenGL can't get close to DX9 performance, let alone DX10/DX11 potential performance levels.)

smooth3006 said,

microsoft should of killed support years ago for this.

IMO it needs one final roll up of patches or a SP4 before ending support - I work on a bunch of PC's and there are a ton of older people that don't game and do hard core photo altering etc etc ..just mom and pop web browsing and email that still run it...and hell some of them that still run it without SP3,SP2 or even SP1 installed!!! Many just don't mess with things until it breaks.

sava700 said,

IMO it needs one final roll up of patches or a SP4 before ending support - I work on a bunch of PC's and there are a ton of older people that don't game and do hard core photo altering etc etc ..just mom and pop web browsing and email that still run it...and hell some of them that still run it without SP3,SP2 or even SP1 installed!!! Many just don't mess with things until it breaks.

Another service pack is unlikely, but I can't see why they shouldn't do like what they did with NT4, and do a Windows XP Post Service Pack 3 Update Rollup. It would make life for techies easier as well, too.