Windows XP antivirus updates for Microsoft Security Essentials could end April 8th

Microsoft has already said it will end its official support of Windows XP on April 8th but what about putting out new antivirus updates for the OS in the company's free Microsoft Security Essentials program? A new statement from Microsoft says we should not expect that kind of update to continue past Windows XP's support cut off date.

In a note sent to ZDNet, Microsoft said it "will not guarantee updates of our antimalware signature and engine" after April 8th. It sounds like the company, in theory, could make a decision to continue its antivirus updates after support for Windows XP ends but is preparing XP users for the worst. The statement added:

Running antivirus on out of support operating systems is not an adequate solution to help protect against threats. Running a well-protected solution starts with using modern software and hardware designed to help protect against today’s threat landscape.

Earlier this week, Microsoft released its latest edition of its Security Intelligence Report, where it stated that malware infection rates for Windows XP is nearly six times higher than that of Windows 8, and that's with full support for the 12 year old OS. When it ends in less than six months, the infection risk will be far higher.

Source: ZDNet | Image via Microsoft

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Yes, because every individual and organization has the ability of funds to upgrade hardware and software to support Windows 7 or Windows 8.

I agree people should be upgrading and it is time to do so. However, not everyone has the means to do so or can afford to do so. And there are MANY people out there that dont even think they need to upgrade, doesnt know about the EOL of XP.

techbeck said,
Yes, because every individual and organization has the ability of funds to upgrade hardware and software to support Windows 7 or Windows 8.

I agree people should be upgrading and it is time to do so. However, not everyone has the means to do so or can afford to do so. And there are MANY people out there that dont even think they need to upgrade, doesnt know about the EOL of XP.

They've had five flippin YEARS. XP has been superseded by 4 additional operating systems. If you don't have the funds to upgrade after that much time, than you're probably falling out of business.

Has Studio384 seen what his financial institution and/or health care organization are using as a basis for their critical applications? There is an excellent change, the splash screen will show XP Professional.

Dot Matrix said,

They've had five flippin YEARS. XP has been superseded by 4 additional operating systems. If you don't have the funds to upgrade after that much time, than you're probably falling out of business.

I work for a manufacturing company. We use a lot of custom software from people who no longer work here. Besides having to pay another company to either reverse engineer the sofware to update/create new software...we have to upgrade the controller cards in the equipment. This costs millions of dollars to do so and we still need the equipment around to support the equipment currently in use.

So yea, 5yrs is plenty for most...but not for a lot. Hell, we still have a few systems on Windows NT.

techbeck said,

I work for a manufacturing company. We use a lot of custom software from people who no longer work here. Besides having to pay another company to either reverse engineer the sofware to update/create new software...we have to upgrade the controller cards in the equipment. This costs millions of dollars to do so and we still need the equipment around to support the equipment currently in use.

So yea, 5yrs is plenty for most...but not for a lot. Hell, we still have a few systems on Windows NT.

A fringe case. It still doesn't change the fact that XP has been superseded 4 times now. Everyone should have gotten the hint after Microsoft started developing Windows 7 that clinging to Xp isn't going to last for much longer.

I have much less sympathy for businesses that are still running XP than I do individuals.

These companies that let themselves get painted into a corner and can't update their Windows operating systems only have themselves to blame.

Anyone that adopted XP as if it was going to be around for longer than 12 years made a huge mistake to begin with. Maybe they just didn't think to check what it's support lifecycle was

Lapses in management and best practices isn't a good excuse to then engage in another bad practice. If someone in your own IT department can't go back over that code and easily update/manage it, then it's trash already. It should have been reverse engineered and updated long ago. You're operating blind on code that you can't even manage.

Upgrading controller cards, pulling delivery trucks off the road, remodeling a department store, these are the costs of doing business and keeping your business up to date. If that's unaffordable to do every decade or so to keep your business competitive, that's just bad business and/or bad accounting.

I am currently trying to get coworkers, friends, and acquaintances over to Windows 7. Most of these people only use their PC's or laptops for paying bills and Facebook.

They've said this for the longest time already... this isn't really news. That's the whole point of 'end of support ending April 2013'.

j2006 said,
They've said this for the longest time already... this isn't really news. That's the whole point of 'end of support ending April 2013'.

I wish it'd ended in 2010 when it was supposed to.

Randomevent said,

I wish it'd ended in 2010 when it was supposed to.

Yep. Pushing it back again just made people dig in for the long haul and think that they would never have to upgrade.

Users could upgrade to Windows-7 32-bit, and hope that they could run in "XP SP-3 Mode" or, they could stop using Security Essentials and switch to other equally good free antivirus software.

Considering that MSE only offers "basic protection", this shouldn't be a problem. There are many better, free anti-virus options, such as Avira Antivirus.

Ian William said,
Considering that MSE only offers "basic protection", this shouldn't be a problem. There are many better, free anti-virus options, such as Avira Antivirus.

You should read up on AV comparatives or some other independent testing. The free MS Essentials is one of very very few AV software that actually scores 100% detection rates regularly. Bests Avira, Avast, AVG, Norton (LOL Norton), Kaspersky, NOD32 most of the time and has done for a couple of years

This is one of Microsoft's huge untold success stories: they have gone from being infamously bad with security (giving plenty of opportunity to myriad companies to offer AV solutions) to being an absolutely dominant player and just about the only one ever to offer reliably secure solutions. People don't know this because it's far too boring for sensationalists/jonolists to talk about MS successes...

james.faction said,

You should read up on AV comparatives or some other independent testing. The free MS Essentials is one of very very few AV software that actually scores 100% detection rates regularly. Bests Avira, Avast, AVG, Norton (LOL Norton), Kaspersky, NOD32 most of the time and has done for a couple of years

This is one of Microsoft's huge untold success stories: they have gone from being infamously bad with security (giving plenty of opportunity to myriad companies to offer AV solutions) to being an absolutely dominant player and just about the only one ever to offer reliably secure solutions. People don't know this because it's far too boring for sensationalists/jonolists to talk about MS successes...

Do note that my comment was regarding the recent news that MSE provides "baseline protection".

http://www.neowin.net/news/mic...rovides-baseline-protection

I am aware of Microsoft's commitment to security, particularly Windows Vista and the Next-Generation Secure Computing Base.

There are plenty of other articles on Neowin that (attempt to) show how MSE is inadequate.

How does the signature file depend on the OS version. I understand, MS can kill the scanning engine update for XP with the touch of a button, but the signature file is something that has very few to do with the OS. OK, artifically MS can decide that a new engine uptade is mandatory from the 1st of May for new signatures to be working, but in that case we are talking about planned obsolescence, and not technical reasons.

soder said,
How does the signature file depend on the OS version. I understand, MS can kill the scanning engine update for XP with the touch of a button, but the signature file is something that has very few to do with the OS. OK, artifically MS can decide that a new engine uptade is mandatory from the 1st of May for new signatures to be working, but in that case we are talking about planned obsolescence, and not technical reasons.

^this^

The signature file is reliant on the client supporting its format; future improvements might require changes to the definition format (or even a different definition format) that the old client cannot recognise. By not promising ongoing compatibility for the XP client they are free to make changes as needed to provide the best experience for users of currently-supported versions of Windows.

Microsoft Security Essentials reminds me of Vista-esque software - slow, inefficient and resource-hungry. Seriously, don't stand by it just because it's from Microsoft.

68k said,
Microsoft Security Essentials reminds me of Vista-esque software - slow, inefficient and resource-hungry. Seriously, don't stand by it just because it's from Microsoft.

Mind = blown.

For the longest time, MSE was being lauded as one of the more efficient / least resource-intensive AVs out there. When did that change?

Whether it's still considered effective is another matter entirely.

_dandy_ said,

Mind = blown.

For the longest time, MSE was being lauded as one of the more efficient / least resource-intensive AVs out there. When did that change?

Whether it's still considered effective is another matter entirely.

I installed it because I thought it was going to be great, being from Microsoft. Unfortunately straight after installation, I noticed the slow downs, and Task Manager clearly showed it was MSE. Plus, it didn't have the advanced features of some other AV software. I now don't mind paying $25 a year for an AV subscription - it's been worth it especially for family computers (running XP!).

I knew this was coming for the last two years this AV hasn't been up to snuff in a long time soon as it started getting low scores at AVTest.org I knew it was time to get rid of it, all my customers who had this on their systems have been moved over to Avast free or pro depending on what version they wanted

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