Your Windows XP computer is a liability

22 July 2015

windows-logo While the death of Windows XP is a surprise to very few, chances are, your place of work is so tight-fisted that they're still running everything on the creaking OS.

Well, you might want to tell your boss (and if you are the boss, pull your finger out already) that Microsoft have not only stopped support for the operating system, but they'll also stop their free anti-virus software. So basically, you will be using a computer that is just asking for trouble and malfunctions.

On Microsoft’s sites, they say that the Malicious Software Removal Tool and updates to Microsoft Security Essentials will stop being a thing after 14th July 2015. Yes. That's a date that is now gone.

If you don't know, the Malicious Software Removal Tool checks your computer for infections by prevalent malicious software. Normally, it is updated once a month, but as of yesterday, any threats can now waltz their way inside your XP computer and cause bother.

And you can guarantee that cyber-crooks will be looking to exploit those who are lazy and have thought 'it'll be fine'. That's what they do. They're good at it too.

Naturally, if you're running a computer that has XP on it, then it is invariably a bit on the old side. That means it is worth considering buying a new one. You could buy a cheap Windows 8 PC and just wait for the Windows 10 free release, which will be happening very soon. Or, if you're a Linux nut, you could eye that up.

Failing that, you can just try and style it out and hope for the best, but don't go crying to anyone when your PC dies with loads of infections.


  • Jeremy B.
    Put Linux on it.
  • oldgit
    Or ask someone who knows why it might not be that simple to put X operating system on an old pc/why a new operating system cant run lagacy code etc rather than just assume its people being tight.
  • oldgit
    or even Legacy code :o)
  • Steff
    Microsoft Security Essentials is not the only antivirus out there :) there are plenty others working on XP and even free ones
  • Matt
    All they have to do is do regular backups and if needed install third party programs and as suggested above MSE isn't the only Antivirus out there.
  • Matt
    1)Run clean install of Windows XP SP3. 2)turn off remote assistance 3)create a limited user account. 4)Make sure your Windows Firewall is turned on and uncheck Windows remote assistance from that and click ok. 5)control panel,windows update, notify only. 6) right click my computer, properties, hardware, open device manager. If you have a CD install your drivers or download them elsewhere from manufacturer website. 7)Install programs you want, Install Antivirus/Antimalware programs if you need them if so keep them up to date. 8)when windows update attempts to install updates you want to uncheck the Windows xp end of support notification from installing, then hide the update, this is why you received a nag on April 8th 2014 the nag is permanent if you have it installed if you accidentally installed it run system restore. 9)control panel Windows update, set to automatic. 10) Install any other programs such as Microsoft office if you need them. 11) Run disc cleanup 12)Run disk Defragmenter 13)Run regular backups of your work and system state. 14) If you're in a small business and you would like to be more secure use a local area network LAN which is more secure than a wide area network. 15)Don't allow anyone to access your computer unless you trust them don't give remote access to anyone unless you trust them. 16)An Ethernet cable is faster and more stable than wireless networks alone. 17)You have heard of these different vulnerabilities in Windows that are usualy fixed, XP won't get any more vulnerabilities fixed which means that newer versions of windows that are still supported will get these fixed but XP is secure if you use common sense then you'll be ok but for any user a limited user account is safer and will protect you because you can't install anything, this means you won't be able to install anything that could risk your system or install malware and viruses onto your system. you'll find vulnerabilities are risks and it doesn't always mean something bad will happen. 18) Don't believe everything an article says about XP being really insecure and will get a virus, any system with up to date patches and wth all the protection can still get a virus and can still be vulnerable not the computer itself but the user, if they don't have basic common sense of using the Internet. 19)It's not XPs fault if you go onto porn sites don't check reviews on torrents before you install them, or if you were to open an email attachment that looks suspicious and clicked on the link that redirected you to a dangerous site that could lead to your web broswer getting hijacked, which could install all these toolbars and addons which are a pain to get rid of. When you install a program make sure you check the ratings and you trust it before it launches. 20)you rarely need to use an Administrator account because that isn't as safe as a limited user an admin can do everything such as change settings and instasll and update stuff, but if a virus gets installed it's usually the admin user that gets infected and when it does it infects that more and makes your computer unstable so it is really important that you stick to using a limited user account with any version of Windows. 21)Also if more than 1 person uses your computer create them a limited user account as well and put a password on each of them, to encrypt them. And if you're the Administrator put a password on the Admin account because that's to control the computer itself.
  • Matt
    Also be careful around running scripts such as Flash, Reader Shockwave Jave etc. some of these popup in your system, some of which are genuine and you can click on them and update them and keep using them even if they're out of date, just be careful if you go onto one of those free movie sites or torrent sites sometimes you will come accross something asking you to update your programs one of them listed above if it does don't click on it just close it with the X And if it comes up saying win £2000 or update you computer or install drivers don't believe it any of these messages on websites are fake and they can appear on any Windows, ignore them. some popups will even ask you to fill in your information don't unless you want to be spam mailed. Be careful of surveys and special offers find out if they're genuine before you use them. Don't reply or accept emails from a third party you don't know or haven't contacted, even if it's convincing unless you know it's genuine then do it. If you do get an email sent to you that you're unsure about leaving it there isn't going to hurt just make sure you check out to see if it's vali if it isn't and you don't recognise it take the information of the email, report it and delete the message or just delete it.
  • Raggedy
    Or alternatively, if your XP machine is already up to date, go to Device Manager and disable the network card. No internet but no viruses either :-)

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