Windows XP Home: obsolete sooner than you expect
Ars technica published this very interesting article today about how XP home may fall out of the MS support cycle sooner then we think. As you probably already know, XP pro and XP home fall under two different product categories: business and consumer. XP pro, as a business product, will receive support for two additional years after Windows Vista is released. After this period, it will receive an additional 5 years of extended service. In the 7 additional years that MS will provide (ending in 2013), security updates, service packs and support will still be available to users.
Since XP home falls under the consumer category, it will not qualify for the additional years of support when Vista comes out. What does this mean? Mainstream support for XP home will be ending on January 1, 2007 (If Vista is released before the end of 2006).
Ken Fisher from ArsTechnica contacted Microsoft to get more clarification about this matter. Here is the answer he got from Microsoft:
"For consumer products, security updates will be available through the end of the mainstream phase. For Windows XP Home Edition, there will be no security updates after 12/31/06." Regarding paid support for problems unrelated to security patches, I was told that "Users who want to continue to receive support after the Microsoft assisted and paid support offerings have ended may visit the Retired Product Support Options Web site."
Frightening isn't it?
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