While our site focuses on WindowsXP, we often get questions about which version came first between XP and some earlier or later edition - and often we are looking up which version was when on the timeline of releases - so here for you is a great article on Wikipedia that shows the order, and if you click on a version, it goes to a page that gives much more information on that particular version  - great resource! 

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_Microsoft_Windows 

   While Microsoft did officially end its support for Windows XP April of 2014, they are doing a rather unusual extra bit of support by now releasing a new patch for XP for the first time in 3 years.  This new patch for the XP operating system is to help protect you from the dangerous and recent ransomware attack called "WANNACRYPT". ( also is called "WANNACRY" in some versions)   
   In a post as described on the Windows Security blog, Microsoft says it's taking this "highly unusual" step after customers worldwide including England's National Health Service suffered a hit from "WannaCrypt" ransomware. Microsoft patched all of its currently supported systems to fix the flaw back in March, but now there's an update available for unsupported systems too, including Windows XP, Windows 8 and Windows Server 2003. 

Click here to go to a link where you can download this patch from Microsoft. 
 
   The virus/ransomware encrypts your files making them un-available to you till you pay the ransom - the screen that first tells you this looks like this one: 
 
  WannaCrypt ransom
 
 
    Microsoft's legal chief Brad Smith posted yesterday this comment about needing co-operation from the various agencies - the post helps explain a bit more about how this particular threat came to be and could have possibly been prevented. 
    Also of note, is this story about an English malware tech who found the malware was seeking an unregistered domain name. By registering this name the tech activated a "kill-switch" built into the malware shutting it down.  No doubt this helped (at least temporarily) many thousands of systems or more.  Read more about it here in this article excerpt. 

"The spread of the initial release has actually stopped (after infecting more than 123,000 computers) because security researchers registered a domain that the malware checks before the infection starts. As long as the software finds it, a sort of killswitch engages and no encryption occurs. However, as @MalwareTechBlog notes, anyone could modify the attack to remove the killswitch and begin attacking computers again.

That's because even without phishing links, another part of the exploit the searches out a vulnerable server component (SMBv1) on unpatched Windows machines and can infect them remotely. This probably won't work across the internet for PCs behind a firewall or router, but if a server is connected directly to the internet, or a PC is on the same network as an infected computer, it can spread quickly -- which is exactly what happened yesterday."

More shortly - working on this post as the day goes on and more information is available.
 
 
 

Bulletin Board Clip Art

The message board system is up and tested, and ready for you to use.

        Whether you have a question about using different hardware on your old faithful XP antique, or wish to know how to do a tiny and simple install of XP on a newly built system, pick the area and post your message.  Someone here or other users will hopefully be able to answer your question soon.  Or if you see a question and you know a good answer - or even just have a "that happened to me too" kind of comment to add, please feel free to do so. We are using the great open source message forum software for Joomla called Kunena and it can send you email letting you know when your question has an answer.

  Just thought you might want to have some classic tunes to listen to while you surf.. This station is Oldies for the Oldies - a station with music mostly from the 50s,60s,70s and some from a few years either way further - so you may hear big band tunes followed by the Eagles, the Beatles and Heart.  A very wide variety - and no commercials..  Tune it in and then open another window to do your other browsing or email while you listen.  Works on smart phones, tablets and PCs - should work on most Apples too.

   click  Oldies For The Oldies to visit.

SOME FIRST STEPS TO HELP KEEP YOUR XP RUNNING SAFE AND SOUND 

IF YOU HAVE NOT ALREADY DONE SO, MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE LATEST UPDATES AND PATCHES FROM THE MICROSOFT UPDATE SERVICE.  MOST OF US WILL HAVE THESE SET TO AUTOMATICALLY HAPPEN BUT YOU SHOULD CHECK IF YOU DON'T REMEMBER SEEING ANY HAPPEN RECENTLY.  

    While most of the time the updates are a good thing - sometimes people have problems with an update and then turn off the automatic updates.

 One of the reasons you will likely not have much trouble with keeping your copy of Windows XP going is that it is definItely a mature product. In all the years since it was introduced there have been many attempts to find its weaknesses, ways to corrupt or take control of parts of it for various reasons and such.  Also in all these years your helpful folks at Microsoft have been hard at work to find improvements, patches to fix security holes and vulnerabilities just almost as fast as people have found them.  Consequently - XP is, in my opinion, probably the safest of the Windows versions for these reasons. It is very likely that any probable weakness has been found and fixed.  

    Now don't get me wrong - right away first thing - be aware that I share the usual displeasure with the bugs in Windows.  I can rant and rave for hours about how big, bloated and trouble prone Windows can be.  And how the majority of the world being stuck with Windows has prevented a better operating system from gaining a toehold on the market.  But not all of this is Microsoft's fault when you really look deeper.  If you want to keep your buyers happy, you try to build things to keep using existing programs and technology - and this resulted in many of better things which have come along being put on the shelf as they would not be initially compatible with the existing application software and hardware. 

   I can understand this even on my level with the little bit of programming I have done over the years.  If I start on a program - and expect it to be useful to the majority of the computer users, then I would write the program for use with Windows - and maybe think about applying the same work to a program for other computers later.  Then of course it is very unlikely it will really happen.  

   In a future post I will explain some of the history of the sizes and complexity of Microsoft Windows - it is a wild expansion from a program that fit on a few floppy disks to today's versions which require thousands of times the space.  

   Secondly - be sure you have some proper tools to keep your system protected from virus problems, malware, adware and spyware.  Check our page about tools and resources for keeping your system clean for suggestions.