Microsoft Extends Windows XP Lifeline

Dennis Faas's picture

Despite the short-lived Seinfeld commercials and the ongoing ad blitzes, customer demand for Windows XP over Windows Vista has again prompted Microsoft to extend the Windows XP lifeline.

Microsoft stopped selling Windows XP on June 30 of this year, but Windows XP is still available at some retail outlets, including while supplies last.

Larger PC manufacturers can't directly sell Windows XP anymore -- except on ultra-low-cost machines -- but they can sell Windows Vista Ultimate and Windows Vista Business machines with Windows XP discs in the box or they can do a 'factory downgrade' and install Windows XP on the Vista machines.

The original January 31, 2009 cutoff date from Microsoft has been extended to July 31, 2009. According to The Register UK, Microsoft's hardware partners are trying to have the new deadline extended even further.

System builders -- less major PC manufacturers -- will not receive an extension. System builders can sell machines with Windows XP that have not been downgraded from Windows Vista, but only through January 31, 2009.

Microsoft tried to put the best face on the move in a statement provided to CNET News. In France, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer commented on Vista sales and businesses moving at their own pace when it comes to moving to Vista or waiting for Windows 7, saying that it depends on the business, and it appears that most businesses aren't interested in Windows Vista.

Depending on when Windows 7 is released and how well it functions and the reception it receives, there may be more reprieves for the extension of Windows XP in the future since it appears to be the preferred operating system of choice.

We shall certainly see.

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