As of April 8 2014, Microsoft® discontinued support for Windows® XP. Also, after April 8, Microsoft will no longer provide security updates or any of the various support-related options and updates for XP.

Windows XP was introduced in 2001 and was a big hit in the Windows series of operating systems. Globally it is estimated that 21 percent to 29 percent of Windows PCs still use XP.

Follow-ups to XP were Windows Vista®, which was less well received; Windows 7, which was very well received and is likely to be the “new XP” for those who are looking to choose and stay with a new Windows; and Windows 8. Windows 8 primarily serves the mobile market and is widely considered to have few improvements for the desktop market.

According to Cincom Smalltalk product manager, Arden Thomas, “Cincom Smalltalk™, per its policy, will not include Windows XP as a supported OS in the next major release of Cincom®ObjectStudio® 8.6 and Cincom® VisualWorks® 8.0.”

Since staying on XP represents a security risk, Thomas expects that many or most will upgrade to Windows 7 or Windows 8.

What does this mean for the market?

Thomas expects that many will buy new hardware and software, particularly if those users are on dated hardware.  Microsoft should benefit from Windows and Office upgrades, and other hardware and software vendors may benefit as well.   Perhaps this motivates some companies with old Smalltalk applications to upgrade and become Cincom Smalltalk customers.

The only ones who stay on XP will be large companies with a massive investment who can supply their own security (i.e., bank ATMs running XP) and those who increasingly (foolishly?) expose themselves to security risks.

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