Microsoft Blinks

There are something around 100,000,000 PCs around the world still running Windows XP, including many in busineses supporting mission critical software.

You may have heard there is an extremely severe hole in Microsoft Internet Explorer – going all the way back to MSIE 6.0. Microsoft said flat out that while it has a patch that would fix MSIE 8.0 (the last version that will run under Windows XP), it would not release a patch because XP support has ended.

Imaginary future courtroom setting

DOJ Lawyer: So, let me see if I understand this – you had a fix for the MSIE security hole and you decided not to release the fix to the 100 million users whose systems have now been hijacked. Why did you do that?

MS Lawyer: Well, XP support has ended. We told people they need to buy new computers or buy an upgrade to Windows 8.1. If they didn’t do it, it’s their fault.

EU Lawyer: So let’s see if I understand this… You withheld a patch that you had to extort money from the people who trusted your operating system to be secure. Is that your testimony?

MS Lawyer: Well, they did have the option to remove MSIE from their system if they wanted to stay on XP but not be exposed to the security hole we refuse to fix.

EU Lawyer: You really want to go down this path again?

Microsoft released patches today for MSIE 6,7 and 8 for Windows XP.


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10 Responses to Microsoft Blinks

  1. Nidster says:

    Shucks!!! Maybe I need to fire-up my ‘old’ computer and get me that patch.

  2. CC1s121LrBGT says:

    Well, remember that browser is a separate item… usually a separate download required by the US Department of Justice because Microsoft had an operating system monopoly on computers running the Microsoft operating systems.

    • Art Stone says:

      Exactly – that’s why Microsoft’s initial statement that they were not going to push the update to windows XP users was so blatantly obvious what their motivation was. The flaw was in the browser, not the operating system.

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        The code for IE on XP can’t be very different than the code for IE on other versions of Windows – the incremental cost of providing the fix would be less than the cost of talking about it.

        … still, Microsoft does not offer IE for Linux/Android and I believe they do not offer it for the Apple OS.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          The question is whether they will offer the fix for the 64 bit version of XP. I have that CD still. At the time, it was hard to find 64 bit apps for it.

        • Art Stone says:

          There was an Internet Explorer briefly for the Mac (and Windows Media Player)

          For a variety of reasons, Microsoft decided to pull the plug on it in 2005. The GUI for macs is enough different than Windows that it would have been difficult for a mac user to use even if it added value

          In theory, you could run MSIE on Linux, but you would have to do it inside WINE (the windows emulator) or Oracle’s VirtualBox or a third party “free” program

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            “There was an Internet Explorer briefly for the Mac (and Windows Media Player)”

            What?!? How do Mac users download music for their Zunes? lol

  3. Parrott says:

    wonder how many Computers are still running XP. I know of a couple Pharma companies still using XP for production. Its cool, they are not on the ‘Algore-internets’
    they are internal.
    I know of one in our main office, that is used to support older software. My wife has a machine in her office at the university, that is windows XP sp2 64bit. Its not on, I’d like to buy that computer.

    I have two. I need to fire up ole windows server 2003. It was good.

    Oh and we have real net neutrality, again.
    Its the wild west again boys and girls. No mo Obo rulz. Is fairness doctrine gone again ?
    pa-rott ( thats the french version) ha ha ha

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      Wow. You are the only other person that I have know to run Windows XP 64-bit. I still have the CD and had to have Microsoft mail it to me directly. Most people don’t even know about it.

      What a lot of companies have done, it convert each of those XP machines to a virtual machine that runs in its own instance of VMware… then they put all those instances of VMware onto a new faster machine running the free Linux OS. The idea is that a single new machine has more reliable hardware and that it is easier to dynamically spread the workload rather than have one XP machine maxed out while the others are not busy.

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