Ten years ago, Windows XP received its final update

Exactly ten years ago, on April 8, 2014, Microsoft released the final security patch for Windows XP. The day marked the end of the road for one of the most iconic Windows versions ever released.

↫ Taras Buria at Neowin

I never liked Windows XP. Compared to the operating systems I was using at the time – BeOS, Mandrake Linux 8.x – Windows XP felt kind of like a bad joke I wasn’t in on. It looked ridiculous, didn’t seem to offer anything substantial, and it didn’t take long for major security incidents related to Windows XP to start dominating the news. It wasn’t until several service packs had been released that Windows XP came into its own, but by that point, I had already found a much better alternative for my Windows needs at the time. I’m of course talking about Windows Server 2003, the better Windows than Windows XP.

Today though, I do have an odd fondness for Windows XP, as I grow older and XP has become something from my teenage years. The look and feel of Windows XP – the classic theme, not that horrendous Fisher Price nonsense – the sound set, the wallpaper of course – has become iconic, warts and all, and whole generations of people will feel instant feelings as soon as they see Bliss or hear that iconic startup sound.

Windows XP with a few service packs now belongs to the small group of Windows releases that I would call the peak of the platform, together with Windows 95 and Windows 7 (and perhaps Server 2003, but that’s more of a personal thing and not a consumer operating system). Everything else has not exactly been great or even aged well, and I doubt Windows 10 and 11 will suddenly get good, either.


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