|Windows XP PRO Corporate serial number S/N: Key: MQPWW-PGVKX-YPMKG-8Dh4G-KC8PW|
|windows xp home edition serial number S/N: 034634-262024-171505-828316-729010-413531-800424-400442|
|Windows XP 64 serial number S/N: B2RBK-7KPT9-4JP6X-QQFWM-PJD6G|
|Windows XP serial number S/N: K6C2K-KY62K-DQR84-RD4QV-QB74Q|
|Windows XP Professional 64-bit Corporate Edition 5.2.3790.1830 serial number S/N: VCFQD-V9FX9-46WVH-K3CD4-4J3JM|
|Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP2 serial number S/N: YY8F2-3CKVQ-RKTRG-6JMDR-9DTG6|
|Windows XP Professional Service Pack 1 sp1 serial number S/N: F46YY — 2R8VQ — R8GMY — 926VK — 6BQ73|
|Windows XP Pro serial number S/N: KBWR7-76BD8-J7MDQ-KKG&C-V9Q2J|
|Windows XP Professional Polish (Compilation 2600) serial number S/N: HRXTR-FKTCV-X8QCH-D7PTH-KYYPB|
|Windows XP Professional serial number|
|windows xp home home edition serial number S/N: v7bwd-g9yr6-9fg87-8q2hv-yjgtg|
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|windows xp professional 2002 serial number S/N: 55214-643-6215176-23079|
|Windows XP Home Edition serial number S/N: G7BR9-8QV29-3QFHP-F84WG-X9PYQ|
|WINDOWS XP HOME EDITION serial number S/N: 55372-OEM-0011903-00148|
|WINDOWS XP HOME EDITION serial number S/N: 55372-OEM-0011903-00148|
|Windows XP serial number S/N: 216601-009505-171906-713385-887224-774934-591725-010425|
|WINDOWS XP HOME EDITION serial number S/N: 55372-OEM-0011903-00148|
|Microsoft Windows XP Home Edidtion / Professional serial number|
|S/N: FCKGW — RHQZ7 — YXRQW — 7AS6W — 3C8Q8|
|QB2BW — 8PJ2D — 9X7JK — BCCRT — D233Y|
|47QBF — KTJPV — 4HTP8 — 3T2DY — WTD64|
|FM9FY — TMF7Q — KCKCT — V9T29 — TBBBG|
|DTWB2 — VX8WY — FG8R3 — X696T — 66Y46|
|RBDC9 — VTRC8 — D7072 — J97JY — PRVMG|
|BX6HT — MDJKW — h3J4X|
|Microsoft Windows XP Home Ed serial number S/N: VRWXX-QM4XW-J6R3P-8FK3W-V64FT|
|these are for unlocking the install CD key, once installed do not, i repeat do not use a serial to activate windows download a crack from a peer to peer sharing network (Limewire, Kaazer or whatever) the nme will be like «WINDOWS XP PRO OR HOME KEY GEN KE|
|Windows XP Home Edition SP2 serial number S/N: J76RR-MY44M-VTJ9T-6PMWX-FH88T|
|Windows Xp Professional Professional serial number S/N: S/N: TFGK8-RQT7R-F6KW8-Q2X4M-YF2CX,P6Q8C-67D6P-X2PMX-M3372-RYY8F,8WDM6-H8HGX-4T27D-XQ2FT-TTQDV,TT6M7-RCMJK-RW433-PYDQR-2R8FD,FW2QC-KCT97-2XYFK-CF9G4-MG79Q,JHJ6R-BM2QW-YKW49-J7GYC-PPD2W,D86RX-TFGFT-GYXKM-3MQVX-43D73,TFFF4-QP8Y3-JQQ3R-4MRGP-7FVWM,JVXDX-847YV-3G6|
|Windows Xp Home Home serial number S/N: HRXTR-FKTCV-X8QCH-D7PTH-KYYPB,FKCQQ-HYY3X-T3h59-T73M-PTCYJ. KQXXH-YW4QM-B84W8-296FX-6XRDW,XJFG6-2GH83-87QQJ-33F4K-K7HBB,BQJG2-2MJT7-H7F6K-XW98B-4HQRQ,VQGJ8-4T8GB-83M2Y-GFBYX-T22MP,BQJG-2MJT7-H7F6K-XW98B-4HQRQ,QB2BW-8PJ2D-9X7JK-BCCRT-D233Y,D9F7Y-YPPGB-7GQ48|
|windows xp serial number S/N: HBJTW-HJ9HH-WJ27D-FFWFF-2VBH8|
|Windows xp pro serial number S/N: VFWGM 3GRYG QB43V MVP84 XB3G9|
|Windows Xp Perofessional Professional serial number S/N: FCKGW-RHQQ2-YXRKT-8TG6W-2B7Q8|
|windows xp home edition serial number S/N: fqppd7dpy848cfx7trcgvvmk6|
|Windows xp pro spanish oem serial number S/N: fckgw rhqq2 yxrkt 8tg6w 2b7q8|
|upgrade windows xp pro 2002 serial number S/N: xo8-26173|
|Windows XP Professional Corporate build 2600 serial number S/N: S/N: WRX9H-CXFMF-9M9YB-YPJP6-3F3PH|
|Windows XP Home Edition serial number S/N: HBQ3Y-BHDWT-KQMDP-K3TXC-FX2WT|
|Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition OEM for Dell PC serial number S/N: FP2TC-MJ2CP-32J8T-FP3BY-RW6K6|
|If you have a Dell PC and a Windows XP disk or a restore disk this key should work. This Key will not work with any other Windows XP disk that I have found.|
|Windows XP Professional Edition serial number S/N: QG6V8-DKTVK-24M6F-99M3Y-FQFTM|
|MICROSOFT WINDOWS XP PRO — CORP serial number|
|windows xp Professional serial number S/N: 55375-oem-0011903-00102|
|Windows XP Netherlands SP1/2 serial number S/N: QJYBC-6GHC3-JVRHB-2DB4M-RKRJT|
|microsoft windows xp home eidition sp2 built 2162 serial number S/N: wwwjr-bx7cv-p32x2-c7vt3-qd6bp|
|Windows OS XP Pro serial number S/N: HH7VV-6P3G9-82TWK-QKJJ3-MXR96|
|Windows XP Professional x64-edition x64 serial number|
|Windows XP Pro XP Pro serial number|
|These are XP Pro cd keys from dell computers. I haven’t tested to see if they work with the normal version of windows.|
|Windows XP Professional Incl. SP1 5.1.2600.1106 serial number S/N: S/N: YDYQ7-M37FK-JFFPV-QBPBB-44FDM|
|Windows XP Pro Windows XP serial number|
|S/N: CD-Key For This Version|
|it not work but|
|this work i try it already|
|Windows XP SP1 serial number|
|Windows xp home edition serial number S/N: K3JBD-FHBHH-2QWY3-RXTP6-JY|
Microsoft Windows XP — Professional review: Microsoft Windows XP — Professional
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Microsoft Windows XP — Professional
2 min read
After a buildup of Hollywood proportions, Microsoft has released its final cut of Windows XP. PC makers received final code last week, and you’ll be able to pick up your own copy come October 25, although some vendors will most likely release systems with XP preinstalled before that date.After a buildup of Hollywood proportions, Microsoft has released its final cut of Windows XP. PC makers received final code last week, and you’ll be able to pick up your own copy come October 25, although some vendors will most likely release systems with XP preinstalled before that date.
So is XP worth all the hype? Grudgingly, we say yes. This major upgrade at long last ends the distinction between the corporate (and more stable) NT/2000 Windows and the consumer-oriented Windows 95/98/Millennium. XP provides similar variations of the same OS for both home and business: XP Home and XP Professional editions. On the outside, XP looks radically different from any previous Windows version. It’s spiffier, with both aesthetic and functional redesigns, and features login screens for home and corporate systems alike—something many Windows 95/98 users have never seen.
Like any radical overhaul, XP takes some getting used to—we often lost patience with it—but, after time, it’s hard not to like the new design. While its new, hand-holding «task-oriented» design may annoy experienced users, Microsoft nevertheless managed to create an OS that works equally well for novices, corporate users, and enthusiasts. Despite hefty system requirements (a Pentium II-300 or faster, 128MB of RAM, and 1.5GB of free disk space), onerous product activation, and some not-so-obvious touting of Microsoft’s business partners, you’ll want to consider an upgrade—if not immediately, certainly the next time you buy a PC.
Read more of the review
The new XP Start menu is where all the action begins, and it’ll be your first glimpse at the major changes in XP. By default, it’s the only place you’ll find My Computer, My Documents, and My Network Places (formerly known as Network Neighborhood). But you can always drag items you like onto the now barren Desktop and make shortcuts, as we did here.
Examining Windows XP | Windows IT Pro/RE
The next generation of desktops
With the release of Windows XP in October, Microsoft has taken Windows to the next evolution of operating systems. XP is intended to replace not only Windows 2000 and Windows NT, but also Windows Me and Windows 9x. Like Windows 2000, XP is based on the 32-bit NT kernel. But, unlike its predecessor, XP is positioned for both corporate and home use. XP was born at a time when Microsoft split the development of operating systems into the client (XP) and server .NET Server family, formerly known as Whistler. To decide whether XP is the right choice for your base enterprise desktop, you need to have an idea of the functionality of the new operating system.
Microsoft released three new versions of XP: XP Home Edition, XP Professional, and XP 64-Bit Edition. XP Home, designed for home use and small businesses, is essentially a modification of Windows 9x. The XP Professional operating system is for Windows 2000 Professional or NT Workstation 4.0 users. Although XP Home and XP Pro are based on the same business-oriented system core, XP Pro has more functionality than XP Home. Figure 1 lists XP Pro features that are not available in XP Home. Both operating systems can be ordered through specialist retailers or come pre-installed when you buy your computer. The 64-bit version of XP can be purchased with an Intel Itanium-based computer from a trusted manufacturer such as Hewlett-Packard (HP), Dell, IBM, or Compaq.
System requirements and support for new devices
Not surprisingly, the requirements for XP Home and XP Pro and Windows 2000 Professional are very similar. Table 1 lists the minimum and recommended system settings. According to the tradition that has developed in Microsoft — especially RAM — the requirements are clearly underestimated. Therefore, as with Windows 2000, XP needs significantly more memory to achieve acceptable levels of performance. I tested XP Pro on 450 MHz and 1.2 GHz systems with the same 128 MB of memory, and performance was impressive in both cases. Typically, the performance of a Windows 2000 desktop system stays about the same when moving to XP.
As you might expect, XP supports hardware available on the market at the time of system release, such as high performance ATA100 hard drives, IEEE 1394 (FireWire), CD-R and CD-RW devices. XP has the ability to burn CDs on CD-R and CD-RW devices, so no third-party software is needed. To burn to a CD, you just need to select the files of interest in Windows Explorer and drag them with the mouse to the CD-R, CD-RW or DVD-RAM device icon. Additionally, Microsoft developers have built into the new operating system the ability to create a CD using Windows Media Player (WMP) and NT Backup. For DVD-RAM, support for the FAT32 file system has been added. However, the latest DVD-RW models are not supported in the base distribution.
Installation or upgrade?
Users who already have Windows Me or Windows 98 installed on their home computer will likely choose to upgrade their current version to XP Home. Enterprise users with Windows 2000 Professional and NT Workstation 4.0 will be able to upgrade to XP Pro through the upgrade process. But if you are using Windows 95 or an earlier version of Windows, you cannot upgrade. You will have to reinstall the system. Figure 2 shows possible ways to upgrade to Windows XP.
Figure 2. Pathways to XP.
The actual installation process for XP, like Windows 2000, is fairly simple. If the machine is on a network, the installation process will require you to specify the computer name, workgroup or domain name, and a TCP/IP address if there is no DHCP server on the network. By default, when installing XP in a domain, the Fast User Switching feature is disabled (this feature allows multiple users to work on the same machine). After installing in a domain and rebooting, the system displays an updated version of the Windows Logon dialog box. From start to finish, installing the system manually takes about 30 minutes. As with Windows 2000 Professional, you can use Remote Installation Services (RIS) technology to install systems from a remote server in an unattended manner. In some cases, as described below, product activation may be required after installation (for more information on this, see the sidebar “Windows Product Activation Procedure”).
After upgrading from Windows 2000 to the XP level, previously shared directories are no longer available. To prevent this from happening, you need to run the Network Setup Wizard and inform the system of your intention to use file sharing in the future. However, you can always allocate directories to the public anew. Microsoft developers have explained that this updater feature is implemented for security reasons.
XP user interface
For the new operating system, Microsoft has developed a user interface (unofficially called Luna) that allows newcomers to easily perform the most common tasks. However, experienced users of Windows 2000 or NT 4.0 may find the new interface annoying. The location of a number of familiar objects (for example, Administrative Tools and the My Computer icon) has changed. In addition, the new interface, compared to its predecessors, requires more mouse manipulations and moving around different screens to perform the same tasks. Nevertheless, the “picture”, in general, has changed little. Users who used Windows 2000, Windows Me, and Windows 98 should quickly get used to the new interface. It is more concise: by default, only one icon is displayed on the desktop — Recycle Bin. The graphical icons are larger, the Start menu has been redesigned, and the default background is a soft blue background (the Start menu is shown in Figure 1).
Screenshot 1. Start menu of XP system.
In the new Start menu, the two positions at the top left are fixed for the Web browser and the client’s default email program. If desired, you can use any Web browser and any email program, not just Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) and Microsoft Outlook Express. Frequently used programs automatically appear in the Start menu at the bottom left. WMP, MSN Explorer, Windows Movie Maker and Tour Windows XP icons are displayed by default, but you can always remove them. For installed programs, the All Programs submenu is used. The items on the right side of the Start menu perform the same tasks as the Start menu in Windows 2000. And the Control Panel is finally moved to the top level of the Start menu.
Screen 2: XP system control panel.
Unlike the Windows 2000 Control Panel, where programs related to system maintenance are listed individually, the XP Control Panel (see Figure 2) displays links to categories of system functions. Click on the link and a more detailed list of tasks appears. For example, if the Network and Internet Connections category is selected, XP will display a dialog box containing some list of tasks available to perform, including Set up or change your Internet connection, Create a connection to the network at your workplace, and Set up or change your home or small office network. By selecting any of them, the user thereby launches the Network Setup Wizard program, which will guide the process of completing the task. The named dialog box also contains icons for Internet Options and Network Connections. You should select one of them to display a window in which the properties of the specified object are configured. If the user prefers the Windows 2000 interface style, simply switch to Switch to Classic View.
XP has a number of user interface enhancements: the taskbar has been redesigned and the Group similar taskbar buttons option has been added to the panel setup. This option allows you to group objects that are similar to each other. If this option is specified, XP groups multiple instances of the same application under a single icon. Arrows and dots are displayed on the taskbar itself, which help to monitor the process of grouping objects. When you click on the taskbar icon, the system displays a menu that shows all instances of the open application. Following the concept of minimalism, the Desktop Cleanup Wizard automatically removes all icons from the desktop that are accessed infrequently. The next enhancement is the Web-Views feature, which uses a Dynamic HTML (DHTML) to-do list anchored to the current directory to create a context-sensitive to-do list. For example, when a directory is opened using Windows Explorer, the WebView window displays directory management tasks available to the user, such as Create a new folder and Share a folder. When Windows Explorer is working with files, the WebView window displays tasks related to file manipulation — Copy a file and Delete a file.
Management and Compatibility
XP Pro provides the same system management tools as Windows 2000, including Group Policy, Roaming Profiles, RIS installation, and IntelliMirror. However, the XP developers have improved many features. For example, Group Policy in XP allows you to configure network logon settings (Netlogon). For example, a user can use Group Policy to configure DNS client settings and redirect the contents of My Documents to their home directory. Improvements in Roaming Profiles include the ability to configure interaction with stand-alone offline directories, impose a ban on copying a roaming profile to the server every time it changes, and also prohibit the use of such a profile on certain computers. The RIS service in the XP implementation allows you to install Windows 2000 and .NET Server remotely along with XP Pro.
XP Pro has a new management feature called Automatic Updates. It allows system administrators to automatically download and install critical updates (such as Service Packs), as well as security patches and device driver updates. Updates are downloaded in the background, after which the system prompts you to install the updates. You can turn this feature on and off from the Automatic Updates tab (see Figure 3) in the Start, Control Panel, Performance and Maintenance, System menus.
Screen 3. Automatic update tab.
The next new XP management feature, Automated System Recovery (ASR), provides strong protection against Unexpected System Failure. The ASR Backup component saves the state of the system, services, and disks. In addition, a file is created that contains backup information, disk configuration, and instructions for the recovery procedure for a particular case. The ASR Restore component will then use the data from the named file to restore the previously saved system state.
XP Pro supports Device Driver Roll Back, which allows you to replace a failed device driver with a previously installed version. To use the Device Driver Roll Back feature, open Device Manager, click on the icon of the failed device, and select Properties from the context menu. Then select the Driver tab and click Roll Back Driver to return to the original device driver. Whenever an unsigned device driver is installed, XP automatically creates a Restore Point, a kind of return point that is used to restore the system.
XP Pro has a number of important features that have been designed to help IT administrators. First, there are a large number of new command-line utilities (see Table 2), taken primarily from the Microsoft Windows 2000 Resource Kit. Second, XP Pro is able to handle log files larger than 1 GB, and event logs can now contain embedded URL links to various Web sites where you can get more information. Third, XP’s NTFS supports read-only volumes, which makes it easier to back up the system.
Microsoft’s initial goal was to create a single platform for migration from both Windows 2000 and Windows 9x. This means that XP must be compatible with DOS and Windows 9x applications. To achieve better compatibility with 16-bit DOS, the developers have adjusted the Virtual DOS Machine (VDM) virtual machine. As a result, XP can run DOS programs that Windows 2000 or NT couldn’t, but Windows Me or Windows 98 required a special DOS mode (a mode of operation in Windows 9x that ran DOS programs in single-tasking mode). The new XP virtual machine more effectively emulates Windows 9x’s memory management, and this solves a lot of the problems users had with running 16-bit software running a 32-bit NT kernel. Microsoft developers have also added Creative Technology Sound Blaster 2.0 audio support for legacy DOS games and applications to the XP DOS VDM machine.
The most significant change to XP’s networking component is the Windows Messenger service, which now replaces MSN Messenger (quick messaging) and Net-Meeting (video conferencing). The Windows Messenger service provides messaging, video and audio conferencing, and collaboration support (this feature is related to the Remote Assistance service, which will be briefly discussed). Advanced technology for transmitting audio and video information allows you to use Windows Messenger to provide conference calls via modem and conventional DSL lines (Digital Subscriber Line, digital subscriber line).
Unlike NetMeeting, Windows Messenger is based on the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), a lightweight, real-time communication protocol that uses participants’ email addresses to initiate calls (unfortunately, Windows Messenger and NetMeeting’s SIP algorithms are incompatible between yourself). The new acoustic-echo-canceling feature allows Windows Messenger participants to use a standard PC microphone (instead of a headset) for a quality audio conference. To improve the quality of communication over DSL and broadband connections, developers have built into Windows Messenger support for the 16-kilobit SIREN audio codec from Sonic Foundry. In addition, Windows Messenger supports sessions with MSN Messenger systems. Unfortunately, the Windows Messenger service is not compatible with the AOL Instant Messenger service.
To use Windows Messenger over the Internet, you must first have a Microsoft Passport account. Microsoft Passport is a free service that performs user authentication and call initiation. Corporate users can use Microsoft Exchange 2000 Conferencing Server as an authentication server. In addition, the forthcoming .NET Server product enables support for Windows Messenger. Screen 4 shows an example of a video conference session using Windows Messenger.
Screen 4. Working with Windows Messenger.
The implementation of SOHO-class communication programs in XP provides system users with the ability to work together with Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) connections, similar to the Windows 2000 service of the same name, and a personal Internet Connection Firewall (ICF). ICS allows you to use XP as an Internet gateway for other
systems on your local network. ICS in XP provides basic DHCP, DNS, and Network Address Translation (NAT) services for network clients. At the same time, the system with ICS does not have to be constantly connected to the Internet: client systems can be configured according to the dial on demand principle (providing a channel on demand) — the ICS gateway will automatically connect to the Internet as needed.
The ICF function dynamically opens and closes communication ports used by network programs. ICS maintains connection tables initiated by local systems, and incoming Internet traffic can only reach a local destination if there is a corresponding entry in the ICF table — this means that the information exchange process was initiated from this local network. Although XP’s ICF Gateway is inferior to specialized firewall products in terms of the variety of features, ICF nevertheless occupies a very important niche in the SOHO and modem user market. XP Pro automatically starts the ICF service whenever an ICS connection is established.
One of XP’s most useful new communications features is the Network Diagnostics utility, a program for diagnosing and fixing system and network problems. Network Diagnostics allows you to check the current status of Internet services (mail, news), get information about the computer (system name, boot type, amount of RAM), information about the operating system (build number, installation date, version number), and check the status of modems and network adapters. To start Network Diagnostics, select Scan your system (Start, Control Panel, Network and Internet Connections, Network Diagnostics). Screen 5 shows the results of such a scan.
Screen 5: Checking network settings.
When testing network adapters, Network Diagnostics checks the status of network adapter drivers and queries the default gateway, primary and secondary DNS servers, and the local IP address. The utility displays Passed or Failed marks for each network component it scans and provides other useful information about the network, including the IP addresses of the gateway, DNS server, and scanned computer. The results of Network Diagnostics can be saved to a file, which can be sent via email or FTP to support if necessary.
XP’s wireless communication capabilities have also been improved. XP allows you to scan for a wireless network and automatically configure 802.11 network cards to connect to it. This feature is useful for mobile users when connecting to public resources. XP supports the IEEE 802.1X standard for performing authentication on network access.
Support and Help Desk
When it comes to customer support, XP excels. Firstly, the help service (Help) has been redesigned in the system. The search capabilities of the new Help are integrated with the Web, so search is not limited to the local computer, but also affects the Microsoft Knowledge Base. Additionally, you can link to Microsoft news conferences and the new Did you know? section, where Microsoft or an OEM maintains links to all sorts of Web sites. Each time you access the Help and Support Center, the system contacts the Web site and updates the headers in the Did you know? section. Screen 6 shows the Help and Support Center main window.
Screen 6. XP system support system.
Although the user support experience has been improved over previous versions of Windows, there is no consistency in the way Microsoft services such as TechNet, the Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN), or the MSDN Web site work. The Help program does not remember previous requests, the results of requests are displayed differently. In one case, the system may show the results of the query in a separate window, in another — in a pop-up window, in the third — as an update of the contents of the Help and Support Center window. During testing, as I navigated through the links in the Help system, I often lost the original index entry or search list.
However, when testing XP Pro’s most interesting support services — Remote Desktop and Remote Assistance — I had no complaints. Both services are based on Windows 2000 Server Terminal Services technology. Remote Desktop allows you to control the target XP system from a remote machine. This is extremely convenient, for example, when connecting to an office system from your home computer. The same technology enables more users to register remotely and share resources on the same system. But before XP allows you to establish a remote connection, you must enable support for the Remote Desktop service yourself. To do this, select the Enable Remote Desktop (Start, Control Panel, Performance and Maintenance, System, Remote) checkbox. The specified number of users are then granted permission to use the Remote Desktop service. To access the target system from the control station, select Remote Desktop Connection (Start, All Programs, Accessories, Communications).
Although two users with different User IDs can simultaneously establish a remote connection to the target computer, the same user will not be able to log in to the target computer both locally and remotely at the same time. After the connection is established, the Remote Desktop appears in the Terminal Services window on the host system, and the target system blocks the ability to work locally. But if the local user presses Ctrl+Alt+Del then the remote session will be terminated. The performance of client computers during testing over LAN connections turned out to be very high.
Remote Assistance starts working where Remote Desktop does not; it allows other users to remotely view the screen or take control in the event of a problem. This feature is useful for Help Desk personnel. Like Remote Desktop, Remote Assistance uses the Terminal Services RDP protocol to display the remote screen. To start Remote Assistance, you should use either Windows Messenger or email to attract the attention of service personnel. When using Windows Messenger, a list of currently available technicians is checked. After the message asking for help is sent, the specialist at his workplace receives a corresponding request. Screen 7 shows the remote user’s desktop inside the Remote Assistance window.
Figure 7: Accessing a Remote System Using Remote Desktop
The service technician can either passively observe what is happening on the screen or take control. In the latter case, the initiator of the call receives a request to transfer control functions remotely. After the user answers OK, the specialist gets the opportunity to remotely control the user’s system. To end a remote session, the user just needs to press Esc. Remote Assistance supports voice data transmission, so that the user receives instant feedback without lifting the handset. You can also send files using Remote Assistance, for example when sending a Network Diagnostics report for analysis.
Make the Right Decision
For Windows Me and Windows 9x users, upgrading to XP Home or XP Pro will provide greater system stability and functionality. NT users, in turn, will benefit from the new interface and system utilities, as well as better compatibility of running applications and faster boot times.
For Windows 2000 users, the issue of switching to XP is more difficult to solve: Windows 2000 has stability and performance comparable to XP. However, for those interested in telecommuting, Windows Messenger conferencing, and mobile users, moving to XP has its undeniable advantages.
Michael Auty is Science Editor of the American Windows NT Magazine and President of TECA, a software development and consulting firm. He can be contacted at [email protected] .
Windows Product Activation
If a user chooses a Microsoft Open, Select, or Enterprise license agreement when purchasing Windows XP, they do not need to worry about Windows Product Activation (WPA). When parsing the product key associated with these licenses, the system bypasses the activation procedure (Microsoft’s licensing policy is described in an article on the Microsoft website. http://www.microsoft.com/business/licensing ). The same is true for copies of XP that come pre-installed on OEM systems that have been pre-activated and no activation questions will be asked during the initial OS rollout. However, be aware that if more than four changes have been made to the hardware, the system will require the product to be reactivated. When purchasing Windows XP from the retail version, you should be prepared to answer the product activation question at the end of the installation process and register it (optional requirement) at the end of the installation process.
An Internet connection is required to automatically activate your copy of XP. The activation program sends a unique system identification code to Microsoft. In response, some key is returned that activates the operating system. XP uses the hardware configuration data, as well as the value of the Product Activation Key number that the user entered during the installation process, to generate the specified key. If you do not have an Internet connection, you must call Microsoft at the number listed on the Windows Product Activation Wizard screen to complete the activation process. Microsoft provides a 30-day grace period to complete this procedure, and after the deadline has passed, XP returns to the Welcome screen and prompts you to complete the activation process.
Although the developers do not disclose all the details of WPA, it is claimed that the activation procedure does not transfer any personal information about the client to Microsoft. One developer has investigated the WPA procedure and published the results with a detailed description (see http://www.licenturion.com/xp ).
Figure 1. Features not supported by XP Home.
ASR Automatic Recovery Service
Client for NetWare
Working in a domain
Support for two processors
File level access control
Automatic installation of IntelliMirror applications
IP Security Protocol (IPSec)
Multinational interface support
Remote installation of RIS
SNMP 9 protocol0205
Risks for corporate customers associated with the end of support for Windows XP
On April 8 this year, Microsoft ended support for Windows XP. One of the most popular versions of the Windows operating system in its entire history, which served users for almost 13 years, is becoming a thing of the past. The end of support for Windows XP poses serious security concerns for businesses that continue to use it. The article provides an analysis of the risks that may be faced by those who have not yet switched to more modern versions of Windows.
1. A Brief History of Windows XP
2. Every 4th computer in the world still runs Windows XP
3. The corporate sector never forgets Windows XP
4 After 04/08/2014, vulnerabilities in Windows XP will be mean guaranteed 0-day
5. Because of its outdated architecture, Windows XP is at high risk
90 228 A Brief History of Windows XP
The Windows XP operating system was released by Microsoft on October 25, 2001 and is an evolution of Windows 2000 Professional. During its existence, three service packs (Service Pack 1-3) were released. Its maintenance period ended in April 2009, but was extended for a few more years due to its high popularity. Until August 2012, Windows XP remained the most popular operating system, then lost ground to Windows 7.
At the beginning of 2014, Microsoft already had three new versions of the operating system to replace Windows XP, which were superior in every way to its predecessor. This is especially true for built-in security features. Microsoft made the main bet on Windows 8 (8.1), in addition, technical support for Windows XP was finally terminated on April 8, 2014, as planned.
Since then, Microsoft has stopped releasing automatic updates for Windows XP that fix the vulnerabilities found in the system.
Figure 1. The history of the operating system Windows and the timing of support for individual versions
Windows XP is still running every 4th computer in the world 9022 9
In order to be able to assess the scope of potential threats associated with the continued use of Windows XP, it is necessary to determine the degree of its prevalence among users. Research company Net Applications over the past few months has registered a slight decrease in the share of the Windows XP operating system. The impetus for this was the news about the approach of "hour X" in the form of the termination of its official support. In November 2013, Windows XP accounted for 31%, but by April 2014 its share had dropped to a record 26%.
Despite its advancing age by the standards of the IT industry and the emerging noticeable decline in its share, Windows XP firmly retains its second place in popularity among operating systems for desktop computers. Computer owners are in no hurry to migrate to more modern versions of Windows.
Figure 2. Popular desktop operating systems in the world (April 2014)
Source: NetMarketShare, April 2014
If we take as a basis the figure of the total number of desktops in the world at 1.6 billion, then in absolute terms as of April 2014 there are more than 400 million computers running Windows XP in the world. This is a colossal number of computers that suddenly lost the support of the manufacturer.
The corporate sector does not forget Windows XP
To understand the situation in the corporate segment, let's turn to some research data. According to Evolve IP, based on a survey of 1,070 IT leaders worldwide, 77% of companies still have Windows XP workstations. In Russia, this figure is even higher. According to a study by IAA "Telecom Daily" commissioned by Microsoft Russia in March this year, more than 95% of Russian companies still use Windows XP. All in all, almost 42% of workstations in Russia are running Windows XP; almost half of the entire PC fleet!
How aware are people at companies about the end of support for Windows XP? According to the Evolve IP study, an average of 40% of companies surveyed around the world were not aware of the end of support for Windows XP at all. In Russia, according to IAA "Telecom Daily", there were more than 30% of such people. There is a mass ignorance and misunderstanding of the problem.
According to analyst firm Gartner, 15% of medium and large businesses plan to continue using Windows XP on at least 10% of their workstation fleet, despite the end of support for this version of the OS from Microsoft.
Thus, a huge number of corporate users after April 8 continue to use Windows XP in their companies and are in no hurry to switch to more modern and secure versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8.
According to a study by IAA Telecom Daily, 46.5% of Russian companies that continue to use the outdated Windows XP are ready to switch to new versions of this OS. The study was conducted in March 2014, so at the time of this writing, their percentage could become even higher. As a rule, migration slows down: incompatibility of used application programs with newer versions of Windows; outdated computer equipment; lack of budget for its updating of computers and software; incompatible peripheral equipment, habit and unwillingness to change anything.
After 04/08/2014, vulnerabilities in Windows XP will mean a guaranteed 0-day
The main security threat for devices based on Windows XP after April 8, of course, will be new system vulnerabilities. Their appearance is very likely, since this version of Windows remains very popular, and, therefore, will be of high interest to specialists who make money on the search and sale of information about vulnerabilities and exploits for them on the black market.
There is an opinion that all dangerous vulnerabilities in Windows XP have been discovered and closed over many years of its operation. This is wrong. To verify this, it is enough to refer to the statistics of detected vulnerabilities in this OS, for example, from CVE Details.
A total of 727 vulnerabilities of varying severity were discovered during the life cycle of Windows XP. At the same time, the peak of their detection falls on the last 5 years.
Figure 3. Vulnerability detection in Windows XP from 2000 to 2014
Simple interpolation of statistics data shows that in the future it is probability of detecting new vulnerabilities in Windows XP is evaluated as very high. In addition, the very fact that its technical support is completed will stimulate the process of searching for new vulnerabilities specifically for Windows XP. After all, now vulnerabilities will not be closed, which means that they can be exploited much longer, which increases their value on the black market.
Thus, now any discovered vulnerability in Windows XP will mean, in fact, an eternal security hole that the manufacturer will not fix.
The first precedent arose almost immediately. Already on April 27, 2014, Symantec Corporation announced the discovery of a vulnerability CVE-2014-1776, which affects all versions of the Internet Explorer browser, including those used on Windows XP. The attackers got the exploit very quickly and started using this vulnerability to infect computers.
Considering the high risk of the discovered vulnerability, Microsoft went to meet its customers and, as an exception, released an unscheduled update MS14-021. But no one knows what will happen next time, because officially support for Windows XP has ended.
For companies that continue to use Windows XP, the security of their entire infrastructure is severely compromised, as workstations that are vulnerable by default become the weak link. Through them, attackers can gain a foothold in the corporate network and develop an attack further on those nodes that were inaccessible to them.
Thus, old computers on deprecated Windows XP become, by definition, a weak spot in any corporate infrastructure.
Due to its outdated architecture, Windows XP is at high risk
Vulnerabilities themselves and the malware they spread are not all threats, which are worth paying attention to in the context of Windows XP. To assess the completeness of the changes in the information security threat landscape, let's look at the changes in the cyber threat landscape from 2001 to 2014, i.e. throughout the life cycle of Windows XP.
Table 1. Threat landscape change during the life cycle 0021
2001 2014 The main methods of hackers in Vandalism, DoS attacks Theft of information, takeover of computer control Targets of criminals Random attacks, computer vandalism, website corruption, simple DoS attacks Specific targets, data theft (personal data, credit card data), botnets, DDoS attacks Criminals Mostly individuals, students, schoolchildren and other computer hooligans Professional cybercriminals, teams and government intelligence agencies Criminal motives Vandalism, public recognition, challenge to corporations and society Money, confidential information, disruption of unwanted websites and services Criminal Market Small market for criminal services Easily accessible multi-million dollar black market
As we can see, the threat landscape has changed significantly in 13 years. Back in 2001, it was impossible to predict such a rapid development of cybercrime. Many security problems went to Windows XP with the birth, as they say, "by design". The new versions of Windows 7 and 8 were originally developed with strict security requirements in mind and in strict accordance with the SDL (Security Development Lifecycle).
Just a small list of security-related improvements that have appeared in Windows operating systems over the past 7 years, see Table 2.
- Improved ASLR and DEP
- Full SDL
- User Account Control
- Digital Right Management
- Firewall improvements
- Signed Device Driver Requirements
- TPM Support
- Windows Integrity Levels
- Secure “by default” configuration (Windows features and IE)
- Improved IPSec stack
- Managed Service Accounts
- Improved User Account Control
- Enhanced Auditing
- Internet Explorer Smart Screen Filter
- BitLocker to Go
- Windows Biometric Service
- Windows Defender
- Smart Screen Filter
- UEFI (Secure Boot)
- Firmware Based TPM
- Trusted Boot (w/ELAM)
- Measured Boot and Remote Attestation Support
- Significant Improvements to ASLR and DEP
- Windows Store
- Application Reputation moved into Core OS
- Virtual Smartcard
- Picture Password, PIN
- Dynamic Access Control
- Built-in Anti-Virus
Statistics confirm the obsolescence of Windows XP security principles. According to Microsoft itself, other things being equal, the probability of infecting a computer on Windows XP with malware is now 21 times higher than on modern Windows 8. Or 4 times more than on Windows 7.
According to the antivirus company Avast, Windows XP computers are 6 times more likely to be attacked than Windows 7 computers. Avast believes that after the end of support for Windows XP, the situation for this OS will worsen even more.
After the completion of its technical support for Windows XP, the information security risks for those companies that remain workstations on this version of the OS increase significantly.
Companies that are still using Windows XP need to take a number of urgent steps to ensure business security and continuity. We recommend the following set of actions:
- Promptly develop a plan for migration to new, more modern versions of Windows and measures to minimize information security risks.