Windows XP will pass another milestone on the road to retirement next week when Microsoft withdraws mainstream support for the operating system..
While the company said that it will continue to provide free security fixes for XP until 2014, any future bugs found in the platform will not be fixed unless customers pay for additional support.
Mainstream support for XP will end on 14 April 2009, over seven years after the operating system originally shipped.
However, the passing of the deadline will place Microsoft in the unusual position of no longer offering mainstream support for its most widely used product. Windows XP accounts for about 63 per cent of all internet connected computers, according to March 2009 statistics from Hitslink, while Windows Vista makes up about 24 per cent.
Windows XP also continues to be sold with low-cost mini laptops, otherwise known as netbooks, as Vista is too heavy on system resources for this level of hardware.