Microsoft patches Windows XP against 'WannaCrypt' malware, despite official support ending...

By Jos ยท 18 replies
May 15, 2017
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  1. Last week, an unprecedented ransomware attack began locking up thousands of computers in more than 150 countries. The so-called WannaCrypt malware leverages a Windows vulnerability known as EternalBlue that leaked last month when a group known as Shadow Brokers posted a bunch of hacking tools that allegedly belonged to the NSA. Microsoft issued a patch for the flaw in March, but many organizations failed to keep up or are running older versions of Windows for which Microsoft no longer issues patches.

    But with some security experts estimating the number of infected systems at 200,000, Microsoft is taking the “highly unusual” step of providing a security update for all customers to protect Windows platforms that are in custom support only, including Windows XP, Windows 8, and Windows Server 2003.

    Windows XP’s continued popularity and the fact that Microsoft hasn’t officially supported the operating system since 2014 makes it an obvious target for hackers. According to data analytics companies StatCounter and Net Applications, somewhere between 5% to 7% of Windows PCs still run XP.

    As Ars Technica notes, this is possibly the first time ever that Microsoft has issued a patch for a product decommissioned so long ago. The last time that happened it was an emergency patch for Windows XP but merely a week after official support for the operating system ended in 2014.

    Microsoft says they are working with customers to provide additional assistance as this situation evolves, and that they’ve made this decision to patch unsupported version based on an assessment of the situation, with the principle of protecting their customer ecosystem overall.

    You can download Microsoft’s WannaCrypt Hotfix for Windows XP, 8 and Windows Server 2003 here.

    Permalink to story.

  2. hitech0101

    hitech0101 TS Guru Posts: 451   +34

    Typo in title '2104'
    Billybobjoey and Hexic like this.
  3. Hexic

    Hexic TS Maniac Posts: 333   +165

    2104 - now THAT'S support.
  4. aMerkuri

    aMerkuri TS Enthusiast Posts: 49   +19

    That makes me want to switch back to XP!
    Jos likes this.
  5. MannerMauler

    MannerMauler TS Addict Posts: 183   +44

    No kidding! XD
  6. Per Hansson

    Per Hansson TS Server Guru Posts: 1,959   +218

    Reehahs likes this.
  7. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,046   +680

    These companies and end users still running XP need to wake up!
  8. amstech

    amstech IT Overlord Posts: 1,936   +1,101

    I believe the Navy still uses XP, and pay a crapton of $$$ for it to be secured.
    In fact I believe TS posted the article.
  9. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 3,355   +2,004

    Still have XP running on one of my machines and it still does a great job ..... don't get me wrong, I really enjoy WIndows 10, but for some things XP just makes it easier with a lot less overhead.
  10. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,585   +250

    My XP desktop is now patched and it took only a few minutes. Thanks for the link.
  11. MannerMauler

    MannerMauler TS Addict Posts: 183   +44

    Probably because of old tech or hardware that would cost much more to rewrite for the newer operating systems or cope with recent operating systems
  12. Dustyn

    Dustyn TS Enthusiast Posts: 57   +12

    Really Microsoft? Really? Windows XP got another damn patch? Might as well start supporting Windows 2000, or Windows Me while you're at it. -.-
  13. 5hack

    5hack TS Rookie

    Do I need to run this on my windows 98 box :p

    PS. Windows XP is like the godfather.
    Dustyn likes this.
  14. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +651

    My Windows 3.1/Dos 6 is still protected! I love dialup!
    Dustyn and 5hack like this.
  15. reproductor

    reproductor TS Rookie

    Old printers and scanners work just fine but XP is the limit for the drivers. Still have XP on a drive but with network disabled so not bogged down with services running.
    I just read that 20% of Apple Macs are not supported with security updates, too old to install the last 3 OS X's going all the way back to late 2014.
  16. Jerimy AG

    Jerimy AG TS Member

    The patch saw the light just because Microsoft still supporting WXP on the US Army, don't be wrong kiddos.
  17. Greg S

    Greg S TechSpot Staff Posts: 1,073   +428

    They are being paid a hefty amount to do so though. It's likely quite profitable to continue under government contract compared to losing money by keeping it updated for free for the general public.
    Jerimy AG likes this.
  18. Jerimy AG

    Jerimy AG TS Member

    Well, yeah, whatever the reason is, the Gov have the money to run this operation and MS loves the reputation that this does.
  19. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,585   +250

    After beginning as an informative and useful thread this has degenerated into another Microsoft bashing session. :( I love XP but people need to move on for their everyday computing. Credit to Microsoft for being pragmatic and releasing the patch.

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