I want to take another break from the discussion of the overall Support Lifecycle policies to address some common confusion that we’ve been hearing regarding the support dates for Windows XP. Recently, there have been a number of posts in the blogosphere about Windows XP and the upcoming end of Direct OEM and Retail License availability. Some people are interpreting this as the end of support for Windows XP.
Please let me try and clear this up… Support for Windows XP will continue, in accordance with the Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy. This means that the Mainstream Support phase will end on April 14, 2009 and the Extended Support phase will end on April 8, 2014. That’s at least another 6 years of support remaining for Windows XP!
Remember, that Windows XP was launched in 2001 and Microsoft committed to providing a minimum of 10 years of support (5 years of Mainstream Support and 5 years of Extended Support) at the time it was released. In accordance with the policy, when we announced the updated release date of Windows Vista, Microsoft also provided additional 2 years Mainstream Support for Windows XP. Last year, we also announced the addition of an Extended Support phase to the consumer editions of Windows XP. Supporting products for this length of time is not something that is typical in the software industry. This is a significant advantage for Microsoft customers, because it allows for future business planning and allows our customers to maximize their investment in Microsoft technologies by understanding how to achieve the most productive use of the product.
So, what is really changing on June 30th? To understand this, I would recommend reading the Windows Lifecycle Policy page and the official Support Lifecycle pages for Windows XP. Essentially, this means that OEMs and Retailers will not be able to obtain new copies of Windows XP. That’s it. System Builders will continue to be able to obtain XP through January 31st, 2009.
Source:→ Microsoft Support Lifecycle Blog
Microsoft, Windows XP