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Security Threat Amplification (Part III of III)

vol15 fig3 smallWindows XP analysts, such as myself, are hyper-focused on the percentage of market share that Windows XP holds today. Why? Because by definition, the number should be declining rapidly. You would expect such a decline with all the migration motion and message amplification occurring “out there.” But as you will see, there are mixed measurements in the real world. Hang on fast, as the measurements vary widely.

Scott Bekker, editor of Redmond Channel Partner Magazine, found that Net Applications is reporting that the rate of Windows XP eradication has slowed and stands at 31.24 percent as of November 1, 2013. Read his excellent work here.

The Microsoft Security Intelligence Report, Volume 15 that I’ve been writing about for this series of articles, has a differet gathering methodology with different results. Windows XP makes up approximately 21% of the worldwide operating system market today (see the figure above), a statistic which was pulled from web analytics first StatCounter. You can see their global stat charts here. I believe the default looks at web browser market share, but you can change the parameters to look at operating systems, as well as a few other things. Also, now that we’ve rolled in to November, StatCounter has October statistics available, so the number you’ll see for October 2013 (20.06%) is slightly less than the “approximately 21%” than was the 20.59% for September 2013.

So there you have it. Another look at the Windows XP migration matter is now complete. Don’t forget to learn more about this study using these resources:

Press Room

Microsoft Security Newsroom

SIRv15 Press Release

SIRv15 Digital Slideshow

 

Informative Blogs

Microsoft on the Issues Blog

Microsoft Security Blog

Trustworthy Computing Blog

Malware Protection Center Blog

 

Website

www.microsoft.com/sir

 

SIRv15 Report

Full Report

Key Findings

Regional Data

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Comments 1

Stephen on Monday, 25 November 2013 16:45

Junk data, see George Bernard Shaw on lying with statistics. And Windows has an even lower share of devices if we count Smartphone and Tablet browsers. Last legitimate Enterprise survey I saw had 45% XP. Our SMB customer database has 50% XP, 20% Win7, 5% Vista, 2% Win8, rest non-Windows or older Windows. (Some top 100 financial institutions still running DOS apps.) Note that embedded XP, e.g. POS systems, don't surf the web and Microsoft is supporting embedded XP until 1/12/2016. And consider that XP will continue to work after 4/2014; Microsoft has not even announce it has disabled new activations. In fact the only thing lost is Microsoft updates (yay, no patch Tuesday); can you tell me how many new exploits Microsoft has patched in XP versus the gigabytes of updates for flaws in previous updates? I give you the 4% Windows 2000 machines of our customers that have not had a security breach since Microsoft stopped supporting THAT operating system (security breaches on our customer machines are primarily on Win8 and Win7 machines). And one thing your magazine has turned a blind eye to (but important to us as Service Provider) is the companies offering sundown support for XP that have approached us. We will stop selling software from Security vendors that are dropping support for XP.
A more IMPORTANT fact that you seem oblivious of, is the percentage of SMBs still using Server 2003 (~45%), which support ends 7/14/2015. We see a higher rate of migration of these customers to "serverless" (incl. Router centered network) or Linux Server (aren't most routers Linux?) infrastructure rather than migration to newer Microsoft Server software.
Um, shshsh and don't tell, but XP is based on codebase NT 5.2, same as Server 2003 and XP embedded; there will be updates for that codebase per Microsoft. Vista was codebase NT 6.0, Win7 is NT 6.1, and Win8 is NT codebase 6.2: note that core operating system bugs "to be fixed in 6.0" per Microsoft have not yet been fixed in Windows 8.1 (because they are rooted in the core NT6 functionality). The smart money would be to wait until codebase NT7 operating system is released in 2016, assuming Microsoft is still around after Balmer's mistakes.

Junk data, see George Bernard Shaw on lying with statistics. And Windows has an even lower share of devices if we count Smartphone and Tablet browsers. Last legitimate Enterprise survey I saw had 45% XP. Our SMB customer database has 50% XP, 20% Win7, 5% Vista, 2% Win8, rest non-Windows or older Windows. (Some top 100 financial institutions still running DOS apps.) Note that embedded XP, e.g. POS systems, don't surf the web and Microsoft is supporting embedded XP until 1/12/2016. And consider that XP will continue to work after 4/2014; Microsoft has not even announce it has disabled new activations. In fact the only thing lost is Microsoft updates (yay, no patch Tuesday); can you tell me how many new exploits Microsoft has patched in XP versus the gigabytes of updates for flaws in previous updates? I give you the 4% Windows 2000 machines of our customers that have not had a security breach since Microsoft stopped supporting THAT operating system (security breaches on our customer machines are primarily on Win8 and Win7 machines). And one thing your magazine has turned a blind eye to (but important to us as Service Provider) is the companies offering sundown support for XP that have approached us. We will stop selling software from Security vendors that are dropping support for XP. A more IMPORTANT fact that you seem oblivious of, is the percentage of SMBs still using Server 2003 (~45%), which support ends 7/14/2015. We see a higher rate of migration of these customers to "serverless" (incl. Router centered network) or Linux Server (aren't most routers Linux?) infrastructure rather than migration to newer Microsoft Server software. Um, shshsh and don't tell, but XP is based on codebase NT 5.2, same as Server 2003 and XP embedded; there will be updates for that codebase per Microsoft. Vista was codebase NT 6.0, Win7 is NT 6.1, and Win8 is NT codebase 6.2: note that core operating system bugs "to be fixed in 6.0" per Microsoft have not yet been fixed in Windows 8.1 (because they are rooted in the core NT6 functionality). The smart money would be to wait until codebase NT7 operating system is released in 2016, assuming Microsoft is still around after Balmer's mistakes.
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Friday, 20 October 2017