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  • I asked Firefox if they were continuing to support Windows XP. They advised me to update to the latest version of Firefox or switch to Opera. Never tried Opera before and absolutely love it but I still need to know. Am I safe continuing to use Windows XP?

  • Opera currently supports Windows XP Service Pack 3 only. Thats the newest major release of that OS. Opera does not officially support older versions of XP. That said, no, you are not safe.

    Update support from Microsoft for Windows XP ended over a year ago. Any bugs or security issues that have been discovered since then or will be discovered in the future will never be fixed. Using a different web browser only provides some safety compared to running Internet Explorer. I would not use XP to process or store any kind of personal or financial information (medical records, taxes, paychecks, banking, etc). I would not use it to make any purchases online, pay any bills or log into a security sensitive websites (your work, your bank, you insurance, etc). I would upgrade to Windows 7 at the oldest as soon as you are able. That will probably mean getting a new machine though. Most machines made when XP was new aren't up to the task of running more modern operating systems.

  • And, Melbar, you might consider interesting to take part in this thread in the Lounge.

  • @melbar1940, Because you're using an obsolete system, from here on you will need to consider it as being fragile and more easily damaged than in the past. You're basically on your own with it. Apart from a shrinking pool of software that can be compatibly installed or updated on it, maintaining system security will now be your biggest problem.

    If you're going to continue using XP and want to avoid an infected system, you must now make it a practice to frequently and routinely check for security-alarm reports out on the net regarding new XP exploits that can penetrate your system. New exploits pop up literally overnight, and many of them are designed to affect even an old operating system. If you discover a legitimate report, you will need to take your own remedial action (if any is even possible) to protect your system. Microsoft is no longer informing you or protecting you against risks to your old operating system. Don't count on antivirus necessarily blocking them, especially for older systems and especially right after the exploits first appear. This is particularly true for those threats that can be delivered as drive-by exploits from ads embedded in otherwise innocent websites. __Any__thing brought onboard your system in the future will represent a possible risk of containing a new exploit, and that risk will only grow as time goes by and your system obsolescence grows. It's unpleasant, but it's reality in the modern digital world.

    To keep your risks low, you will have to more than ever practice "safe hex" in where you browse, what (if anything) you download, and what you enable in your browser. If you can, you should disable JavaScript in your browser for your casual browsing, even though it will break a number of sites; enable it only for sites you absolutely trust that have few if any ads. Adspace is normally rented out to other sites that may not have been fully vetted by the hosting website, and are the most common portal for drive-by infections. JavaScript is a scripting language that allows websites to do things on your system, and it can be and is essential to a lot of infection methods.

    What you decide to do, is of course up to you and your reasons for doing so. Just recognize the risks involved going forward if you elect to continue with an obsolete system. To reiterate, from here on, preserving system security will be your greatest challenge, unless you simply keep it offline. If system security will be much harder to maintain, then act accordingly in terms of what you do with the system.

  • Pale Moon (a Firefox derivative) has a special build optimized for Windows XP and/or computers with Atom processor:

    IMO, this is currently the best (certainly the most responsive) browser for Win XP.

  • +1 for Pale Moon - my third choice among browsers (after old and then new Opera :)).

    About XP - everything important was said by blackbird71 already. I consider it enough safe to me, but your mileage may vary.

  • run your browser in sandboxie. and you can use qtweb. my xp laptop is a little sluggish, and i found qtweb fairly light. i never tried pale moon on it though, and might compare the two:)


    Windows Vista/Windows 7/Windows 8/Server 2008 or later
    A processor with SSE2 support
    256 MB of free RAM (512 MB or more recommended)
    At least 150 MB of free (uncompressed) disk space