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John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8

2 recommendations

Strategies for Keeping XP - When You HAVE To Keep XP

I noticed that there are a lot of good suggestions for dealing with the XP EOL issue in various threads. I thought that it would be good to have them all in one place for easy reference.

I realize that moving to another OS is preferable, however there are times when this is not possible. I have neighbors who are elderly, retired and on fixed incomes. Upgrading is simply not possible for these folks.

I have been checking to see that they at least have a router in place, and are not connected directly to the Internet. I also recommend moving all of their valuable files off on to thumbdrives and keeping those disconnected at all times when they are not actively using them. A full backup would be better, but again, too much money for them.

At any rate, what other suggestions or methods can/should be used?


StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:3

4 recommendations

Practice safe hex
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!


therube

join:2004-11-11
Randallstown, MD

2 recommendations

reply to John Galt
I intend on doing nothing, different, until/if such time that there is a reason to do so.


therube

join:2004-11-11
Randallstown, MD
Reviews:
·Comcast
·Verizon Online DSL

2 recommendations

reply to StuartMW
> 1. Be very careful where you surf. To help you stay away from bad sites

I don't believe in that. What is to define a "bad site".

> P2P networks

Well that's ridiculous, if that happens to be the manner of distribution for the file you're wanting.

Eh, just use common sense.


Parad0X787
"If U know neither the enemy nor yoursel
Premium
join:2013-09-17
Edmonton, AB

2 recommendations

reply to John Galt


Blackbird
Built for Speed
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Fort Wayne, IN
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Reviews:
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6 recommendations

reply to John Galt
Backup, backup, backup! If you keep it backed up, no matter what happens short of catastrophic failure (like when the magic smoke leaks out), you can always get back to where you were.
--
The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money. -- A. de Tocqueville


DarkSithPro

join:2005-02-12
Tempe, AZ
kudos:2

1 edit
reply to John Galt
Put your Bank and CC companies on speed dial. Oh yea, don't forget about your clients. Clients come in no less than second!


DownTheShore
RIP tmpchaos
Premium
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Beautiful NJ
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Reviews:
·Verizon Online DSL

1 recommendation

reply to John Galt
said by John Galt:

At any rate, what other suggestions or methods can/should be used?

Install something like WOT or one of the other site-rater, so that when they Google search in their browser there's some sort of visual warning about bad websites. Just seeing an alert about some sites will at least make them aware that not every search result is harmless.

I realize that WOT and its ilk have their detractors and that not all the "unsafe" sites are actually "unsafe", but for people who might be clueless to begin with, they're not going to miss out on anything.
--
Patriotism is not waving a flag, it is living the ideals

I want to retire to the Isle of Sodor and ride the trains.

Life is just better when Jeter is in the lineup.



planet

join:2001-11-05
Oz
kudos:1

2 edits

3 recommendations

reply to John Galt
How bout a Linux distro like Ubuntu or Mint. If they have some space on their hdd, a live cd would allow them to try it out first then a partition and install thereafter. They could keep ole XP with a dual boot option. The perfect price: free.

davidhoffman
Premium
join:2009-11-19
Warner Robins, GA
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to John Galt
I second planet's idea about picking a good long term supported version of a Linux distribution. I am headed that way for all the XP machines I have or know of. I am looking at Linux Mint Version 13 Maya, Long term support release (LTS), supported until April 2017. »www.linuxmint.com/oldreleases.ph ··· ases.php

I am sure there are other Linux distributions offering similar capabilities. I have looked at Puppy Linux, EEEBuntu, Red Hat, and others. I have not ruled anything out yet.
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Frodo

join:2006-05-05
kudos:1

1 edit

4 recommendations

Re: Strategies for Keeping XP - When You HAVE To Keep XP

I think we should avoid the agendas and just simply stay in line with the subject of the thread. The obsolete XP is missing ASLR mitigations and other security features. But I think it is erroneous to believe that only Microsoft can advance security features on XP.
quote:
Host-based intrusion prevention systems such as WehnTrust[17] and Ozone[18] also offer ASLR for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 operating systems. WehnTrust is open-source.[19] Complete details of Ozone's implementation is not available.[20]
I'm not vouching for any of this, since I bought a new PC with Win7. But, on my virtual XP machine that comes along with 7, my browser of choice is Iron, since Chrome and Iron both use sandboxing techniques available in XP.

I like browsing in Palemoon with NoScript and RequestPolicy on Win7. For Iron, I'm using ScriptSafe and KISS Privacy as substitutes.

Just to make it clear, I think that using Firefox or Palemoon in medium integrity mode on Win 7 is as least as risky as using Iron on XP and perhaps more risky. I don't use a browser, broker or renderer process on my Win 7 running at medium integrity level for ordinary web browsing.

If I needed Flash, I would use Chrome, with its Pepperflash. I've haven't tried it, but I believe it will provide flash sandboxing on XP.

I don't think that anyone should be using IE after May 13th, or after the publication of a security issue in IE, whichever is earlier. Hackers will be able to analyze what is being fixed, and then use the information to attack the unpatched browser in XP.

Sandboxie, or a virtualized browsing appliance is another way to surf the net safely.

Don't run the browser with admin credentials. This can go on and on.

One thing is for sure. We need to skip the agenda part " it's time for these people to move on and spend a few bucks on a modern Operating System" and simply describe what we're going to do to secure XP. After all, I have two 7s, two XPs, a Vista, and a partridge in a pear tree.

And I'm going to do something with my XPs. Here's something I just did, today.


Yep, that's right. I'll try to avoid the nag version of MSE and see what happens.
Expand your moderator at work

PX Eliezer
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Graustark
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reply to Anon

Re: Strategies for Keeping XP - When You HAVE To Keep XP

said by DarkSithPro:

They contribute no money to the consumer economic growth....

Last month I donated some money to our local food bank.

Respectfully, I think that this money was better spent as a donation, than making the CEO's of Microsoft and/or Dell a tiny bit richer.

-----

Microsoft never made it friendly to upgrade from XP.

There was a direct upgrade from XP to Vista but why the hell would anyone have done that?

Microsoft refused to make a direct upgrade path from XP to Windows 7. If that had existed I would have upgraded long ago.

Now they want people to go from XP to Windows 8. Are they fucking kidding? Windows 8?

-----

I do plan to upgrade from XP to Windows 7. Not that I want to, but people nagging and nagging make it a necessity. Same reason I had to get my hemorrhoids taken care of.

But it's going to be a day or two of work for me, taking me away from my real work for NO real benefit in the end. And having the added expense of getting some proprietary program to help with the transfer because MS has not provided a direct path.

said by DarkSithPro:

They contribute no money to the consumer economic growth....

No, rather MS has caused enormous expense and waste for no real reason.

Real harm to people as well, as computers used in all sorts of places like shelters for abused women, schools that are not in rich areas, etc, etc, will end up being trashed and often not replaced.

-----

BY THE WAY---The British government just made a deal with MS to extend XP support for THEIR computers.
»www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/new ··· ent-deal

MS it turns out WILL do this if you pay them enough money.

“Winston Churchill: "Madam, would you sleep with me for five million pounds?"

Socialite: "My goodness, Mr. Churchill... Well, I suppose... we would have to discuss terms, of course... "

Churchill: "Would you sleep with me for five pounds?"

Socialite: "Mr. Churchill, what kind of woman do you think I am?!"

Churchill: "Madam, we've already established that. Now we are haggling about the price”


Mele20
Premium
join:2001-06-05
Hilo, HI
kudos:5

1 recommendation

reply to John Galt
You might put Zorin on their computer. It's designed for new Linux users and has a Windows GUI. I was going to install it on a virtual machine until I noticed that it comes with Chrome as its default browser. That killed it for me but your elderly neighbors probably don't have the strong objections that I have to Chrome.

Plus, your neighbors can make Zorin look like XP if they wish. A program is included so one can very easily add other browsers (but my objection is that I would not be able to uninstall Chrome once I got Fx on it).

»distrowatch.com/table.php?distri ··· on=zorin

»www.zorin-os.com/
--
When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. Thomas Jefferson

BlitzenZeus
Burnt Out Cynic
Premium
join:2000-01-13
kudos:4
I suggest you don't suggest things like this in the future, especially if you've never used them, especially for those actually expecting windows. I've ran it, and it's clearly linux with wine at a glance. I really doesn't look like Windows except for the start menu is remotely similar, but as a matter of fact many linux desktop environments are similar anyway. It's nowhere near a real gui clone of windows. I'd rather run a different linux distro, and do as zorin gives you less options than other common distros. Linux is a completely different world compared to windows, and wine is far from perfect.

It's also very easy to put Firefox on linux, very easy, you can even easily put Opera on there, and based on what you said you understand almost nothing about linux. It's also very easy to remove chrome, or chromium, whichever they have installed. Chromium is usually distributed for linux distros, and not chrome. Chromium is what chrome is built from, and doesn't have all the last minute addons. I actually prefer chromium over chrome, but you do need to install a flash plugin for it, unlike chrome flash is not built into it.

Also it's one thing to run linux in a vm, and another to actually run it on your hardware, however for purposes of checking it out it's fine to load them in a vm usually, not all are friendly to being installed to a virtual machine. If everything works through the gui it seems like it's great at first until you have to actually fix, or do something that requires knowledge of linux. Maybe you should just play around with it yourself in the future, I'd suggest you start with Mint, or Ubuntu.
--
I distrust those people who know so well what god wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires- Susan B. Anthony
Yesterday we obeyed kings, and bent our necks before emperors. But today we kneel only to the truth- Kahlil G.

Mele20
Premium
join:2001-06-05
Hilo, HI
kudos:5
I've had Ubuntu installed on VMWare Workstation on my XP machine but that was several years ago. It came with Fx which was nice. It did NOT come with Wine and I needed that immediately. I won't use any OS that I can't put the Proxomitron on. I have no understanding of how anyone can stand all the ads. I haven't seen any ads since 2000 on 98SE when I got Ad-Subtract program (based on licensed Proxo code) and later Proxo itself. I spend a good amount of money on my computers and no way I would do that if I had to see ads. Nor would I be spending $50 a month on my ISP connection. I simply would not bother with the internet if I had to endure all those horrible ads.

So, I was interested in Zorin partly because Wine comes with it, and from various reviews I read, as well as Zorin's website, as it seemed much more interesting than the distros I have tried (although none in the past few years). I know Wine isn't perfect but I know some members here who are long time Proxo users who got Proxo working on some Linux distros (but again several years ago when so many here were transitioning to Linux).

Anyhow, I disagree that folks should refrain from mentioning programs they have read about, perhaps talked to a friend about (who uses the program), etc. I'm sure the OP is perfectly capable of judging whether or not Zorin might be a possibility for his neighbors. I simply thought perhaps he had not heard of it so I mentioned it. I see no harm in having done so as I did mention that I have not installed it myself.
--
When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. Thomas Jefferson

TheMG
Premium
join:2007-09-04
Canada
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reply to John Galt
The couple of XP machines that I have that will NOT be upgraded to another OS are behind a hardware firewall and router (as are all my other computers and internet-connected devices).

Additionally, the web browser on them (FireFox) is equipped with various plugins to disable scripting, Java, flash content, etc. This eliminates most of the infection vectors that can be encountered while web browsing.

I should also add that these computers are not used for casual daily web browsing.


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8

1 recommendation

reply to John Galt
This thread isn't just for me alone...so feel free to recommend anything that others might be able to use.

Just trying to keep it all in one place, that's all.


sivran
Vive Vivaldi
Premium
join:2003-09-15
Irving, TX
kudos:1
reply to John Galt
I had three remaining XP machines at the beginning of the year. All see only very light use, not worth replacing or upgrading.

The most vulnerable one would be my dad's PC. It's not just XP, it's XP Home (ugh). However, given the success of the security measures I've used on it so far, I don't think it'll need any more special handling next week. It'll probably be replaced by a more up to date machine some time this year.

Security currently consists of:
-Layered ad blocking (HOSTS file, AdBlock, NoScript)
-Limited User Account
-Avast
-Sandboxie

Or maybe I'll just install Vista on it to torment my poor dad. I do have a spare copy.

My old XP laptop is on its last legs and sees little use these days. I'm not even going to worry about it. It too has ad blocking in layers, plus Avast, and also Sunbelt Personal Firewall.

The third machine, which would've been the absolute least vulnerable since its only remaining function was as a local file server, was decommissioned due to its power supply being on the verge of dying.
--
Oh, Opera, what have you done?


antdude
A Matrix Ant
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join:2001-03-25
United State
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Reviews:
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reply to John Galt
Pay MS a lot of money like shown in »www.computerweekly.com/news/2240 ··· -support from »news.slashdot.org/story/14/04/05 ··· ndows-xp ...
--
Ant @ AQFL.net and AntFarm.ma.cx. Please do not IM/e-mail me for technical support. Use this forum or better, »community.norton.com ! Disclaimer: The views expressed in this posting are mine, and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.


Bill_MI
Bill In Michigan
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Royal Oak, MI
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reply to John Galt
Maintain a disk image to get back where you were at any time.

I'm getting rather perturbed at those that look down on staying with what works and remind them... just who's interest is it to upgrade??? Three guesses and the first two don't count...

BlitzenZeus
Burnt Out Cynic
Premium
join:2000-01-13
kudos:4

1 recommendation

You wouldn't say the same about your bank insecurely keeping your personal, and financial information, even your money, so lets not assume everyone will be fine running an unsupported os. Just restoring it won't prevent future problems, that's not a pro-active solution. Would you knowingly enter your personal financial information on a computer you didn't feel was secure?

For ten years of support, in the special case of xp thirteen years, for a small one time payment some people seem to think that they're somehow entitled to more free support. On the home operating system side windows has the longest supported releases, and yes they are a software company. Did you figure that out all by yourself? Even Apple has stopped updating Snow Leopard, and that was released about the same time as Win 7 was, but we can excpect Win 7 to be supported until at least 2020. Maybe Microsoft should move to the subscription model, even charge for what are basically service packs like Apple was, but then people would complain, however apparently it's truly what they wanted since they can't survive off a one time payment of $100 or less per customer on the bulk model with assumed lifetime support. Sometimes people forget they are a business, and they have employees to pay.

That antiquated single core computer with less than 1GB of ram that came with xp doesn't even have sata connections isn't going to hold up to the test of time for the average user even in 3rd party software standards. Computer hardware is a fast changing world, even what trickles down to the consumers.
--
I distrust those people who know so well what god wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires- Susan B. Anthony
Yesterday we obeyed kings, and bent our necks before emperors. But today we kneel only to the truth- Kahlil G.


dib22

join:2002-01-27
Kansas City, MO
reply to John Galt
Many of us quit trusting XP years ago, anyone on XP now is in just as vulnerable a position as they will be Tuesday.

As for my suggestion: disconnect it from the internet.

I suspect you would see a 50% botnet decrease if every XP machine was simply disconnected from the internet.

The real fix would be to move to 7, or since cost is so prohibitive, move to a Linux flavor.


Davesnothere
No-BHELL-ity DOES have its Advantages
Premium
join:2009-06-15
START Today!
kudos:7

1 edit

1 recommendation

reply to John Galt
 
IMNSHO, everything which you have suggested in your OP would be top-notch advice for the user of ANY version of Windows.

And also, it is not necessarily a question of HAVING to keep XP.

I have at least 1 XP PC and one other with Win2K, and do not WANT to change OS, nor buy new hardware - even if I HAVE the money.

All advice offered by yourself and others here would apply equally well to ME.

These are the general rules, XP or other OS, as I see them :

(1) Learn how to be careful on the web, and practise it. - There are many subsections to this rule.

(2) Install decent 3rd party Anti-Malware / Security software, and keep it current.

(3) Backup all important files (documents, pictures, contacts, bookmarks, etc) to at least 2 other places which are outside of the computer, and do not let both backups be on the same type of media. (These can include CDs, DVDs, Flash Drives, External Hard Drives, Tape Drives, Cloud [Internet] Storage.)

And update the backups regularly (or make further complete backups), and store the newest backup offsite (different street address).

Most of this stuff is common sense, but it can never be said often enough.


Bill_MI
Bill In Michigan
Premium,MVM
join:2001-01-03
Royal Oak, MI
kudos:2
Reviews:
·WOW Internet and..
reply to BlitzenZeus
said by BlitzenZeus:

Maybe Microsoft should move to the subscription model, even charge for what are basically service packs like Apple was, but then people would complain, however apparently it's truly what they wanted since they can't survive off a one time payment of $100 or less per customer on the bulk model with assumed lifetime support. Sometimes people forget they are a business, and they have employees to pay.

And they seem to have missed an opportunity to take advantage at the popularity of XP. For the little guy, anyway. Some big companies and governments are gladly paying for it. Instead, they want to push bloated junk and call it new. Ha! They couldn't sell it off because we know the code isn't all that removed from the stuff they're pushing now.

And don't forget the ultimate politics. MS is obviously anti-elderly!

A lot is moot. Just wait a few decades... when proprietary software will dwindle to niche applications simply because the business model will be gone. Good riddance!


Davesnothere
No-BHELL-ity DOES have its Advantages
Premium
join:2009-06-15
START Today!
kudos:7

2 recommendations

reply to davidhoffman
said by davidhoffman:

I second planet's idea about picking a good long term supported version of a Linux distribution. I am headed that way for all the XP machines I have or know of. I am looking at Linux Mint Version 13 Maya, Long term support release (LTS), supported until April 2017. »www.linuxmint.com/oldreleases.ph ··· ases.php ....

 
I played with Linux Mint & Ubuntu, 'Live' booting from Flash Drives on a laptop last year.

From Linux, I could access the data on my internal hard drive which had XP on it - I think it was set as FAT32.

Mint is pretty friendly, and it HAS a Start Menu too, in case any grumpy Windoze 8.x users are reading along here.

Might be a worthwhile alternative to ANY version of Windows for some of us.

Hmmmm....
Expand your moderator at work


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8

5 recommendations

reply to Anon

Re: Strategies for Keeping XP - When You HAVE To Keep XP

Most of these people are old-timers (70-80 yo) on fixed incomes. I bake them bread and make soup for them a couple times a week. Most of them are deferring property taxes until they die.

One of them had XP SP0 and was connected directly to his DSL modem. No updates, ever. Risky business that..of course he was totally infected. Got that cleaned up and put behind a donated Linky box.

Bread is ready to go in the oven...gotta go!