According to a Monday blog post by Microsoft marketing director Stella Chernyak, a "two-year countdown" to the death of Windows XP has been kicked off by the bigwig software company.
Despite the fact that Windows XP - which was released in October 2001 - has been Microsoft's longest-lived operating system, Microsoft has recently reminded the users of the software that it will stop supporting Windows XP SP3 and Office 2003 with effect from April 8, 2014.
In other words, the disclosure by Microsoft implies that the company will no longer ship any security updates for XP and Office 2003 - which went on sale in October 2003 - after two years.
While Microsoft usually supports an OS for around ten years, the company would have maintained XP for 12 years and 5 months when it finally pulls the plug on it in two years' time. As such, XP will end up surpassing the record life-span of Windows NT, which Microsoft supported for 11 years and 5 months.
With Microsoft's support for XP to be discontinued after two years, the company is urging the users of the software to upgrade to Windows 7 at the earliest, as Windows 8 is yet to be released; and, according to Microsoft, statistics have shown that OS migration programs in businesses take around 18 to 32 months to complete.
Noting that it is "important for companies to complete deployment before support runs out," Chernyak said in the blog post: "We don't recommend waiting for the next editions of Windows or Office."