Microsoft has beefed up its rhetoric designed to move customers off XP and on to its new Windows 8 platform by claiming the old OS is six times less secure than its newer counterpart.
Support for Microsoft's Windows XP, which was launched more than a decade ago, is set to end next April, and the vendor, as well as its disties and resellers, have been keen to lure customers into upgrading since the 12-month countdown began this year.
Resellers have hailed the end of support as a huge opportunity for them to cash in on upgrades and at an RSA conference in Amsterdam this week, Microsoft helped their cause and claimed the old OS will simply no longer be safe without support.
According to CRN sister site V3, which was at the event, Mike Reavy, Microsoft's general manager for Trustworthy Computing, said: "There are over one billion Windows machines online and we can use them to track malware.
"I'm pleased to say if you look at the infection rate on Windows systems you can see older versions are infected more than newer machines. Windows XP is six times more likely to be infected than Windows 8, even though it has the same malware encounter rate."
Earlier this week, Microsoft distributor Tech Data urged resellers to sell more upgrades and said that as many as one in three users could still be running the OS.
Windows 8 got off to a shaky start, taking criticism from some analysts for failing to boost the PC market. IDC and Gartner cannot decide if XP upgrades will benefit PC sales – the former believes it will but the latter said those who wanted to update would have already done so by now.
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