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How secure is it?


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#1 Chris030

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 01:37 PM

Hi,

 

I still own a desktop pc with Windows xp and I know that the security patches have stopped.

Because it was sluggish and full of things we (at home) didn't need anymore and the important things were already copied, I did a fresh install to clean that mess up. Now it works like "new" :wink:

We (mostly me but my parents want to learn a bit but won't buy a new one..) would use the pc mostly for news, browsing, research, typing, reading, ... Nothing fancy.

I also wondered if I can use it to learn to programm in Java for example.

 

Like the title says, my question is how secure the system still is?

How can I see or know if all the things I need are up to date? (adobe reader, ...)

I presume that the newer versions won't work on an old model like that and so there might be more security issues than in the newest version?

 

I also thought about putting Ubuntu on it but I don't know which version (there are so many x_x) and if that desktop pc could run it...

I went through the forum post "With XP ending, what are your alternatives?" and immediately did a DVD with Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS if I'm not mistaken. Just out of curiosity :P

These are the lines I found when going to properties of the system:

  • HP Windows xp with Service Pack 2
  • Intel® Pentium® 4 CPU 2.93GHz
  • 2.93GHz, 504 Mo RAM

 

Hope you guys can teach me new things :)



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#2 gigawert

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 01:58 PM

It will just get more unstable and more unstable due to no updates. I would recommend Ubuntu 14.04 because it is currently the best version of Ubuntu to date. With a tiny amount of RAM you probably won't get much done quickly. Ubuntu 14.04 will run on your PC as it requires 384 MB of RAM (i think). :)


John 3:16

 "God loved the world so much that He gave His uniquely-sired Son, with the result that anyone who believes in Him would never perish but have eternal life."


#3 Sintharius

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 02:32 PM

A Windows XP SP2 system is not secure at all (the latest patch is SP3, and even with that the system is still insecure) so I would recommend to ditch XP and get Linux.

You can also try out Mint, I just recommended a friend to switch from XP to Mint and he is very happy that his system runs rather smooth comparing to its XP days.

#4 hamluis

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 03:02 PM

Well...the truth is that many websites won't even allow access by XP with IE 8...which means that even fewer (if any) allow access by any older version of XP.

 

And...the web is not known as something where security is tightly practiced by most websites...if anything, the opposite is probably true, IMO.  Consider the flood of adware, popups, unwanted downloads, etc. which any Web user must negotiate each day.

 

Louis



#5 Chris030

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 03:25 PM

These were my thoughts about this...

Mint.. Another version of Linux? man, there are so many versions I don't even know where to look x_x

Will I be able to use things like Adobe or Eclipse, ... with Mint?



#6 Sintharius

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 03:28 PM

Mint, like Ubuntu, is another "flavor" of Linux. These are collectively called distros.

Most distros offer the ability to run from live USB/CD, so I would recommend you make one each and try them out to see if you like it before actually installing.

Common Windows software usually have Linux replacements, although if you insist on running the Windows version then you can try Wine.

#7 gigawert

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 03:34 PM

These were my thoughts about this...

Mint.. Another version of Linux? man, there are so many versions I don't even know where to look x_x

Will I be able to use things like Adobe or Eclipse, ... with Mint?

I like Ubuntu, especially 14.04.2.


John 3:16

 "God loved the world so much that He gave His uniquely-sired Son, with the result that anyone who believes in Him would never perish but have eternal life."


#8 Chris030

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 03:44 PM

Ah okay, I start to get the hang out of it.

Which distro would be the best for my desktop pc? Or do all of them work and it's just a matter of what I prefer? Do some of the distros have "special" abilities or why are there so many?

Would my pc be able to have a double boot?



#9 Sintharius

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 03:48 PM

All of them should work, so the best would be to try out live CDs/USBs since they are not permanent. Each distro has its own speciality, hence the many flavors to suit each person's needs.

You can dual boot XP and Linux, although I don't recommend you doing so because of XP's security weaknesses.

#10 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 04 August 2015 - 05:52 PM

I suggest you take a look at the Linux/Unix section on BC. There is quite an active section there on helping you pick a distro - with pros and cons - and a lot of advice on problem solving once you get one installed.

 

But follow Alexstrasza's advice and try a couple or three on CD/DVD before you go to the effort of installing one. The nice thing is I think every distro will run from a disc.

 

Chris Cosgrove



#11 Chris030

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 01:32 AM

Thanks for your help!

Yes, that's really cool! I already have one with Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, I going to try it out soon.

I will read through that forum part.



#12 Phantom010

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Posted 05 August 2015 - 11:57 AM

I hope you'll at least be updating SP2 to SP3.

 

Here are a few opinions on the matter (especially posts #2 and #58). I'm in no way encouraging people to stick with XP, but it's not as bad as Microsoft wants you to believe. The thread is a year old, so of course, XP isn't getting any younger. But, if you must, run it preferably offline. Otherwise, read the following:

 

http://forums.techguy.org/windows-xp/1123759-xp-really-risk.html

 

 

By the way, go through the malware removal forums and look for XP computers. You won't find many...


Edited by Phantom010, 05 August 2015 - 11:58 AM.


#13 Chris030

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Posted 06 August 2015 - 12:26 PM

Thanks Phantom, that was really interesting!

I'll try to boot my xp with the DVD with Ubuntu 14.04.2. Let's see how that goes.



#14 hamluis

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Posted 06 August 2015 - 12:56 PM

Note well:  I still run my XP installs on my two desktops that I use daily.

 

Realities are the following:

 

If XP is installed, there have been no security updates implemented for over a year nowl.

 

Those misanthopes that generate malware...well, they seem to have increased in number and intent to be nuisances...every year for the last 5 years.

 

IE is an integral part of Windows, there is no uninstalling it...and it is used by Windows for basic system processes each day that Windows XP is fired up.  It doesn't matter whether the user opens a browser windows or not, there is always at least one instance of IE running (see Task Manager) and various processes running via IE (see svchost.exe and others).

 

The risk of malware and/or system failure is real...happens every day, to someone.  Those who are unprepared for such (don't believe in backing up or cloning their O/S) react poorly to said risk...and often wind up singing the old "woe is me" song on this and other system-help forums.

 

As noted above, other applications installed on any Windows O/S...as well as any website you visit...can be a source of infection. 

 

Win 7 is probably the best Windows tested O/S thus far.  It's not a foreign country, doesn't use a foreign language for explanations or instruction...it just happens to be something that those who like the "familiar" choose not to like, IMO.  It's still available for purchase/installation and has the advantage of being the ticket to a free "upgrade" to the current version of Windows 10.

 

Users who don't have a Windows XP install disk...increase their risks when they continue to run XP...of not having a system which they can use or repair when things go wrong.

 

Although I maintain my XP installs...it's not because I'm in love with XP.  I dual-boot XP and Win 7, I have 4 computers available to me with at least one of those installed.  But the major reason I have deleted my XP partitions is the fact that other members here still hang on to XP and it helps me to understand what their problems may be, if I have an XP install.  If there was no activity in this forum, I would wipe XP within seconds.  Just as I did with Win 9x after I became convinced that XP was going to be a better O/S and more widely used.  Just as I dual-booted when I decided that Win 7 was going to be a better O/S and more widely used.

 

Those person who continued to run...Windows 9x, Win 2000, etc...they all claim to have cogent reasons for such...and we still have some members who try to offer advice/support for those O/Ses at this website.  But you will see (if you look) that the vast majority of users have moved away from the obsolete...and this trend will likely continue as more new computer users enter the "help market" each and every day.

 

Let go.

 

Louis

 

P.S.  I forgot about the linux plethora of distros...but any person still running XP needs to investigate those alternative O/Ses...for no other reason than the fact that a system which is incapable of being secure and used on the Web with some degree of confidence...is a rather large dead weight to boot up every day.


Edited by hamluis, 06 August 2015 - 12:59 PM.


#15 gigawert

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Posted 06 August 2015 - 01:05 PM

Note well:  I still run my XP installs on my two desktops that I use daily.

 

Realities are the following:

 

If XP is installed, there have been no security updates implemented for over a year nowl.

 

Those misanthopes that generate malware...well, they seem to have increased in number and intent to be nuisances...every year for the last 5 years.

 

IE is an integral part of Windows, there is no uninstalling it...and it is used by Windows for basic system processes each day that Windows XP is fired up.  It doesn't matter whether the user opens a browser windows or not, there is always at least one instance of IE running (see Task Manager) and various processes running via IE (see svchost.exe and others).

 

The risk of malware and/or system failure is real...happens every day, to someone.  Those who are unprepared for such (don't believe in backing up or cloning their O/S) react poorly to said risk...and often wind up singing the old "woe is me" song on this and other system-help forums.

 

As noted above, other applications installed on any Windows O/S...as well as any website you visit...can be a source of infection. 

 

Win 7 is probably the best Windows tested O/S thus far.  It's not a foreign country, doesn't use a foreign language for explanations or instruction...it just happens to be something that those who like the "familiar" choose not to like, IMO.  It's still available for purchase/installation and has the advantage of being the ticket to a free "upgrade" to the current version of Windows 10.

 

Users who don't have a Windows XP install disk...increase their risks when they continue to run XP...of not having a system which they can use or repair when things go wrong.

 

Although I maintain my XP installs...it's not because I'm in love with XP.  I dual-boot XP and Win 7, I have 4 computers available to me with at least one of those installed.  But the major reason I have deleted my XP partitions is the fact that other members here still hang on to XP and it helps me to understand what their problems may be, if I have an XP install.  If there was no activity in this forum, I would wipe XP within seconds.  Just as I did with Win 9x after I became convinced that XP was going to be a better O/S and more widely used.  Just as I dual-booted when I decided that Win 7 was going to be a better O/S and more widely used.

 

Those person who continued to run...Windows 9x, Win 2000, etc...they all claim to have cogent reasons for such...and we still have some members who try to offer advice/support for those O/Ses at this website.  But you will see (if you look) that the vast majority of users have moved away from the obsolete...and this trend will likely continue as more new computer users enter the "help market" each and every day.

 

Let go.

 

Louis

 

P.S.  I forgot about the linux plethora of distros...but any person still running XP needs to investigate those alternative O/Ses...for no other reason than the fact that a system which is incapable of being secure and used on the Web with some degree of confidence...is a rather large dead weight to boot up every day.

Are you talking about explorer.exe? I don't think it's the same as iexplore.exe. Explorer.exe is what shows the desktop icons and taskbar.


John 3:16

 "God loved the world so much that He gave His uniquely-sired Son, with the result that anyone who believes in Him would never perish but have eternal life."





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