Leaked HP memo details XP reprieve until 2010, report says

Microsoft admits it is 'broadening the options' for Windows downgrades

Microsoft acknowledged Monday that it has "broadened the options" for PC makers to continue offering the eight-year-old Windows XP as a downgrade from Vista, and potentially from the upcoming Windows 7.

However, the company would not confirm specific reports that Hewlett-Packard Co. has been given the green light to sell new PCs with Windows XP Professional preinstalled through the end of April 2010.

"Based on feedback, Microsoft is further broadening the options provided to Direct OEMs to help customers facilitate End User downgrade rights included in the product license terms of a new system with either Windows Vista Business or Windows Vista Ultimate," said a Microsoft spokeswoman in an e-mail. "This option is designed to help Direct OEMs further support customers, primarily small business customers, looking for Windows XP Professional due to application compatibility concerns."

On Saturday, AppleInsider reported that Microsoft had given HP the okay to offer Windows XP as a downgrade through April 30, 2010.

"Downgrade" describes the Windows licensing rights that allows users -- and in their stead, computer makers -- to install Windows XP Professional while also providing media for Vista for a possible upgrade later. In effect, the license for the newer Windows -- Vista -- is transferred to the older edition, XP.

Microsoft allows owners of only Vista Business and Vista Ultimate -- the two highest-priced editions -- to downgrade to XP.

Windows XP went into semi-retirement in June 2008 when Microsoft stopped selling it at retail and withdrew Windows XP Home from use on all but netbooks, though it allowed XP Professional to be installed as a Vista downgrade. Since then, Microsoft has extended the final date it would sell XP Professional install media to large-sized computer makers and smaller system builders to July 31, 2009 and May 30, 2009, respectively.

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags HPwindows xp

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Gregg Keizer

Computerworld
Show Comments

Essentials

Mobile

Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?