A guide into what's next after Windows XP April 8, 2014 final update.
Released: March 22, 2014
April 8, 2014, the last few updates for all users of Windows XP will be pushed out, and this will, also, be the last time that any exploits will ever be fixed for those who still using this legacy operating system.
Although, it won't happen immediately, it will become more and more dangerous to continue using Windows XP, so what is a person to do?
First, what do you want to do? Keep Windows XP? Upgrade to a newer Windows? Use a free operating system that is safer?
If you are looking to keep Windows XP, probably because who work with the computer, you will have to adjust the way you use your computer. Most exploits leverage the fact you may use Internet Explorer, and are running as an administrator. Create a new administrator account, and change your current account to that of a limited user. This way you don't have to recreate all your settings, and you get the benefit of being more secure within the Windows XP environment. If you don't need Internet Explorer, use any other web browser available, all of them will be secure. Internet Explorer is the only browser that has support for ActiveX, and by that point alone, any exploits that require access to ActiveX. You should, also, be running an up to date anti virus solution, and be running anti-spyware software. For ultimate security, use a router with UPNP turned off, and if you need a wireless network, opt for WPA or better security options. Keep in mind, there will come a time where it will become excessively dangerous to be running Windows XP, and future hardware may or may not decide to support Windows XP.
If you wish to update Windows, and your computer does not have support for UEFI, you only current option is Windows 7, but a copy of Home Premium is only $109, and if you ever decide to upgrade your computer, you can keep the same license. If you can use a 64-bit Windows, do so, upgrading will be easier, and you will be able to have more ram, as a result. If you can upgrade to Windows 8, you may want to, especially if you have Atomic Clock support and UEFI support. With the Windows 8.1, you can opt to boot into the desktop mode, instead of the Tile Screen, which is better for desktops. Each successive Windows OS has better memory handling, and will, also, be valid for longer with updates for years to come.
If you are looking for a good free operating system, may I suggest Ubuntu. Older computers will have more support than newer computers, especially with open source operating systems that neither have access to the latest hardware to make drivers for, or the companies themselves don't make or have any driver support. Nvidia is one of those companies that for years absolutely refused to support Linux properly, but times are changing with the advent of Linux based gaming operating systems, like SteamOS. Ubuntu is relatively user friendly, and if you ever have questions, you can always refer to my older episodes, or you can always just ask me.
Now, if you feel like buying a new computer instead, I do have a few suggestions. One, make sure you recycle your old computer properly, and make sure to wipe your hard drive. When purchasing your new computer, make sure to take out a warranty on it. Each individual piece has their own warranty, but what you might save is time, and trouble. I've already RMA my own computer mainboard and nothing is more annoying that calling technical support, buying a box, paying the stamp, and insuring the package myself. The total cost of sending the dead board came out to be 66% of the initial value of the board, most warranties in boutiques are definitely lower.
Host : Steve Smith | Music : Jonny Lee Hart | Editor : Steve Smith | Producer : Zed Axis Productions
It should remove all traces of the virus, provided the hard drive has no bad sectors on it. It it does, you the mentioned Spinrite to try to fix the hard drive then run DBAN after, but usually, DBAN can erase the entire drive without issue. I've used it on maximum and let it run almost 16 hours on my friends computer, that is why this episode exists.
Great! I am going to run 'autonuke' on a machine that has polymorphic malware, not sure if it is in the MBR or somewhere else on the machine. Assuming autonuke runs fully without any error, will it remove the malware from the computer with certainty?
Yes, it will wipe all data, including the master boot record on your hard drive. If you are unable to get DBAN to work correctly, consider using Spinrite to fix the drive so DBAN can work, rarely needed, good to have.