I am still keeping XP. The reason AX is not being supporters anymore is because Microsoft wants to increase sales of Windows 7 and Windows 8. Never used Windows 8.
Just a marketing plan.
Ackkk... you just gave me flashbacks of a DBSTalk thread last year where DirecTV was discontinuing the legacy "Master Program Guide" (MPG)
, and several folks were even rejecting the free upgrade.
Any time you computer interacts with the outside world, it is subject to a security thread, whether it be from Floppy discs, USB drives, or browsing the Internet. Anyone want to care to guess how many security patches and hotfixes were released in that time span? Now, consider some of the end users who use computers, and your hair should stand on end.
I see that you are using an Apple product. During Windows XP's timespan, Apple released OS X 10.2, 10.3, 10.4, 10.5, 10.6, 10.7, 10.8, and 10.9. Anything prior to OS X 10.7, which was released on July 20, 2011, is now in a "unsupported" state with Apple. Also, during that timespan, Apple switched from the PowerPC to the Intel processor platform, and there was a lot of incompatible software as a result.
On thing to be aware of is that Microsoft announced end of support for XP back in 2007
and that support was originally going to end in 2010 before it got pushed back to 2014. In addition, end of sale for Windows XP was 2008/2009. Five to seven years is a good lifespan for a computer.
If you ever dealt with software development, either from a support perspective or from a programming perspective, then you would know how much costs increase when you have to support multiple operating systems and multiple configuration. The APIs and libraries for Windows XP are different from Windows Vista/7/8, not to mention that you have to check for 32 bit compatibility as well as 64 bit compatibility. The more you have to test and validate, the more expensive it becomes. And, too many people stuck with Internet Explorer 6 for a long time which came with Windows XP. Ask any web programmer what it was like to program in compatibility with Internet Explorer 6 style sheets, and they are like to respond in swear words.