Then and Now: What 10 Years with XP Looks Like

Then and Now: What 10 Years with XP Looks Like

  • Comments 37
  • Likes

Let’s talk about our past. In particular, let’s talk about 10 years in the past. Ten years ago, Destiny’s Child was all the rage, Tom Brady’s wife was at the top of her modeling career, flip phones were the cool gadget and I wore a high ponytail every single day. Now, Beyoncé is having a baby, Giselle is now a football wife, flip phones are impossible to find and (okay fine) I still wear a high pony but only when I have on running shoes. We are talking about the changes in the past few years because Windows XP just turned 10 years old. While turning 10 is often lauded, in the tech industry it means you’re falling behind. 10 years is a long time to have the same old technology.

Think about phones – would you even carry a flip phone now? Think about music – would you still claim that Destiny’s Child is your top favorite band (if you or your wayward self ever did)? Think about hair – are you still rocking the same cut? Why then are you still on Windows XP when Windows 7 is so much better? Now you can use Snap to compare open windows, you can edit movies in a few simple steps, pin your favorite websites to your taskbar with Internet Explorer 9, effortlessly create screen “snips” and more!

Check out this infographic to find out more:


Our Windows Champions are joining the crusade to reflecting on their then and now. What we are learning is that a lot of people have seen a lot of changes in 10 years! Check out their photos, articles and more by clicking on the following links. Carrie, of Carrie with Children, just had a high school reunion and discusses what’s happened between then and now. Meanwhile, Glenn of Driven Forward shares his photos. 

Carrie with Children

Her Bad Mother

Jessica Gottlieb

Sippy Cup Mom

Our Ordinary Life

Our Kid’s Mom

Mom Start

Resourceful  Mommy


College Cures

Exile Lifestyle

Scraps of My Geek Life

Traveling Mom

Faithfully Free

Kludgy Mom

Bitchin Amy

Mom Spark

Being Alison


The Online Mom

The College Prepster

Mom Blogger Magazine

Dada Rocks

Driven Forward

And, last but not least I included my own below. Enjoy!

kl @ 17

You must be logged in to comment. Sign in or Join Now
  • jjfan50
    1 Posts

    I have to admit I love Windows 7 however there are some things in Windows XP, I will always miss...

  • JoshK
    2 Posts

    Oh yeah, and Win7 search is terrible.  Windows XP search (the old one, not with the stupid dog or the instant-search thing) could search within the contents of files, and a registry hack would let you search all file types.  Windows 7 search is so useless I had to write my own search program.

    The BASIC FUNCTIONALITY of an operating system is to manage files.  How on Earth did you manage to screw that up?!!

  • JoshK
    2 Posts

    "Why then are you still on Windows XP when Windows 7 is so much better?"

    You sort of answered your own question there, didn't you?

    -The Windows 7 GUI appears to not use hardware acceleration, making redrawing visibly slow compared to the instantaneous redrawing I get on Windows XP.

    -The ridiculous Libraries "feature" MS added because you think we are too stupid to understand the concept of a hierarchal file system.  It appears in the left side of Explorer with no option to turn it off.

    -Extreme UI inconsistency.  Ribbons, Aero, yet hovering over a window minimize button still produces an old XP-style tooltip message.

    -The retardation of basic functionality like changing the system color scheme.  Why would I want to choose a wallpaper, sound and visual scheme together in a big web-like interface?  It's insulting.

    Want to make a Windows people will actually like?  Do this:

    -Get rid of the user accounts system.  It's a personal computer, not the village whore computer.  With this improvement comes to opportunity to...

    -Simplify the file system.  Downloads should go to C:\Downloads, by default.  Documents should go to C:\Documents by default.  Programs go in "C:\Programs".  Simple, right?

    -Bring back the classic start menu.  You can make the start menu populated by scanning the "C:\Programs" folder and adding one shortcut for each EXE found, by the same name as the folder.  For example, "C:\Programs\Crysis\Crysis.exe".  Alternatively, you might want to find a way to identify each program as a game, work tool, development, etc., and put them in submenus in the start menu, i.e. "Games\Crysis".  Then again, you'd probably find a way to screw that up, so maybe keep it simple.

    -Create an install system with an install file maker provided by MS.  The operating system should unpack the contents into a subfolder of the programs directory.  When the program is executed, it should be sandboxed so it has no access to file outside its own folder.  If the application requests a file from outside the directory, have a warning pop up before a result is returned to the program.  If the user agrees, adjust the permissions for that program.  That way older programs will still work without being recoded.

    -Under no circumstances should programs ever have access to the registry, Windows directory, or the ability to install auto-startup processes!  This is what kills Windows for most average users, and what turned the PC into a replaceable bargain-basement commodity.  The user is typically too stupid to reformat their computer, so they just throw it out and buy the cheapest piece of junk laptop they can find once a year.

    -Finally, have some appreciation for what made Windows great, and stop lusting after the iPad.  If people wanted iPads they would buy an iPad.  Windows 8 is sending the wrong message, and saying "We give up, Apple is better, we don't even like Windows anymore".

    But I suppose that was way over your head because you're probably just a dumb salesperson, like all the people who seem to be making the decisions over there nowadays.

  • As far as I am concerned there is no reason to "upgrade" (matter of opinion) to windows 7 from XP. If you have vista well thats another story, I would consider downgrading to XP. I have two computers that I use regularly. My desktop which is a fairly decent computer that I built, and my laptop. My desktop runs windows XP flawlessly and I don't have any problems with crashing or the speed of it. My laptop is just an asus Eee PC that I bought to be more mobile. It came with windows 7 installed and was extremely slow. It would take forever for me to just load firefox or other basic programs. Another problem I had with windows 7 is that it seemed to do an update whenever I shut the computer down. Not a very good thing to happen to you when you decide you are done with you laptop and ready to leave wherever you are. Not long at all after buying it I decided to install fedora 15. Now instead of taking 700MB or RAM just to run windows it only takes 400MB to run the OS. The user interface is much nicer and more user friendly more customizable, faster, and even more user friendly than windows. Sure linux isn't for everyone but it is simple to use for the people who just do web browsing and facebook and is a powerful operating system capable of whatever windows is and more for the power users. Also another great thing about linux is that you have choices. You can choose between several different user interfaces such as Gnome and KDE and there are thousand of programs that are all free to do anything you need to and most of them work as well or better than commercial products. I would have to say the best thing about it though is security. Viruses really just aren't a problem with linux. So to sum up I would have to say that my choices for operating systems would be Linux then windows xp followed by windows 7.

  • windows XP was great.. I miss XP. its really more useful OS. now I am using windows 7 professional. thnks to microsoft for discovering this type of OS. Thanks again...

  • I really loved Windows XP, it was my favourite OS until two years ago when I started using Windows 7. I still use XP for some apps that aren't running well on 7... but is inside a VM. Furthermore, laptop manufacturers no longer provide drivers for Windows XP ( or even Vista ) on their latest products. When it comes to serious things, like a real IPv6 stack or firewall, XP is out of question. Running Windows XP today is like running Windows 98 in 2008: no one will seriously think about doing it.

    When people ask me assistance on Windows XP, the first thing I ask is: "Why are you still using it natively?".

    The real problem is that, because of the Vista fail, XP lasted too long, but IE9 and the Windows Live suite ( and probably Office 2012 and the next release of Visual Studio too ) no longer supporting Windows XP is a sign that we will finally say 'farewell' to XP.


  • not every one can afford a new computer at the drop of a hat

  • No offense to you people who have the money to keep replacing Operating Systems the day they come just because it is new, but Windows 7 is perhaps the single WORST operating system i have ever used. I have a computer that was built for XP, and that computer has been around almost as long as XP has been. It worked very well. We recently added Windows 7, and now the computer crashes daily. I can't replace it because I don't have the money to buy a fancy new computer, nor do i want to. No offense Microsoft, but Windows 7 is the worst abomination of an Operating System I've ever seen. Nothing here can change my mind. There are just NUMEROUS flaws with it. I pray that you don't mess up Windows 8 like you did 7.

  • i bought a laptop with original windows seven .but i deleted the windows 7 and installed a new windows xp sp3.sorry but xp is one of the best OS in the world

  • @ Gav80K Dumbed down? I've been in the IT industry for 20+ years and hobbiest for 35+ years...Windows 7 has the best interface I've ever used and it is enough for this power user!

  • Unfortunatly there is some bad directions since Windows 7 : with Windows I can't anymore manage my photos, neither read my mails since you removed it from Windows and integrated it to live (so no more corporate usage, no policies, no updates throught WSUS ....).

  • so

  • controlz
    145 Posts

    I really can't believe people still use Windows XP. It was a great OS at the time, and it was my first computer OS that I really used, but now it's just outdated. Windows 7 is amazing and Windows 8 looks to be even better. Why don't people switch?!

  • @Robert

    "Cisco VPN is NOT supported, and neither is a variety of SAP clients, EMC storage apps, and alot of other critical business apps, especially homegrown stuff still running VB6 and .NET 2.0 frameworks."

    That's not a Microsoft issue. That's the fault of Cisco, and the developers of those applications.

    If their not up to par, it might be time to find a new vendor. There just isn't any reason why those should not have been brought up to spec by now.

  • We are talking about the changes in the past few years because Windows XP just turned 10 years old. While turning 10 is often lauded, in the tech industry it means you’re falling behind. 10 years is a long time to have the same old technology. <a href="">Rosetta Stone French</a>.

  • 7flavor
    352 Posts

    Your latest and greatest OS Windows 7 cannot arrange documents or pictures freely in a folder - auto arrange is now a forced option. It also forces auto refresh on all folders, so files and folders are sorted forcibly the moment they are created, renamed or copied making file management really difficult. Windows 7 does not do hardware accelerated audio which XP does, it doesn't do surround sound in games. The search is useless, it never finds anything compared to XP search which is really fast and effective. Service packs and updates take hours to install on Windows 7 instead of minutes. The Windows Media Player 12 U is a disaster and drops many features compared to WMP 10 which was really the best WMP. There is no choice of a Classic Start Menu. Windows Explorer also is thoroughly dumbed down. Windows 7 is good for those who spend most of their time on Facebook and Twitter.

  • Tommyinoz
    46 Posts

    Windows 7 is not modern technology.  Some aspects of Windows 7 may be considered modern, but overall it is not modern technology because it's still based on old outdated ideas.  

    One of the biggest issues with WIn 7 is that it is a very bloated OS which forces users to throw hardware at it just to get software running properly that was running fine on the old system.  On top of that, Win 7 introduces unwelcome compatibility issues with software and hardware.  

    On Win 7, you need to reboot the OS after installing a single security update to the built in web browser.  How annoying.  I also use Linux and there is far less rebooting.  In today's modern age, I expect to not have to reboot the whole OS after an update to a web browser.

    Win 7 does not come with a Live DVD.  Despite it being 2011, I still cannot boot Win 7 from a DVD drive so that I can do things like try it out before I install it and also to make life easier to repair Windows that is already installed on a machine.  Linux can boot from a CD drive and give me complete access to the internet, a web browser, the network, and all hard drives installed on the machine.  

    - Windows 7 does not have a unified file system.  It still uses drive letters which is a hang over from the 1970's.  

    - Linux runs on just about any platform.  Windows does not.

    - Windows does not have multiple desktops.  

    - Windows still requires disk defragging process to defrag the HD.  

    - There are too many versions of Windows.  It just makes decisions on which Windows to use unnecessarily harder.

    - Windows 7 does not run well on old hardware. Linux does.

    - The 'Run As' option disappeared from Control Panels. This seems odd to me. With XP I could just walk up to a users machine and make changes to their system which the user does not have access to due to security settings.  I could run items in Control Panels as administrator and make changes without the need to log the user off.   Windows 7 with an emphasis on security and enforced separation of user and administrator is strangely not an option. :\  But I don't have this issue with Linux, XP and Mac.

  • 10 years ago I was using Windows 2000 at university before moving to XP in 2002. Shortly after that I switched to Linux and haven't looked back. I have to admit that Windows 7 is a lot better than Vista, but I still don't think it does everything I need it to yet without me putting in a lot of effort, so it's not for me.

    One interesting thing to note though is that Microsoft seem to launch alternating good and bad versions of Windows:

    Windows 95 Good, 98 Bad

    Windows 2000 Good, Windows ME Bad

    Windows XP Good, Vista Bad

    Windows 7 Good, Windows 8...

  • NerdMom
    5 Posts

    I remember when XP came out. I was already married by then (yes, I am old;). It seemed to fix some of the bumps of 95 and it is still pretty stable. But I have heard such great things about Windows 7! I can't wait to get my hands on it!!!

  • Mtnewk
    1 Posts

    In the end it is all about money.  I have a 10 year old car that runs reliably and is paid for.  I am not about to trade that in for a newer vehicle and the payments.  The same is true of my computers.  My wife and I have two six year old computers that do everything we ask of them and more.  But they can't support enough RAM to make the upgrade feasible.  So we will keep thm until they break. And use the only operating system possible,  XP..  

    We bought a laptop that has windows 7 on it and are pleased with that.  But upgrade is not possible on our old systems.

  • Microsoft.  I can understand why you are wanting to discontinue quite possibly the greatest product you ever produced, but Windows 7 certainly is not ready for prime time.  Cisco VPN is NOT supported, and neither is a variety of SAP clients, EMC storage apps, and alot of other critical business apps, especially homegrown stuff still running VB6 and .NET 2.0 frameworks.  You are going to do the same thing you did for Windows 98SE...extend it.  Most of the commenters here like child-like things like facebook and shiny things but fail to understand how critical apps are needed so businesses can make money.  I used NT Workstation 4.0 and Windows 3.11 UNTIL Windows XP came along.  Windows 8 might be the next animal I move to and that is where a lot of the trending is pointing towards.

  • XEmp
    1 Posts

    "...10 years is a long time to have the same old technology..."

    We know... that is why people are buying tablets and mobile devices instead of  PC's running Win7.  

    Too bad you dropped 'Courier' all because it couldn't run a Windows OS on it.

    Now watch as someone else gets the rewards while shareholders are left scratching their heads and wondering when oh when MSFT is going to pan out.

  • Gav80K
    1 Posts

    The reason I still use XP is because the Windows 7 interface has been dumbed down for the most brainless user.  To avoid confusing novice users useful information is hidden, functionality has been nested further meaning it takes longer to access and everything has been made painfully verbose to hold user's hand.  At the same time useless junk wastes large amounts of screen space, like the tool bar in Windows 7 Explorer with massive buttons to create a new folder or open the highlighted file.  To make things worse there is no way to customise your experience and simple options, such as disabling the useless Explorer toolbar, aren't there.

    Judging by XP's still massive market share it seems a lot of people prefer it's more consistent, efficient and effective user interface to 7's dumbed down, wasteful and inefficient UI.  Slogans like "Standing still is falling behind" and "It's time for change" make Microsoft look desperate to get customers to upgrade.  If you really want people to upgrade how about giving customers what they want - a user interface that is customisable and can be configured so that all the elements designed for morons can be removed.  Sadly they're going the exact opposite way and dumbing down further with Metro and further use of the ribbon.

    The reason XP has lived so long is because Microsoft keep trying to force inferior, dumbed down software on the users.  As long as Microsoft continue to ignore user's demands to be able to customise the interface to their preferences, the longer XP will live.  With so many people still using XP Microsoft better get ready to extend that 2014 end of support date.

  • yrreti
    1 Posts

    XP Pro has vastly improved from when it was first released into a very usable system, and I like it. Sure it still has some quirks, and Windows 7 may have some new and better features.  BUT!  The biggest complaint most have about switching to Windows 7, is what they did to explorer.exe, and secondarily, adding that limiting ribbon interface to paint and some other programs. I have two valid installed copies of Windows 7 that I use 'mainly' to test software that I write as a hobby, to make sure that it works on Windows 7. I rarely use Windows 7 because I hate using it so much. XP Pro's file explorer in which I use a lot, is so much easier to use.  I understand Microsofts need to sell software to stay in business.  But I want my XP Pro's explorer.exe back before I ever drop XP.  Microsofts heard this complaint before, yet nothing is ever done about it.  When support is over for XP, I wish they would offer a subscription service, just like you do with anti-virus programs to keep support.  I'll bet there is a lot out there like me who will support it because of the above listed changes in Windows 7 that they also intensely hate.  If Microsoft would give the option, or some how allow a user to get those programs back, I would then drop XP Pro.   As it is, I'm already starting to use Linux in preparation of when support for XP Pro is stopped, because I really do not like using Windows 7.

    Please give me back those programs Microsoft, and I'll switch!

  • XP is still great: It's light and it still runs all the software that most users need. Windows 7 is good, but it's not so good that I'd pay 200€ just for the OS and go through the trouble of reinstalling the whole computer again. For a home user the reinstallation takes at least a day when you add up the time of installing all drivers, programs and games. And when you have four computers at home, that adds up to a lot of money and a lot of time.

    It's actually sad that Microsoft hasn't really provided a feasible and affordable upgrade option from XP to Windows 7 for home users, except buying a new computer. XP is really old and Windows 7 is good, but when you have hardware that's still powerful enough for even the newest games and programs running XP, there just isn't any justification to go and buy the new OS for 200€. I mean I can buy a netbook for 200€!

  • Kradiel
    1 Posts

    @jasonosaj , have you ever used windows 7 ? People still don't upgrade for the same reason they are still using ie6. Many of them don't know how to do it, and the rest of them are just too ignorant to bother with stuff like that.

  • If Windows 7 is so great you wouldn't need to create a whole campaign aimed at convincing your own users to upgrade.  You made an 'infographic' for god sake.  Really?!!

    The fact that you have to try so hard just shows that Win7 isn't good enough to be able to sell itself.

  • @adriann -- ha :)

  • adriann
    3 Posts

    I finally got my friend to upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 7, but the first thing they did was switch to the "Classic" theme, which made Windows 7 look like Windows 95.  Doh!

  • angget
    1 Posts

    I remember when my old PC was installed my new Windows XP. But my pc was not meet the minimum requirements for Windows XP... :(

  • Let's keep bringing down that XP and IE6 marketshare!

  • Entegy
    42 Posts

    I hope Microsoft doesn't mind if I say "Die XP, die"

  • Here at my office we finally upgraded my primary desktop PC running XP to a laptop running Win7.  It was a long-overdue change, and I couldn't be happier.  I loved Win7 on my personal laptop (formerly Vista), and I'm even happier now having it on a computer I use pretty much all day.

    XP was great for a long time, but I'm happy to be a part of the Windows 7 family  now.

  • It's funny to see Windows XP launch reviews chastising it for "high system requirements". 10 years later, Those same system requirements would be laughed at!

    Windows XP was my first real OS, I grew up using Windows since 3.1, but my first computer that I could call my own came with XP. I crashed that sucker like crazy, learning the ins and outs of it, but 10 years later, it's almost impossible to use. In fact, it IS impossible to use. When doing repairs on the side, I have given up supporting it. It's just not worth running anymore.

    Happy birthday, XP, but you're better off to everyone retired.

  • abm
    268 Posts

    @Brandon LeBlanc, wow I envy you. :D  Windows 7 rules!

  • 7flavor
    352 Posts

    You just cannot celebrate it without trashing it can you?

  • Here is my "Then and Now" photo: It's my office from 10 years ago and my office now. 10 years ago I was a high school senior! I like my office better today and Windows 7 ;-)