DEAD BY APRIL: 5 Greatest Features of Windows XP

Does anyone of you guys remember the first days when Windows XP became available? I do! If I had to describe my first impressions of it, I would say “It just works!” Preceded by the release of a buggy and unstable Windows ME, the old dude XP was introduced almost twelve and a half years ago in the era when machines were big, noisy and slow. What’s interesting is that the XP is Microsoft’s longest living OS. Windows ME and 95 both lasted for six years, Windows 98 – for roughly eight.

Today is the last day of the Windows XP, as Microsoft officially kills its support. So we decided to remember the best features, which have happened to XP throughout its era. Here is my countdown of things that I admired about this OS.

#5 CD Burner

This was so cool! Thanks to this built-in function I could simply drag sound files onto my CD-ROM drive’s desktop icon… and my CD was ready.

#4 Device Driver Rollback

I could uninstall any driver updates and continue using the previous “stable” version. Actually, this feature is #1 according to my colleagues’ opinions.

#3 Internet Connection Firewall

In the official Microsoft’s documentation this feature is explained as a “security system that acts as a protective boundary between a network and the outside world.” Well, it did a great job protecting the system using packet filtering to block LAN, Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet (PPPoE), VPN, and dial-up network traffic.

#2 Remote Desktop

One of the coolest features that helped me as an IT guy to do my job remotely in a critical situation. Back in the days this feature literally sold me on Windows XP.

#1 Remote Assistance

Remote Assistance worked in conjunction with Remote Desktop and helped corporate Help desks handle remote troubleshooting. The user had to fill out a ‘Request for Help’ form and email it to the Help desk. The form prompted the user for an activation period and a password. The email message then enabled the support personnel to connect to the user’s PC to diagnose and fix the problem.

Did I miss something? What have you most liked or hated about the XP? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Jeff is a Director of Global Solutions Engineering at Netwrix. He is a long-time Netwrix blogger, speaker, and presenter. In the Netwrix blog, Jeff shares lifehacks, tips and tricks that can dramatically improve your system administration experience.