Microsoft doubles cost of XP support

Watch out, corporations – support for your Windows XP is almost as expensive as buying a new OS.

Microsoft is doing everything it can to encourage businesses and private users alike to switch from Windows XP to a newer version of the American company's PC OS.

Last year it announced that its support for Windows XP officially ended, and now we know how much it will cost businesses to hold on to that support.

A licensing expert spoke to Computerworld on the condition of anonymity, and explained that the per-PC price for Microsoft's custom support agreements (CSAs) for XP will be $400 (£259) for any enterprise looking to carry on with support.

Companies that sign the CSA will receive any critical updates needed, but these updates are not universal for all companies. Instead, the CSAs are signed on a firm-by-firm basis.

The original Windows XP CSAs cost $200 (£130) per PC, with a $250,000 (around £162,000) cap.

Many organisations around the world still use the 13 years old OS Windows XP, including the British government.

The numbers on the usage of XP vary.

IT security company Secunia claims that some 15.17 per cent of the world’s computers are still running the OS, Net Applications claim the global user share of XP stood at 20.7 per cent of all Windows-powered PCs in January, representing more than 300 million machines.

StatCounter, on the other hand, claims XP’s usage share in January was 12 per cent.

Microsoft recently announced that its latest OS, Windows 10, will come as a free upgrade to all machines running Windows 7 and 8.

And according to cNet, Windows 7 Ultimate edition costs $450 (around £300).