Windows XP was one of the most successful operating systems in Microsoft’s history. However, now it is starting to become a thorn in its side, as millions of Windows XP users around the world are refusing to let go. Nevertheless, Microsoft is making it clear that it is ready to move on.
After Internet Explorer 9, Microsoft has decided to drop Windows XP support from the next generation of Windows Live Essential applications. Microsoft confirmed this through a comment posted on the WindowsTeamBlog:
We know many customers use Windows XP and are happy with their experience, and of course we will continue to support our current release of Windows Live Essentials on XP and the new versions all of our web-based services (including Hotmail and SkyDrive) will run on XP. As some have noted on this blog, Windows XP is nearly 10 years old and simply doesn’t provide the same level of platform support for graphics, and we recognized early in our work on Wave 4 that we could do much more in our software on a modern graphics platform. As a result our new version of Essentials will require the new graphics platform and controls that are only available on Windows 7 or Windows Vista and therefore will only run on these platforms. So if you are happy with XP, you can keep running the current version of Windows Live and our new services. When you move to Windows 7 and Windows Vista, we will have a new version that will let you do more on a modern platform.
Windows Live Essential bundles various Microsoft utilities for home users including Windows Live Messenger, Windows Live Writer, Windows Live Mail and Windows Live Photo Gallery. Microsoft is currently getting ready to begin the public beta phase of Windows Live Wave 4. However, an early version has already been leaked on torrent websites.