AVG and Avira are two of the most popular free antivirus solution providers on the Windows platform, and the latter it seems is ready to take up the task of providing security to Windows XP users beyond the official retirement of the platform.
The company announced the decision on its official blog, saying that while Redmond seems set to stick firm on its support end date, it will not stop its antivirus definition updates after April 8, 2014:
“The best alternative is, of course, Avira Free Antivirus which continues to be supported by Avira one year after the main stream support offered by Microsoft for the operating system ends. Avira Free Antivirus runs on Windows XP SP3 (32-bit), Windows XP SP2 (64-bit) and requires a computer with minimum 1 GB RAM (2 GB recommended).”
Obviously, the computer security market is as competitive and volatile as the web browser market, and vendors and software companies do not want to give an inch away to competitors.
Google, Mozilla and Opera, all three have recently confirmed that they plan on supporting Windows XP for either a set amount of time after retirement, or indefinitely — until there is a large enough install base for the aging platform.
Microsoft, for its part, has made it clear on multiple occasions that every single vulnerability that will be unearthed and made public on Windows XP would basically mean an open invitation for hackers and cybercriminals to mount attacks on PCs and the data they hold.
And not to mention they will only lead to more flaws that may be exploited.