Although Microsoft has told Windows XP SP2 users several times this year that it will retire the 2004 operating system on July 13, users may not realize that they will also not receive any Internet Explorer (IE) security updates after that date. Microsoft confirmed that users running Windows XP SP2 will receive no IE6, IE7 or IE8 patches after July 13.
"Customers will need to install [Windows] XP SP3 in order to leverage the extended support (which includes security updates), which will run through April 2014," a Microsoft spokeswoman said.
To continue to receive IE security updates, users must upgrade to Windows XP SP3, shift to a newer edition of Windows, or manually download the browser updates from Microsoft's site. The latter, however, is not supported.