Just how many Delta PC’s are still running obsolete Windows XP?

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If you happen to peek at many of the computers that Delta uses, you will see a large portion of them run Windows XP. So what? It is no longer a secure operating system since Microsoft has stopped updating the OS as of April 8th, 2014.

Should you be worried? Delta has told me they take passenger data and information security very seriously. I am sure they do, but how can running obsolete software accomplish that and it is not like Microsoft has not been warning for a LONG time that updates will soon be coming to an end!

end of xp support microsoft

Is Delta the only major company that has out of date XP machines? You probably don’t want to ask your bank how many of their ATMs and other machines run XP as it may keep you up at night. But just because other companies are slow / bad about upgrading does not mean Delta should be fine with old IT that is no longer supported. I mean, notice what Microsoft says about XP:

“While it’s true that you can keep using your PC with Windows XP after support ends, we don’t recommend it. For starters, it’ll become five times more vulnerable to security risks and viruses, which means you could get hacked and have your personal information stolen.” – Microsoft.com

Yikes! I am really looking forward to Delta upgrading a great many things, the award booking page for example, and I hope they also put forth a real effort to upgrade their out of date software as well! – René
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12 comments

  1. Although XP has been around for over a decade, Windows XP is actually a very good, stable, easy-to-maintain OS. Think of it as the MD88 of operating systems!

    The main reason that many IT departments haven’t migrated off of XP is that the next version – Windows Vista – was an absolute disaster, and Windows 8 is such a radical change from previous operating systems.

    Many large corporations and government agencies have purchased contracts from Microsoft to provide support and security patches until they fully migrate off of XP. Of course, I have no way of knowing if Delta is one of those companies, but I certainly hope they are.

  2. @Todd – They replace engines on MD88 when needed and Delta TechOPS is just about the best on the planet! I think it is insulting to TechOPS to compare them to Delta IT! 😉

    PS – You may have stumbled upon why the award booking site is so hopelessly broken – it runs on Vista! 🙁

  3. My hospital still runs on Windows XP. Right now were about to start a 16 month transition period to Windows 7 (a 5 year old project), but it appears that there is a software conflict with one of our medical records….

    XP really is like a MD88…

    FDW

  4. XP is still considered a good business platform even if Microsoft doesn’t want to support it. I agree about the security concerns this day and age. It reminds me the terrorist outsmarting the FAA in Die Hard II until John McClain shows up.
    Maybe if they lose some customer data they can just deny it and say the computer crashed like Lois Lerner and the “IRS 7”.

  5. Its not easy to upgrade large companies operating systems, especially when they have legacy software that could potentially break during an upgrade. Delta need to work on its reliance of Microsoft more than it does anything else. Forcing the Surface on their pilots just because they got ticket sales out of MS wasn’t serving their employees well. If you go to training, good luck trying to use your Mac. Its 20th century thinking at best. Its fortunate for them being a pilot for Delta is a hot ticket or they would be having issues attracting good young new talent.

    I hope they don’t buy inferior parts for their planes just because someone buys a certain amount of tickets every day.

  6. Delta runs Windows XP Embedded- as do many banks, ATMs, etc- which is still supported and patched by Microsoft.

  7. I agree with everyone else, this is much ado about nothing. I maintain a ton of XP machines because it is such a stable OS. Running the award booking site (or anything else for that matter) on Vista is almost criminal! ☺

  8. The end of support (and the riduculus five times more vulenarble claims) is only for the consumer version. Microsoft is more then happy to take big business money to provide support for years to come on their “legacy” systems.

  9. Most of the companies engaged with Microsoft for extending XP support to few more months, while they are transitioning to Windows 7. So don’t think it is an issue. I feel that any company focused on security, wouldn’t just like that use obsolete OS without a strong backup plan.

  10. I am so sad that XP has gone away buy if I were to guess all of the Delta XP computers go through the Delta network which hopefully has a higher level of security than that offered my Microsoft all along. I don’t think any of those PCs are connecting independently to the Internet?

    I do have a concern about the huge lack of updating by all industry. But has Microsoft offered a reliable new product?

  11. 2 thoughts I have here: Delta’s systems are quite closed and on an intranet — it’s not like the systems are on an open internet. I would think the machines are quite locked down too — someone can’t just plug in a flash drive and install something with proper credentials!

    Re ATMs etc. running XP — they are running a different XP version, XP Embedded system, which is still supported by Microsoft for at least another 5 years.

  12. “XP. So what? It is no longer a secure operating system since Microsoft has stopped updating the OS as of April 8th, 2014.”

    Trust me, XP was never a secure operating system. 🙂

    I’m sure Delta will be fine, as several posters have noted, Microsoft is continuing to support companies with contracts who still run on XP.

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