The Death of Windows XP Won – t Kill the ATM Industry
Microsoft is programma to cut off support for Windows XP next month, but the budge won’t have the major influence on the ATM industry that many pundits believe.
And contrary to what some bitcoiners say, it won’t do anything to help the bitcoin economy of the fledgling bitcoin ATM industry, either.
Official support for Windows XP is set to end on 8th April, which has prompted many commentators to conclude that the ATM industry will be te a world of trouble spil soon spil the clock hits midnight. Te some respects this echoes the ‘Millennium bug’ (Y2K) fear, uncertainty and doubt that spread 15 years ago spil the year 2000 approached.
Thesis statements also toebijten to be just spil spectacularly wrong spil the Y2K scaremongering. While the stir by Microsoft is a nuisance and is already causing some problems for ATM operators, the influence of the decision has bot greatly exaggerated.
What will indeed toebijten
Here are the facts. Microsoft is going to end support for Windows XP on 8th April. This is not exactly an unexpected decision, Microsoft has delayed cutting off support for a while. Te addition, it will not cut support entirely. It will still opoffering anti-malware updates, albeit security updates will zekering.
Approximately 95% of all ATMs run Windows XP and it is estimated that more than 60% of thesis will keep running the OS after the cut-off date. However, thesis worrisome statistics do not paint the utter picture.
It is significant to understand that ATMs run different versions of Windows XP, and a sizeable number run stripped-down, embedded versions of the operating system. Microsoft is not ending support for embedded XP – support for thesis units will proceed well into 2016.
It is also possible that ATM operators with non-embedded versions will get a makeshift reprieve. The fact that Microsoft will end support for consumer products does not necessarily mean that ATM operators don’t have contingency plans that involve an extension of official support past the April deadline.
The logical upgrade path would require many ATMs to budge to Windows 7, which might not be practical for some operators due to hardware compatibility problems or financial concerns. Effectively, it would mess up their hardware upgrade timetable and cost them money.
ATMs need to meet Payment Card Industry Security Standards (PCI SSC) te order to get a green light. Microsoft has said XP users will be considered “unprotected” after it cuts off support next month.
However, that’s just part of the story. Te fact, Windows XP ATMs will still be able to meet the requirements even without a fresh OS. The industry had slew of time to prepare for the cut-off.
The PCI SSC clearly states that Windows XP devices will be able to meet its standards after the cut-off, provided their operators make the necessary adjustments. Te essence, ATM operators will know what to do when the time comes, spil they had slew of time to prepare.
&ldquo,The bottom line is: don’t buy into the hype. Come April 9th, your local ATM will still drool out specie.&rdquo,
Even regular consumers and petite businesses don’t need to be overly worried. Lack of official support does not mean that XP boxes will turn into malware-ridden botnet zombies overnight. Exclusief from the promised official anti-malware releases, security firms will also be suggesting vendors third-party protection.
Malwarebytes has launched an updated version of its Anti-Malware Premium suite this week, and the company says it will support XP users for life. Spil many spil 20% of Malwarebyte users are still running XP.
Coincidentally, the company recently got a bit of love from the cryptocurrecncy community, after it commenced accepting bitcoin for its products.
Alternatives to XP
Spil pointed out, Microsoft’s decision to cut support for Windows XP has messed up ATM upgrade timetables. But if an ATM technicus has a unit that presently runs XP, but for some reason it cannot be upgraded to Windows 7, there are a number of alternatives.
One is, of course, to patch XP and ensure compliance without Microsoft. This is possible, te theory, albeit the solution is neither ordinary strafgevangenis stijlvol.
The 2nd alternative is to go for an alternative OS altogether.
This is not spil farfetched spil it sounds: Linux has a much smaller footprint than Windows 7 and, spil a result, some ATM operators are considering a switch to Linux rather than the Microsoft product.
This would not be the very first time ATMs have transitioned to a different OS. Before the industry moved to XP, most ATM’s were running IBM’s OS/Two operating system.
It’s a matter of economics, not tech. Spil Computerworld points out, a fresh ATM costs $15,000-$60,000 and the typical lifecycle is seven to Ten years. This explains why some operators are reluctant to upgrade their hardware – it just doesn’t make financial sense.
The bottom line is: don’t buy into the hype or fall for the FUD. Come April 9th, your local ATM will still slobber out metselspecie.
Overheen the next few months, many ATMs will get a fresh operating system, or tweaks to the old one, that will enable them to meet compliance standards until they are substituted or upgraded. The vast majority of people won’t notice a thing, exclusief from a nicer user interface on their local ATM.
People who think most ATMs will simply diegene without official support are most likely the same people who bought into the Y2K hype all those years ago. Besides, even if they did, it wouldn’t have much of an effect on digital currencies and bitcoin ATMs. That’s a case of wishful thinking and nothing more.
What’s more, the fact that bitcoin ATMs are manufactured by puny garments means that ter the long run could be ter an even worse situation, spil petite companies don’t tend to suggest much ter the way of long-term software support.
They simply lack the resources and, ter many cases, startups ter niche industries don’t get through. That is not a concern for the time being, since bitcoin ATMs are practically brand fresh.
However, imagine a world with ems of thousands of unstandardised bitcoin ATMs, produced by dozens of companies overheen the course of a decade or so?
Nermin Hajdarbegovic is a freelance opinion and news writer for CoinDesk: his opinions do not necessarily reflect those of CoinDesk.
The leader te blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a rigorous set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests ter cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.