From time to time, Microsoft distributes packages called Service Packs, which contain all the updates to date, as well as some new applications that ensure a safe operating system. Below are detailed, since its launch Microsoft has developed.
Service pack 1
According to abbreviationfinder, SP1 for Windows XP was released on November 9, 2002. The features it has are as follows:
The most visible novelty was the incorporation of the Configure access and default programs utility, to be able to choose more easily which programs to use for the most common tasks. Another novelty that it introduced was the support for USB 2.0 and 48-bit LBA, so that Windows XP could support hard drives larger than 137 GB. As a result of a conflict with Sun Microsystems, Microsoft was forced to release a patch to this SP, called Service Pack 1a (SP1a), which removed Microsoft’s Java Virtual Machine. There is no preview (thumbnail) of Web files (* .htm, *.html) in the details on the common taskbar in folders or in the thumbnail view. Either locally saved web pages or internet shortcuts (url). Like the previous Windows XP operating system (without SP) and unlike the later ones (SP2 and SP3), the Multimedia bar is maintained in Internet Explorer (version 6.0.2600.0000), which integrates it with Windows Media Player. Support for Windows XP Service Pack 1 ended on October 10, 2006.
Service pack 2
On August 6, 2004, it released SP2, which included all the fixes found in SP1, as well as several new features, mainly focused on making the operating system more secure. These news are:
A security center, to check the risk to which Windows XP is subjected. New Windows XP Firewall interface, in addition to being activated by default. Added better Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support. Incorporation of a popup blocker into Internet Explorer, the ability to block ActiveX controls, blocking automatic downloads and a plugin manager thanks to Internet Explorer 6 SP2. Use of DEP technology (Data Execution Prevention or Data Execution Prevention) by Hardware or Software (Depending on whether or not the processor has support for it). Automatic updates are enabled by default. The Windows Messenger service is disabled by default. Outlook Express blocks potentially dangerous attachments (.exe or.vbs). The Add / Remove Programs window allows you to show or hide updates. Multimedia enhancements such as the inclusion of Windows Media Player 9 Series, DirectX 9.0c, and Windows Movie Maker 2.1. It does not include the Multimedia bar in Internet Explorer (versions 6.0.2800.0000 or 6.0.2900.2180), which was integrated with Windows Media Player. Like the previous Windows (SP1), there is no preview (thumbnail) of Web files (*.htm, *.html) in the details in the common taskbar in folders or in the thumbnail view. Either locally saved web pages or internet shortcuts (url). Here is a very useful program to re-enable Web page thumbnail preview (*.htm, *.html) in Windows XP with Service Pack: xp_thumbnail.exe According to the Product Lifecycle Policy, As July 13 as 2010. However, it will have extended support until 2014.
Service Pack 3
Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3) build 5512 RTM was released to manufacturers on 21 of April of 2008, and to the general public through the Download Center Microsoft and Windows Update, on 6 May 2008. The general characteristics they have been published by Microsoft in the document Windows XP Service Pack 3 Overview. SP3 contains new features: standalone updates to Windows XP and features taken from Windows Vista.
The SP3 can be installed in the retail and OEM versions of Windows XP and have full functionality for 30 days without the need to enter a product key. After that time, the user will be asked to enter a valid password and activate the installation. Volume license (VLK) versions also require a product key to be entered. 
Microsoft has said that Windows Internet Explorer 7 is not included in SP3; but it will install security updates for Internet Explorer 6 or 7 independently. Something similar is what happens with Windows Media Player 9 Series or versions 10 or 11. Although the previous service packs have been totally cumulative, as a requirement to install SP3 a system that is running is required, at least, Windows XP Service Pack 1. However, it is possible to integrate SP3 into any edition of Windows XP, including the original RTM version, without any problem. SP3 also contains operating system component updates for Windows XP Media Center Edition and Windows XP Tablet PC Edition; includes security updates for the.NET Framework 1.0 and 1.1, which are included with these Windows XP SKUs. 2005. It also does not include security updates for Windows Media Player 10.
According to information revealed by Microsoft and data obtained from the Internet, there are a total of 1,073 fixes in SP3.
According to Microsoft’s statements, support for SP3 will end in April 2014.
Various services are reactivated if they were deactivated when installed as the “security center”
Support for Windows XP RTM (without Service Pack) ended at the end of September 2005, and support for Windows XP Service Pack 1 ended on October 10, 2006. Support for Windows XP Service Pack 2 was withdrawn on July 13, 2010, 6 years after its general availability. The company ended the distribution of licenses to OEMs and retailers for this operating system on June 30, 2008, 22 months after the launch of Windows Vista. However, the Home Edition version was still distributed, aimed especially for subnotebooks, pre-installed and as a paid downgrade for computers with Windows Vista pre-installed until 2010. In addition, Service Pack 3 was supported until April 8, 2014, as well as support Extended for Service Pack 2.
The Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 version had extended support until April 9, 2019.
Main article: Windows XP Embedded
End of support
In June 2008, Microsoft officially announced that Windows XP would be withdrawn from the market. Later, on June 30 of that same year, it reported that it was not “finishing” with its second most popular operating system. Although Windows XP would no longer be sold in stores, Microsoft and its partners continued to support Windows XP for months and years. In fact, Microsoft offered support for Windows XP until April 8, 2014, as planned. The fact that Windows Vista required a larger amount of RAM, along with the emergence of micro-notebook computers (with 1 gigabyte of memory RAM) were decisive in the later delays in the goodbye of Windows XP.
On April 8, 2013. Windows XP ranked second in world use one year after its end of support, referring to the fact that out of 10 computers, 4 of them used it. The quota was reduced in its final stretch of existence, but not enough yet; Microsoft has sent an update to a newer version since it became more vulnerable in recent months to attacks from hackers who were waiting for Microsoft to remove the version, and it was estimated that millions of systems running in April of this year were attacked; This phenomenon was called Xpocalypse (Apocalypse XP). Since February 2014, Windows XP still presented a very high demand of 30%, while Windows 8, which is the system that Microsoft invited to change, barely reached the 7.8%.
On July 14, 2015, Microsoft stopped shipping updates and patches for security and antivirus holes. Microsoft Essentials stopped working there because the virus definitions were no longer updated, posing risks for people who still used Windows XP.
However, there are still users who are working with Windows XP. The reasons were the low reception of Windows Vista and Windows 8, the increased amount of resources required by Windows 10, the reduction in computer sales due to the Great Recession, the greater emphasis on smartphones and other mobile devices, and the difficulty of deploying the new versions in companies and states, especially in relation to applications, which have problems working in later versions in many cases. Many developers of the most popular applications such as antivirus, audio and video players, optimizers and browsers are still supporting it. Even with all these measures, critics recommend downgrading to a newer version.
By 2014, in China, Windows XP still worked on 40% of computers. This was due to several factors: the high price of the original copies, fears of the possible surveillance of Windows 8, which definitely forced the government of that country to ban its use on their computers. Also, the state of that country fears that the end of the support will increase the piracy rates, since most of the consumers prefer to hack the new versions instead of buying them. Faced with Microsoft’s indifference to this situation, major manufacturers such as Lenovo, Kingsoft and Tencent, dedicated free support and resources to help consumers move to later versions. In other countries,
Despite the retirement of Windows XP, Microsoft released two replacement security patches to correct the main vulnerabilities:
- A patch released in May 2014 to address recently discovered vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer 6 ~ 11 on all versions of Windows.
- A patch released in May 2017 to address a vulnerability that was being exploited by WannaCry ransomware attacks.