Post by steve robinson Post by Martin Brown
They may not have much choice for some of their larger scientific
instruments though. A lot of big ticket kit I know of that is still in
service only has drivers for XP and nothing beyond that. The odd maker
does use Linux but there is a heck of a lot of legacy XP still about.
That's not just a problem in the health service, many pos systems
are still xp based primarily because they need to seamlessly
interface with existing kit , even for smaller operations the cost to
upgrade to a later operating system is so disruptive to business and
costly to implement its avoided as long as possible
That's more-or-less what this article says:
Why do companies still use Windows XP?
By Chris Foxx, technology reporter
13 May 2017
Many jobs can be done using software everyone can buy, but
some businesses need programs that perform very specific
jobs - so they build their own.
For example. a broadcaster might need specialist software to
track all the satellite feeds coming into the newsroom, and a
hospital might need custom-built tools to analyse X-ray images.
Developing niche but useful software like this can be very
expensive - the programming, testing, maintenance and continued
development all adds up.
Then along comes a new version of Windows, and the software
isn't compatible. Companies then face the cost of upgrading
computers and operating system licenses, as well as the cost of
rebuilding their software from scratch.
So, some choose to keep running the old version of Windows
instead. For some companies, that is not a huge risk. In a
hospital, the stakes are higher.
The article also says Win XP will be updated:
How does the malware work and who is behind it?
The infections seem to be deployed via a worm - a program
that spreads by itself between computers.
Most other malicious programmes rely on humans to spread
by tricking them into clicking on an attachment harbouring the
By contrast, once WannaCry is inside an organisation it will
hunt down vulnerable machines and infect them too.
Some experts say the attack may have been built to exploit a
weakness in Microsoft systems that had been identified by
the NSA and given the name EternalBlue.
The NSA tools were stolen by a group of hackers known as
The Shadow Brokers, who made it freely available in April,
saying it was a "protest" about US President Donald Trump.
At the time, some cyber-security experts said some of the
malware was real, but old.
A patch for the vulnerability was released by Microsoft in
March, which would have automatically protected those
computers with Windows Update enabled.
Microsoft said on Friday it would roll out the update to users
of older operating systems "that no longer receive mainstream
support", such Windows XP (which the NHS still largely uses),
Windows 8 and Windows Server 2003.
Post by steve robinson
Post by Martin Brown
Instrument makers are only interested in selling their new shiny
hardware and almost never do upgrades for new MS operating systems. Done
properly with the instruments firewalled from the outside world and the
resulting data put on a shared drive there is no serious problem but if
an infected memory stick breaches the firewall then all hell can break