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Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Windows XP.

Welcome to the Retro Windows Wiki, a community support wiki for older versions of Windows.

Over 25 articles. Started as Windows XP Forever in June 2020, became Retro Windows Wiki in March 2022.

Microsoft doesn't support old Windows versions anymore, but we (the users) do. This is a guide that aims to keep older Windows versions going for decades to come. By encouraging writing new software and drivers for them. As the Windows Versions are out of support from Microsoft and now considered retro operating systems be sure to read about precautions for using retro Windows.

This wiki covers Windows from pre 1.0 to Windows 7. When Windows 8.1 ends support it will added too.


Our other wikis : Apple silicon MacsEncycloplexTelevision Forever

Important notices[edit]

Windows XP[edit]

  • The source codes for Windows XP has been leaked. Expect exploits for unpatched security holes to be developed. Be sure to follow the precautions more diligently.
  • Microsoft has discontinued all update servers for Windows XP (along with Windows 2000 and Vista) as of 3rd August 2020. Update: Microsoft has also removed most XP updates from the update catalog too. Use an unofficial collection such as the UO-SP4 pack. A customisable 'update rollup' pack would be nice in the future.
  • The SHA-1 Root certificate expired on the 9th of May 2021. Expect certificate errors and problems installing drivers.
  • With the increasing amount ransomware and cyber attacks targeting computer systems, it is crucial to make regular backups and use sufficient antivirus and firewalls. Don't use Windows XP with any data you cannot afford to lose.
  • Google Chrome has been showing "your clock is ahead" errors on Windows XP. Updating root certificates from BlackWingCat's root certificates update solves the problem for now. Also The IdentTrust DST Root CA X3 certificate expired on 30th September 2021, meaning many browsers will break without a certificate update.
  • Disputes between the Pale Moon developers with Mypal and New Moon have caused development to cease, leaving the future of these browsers uncertain.

Windows 7[edit]

  • Microsoft has deleted most Windows Vista updates from the update catalog as well as other Vista related updates from Microsoft.com. They really want people to forget Vista existed. Use Archive.org to get lost updates, but even some of these are missing.
  • Windows 7 now gets a 0x80072efe error when installing updates on some computers. This update solves the issue for now.
  • Fresh installs of Windows 7 are getting certificate errors on many websites, be sure to install all updates from Windows update first. Or use Firefox as it uses its own certificates. You will need to install specific updates from the update catalog if you get Windows update errors.
  • As of April 2022 the Microsoft Update Catalog has switched to using HTTPS. You may need to download updates from a newer computer if you don't have a compatible browser installed.

Rules[edit]

  • No links to pirated versions of Windows, product keys or illegal leaked source code. If you want a free alternative, check out ReactOS or Wine on Linux systems.
  • Visitors are welcome to edit this wiki to add more information about older Windows. It is intended to be a community knowledge base providing self support to the existing userbase.
  • To be covered on this wiki, the version of Windows' covered must be out of extended support by Microsoft. Currently this includes Windows up to Windows 7. Windows 8.1 will be included on this wiki from January 10 2023.
  • Anyone with a Miraheze account (or unregistered) can contribute here, the userbox template is available for user pages.

Caution about Windows 11[edit]

Windows 11 is forcing the obsolescence of almost a billion computers due to its arbitrarily strict system requirements and is also getting rid of the loopholes to skip creating a Microsoft account, and now even the Pro version requires one. It is unusable in homes without an Internet connection creating a chicken and egg situation. There are also ethical concerns with the forced use of TPM and secure boot unless someone will invent a USB TPM dongle and USB secure boot adapter.

As nearly all computers that originally came with Windows 7, 8 and around half of Windows 10 are not Windows 11 compatible, this wiki recommends either using Windows 7 under precaution or using Windows 10 until Microsoft admits their mistakes. Windows 11 requires people for buying a new machine, because of new TPM requirements and most computers can't complete the requirement. Even though there are registry keys that bypass the restrictions eventually Microsoft will release an update that breaks computers using them.

Windows 7 & Vista Articles[edit]

Windows 2000 and earlier[edit]

XP Forever is possible[edit]

You Can Do This Today.

Hardware for XP[edit]

Driver challengesSATASSDUSBUEFINVMESSE2x64GPUInternet AccessKerish Doctor.

Virtual machines and emulators[edit]

VirtualBoxQEMUGNOME BoxesPCem and 86boxHyperVVMWareParallelsBochsVirtual PCApple Silicon MacsExtended Kernel

Software for XP[edit]

Software challenges

Productivity[edit]

Scan and copy driversApache OpenOfficeThe Document Foundation LibreOfficeText EditorspdfmediaSnipping tool for XP.

Gaming[edit]

Gaming ChallengesSteamOriginEpic Games StoreGames included with Windows XP -- Age of Empires

Communication[edit]

Communication challengesDiscordZoomSlackIRCEmailSkypeTelegramVLC PlayerGoogle Earth

Entertainment[edit]

Most entertainment sites won't work due to digital restrictions management incompatible with Windows XP. Support companies that offer DRM free media.

Entertainment challengesNetflixYouTubeHuluCrunchyrollDiscovery+HBO MaxDisney+Star+Paramount+Amazon Prime Video

Graphics[edit]

Graphics challengesPicPickShareX

Utilities for XP[edit]

BackupDefragmentingPartitioningNirSoftList of current antivirus programs

Browsers for XP[edit]

Due to the lack of HTTPS support and lack of TLS 1.2/1.3, Internet Explorer 6 (the default browser that comes with Windows XP) can no longer access websites except HTTP-only websites. For a alternative, try these ones.

Chrome clones[edit]

360 Extreme Explorer2345 ExplorerKafan MiniBrowser

Firefox clones[edit]

New MoonArctic FoxMypalK-meleonSerpent (Basilisk) – Iceape-UXPMore

Opera clones[edit]

Otter BrowserOpera Unofficial

No longer supports XP and closed projects[edit]

Internet ExplorerFirefoxSafariChromeOperaTS BrowserMaxthonVivaldiCentauryBaidu BrowserQQ browserSogouMore

Browser help[edit]

User agent spoofingUpdating root certificatesYouTube

Updates and security for XP[edit]

POSReady (EOL) – SP4BackupsWindows Update (shut down) – List of current antivirus programsUpdating root certificates

Windows 7 browsers[edit]

Internet ExplorerEdgeGoogle ChromeChromiumMozilla FirefoxPale MoonWaterfoxVivaldiOperaBraveK-Meleon

Windows culture[edit]

Windows XP culture[edit]

Why we use XP20th AnniversaryBlissYes you canLike Humans DoSetup MusicRover (dog)LunaUsage of Windows XPCodename WhistlerWindows XP related websites

Windows Vista culture[edit]

Why we use VistaThe Wow Starts NowDremesceneThe Mojave experiment

Windows 7 culture[edit]

Why we use 7Music in Windows 7Usage of Windows 7Windows 7 Whopper

Events[edit]

  • April 11, 2017. End of Windows Vista support.
  • August 31, 2019. Windows XP Lost full support.
  • January 14, 2020. End of Windows 7 support.
  • August 3, 2020. Microsoft discontinued the update servers for Windows XP, Vista and 2000. Meaning it is no longer safe to use online.
  • May 9, 2021. SHA-1 Root certificate expired.
  • June 19, 2021. This wiki celebrated its first anniversary.
  • June 24, 2021. Windows 11 was revealed.
  • June 2021. Microsoft removes Windows 7 drivers from Windows update.
  • October 2021. Windows 7 celebrates its 12th anniversary.
  • October 25, 2021. 20th Anniversary. Possible retro revival and interest at this time. (Like Windows 98 20th Anniversary).
  • June 15 2022. End of Internet Explorer as a stand alone browser. Moves to being part of Edge.
  • January 10, 2023. Windows 8.1 end of life. End of paid extended support updates for Windows 7.
  • January 2023. End of Edge/Chrome support.
  • January 2023. End of ESU support.
  • October 2024. End of Support for Windows 7 POSReady.
  • Feburary 7, 2036. NTPv3 (Network Time Protocol) will reach the highest date supported. Network time synchronization will no longer work.
  • 19 January, 2038. End of 32-bit Unix/Linux time.
  • 31st December, 2099. End of BIOS time. Will Windows XP still run in any form by then?