Most internet browsers have already dropped support for Windows XP and Windows Vista, but not Firefox. Mozilla's browser can still run on the more-than-a-decade-old operating systems, despite Windows XP and Windows Vista also being cut off from mainstream support by Microsoft.
However, Mozilla also has its limits, as the company has announced that Windows XP and Windows Vista support by Firefox will only last until at least September 2017.
Firefox Support For Windows XP And Windows Vista
In an official blog post, Mozilla announced that it will be releasing security updates for Firefox users on Windows XP and Windows Vista until September 2017, with users not required to perform any actions to receive the updates.
However by March 2017, Mozilla will be moving Windows XP and Windows Vista users into the Firefox Extended Support Release program, which will limit the users to feature updates that may be several releases behind. In addition, by the middle of next year, Mozilla will be studying the number of users of the internet browser that are still on the defunct operating systems, and then will announce a final end date for Firefox support.
Why Are Windows XP And Windows Vista Users On Firefox?
Microsoft closed off mainstream support for Windows XP in April 2009 and extended support in April 2014. For Windows Vista, mainstream support was pulled in April 2012 and extended support is to be stopped in April 2017.
As such, users on these old operating systems are not able to upgrade the default Internet Explorer browser, with Windows XP users only able to upgrade to IE8 and Windows Vista users only able to install IE9.
Google's Chrome browser is also not an option for these users, who number in the hundreds of millions. As such, Firefox is the likely choice, pushing Mozilla to extend support for these operating systems for several more months.
Users Still On Windows XP And Windows Vista Should Upgrade
In Mozilla's blog post, the company is recommending users that still have their computers running on Windows XP and Windows Vista to upgrade to a version that it supported by Microsoft, as unsupported operating systems do not receive updates that fix security issues and carry exploits that expose users to various risks.
Mozilla added that enterprises that are using Firefox as their preferred internet browser should treat September 2017 as the Windows XP and Windows Vista support end date, so these businesses should plan operating system upgrades accordingly.
For personal users still using Firefox on these old operating systems, it is highly recommended that you upgrade your operating system as soon as possible, or if your computer does not support the more recent versions, purchase a newer one that does.