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August 3, 2006

Microsoft just released a new version of Windows that brings the enhanced security features of XP Service Pack 2 to older computers. The software is designed for companies that are not yet ready to replace aging PCs, and is only available to Microsoft customers with Software Assurance licensing agreements.

Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs (WinFLP), formerly codenamed Eiger, is based on Microsoft Windows XP Embedded Service Pack 2 (SP2) and provides the same security and management features, said Microsoft.

However, the software is designed to work on systems that are currently running older versions of Windows, such as Windows 98, for which Microsoft ended technical support this month. These systems are often too underpowered to effectively run the full version of Windows XP.

For this reason, WinFLP functions as a “lean client”, accessing server-hosted apps via Microsoft’s RDP or Citrix ICA clients. Only a limited number of other apps will run locally, including security tools, management clients, terminal emulation software, document viewers, and the .Net Framework, Microsoft said.

The stripped-down Windows client requires a computer with a 233MHz processor and at least 64MB memory, but Microsoft recommends a 300MHz system with 256MB memory. It also requires about 600MB of disk space, depending on the options chosen and applications installed locally.

WinFLP will allow organisations with such legacy systems to continue to use them until they are ready to replace their desktop hardware, according to Microsoft, when they will probably upgrade to systems with Windows Vista.

Source: Vnunet

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