Mainstream support ends, future users will have to pay for the service

Free support ends for XP and Office 2003

Microsoft’s Office 2003 software suite and XP operating system have ended their phase of mainstream technical support, meaning that future users of the service will have to pay for it.

According to a Microsoft announcement, after five years in service Office 2003 now moves in to its extended support phase. Security updates will continue to be available for free but non-security hotfixes will now only be available to those who purchase an Extended Hotfix Support Agreement.

Redmond Mag reports that XP’s mainstream support phase was due to end in 2006 but was extended during the furore surrounding the launch of Vista, however, this phase has now ended and both products will be in the extended support phase until 2014, when they will both go in to the custom support phase – another paid extension.

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