OIT releases Windows XP Exception Procedures

As of April 8, 2014, Microsoft will no longer offer security patches for Windows XP. In addition, Microsoft will not provide Windows XP with any additional or enhanced device support or upgrades to software functionality and compatibility.

To ensure the safety of the campus network, campus departments should immediately begin identifying any computers running Windows XP or earlier versions of Windows and upgrading them to supported versions of Windows (Windows 7 or later) by May 12, 2014Windows is site licensed for university-owned machines, and you can obtain media for Windows 7 or 8 from Software @ NC State. Contact your local IT support for assistance with your upgrade.

If upgrading is not possible and your computer must remain connected to the campus network after the Windows XP end-of-life date, then follow the exception process outlined below. Justifications are required for all exceptions. OIT Security and Compliance and Communication Technologies (ComTech) will coordinate with Campus Information Technology Directors (CITD) representatives and/or their delegates to move these machines to a separate campus network designed to handle these exceptions. Please note that although the current focus is on Windows XP, if you locate machines running other unmaintained operating systems (for example, Windows NT), you should follow the exception process below.

Machines with Windows XP (or earlier) found on the network after the May 12, 2014 deadline will be disconnected.

Exception Process

What to do for Windows XP Machines that still need network connections

  • Both Windows XP and Campus Network Connection Required
    For example, if an electron microscope needs Windows XP to run its imaging software and also needs to connect to the campus network to transfer very large image files to the central storage server for processing, then an exception would be warranted.
  • Both Windows XP and Internet Connection Required
    For example, if an instrument that is connected to a Windows XP machine must also connect to the Internet for vendor support, instrumentation software functionality, or instrumentation software updates, then an exception must be requested.

In cases like those described above, inform your Campus IT Directors (CITD) representative or delegate of your specific needs as soon as possible prior to March 28, 2014.  See Windows XP CITD Contact & Exception Process for a list of these.You must provide justifications for all exceptions. Your CITD representative must approve exceptions for your area. OIT will not accept submissions from anyone other than CITD representatives or their delegates. If your department is part of the OIT Managed Desktop service or your unit is not in the list, please send your requests to the NC State Help Desk athelp@ncsu.edu or call 919-515-HELP (4357).

What to expect if you use a Windows XP laptop that connects to the campus wireless network
You may be able to connect your Windows XP laptop to the campus wireless network temporarily, but its unsupported operating system poses a threat to the network, so you may be disconnected without warning. To avoid this, you will need to upgrade your laptop’s operating system before the May 12, 2014 deadline.

What to do if your Windows XP machine doesn’t need a network connection
If you need to continue to use a Windows XP machine without connecting it to the campus network, please do all of the following before the May 12, 2014 deadline:

  • Have the machine de-registered from host registration. Contact your local IT support for assistance with this. Only LAN administrators have access to this site. If the machine is then connected to the network accidentally, it will not get a campus network address.
  • Physically disconnect the machine from the campus network (unplug the network cable).
  • Clearly label the machine so that others will know not to reconnect it to the network.

Please note that if this machine is reconnected to the network, it will be disconnected without warning.

If you have questions about this process, please contact the NC State Help Desk at 515-HELP (4357) or help@ncsu.edu.