XP Windows Operating Systems – Coursework Example

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The paper "XP Windows Operating Systems" is an engrossing example of coursework on logic and programming. The success of any operating system lies in the functionalities that the system avails to the user and the ease of working with it. More importantly, however, this success lies in the security measures that the developers have put in place to benefit the users. Windows XP OS that was unveiled by Microsoft has managed to rise above the conventional security talks that affected such systems as Vista. Security has to be guaranteed by the developer given that these systems are used not only for personal applications but also in industrial as well as commercial sectors.

It is however important to note that inasmuch as the developers may strive to enhance security in these later versions of the systems, total security cannot be guaranteed. Loopholes will always exist given the daily activities of hackers and other vandals out to cause the disorder. Therefore, these measures are basically attempting to ensure that Windows XP remains one of the best-operating systems as time might permit.

Some of the security features that are customized in the Windows XP OS are discussed below. There are myriad features that are in-built within the operating system that are designed to enhance its security aspects. Some of these features are basically exclusive to Windows alone and have been developed out of the growing need to boost security measures and in light of the security weaknesses of the previous versions of the Windows operating systems. Nevertheless, some of the security aspects of the previous versions of Windows have still been incorporated into the Windows XP security framework.

Even though this has seen many challenges, much research is currently ongoing on the better methods to enhance security and to limit the exploitative intrusion caused by hackers and attackers. Whichever the case, there will always be room for improvement. Microsoft launched Windows XP in two editions. These are the Home edition which is used for general home application and the Professional edition that is mostly used by businesses. The success of the Windows XP operating system can be attributed to several factors including the security measures that have been put in place.

By statistics, it is the second most installed operating system in the world. That confirms that measures were indeed put in place as regards security aspects. Personalized login The home edition of Windows XP was almost the first OS to be enabled with personalized login ability. In this case, various people can log into the same machine as a different person using a different user account. This capability is enabled by the Terminal Services technology that was only unique to XP. XP is also enabled with Fast User Switching which enables multiple users on the same computer using different user accounts. DEP and ASLR Two of the common features in this operating system are the Data Execution Prevention commonly known as DEP and Address Space Layout Randomization also known as ASLR.

These features have certainly managed to be efficient measures against myriad security threats that have been a source of exploitation on the previous versions operating system. However one cannot comfortably argue that these security measures are sure guards against hackers given the rising level of information technology awareness that poses challenges to the developers.

It is known that much research is currently ongoing on ways and means of bypassing the DEP and ASLR. However, this research was certainly expected and actually factored in during the development process of the OS. ASLR and DEP are created with the functional ability to increase the intruder's cost of exploitation and thereby reduce the benefits they might gain from their attacks on the system. This has surely been a positive boost on the system as potential hackers are discouraged from their exploitative pursuits.

A combination of DEP features and some of the superior aspects of the ASLR is very effective in dealing with a majority of the exploits that are targeted at bypassing the Windows XP OS. Furthermore, the developers are always abreast of any potential bypass or attack techniques. They, therefore, factor in some of their developments in future creations with a view of creating a secure if not totally secure system. It must however be emphasized that the effectiveness of DEP and ASLS is limited to their mitigation functionalities. More development research is therefore still imperative in the fight against system exploitation by increasing the effectiveness, resilience, and functionality of the DEP and ASLR.

References

Bott, E., & Siechert, C. (2006). Microsoft Windows XP networking and security inside out: Microsoft Press.

DiNicolo, D. (2005). PC magazine Windows XP security solutions. Toronto: Wiley Pub.

Karp, D. A. (2004). Windows XP annoyances for geeks. California: O'Reilly.

Ogletree, T. W., Glenn, W. J., & Regas, R. (2002). Windows XP unleashed. Indianapolis Sams.

Scarfone, K. (2009). Guide to Securing Microsoft Windows XP Systems for IT Professionals: A NIST Security Configuration Checklist: Recommendations of the NIST. Pennsylvania: DIANE Publishing Company.

Simmons, C. (2005). How to do everything with Windows XP. New York: McGraw-Hill/Osborne.

Weber, C., & Bahadur, G. (2002). Windows XP Professional security. New York: McGraw-Hill/Osborne.

Weverka, P., Chambers, M. L., Harvey, G., Leonhard, W., Levine, J. R., Young, M. L., & Lowe, D. (2004). WindowsXP Gigabook For Dummies. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Zovi, D. D. (2011). Processor Limits for Windows 7. New york: Paragon Books.

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