A German web noticeboard has published instructions on how to keep getting the free Windows XP updates that enterprises are having to pay for.
According to this thread at Sebjik.com, all that's needed for 32-bit Windows XP installs is to edit the registry so that it tells Microsoft you're using POSReady 2009.
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As Betanews notes, with the registry edit in place, you should receive updates for “Windows Embedded Industry (formerly known as Windows Embedded POSReady). This is based on Windows XP Service Pack 3”.
The Sebjik administrator who created the registry hack posted the following code, which should be saved as a .reg file and double-clicked to be imported:
“Instead [of] PosReady you can also use WEPOS or WES. A reboot is not required,” the post states.
For 64-bit XP, the workaround is more detailed, since update.inf also has to be modified via a new update.cmd file. The instructions are at the link above.
Of course, only a rash fool would try this without being certain they could recover their system if it went awry. And there's no guarantee how long Microsoft will leave the hole open.
If the workaround stays in place, it'll keep desperates getting XP updates until 2019. ®