In some ways, @ben is right. There are hardware restrictions that can get in the way of upgrading an XP machine (more on that below). But I have been quite successful in upgrading a bunch of my rather old machines, and while it has certainly not been a smooth process, the machines are actually much nicer and more responsive now that they run Windows 8 desktop.
Another reader, the wonderfully-handled @mad-man, says that XP is already broken, so why the fuss? It's an interesting perspective: "Windows XP won't die that easy. All this talk about MS stopping updates for Windows XP. What XP is safe now? Why then all the updates all the time? Usually when MS repairs a hole its been out there for a long time already. 66% of vulnerabilities is Adobe Reader, Java and Adobe Flash. Seriously when you have a firewall and malware protection and you update all the stuff that runs on top of Windows it's not gonna be less secure than it is now. There's still a lot of software and devices that only works on Windows XP. So in many companies it will still be running for some time to come."
The challenge of upgrading
@mad-man makes a good point. There are a lot of old systems out there, and we do have some reader questions about how to deal with those challenges. Let's start with a very valid concern by @cmwade1977: "Our software won't run on anything newer than XP, has no updates or upgrades available to make it run on anything new that we have to keep running for legal reasons. Oh, and the software requires an internet connection and a connection to our network. No one has answered how to keep everything safe under these conditions."
This is actually the perfect storm scenario and there really isn't a good answer for @wade. My strong recommendation to Microsoft was to keep supporting and updating XP. I believe it's a necessity born from its success and widespread distribution. My colleague Ed Bott, though, would prefer Windows XP was allowed to die with dignity.
By the way, I know some of the commenters may well be women, but with handles like @chrome_slinky it's impossible to tell. I just went with the masculine pronoun because it's a lot less cumbersome than repeating "he or she" a couple of dozen times in the article.
So now you know how I and my fellow bloggers feel, along with a bunch of die-hard ZDNet readers. How about you? Are you moving off of XP to Windows 7, Windows 8, Linux, Android, Mac or something else? Or are you saying "Hell no, we won't go" and sticking with XP until your last dying breath? Comment below.