Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) told the world that it was ending support for Windows XP on April 8th, but the company has come to the rescue of some worried laggards. The company issued a fix on Thursday for a problem that made Homeland Security suggest that Americans should change their browser from the company’s internet explorer in order to protect their information.

Microsoft windows XP

According to a report from Reuters on the security update, the fix addresses the major problem in Windows XP made public last weekend. The bug, which affected the Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) web browser Internet Explorer. Microsoft said on Wednesday that it would not be releasing a fix for customers still using its older operating system. The company obviously changed its mind, and today’s fix shows a company still pinned to the past by obsolete software.

Microsoft issues XP security fix

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) said that “We decided to fix it, fix it fast, and fix it for all our customers,” through its spokeswoman Adrienne Hal. The public face of the security fix added “Of course we’re proud that so many people loved Windows XP, but the reality is that the threats we face today from a security standpoint have really outpaced the ability to protect those customers using an operating system that dates back over a decade.”

The update will be rolled out to Windows systems through their automatic update center, and will also work its way into Windows XP systems that are currently connected to the internet. the update is set to arrive to users at 10 AM PT, or 1 PM EDT.

The security flaw that the update is fixing was so dangerous that the Department of Homeland Security, as well as security experts in other countries, recommended that users abandon Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) browser internet explorer until the problem is solved. the large number of Windows users that are still operating on a copy of XP is astounding, and it’s harming the way Microsoft Corporation does business.

Windows XP still holding Microsoft in the past

Despite the apparent difficulty in continuing to support those customers, it appears that Microsoft is forced to do so on the back of problems with getting its customers to upgrade. At the end of 2013 Windows XP accounted for around 18% of the world’s total operating systems. The enduring popularity, as well as subsequent failures, have hurt Microsoft sales in recent years, and the end of support was supposed to bring those customers into the company’s latest OS.

Support for Windows XP is still officially gone, but it is clear that enough public outcry and negative public relations will force Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) to fix almost anything. The Windows XP security fix is more than likely a positive in the short term, but it signals one of the company’s most enduring problems, and one that doesn’t seem to be going away.