locked Re: Statement from Joseph Lee regarding NVDA add-ons and Windows XP support requests: no more, period


It's unfair to ask developers to support unsupported software. They've
got enough on their plate to keep up w/new technologies, & often these
are incompatible w/older ones. Not only so, but by extension, folks
who ask this are basically asking developers to support software which
both parties have been warned are a security risk, & ethically many
developers don't feel they either can or want to do that.

On 3/23/20, Joseph Lee <joseph.lee22590@gmail.com> wrote:

The exact statements from NV Access and developers back then were that using
XP is now a security risk for many, and that people can use NVDA 2017.3 and
old add-ons should they need to use XP and friends. As for my statement back
then, it referred to my own add-ons. The statement I wrote below covers
cases where a user would write to developers asking us to make certain new
features available for old releases, which cannot be done, particularly now
that we have fully moved onto Python 3.



From: nvda@nvda.groups.io <nvda@nvda.groups.io> On Behalf Of Arlene
Sent: Monday, March 23, 2020 10:55 AM
To: nvda@nvda.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda] Statement from Joseph Lee regarding NVDA add-ons and
Windows XP support requests: no more, period

Hi, I don’t remember the time you and NVDA developers did say xp support was
no longer going to work for users who still want to continue using xp. You
did say maybe 2 or 3 years ago you were going to no longer support xp and
vista. I think windows 7 is next.

Sent from Mail <https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=550986> for Windows

From: Joseph Lee <mailto:joseph.lee22590@gmail.com>
Sent: March 22, 2020 3:01 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: [nvda] Statement from Joseph Lee regarding NVDA add-ons and Windows
XP support requests: no more, period

Hello NVDA users and add-on developers,

First, I would like to reiterate how important it is that everyone listen to
advice from reputable sources regarding COVID-19, including public health
officials recommending folks to exercise social distancing for a while. Even
if you do not feel sick, please help others by washing hands, practice
social distancing, and monitor the situation regarding the pandemic and
community spread. And since the NVDA community is a global movement, please
support each other.

Onto the matter at hand: for several days I have received requests about
NVDA add-ons and Windows XP support. Requests have included making add-ons
compatible with Windows XP again, compatibility issues, and backporting
newer NVDA bug fixes and features to users of NVDA 2017.3, the last version
compatible with Windows XP.

At the moment there is no community guidance on support for Windows XP, with
many people asking others to upgrade to newer Windows releases. But as an
individual add-on author and a contributor to NVDA screen reader project, I
would like to take this time to make the following personal announcement:

Effective April 15, 2020, if you ask me to do one or more of the following
for Windows XP users, the answer you will get is, “sorry, no more, period.”
These include:

* Making add-ons compatible with Windows XP, Server 2003, Vista, and Server
* Fixing compatibility issues and non-working add-ons after you knowingly
install newer add-on releases on NVDA 2017.3 or earlier
* Backporting features and bug fixes from newer NVDA releases to NVDA
* Maintaining a long-term support version of NVDA for Windows XP/Server
2003/Vista/Server 2008 users

Most importantly, I will flatly say “no” if you ask me privately to ask NV
Access and/or add-on developers about Windows XP support. Many features
introduced in newer NVDA releases cannot be backported for various reasons,
including risk of crashing NVDA (grammar error announcement, for example),
incompatibility with Python 2 (broader Unicode support, for example),
features that will not work properly with XP (screen curtain, for example),
support for apps no longer recommended for wider use (outlook Express, for
example), and broad changes that alters how add-ons work (speech refactor
and multi-category settings dialog, for example). Several add-on authors
have indicated reluctance to support XP, and in case of add-ons I’m either
maintaining or have passed onto the community, none of them support NVDA
2019.2.1 or earlier, let alone Windows XP and friends.

My personal statement above will not be in effect until April so that you
can help others going through COVID-19 and for my statement as an individual
developer to sink in. Note that I’m not speaking on behalf of other
developers – others have their own policies regarding support for Windows
XP. NV Access does provide a download link for NVDA 2017.3, the last version
compatible with Windows XP.

I know my statement is a huge blow to many of you. As much as I wanted folks
to understand that end of support means end of support, and I understand
that many of you cannot afford newer equipment and software releases
(including moving to newer Windows releases), I felt it is time to make a
bold statement and say “no” to Windows XP support. In the past, I did note
on various NVDA forums that my add-ons will not and does not support Windows
XP, but didn’t announce a statement like this then, hoping that folks will
understand the reality at last. But alas, it is time to officially close the
doors to Windows XP support from my end – once again, this is an individual
developer saying this, not on behalf of the community at large, knowing that
others will make statements on their own.

Thank you for understanding.



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