I'm just a Developer Edition/Beta user and I have a Windows 10 system. That
said, you did ask for opinions from a 'broader audience', so I guess I count.
Here are my thoughts such as they are.
1) Mozilla supported Windows 95 for 6 years (126.96.36.199 in 2007) after its last
update (2001), Windows 98 SE for 2 years (188.8.131.52 in 2008) after its last
update (2006), and Windows 2000 for 3 years (12.0/ESR 10.0.12 in 2013) after
its last update (2010). Mozilla has a long history of extending support to
operating systems well past their expiration date. This is the case even when
it causes development problems just to keep in the spirit of the Mozilla
Manifesto that the Internet remain accessible to as many people as possible.
2) Now with regard to Windows XP. XP SP2 had its last update in (2009) and XP
SP3 had its last update in (2014). Firefox has been supporting XP SP2 for 7
years beyond its last update and XP SP3 for 2 years beyond its last update.
Mozilla's support for XP SP3 is about normal for the extending support beyond
the life cycle of an OS. Mozilla's support for XP SP2, on the other hand, is
downright saintly. I mean if you do drop it on ESR 52, which ends in 2018, you
will have supported XP SP2 for 9 years beyond its last update. Considering how
ancient XP is and how different its code base and APIs are from any modern
version of Windows, ESR 52 is probably a good place to end support. Windows XP
had a good run and should now receive an honorary salute as it goes off into
3) For Windows Vista, I don't see where the fire is. I realize that it has a
vastly smaller user base, but it is close to Window 7 code base and API wise.
Windows 2000 and Windows XP RTM/SP1 were also close like Windows Vista and
Windows 7 are. I remember that Mozilla kept Windows 2000 on Tier-2 support
next Windows XP RTM/SP1 on Tier-1 support until it discontinued support for
Windows XP RTM/SP1 in 2013. I don't see why Mozilla can't continue to support
Windows Vista with the Firefox 32 bit installer on Tier-2 support at least
until ESR 66 if not the length of time that it supports Windows 7 SP1.
Anyway, those are my thoughts. Thank you for your time.
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