I am trying to find a way to continue to use Windows XP pro past April 2014, when Microsoft will stop providing security updates. I was thinking about installing Ubuntu on my current PCs and then using some virtual hosting software to run Windows XP guests. That way my users can use Ububtu to browse the internet and check email and that will allow me to isolate Windows XP from potential security flaws. Does this make sense? If it does how would I go about isolating Windows XP so as to shield it from the internet (I am assuming some kind of private LAN but have no idea how to set that up).
If my suggestion does not make sense then what would be the best way to do this? Please keep in mind that 1) Windows XP is a must to run the companies financial and sales software--no way around this (major budget crunch); and 2) We cannot go to Windows 8 and run VMs on it because we cannot afford the expense at this time. So whatever solution you suggest it must allow for using the current hardware and VERY MINIMAL additional costs. Thank you.