Thanks for the reply from Michael and Paolo,
I can access the shared Hard Disk Drives from Win 8.1 on the XP, Vista and Win 7, i.e. accessing HDD's on lower OS's from the higher OS like Win 8.1 is not a problem.
The problem is accessing the HDD's setup as shares on the Win 8.1 from the lower OSD's like XP, Vista or Win 7 is the problem. Attempting to access any HDD's on Win 8.1 only allows access to the UserPublic folder. The shared HDD's on Win 8.1 show, however do not allow access, and this is what I need to be able to do, i.e access the HDD's on Win 8.1 from the lower OS's.
I trust this clears up the issue.
As to the security concerns on XP, my thought are that we should not be concerned about every thing that Microsoft sprouts about. The same concern might then apply to Vista Ultimate and soon to Win 7 Ultimate when MS stops support for it. I repeat what I said, "we should not be concerned about every thing that Microsoft sprouts about."
My Windows for Workgroups 3.11, Windows ME, Server 2000 SP4, Windows 95 and Windows 98 still show up on my LAN when I boot them up and are protected by the BitDefender Network scanner if I suspect an intrusion of a virus which so far have eluded these OS's.
I am reminded of the scare mongering that applied to Adobe Flash Player and Oracle Java developed by Sun MicroSystems which soon faded and are of no concern at the moment, unless more scare mongering is restarted.
When it comes to security issues and holes in Application Software or Browsers or Operating Systems, I heard that the Pope is going to Canonize Microsoft Software as they are so Holey because they have more security holes then the Flash Player and Java combined ever had, and you can quote me on that subject ☺
In the mean time, Happy Computing ☺
Regards / LeBug