Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Six Windows Updates on "Black Tuesday"

Microsoft said Thursday it plans to release at least six patches (or bundles of patches, more accurately) for its various Windows operating systems next week. At least one of the patches will come with a "critical" rating, meaning Microsoft considers the security hole it mends so severe that hackers could use it to break in and take complete control over your computer.

Microsoft will issue the updates sometime Tuesday, Aug. 9. (Microsoft regularly releases patches on the second Tuesday of each month, which several security experts I know affectionately call "Black Tuesday.") You can either retrieve them by pointing your browser (this won't work in anything but Internet Explorer) to the Microsoft Update Web site, or by turning on automatic updates and letting Microsoft handle it for you.

Bear in mind that if you want to manually pull down patches from the Web site, you will need to participate in the "Windows Genuine Advantage" program. That is, you'll need to install a tool that checks to see if you're using a pirated version of Windows. You can still download security updates whether or not you pass the scan with flying colors, but if your computer fails the test, all non-security related downloads from Microsoft will be blocked.

That said, there are fairly simple browser tricks that will allow you to download patches without running the piracy scan, as hackers figured out last month. Then again, it is likely that the bundle of patches Microsoft releases on Tuesday will fix things so that this particular browser trick doesn't work any more.

If this brief writeup about pending patches leaves you thirsting for more, see my past posts about previous patch bundles in July, June and May.

By Brian Krebs  |  August 5, 2005; 11:20 AM ET
Categories:  New Patches  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: A Bit of Free Advice
Next: Antivirus Software: A Tool, Not a Panacea


Hi - I enjoy your column. Wonder if you're adding an RSS feed so I get your column 'up to the minute'?
flyingfree in Ottawa, Canada

Posted by: flyingfree | August 10, 2005 8:04 AM | Report abuse

Hi there. You can definitely read Security Fix through RSS. You should just be able to drop the URL into an RSS reader.

Posted by: Bk | August 10, 2005 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Let's see if I understand Microsoft's take on Internet security.

1. It is advisable to turn off scripting to avoid possible damage to your computer.

2. It is advisable to turn off Active X to avoid possible damage to your computer.

3. It is never advisable to accept downloads of software from Websites unless you initiate the download request.

On the other hand, to use the Microsoft update site you must have scripting and Active X turned on. This violates their own safety rules.

Now, in order to allow Microsoft to verify that your copy of Windows is legal, you are being asked to accept a download of software when you visit their site.

Most sites work rather well, thank you, with scripting and Active x turned off.

Microsoft, on the other hand, does not seem to understand that users do not appreciate having to download a ton of junk in order to use their Website.

Posted by: Bob | August 10, 2005 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Dear sir thank god we can get information from you on this side of the pound, we have no information channels like you have overhere, "thankyou"

Posted by: l.e.alexander | August 10, 2005 3:26 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company