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Lots of Windows patches this coming Tuesday

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July 10, 2010

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Microsoft is planning a fairly large security patch update this coming Tuesday, in order to successfully repair a Windows Help and Support Center critical vulnerability on July 13 at around the usual 1.30 PM EST.

Over the past three years, "Patch Tuesday" has become a very regular event in Internet security circles, as IT professionals all over the world patiently wait for Microsoft 'to do its thing'.

The security hole, which has been the target of many hacking attacks over recent weeks, was disclosed to Microsoft by Google technician Tavis Ormandy in mid-June, in a move to renew the age old debate about responsible disclosure of security vulnerabilities of all kinds.

The critical Windows Help Patch is one of a planned release of four security updates, three of which earn Microsoft's most severe security rating: "Very Critical".

A second critical update covers a "zero-day flaw" in the Aero display driver component of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 release 2, which was first published by Microsoft back in May.

The two other MS security bulletins - one ranked critical and the other important - cover security vulnerabilities in Microsoft Office and various other related software.

"Windows XP SP-2 users are strongly encouraged to upgrade to Service Pack 3 as soon as possible, which will be supported throughout 2014, Microsoft has asserted.

"Windows 2000 users need to upgrade to a different version of the operating system altogether, as the entire Windows 2000 line is now permanently discontinued."

For its part, Wolfgang Kandek, CTO at Qualys, notes that the month of July 2010 marks a very important milestone in Microsoft's security support bulletins, with the termination of security patches and security updates for Windows XP SP-2 and Windows 2000.

The software giant has also reiterated its full support of Windows Server 2003 until at least 2014 as well, although some IT professionals still say it will probably be supported until 2016.

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Source: Microsoft.

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