Does Mainstream Media Finally Get It? Or, The Patch That Wasn't
Written by Gordon Fecyk, 2/28/2010
WHAT A CRAZY FEBRUARY we Windows professionals had this year, eh? It seemed like every Tuesday was Patch Tuesday. Hell, even Fat Tuesday was Patch Tuesday with a minor update to Silverlight.
But I will always remember February 2010 for the patch-that-was-supposed-to-break-Windows-but-didn't, but not because of the impact it had or because of the potential for impact it had over helpless Windows users. Rather, I'll remember it for the utter lack of mainstream media coverage of it, and for that, I'm grateful to the mainstream media.
This sort of "now you see it, now you don't" style of bug management is what got Intel in trouble sixteen years ago with its Pentium floating point bug. That's a definite "heads should roll" kind of story and the mainstream media had a field day at Intel's expense. So where's Jesse Hirsh? Where's the CBC with their "sky is falling" Special Report on The Patch That Wasn't?
It turns out that only a small portion of unsigned, unapproved device drivers trigger the problem. According to one of Computerworld's readers:
[...] the [TDSS rootkit] is the most common cause of this blue screen. However, any driver that references the updated kernel bits incorrectly can also cause this blue screen.
But if there's one thing the release of Windows Vista has taught third party vendors, it's to fix their garbage. The mainstream media seems to have finally gotten it. And if you're in that very small minority that didn't use a current version of Windows and didn't leave the default security settings alone, well, that's not Microsoft's fault either.
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