I guess that's one way to get people off of Windows XP...
Microsoft has fixed a snafu with Windows Defender that took down thousands of business PCs and servers running Windows XP and Server 2003. The software giant responded to sysadmins complaining on TechNet that large numbers of their machines were borked after they’d installed Microsoft’s latest set of antivirus definitions. …
Funny you should say that, after XP's expiry date, my XP machine decided to inform me it was no longer protected as MSE now doesn't work. Which is ever so slightly annoying as it was my understanding that only security updates through windows update weren't going to be updated, not the AV signatures for MSE.
Really didn't want to install some bloated AV solution when MSE has worked just fine..
"Funny you should say that, after XP's expiry date, my XP machine decided to inform me it was no longer protected as MSE now doesn't work."
The culprit here is KB2949787. That's an update for Windows XP which introduced the ability for Security Essentials to respond to the lack of operating system updates. If you remove this particular update then the software will stop spouting those annoying (and unneeded) messages.
Much harder is to sensibly configure XP to handle the lack of updates.
Turning off Windows Update, means that MS Security Center constantly posts a red notification in the taskbar that Windows is insecure due to updates being turned off.
Short of stopping the MSC service I've set MSC to notify user but not to download any updates, as this mode seems to keep it happy and prevent the accidental installation of any future 'updates' such as KB2949787.
Another service that is having problems with the end of support for XP is Secunia PSI; it doesn't really give an option to ignore this security warning.
I had a similar conversation with my frothing-at-the-mouth FD this morning, after 10% of our PC base had died since yesterday, and users were sitting down twiddling their thumbs.
First I reminded him that the documented 2014 budget proposal that I submitted last year had covered replacing all XP machines by April, but that the expenditure was overruled because I was told that nothing bad would suddenly happen that could kill all of our XP machines at once.
Then I again reminded him that my justification when questioned before the board, over removing all XP machines was that once the official support date has passed, it would only take a single untested software update to kill all our identical machines (at which I used identical twins as an analogy, and how genetically an affliction that kills one twin, usually kills another twin unless the other twin seeks treatment straight away (I also discussed virus outbreaks at the same time)), I also pointed out that once the official support date had passed, it would be unlikely that software manufacturers would test new releases of software against XP, and that I joked that the cynical would suggest that MS would deliberatly build in obsolesence to XP so that it died shortly after support expired.
Luckily for me all said meetings are minuted and right now the board are pointing fingers at each other, rather than me.
Personally I believe that what happenned yesterday was a result of MS not testing against XP, or inadvertantly releasing a non-XP update for XP, because it's not MS policy to test anything against XP.
Considering that today has been a total arse for me and my department, I feel strangely liberated, smug and awesome!!!!
No, but for the first time ever, I've been given permission by a unanimous board today to buy what I need to fix the problem, and as a result I've now spent all of our Ebuyer.com credit limit, in one purchase!!!!
I might have squoze the odd network switch replacement, SSD, and RAM upgrade into next tuesdays delivery too :)
Actually i purchase a lot for ebuyer and in honesty ive had great service. Delivery date and carriage issues were fully refunded on every occasion.
Faulty items taken back and refunded.
Items that were ex demo (supplied incomplete), were taken back and refunded once pointed out if its incomplete and they needed to state what was missing at time of sale.
The only gripe is putting business orders on the business version of the site, to a business address and they stick it on a home delivery service.. something they keep on doing.
But all in all they are not that bad, ive dealt with much much worse believe me.
Actually i purchase a lot for ebuyer and in honesty ive not had great service. Delivery date and carriage issues were never fully refunded on any occasion.
Faulty items not taken back and refunded.
Items that were ex demo (supplied incomplete), were not taken back and refunded once pointed out if its incomplete and they needed to state what was missing at time of sale.
Another gripe is putting business orders on the business version of the site, to a business address and they stick it on a home delivery service.. something they keep on doing.
But all in all they are that bad, ive dealt with much much better believe me.
I assume that you've also implemented test system(s) that get updated before the end user base, just so that they don't hit by a similar MS mistake (remember the fun and games of Win7 and the postSP1 hot fix that needed to be installed prior to installing SP1...).
Whilst you may be feeling put out about what you and your department had to do, be thankful that the FD (and others) may appreciate you a little more.
I was thinking it would go more like, "ere guv'nor. Thas's a nice PC you've got there. Got some lovely ornate software, pretty pictures of your family, nice banking records. You wouldn't want somefink to 'appen to it, now would you... Word to the wise my son. Word to the wise..."
Edit: Oh dear. Someone's already beaten me to that gag, and it turns out I can't delete this post until the editing window is over. Hmmm.
...then one won't really care...now will one.
And being that it is mostly crap in the first place...
"In our latest review of antivirus test results last month, MSE was the only one of 24 products tested not to achieve AV-Test certification – it was bottom of the pile for Protection with a score just half that of the next worst product (a quarter of the score of the top product) and it was also poor for Repair ability."
...why on earth would you use them in an Enterprise environment? Because they are FREE? Good move.
I think that av-test.org site might be lying, because it claims Norton is the best not only for protection but also for performance.
Now, perhaps it IS the best for protection, I can't judge. But NO WAY is it the best for performance. Norton kills your computer.
Perhaps that's how they got the 'best for protection' rating, because viruses run at 1/20th speed thanks to the speed of the computer after they put Norton on it.
Any test that rates Norton highly has got to be false.
I'm talking real-world experience here. Norton misses so much compared to MSE, and it's something I reccomend to a number of customers if they want a free AV product (of course I reccomend Linux first :) ), or one that generally works.
I don't think I've yet seen a machine with Norton on it that hasn't been infected in some manner, and the worst infections I've seen in over 20 years in this industry have been machines with legit, paid up and up to date versions of Nortons.
Oh, I have a passionate dislike for all things MS (comes from years of bitter experience with their crap), so MSE has to be doing something right for me to like it in any fashion. It could be stronger but not bad as it is, and it is much better than many of the paid AV (especially Norton).
Your every wish is my command.
However, according to performance test results from respected independent software labs, Defender still can't match the best antivirus for Windows 8 products: Bitdefender Antivirus Plus, Kaspersky Anti-Virus and Norton AntiVirus.
Doesn't look like toptenreviews.com has very good reviews though: http://www.sitejabber.com/reviews/www.toptenreviews.com
"Might I recommend not using an article from nearly two years ago as your evidence?"
And why not? The Windows Fanboi's just LOVE to drag up stuff about a certain Linux change over that started ten years ago...
If you do not do everything in your power to either switch entirely, or, at least get a good mix of Windows / Linux systems, you and you entire company are fools.
Unfortunately, I am in the company of fools where I am...
"... to keep buying stuff from these idots?"
Because it is cheaper and less painful to pay the Microsoft ransom, and put up with occasional snafus and security disasters than to run an enterprise wide Linux roll out (or OSX or other alternatives) complete with full staff training for users and skills conversion for all your Windows centric techs. And I suspect the real challenge is simply selling it to the board, followed closely by selling it to departments who have used Excel as a substitute for a professionally operated database, and built entire complex applications with Excel or Word macros.
Technically it is of course possible to give up WIndows (just as it is possible to give up on manufactured cars and clothing, and make your own), but the larger your business, the more complex your environments, the more legacy Windows only code you are dependent upon and you either have to keep legacy Windows machines or replace possibly business critical software with brand new, possibly custom written versions. Time and money, basically.
"Down voted for not trying harder."
When you've posted enough on the Reg, you find the up and down votes settle down, and its actually very difficult to shift the average. So down votes (and indeed upvotes) cease to matter when you've had your fill of either. My long term average is 4 upvotes to 1 downvote, and despite some bitter battles with one or two other commentards where we tried to change those numbers it hasn't worked. But thank you for caring enough to downvote!
For the record, I'd like the world's default OS to be a decent open source, free Linux distro. But that isn't going to happen until:
a) Consumers can game. Yeah, Steam yadda yadda yadda. But its still not the full monty.
b) Everything (and I mean everything) can be done through the GUI. Yeah, command line is for the brutal, unprincipled hard men, the Vlad Putin's of tech. But I served my time using GCOS on advanced military systems in the days before time, and I'm not afraid of the command line, I just can't be bothered with such a counter intuitive, user unfriendly approach these days.
c) Open source Linux software has all the bells and whistles that MS Office afficionados demand. I know, you know that no real value comes from these toys, but you won't see Linux on the enterprise desktop until it can compete.
"There's no room in this world for a [motor vehicle] that can't be a half-tonne truck, a mini-van and an F1 racing car all at once. Nobody's going to buy that when we have this here vehicle that is a mediocre attempt at all while also being a complete failure at all. The world will be exactly as it is today until such a time as a new company comes out with something exactly like what we have today, at which point it the world will be exactly the same, except with a different name on what you buy."
It may well be that Microsoft owns the general-purpose desktop PC market...but that market is stagnant-to-declining. The new hotness is task-specific computing devices, as the silicon - and the software - is cheap to the point that we can have a "good enough" device for everything, rather than a "not quite good enough" device that tries to do everything badly.
The world is changing. Oh, not all at once, but it is changing. Microsoft's role as the dominant force of the nerd-verse is going away. There is a thing happening. It's called diversity. "One OS/productivity suite/storage array/pop star/car model/brand of toilet paper to rule them all" is a dead concept. Horses for courses is the new normal and uppity nerds terrified of losing their place in the hierarchy are just going to have to fucking cope.
""There's no room in this world for a [motor vehicle] that can't be a half-tonne truck, a mini-van and an F1 racing car...."
Err, FFS what are you responding to? Some random text that popped into you brain due to a crystal meth hit? I don't recognise the text, nor the message, even amongst responses to my post (itself a response rather than an original post).
When I can understand what the f*** you're on about, then you might get a cogent reply.
But I served my time using GCOS on advanced military systems in the days before time, and I'm not afraid of the command line, I just can't be bothered with such a counter intuitive, user unfriendly approach these days.
Holy JFK at the Grassy Knoll, you operated operationally back in your youth and consider today's command line "counter intuitive and unfriendly"???? WHAT!
Well, let's just consider what it means when
"I want to do X"
1) Find out whether doing X is possible
2) Find out how to do X
3) Do X
4) Verify that X is done
5) Verify side-effects of doing X
6) Possible integrate "Do X" into an automation scenario,
1) Generally Supported (apropos and man are your friend, I haven't been friendly with the GNU info ever)
2) Somewhat Supported, you may have to use Google
3) Generally Supported but may demand workarounds or Perl/Bash/Python/Tcl etc.
4) Generally Supported.
5) Somewhat Supported
6) Supported if you know Perl/Bash/Python/Tcl etc.
1) Somewhat Supported (the "Help" may help, but generally does not)
2) Unsupported, you may have to use Google and even then will get screenshots and bad path descriptions that changed at last release
3) Supported if some good soul foresaw you might be "doing X", Unsupported otherwise.
4) See 3)
5) See 3)
6) Mostly Unsupported.
Personally, I believe the future is in a merging of these approaches - Graphics on the Command Line, if you will, but only as needed, and without all the crap clutter of modern windowing systems.
>>"Personally, I believe the future is in a merging of these approaches - Graphics on the Command Line, if you will, but only as needed, and without all the crap clutter of modern windowing systems."
Oddly enough MS are moving toward this. Server 2012 can be run without a GUI - you can manage it entirely by running PowerShell commandlets remotely at which point you can deconfigure the GUI to save install space and RAM. But here is the thing, if you do the install the GUI for it, pretty much everything in the interface is a wrapper for those same commandlets. They're designing it so every aspect of the GUI is just a front for Powershell scripting so that they're interchangeable. It took them over a decade, but they're finally moving toward a more GNU/Linux paradigm.
My company makes a decent amount of money developing .NET applications for windows PCs, hence we are an MS organisation and are still buying their "stuff" regularly. I don't consider being in the business of making actual money particularly stupid, but each to their own.
"I think the point being that your company could do that just as well without being tied to .NET or Windows."
No. The point being that not everyone who makes a decision to target the most commonly used and widely supported software suite in the world is stupid as the OP was saying.
"Talking of which, does anyone think that writing a Prolog program to compute different Microsoft licensing scenarios is a good idea?"
I'm guessing you have a 100 node Cray cluster at you finger tips to be able compute the permutations BEFORE the next Licensing Matrix comes out?
"I think the point being that your company could do that just as well without being tied to .NET or Windows. Multi platform tools have been around for ages."
There's the small matter of not knowing what the AC .NET developer develops software to do. For all you know they could be selling the number one tool for Windows systems management, or migration, or something else fundamentally tied to the OS; and yet you're declaring him he could do just as well by... what? Abandoning their market, their knowledge store and codebase on a whim for no better reason than platform bias? Yes multi-platform tools have been around for ages, but the market for, and logic of developing cross-platform applications depends on their purpose.
"Migrate now or you will be out of business pretty soon. The. Net stuff is for idiots, even MS Cannot manage to depend on one runtime version, SQL Server 2008 needed two versions of the runtimes, FFS!
Some of us in the real world don't have a choice. A lot of the client side software I write is c++, and some .net. The reason? Customers use Windows. All of them. Nobody has ever requested a linux or mac flavour. Not a single one of our customers use anything other than XP and Win 7. The reason for that? Validation. They all work areas where the OS (as well as our software) requires validation, both internally and often through government bodies. Sad fact is, Windows is standard for most client software. There's simply no business motive to make it cross platform. There is absolutely no chance of the business going under - none at all - for not supporting mac or linux.
I will say this though - as a company we're putting more functionality into setups where processing is done on the embedded hardware we sell, and therefore we can use more lightweight clients. Some decent JS frameworks means we're moving some stuff to browser based clients - it's slow going though, as it relies on customers to move with the times and validate more up to date browsers, and there are some things you just can't do from a browser that need to be done on the client - like cuda processing with massive datasets).
Personally - I don't have a problem writing .NET applications. I like CS, and I much prefer .NET to the java framework (which incidentally has a ton of runtimes too, plus a million add ons like java3d).
The .NET runtimes aren't massive in size/number. I'd also point out they (MS) don't try and trick you into installing Ask toolbars every bloody update either (I'm looking at you Oracle! *waves fist*).
Never used SQL Server, but my guess is it'll be bundled with various tools that were developed independently - hence the different .net targets... it's not rocket science.
Before I get slammed as some sort of microsoft groupie or something, I will point out for the record that I'm posting this on a machine totally free from microsoft software, with Eclipse open tinkering with some Java code.
I don't know. Maybe your customers are supposed to be stupid instead.
But I don't think so. Windows, in comparison to Linux, is so popular, and uniform, that there is a lot of useful and interesting stuff you can get for Windows that you can't get for Linux.
And since Linux is free, Windows users have a proven track record of being willing to spend money on software. Wait, it's almost impossible to buy a computer without Windows pre-installed, unless it's a Mac? Oh, well, that probably explains software piracy.
"That statement is just 9 kinds of stupid."
Yes it is, but that invariably sets the tone for any of these flamefests, composed largely as they are of a potent mix of bullshit, monotony, blinkered attitudes and black and white thinking.
So the Linux fanbois have discovered, and are seemingly shocked to the core by the revelation that Microsoft is a large corporation with the sole motivation of making money, and like most large corporations would if endowed with personality possess that of a sedentary yet genial sociopath. Welcome to the world.
The Windows fanbois seem convinced (and terrified) that Open Source leads to socialism, which leads to communism, which somehow leads to great Stalinism, instead of leading to innovation, services, and jobs.
Both camps will resort all sorts of FUD. Nobody else cares. I use them both, the right tool for the right niche, delighting in find new ways for Linux to solve problems and create opportunities, while acknowledging the MS ecosystem is going nowhere in the long or possibly even very long term, and that for all their many faults, a great many MS products have improved considerably over recent years, even if management ears might benefit from more regular syringing.
I suspect the often silent majority of people reading the Reg forums who actually work in IT couldn't care less. The bedroom dwelling fanbois however, never met a territorial pissing match they didn't like.
Well that is at least a little bit better than the attitude of "A Certain Well Known Mobile Phone Producer" who usually refuses to respond to any questions that El Reg might wish to put.*
*No, do restrain yourselves fanbois, I am absolutely not praising "The Demon Spawn of Redmond" regardless of my choice of icon.
This happened to two disparate client XP machines yesterday - just two out of 40 or so puttering around still among my clients. Just two. Common denominators were failed login, Hitachi drives, Intel X38 Express chipsets, and a failed checkdsk... and the dodgy MSE update. Never found anything on the net either so figured it out and installed another AV product, reran checkdsk afterwards and corruption 'disappeared'...
IDK.. I do know I'll be switching out AVs on the remaining XP workstations just in case.
Cost of recovering our IP when MS borked win 98 ??...
6 months of testing and all new non-MS software (we're a Non-Profit without funding)...
IMHO= at that time, a group of IBM hardware users petitioned IBM to prepare a SW changeout if MS did this to Win XP...IBM just recently sold their amall business server stuff to Levono...
Really Hope IBM's fix for MS software is not dumping stuff that runs MS off onto the Chinese folks that bought IBM's Levono line...RS.
note= would really like to see IBM Red Hat LINUX running Red Hat IBM LOTUS Smart Suite on both Intel and AMD chipsets...Make My Millenium !!
"...apply the ultimate patch to your computer: http://www.linuxmint.com/ "
Works well for Fista, 7, and other malware-infested shitfests.. Er, I mean other versions of Windoze..
Have had a neat challenge this week.. A Mac with suspicion of malware on it. Unlike that other thing which is so certainly infected, not as sure with the Mac and it has taken and tested all of my skills to try to track down what may be causing the issues that cause the suspicion of malware..
Next week I may go for a lifetime achievement aware : find an infected Linux machine (although that'd take a lifetime to achieve!)
Good thing I uninstalled MSE when I did. When the big "This computer is no longer protected" nastygram popped up, I went looking for an AV replacement.
For what it's worth, Comcast offers Norton Security Suite free to subscribers. I know Norton's not the best, but it's better than nothing and so far has been less annoying than most of the free AVs currently out there.
Google says Charter's Security Suite is based on F-Secure and AT&T U-Verse offers McAfee.I'm pretty sure most if not all of the Cableco/Telco ISPs offer some sort of free security package to their customers.
I think that is a bit simplistic. Microsoft do make 'OSes' and also applications to run on those 'OSes'. They also spend quite a lot of money to "ensure"(*) the former & latter are the go to products for any organisation with the money to pay for their products and services.
(*) Where "ensure" can be read as you want and is purely a subjective term.
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