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Windows XP Service Pack 2
8 August 2004 19:05 UTC
It's 475 MB [sic] - what does it do?
The release of Windows XP Service Pack 2 is imminent.
It's been posted to the MSDN (Microsoft Developers Network) site.
And it's a monster - 475 MB. What does it contain?
In short brush strokes, the following.
- 'Windows Security Center'.
- Firewall turned on by default.
- Internet Explorer gets a (minimal) popup blocker.
- Better handling of email attachments.
- Protection against exploits through buffer overruns.
Windows Security Center checks the status of your firewall and A/V software and checks for new Windows updates. The firewall could have been turned on with previous versions of Windows; now it's just on by default. Having even a minimal popup blocker for Internet Explorer (doesn't do anything fancy like handling flash stuff) is a light year leap for that decrepit browser. Avoiding pitfalls with email attachments (presumably in Outlook) is long awaited.
How Microsoft claim to deal with buffer overrun exploits is unclear. Other platforms have long had specific methods to prevent code execution on the stack, but what Microsoft are up to, if anything, will take some time to reveal.
Things were getting a bit embarrassing for the Redmond giant - as if they could ever get worse - when the release was pushed back time and again. (It originally was supposed to come out last year.) For dial-up users downloading won't be much of an idea, despite Microsoft's assurances their update system can carry on a huge download like this over a great period of time.
The service pack will be incorporated into mainstream XP by October with XP users able to purchase a CD with the monster patch around then.
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Microsoft Releases Security Patch For Service Pack 1 For Service Pack 2 For Windows XP
Immediately after the release on Saturday Microsoft announced Service Pack 1 for Service Pack 2 which fixes many issues that were not fixed in Service Pack 2 for Windows XP. However this morning a hacker found a new vulnerability with Windows XP and Microsoft immediately announced the release of a security patch for Service Pack 1 for Service Pack 2 for Windows XP.
Windows XP Service Pack 2 released on MSDN
For all the fixes and updates to the Windows OS, there will still remain enough holes to keep the virus writers happy for some time.
Windows XP Service Pack 2 arrives with a whimper!
And currently available for download only to MSDN subscribers.
How Microsoft will eke out Windows XP SP2
On the 25th of August Microsoft will start making the software available as a critical update while CD orders will also be accepted that day. If you've got a dial up connection, this may be the wise way to proceed. The number of downloads will be limited to 2.5 million a day, until the 25th, when all hell will break loose on the servers.
Windows XP Service Pack 2 Is Now Available
Windows XP Service Pack 2 is now available from MSDN Subscriber Downloads.
Windows XP Service Pack 2 - Security Information for Developers
With Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) Microsoft is introducing a set of security technologies that will help improve Windows XP-based computers' ability to withstand malicious attacks from viruses and worms.
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Microsoft Corp finished the largest-ever interim update for its Windows operating system yesterday - a broad collection of fixes and improvements meant to address the security problems that have dogged the company's flagship product.