• Widespread reports of freezing with this month’s Win7 Monthly Rollup, KB 4493472, and Win8.1 Monthly rollup KB 4493446

    Spiceworks has a nearly-feature-length litany of problems with KB 4493472.

    DON’T let Windows Automatic Update get to your Windows 7 or 8.1 (or Server 2008 R2 or Server 2012 R2) machines. But you knew that already.

    Thx @BoltsfanKevin (that’s Kevin Hughes)

    UPDATE: Server 2008 R2 machines are falling left and right. From the Sophos Endpoint Security blog:

    SAV service was logging lots of error messages in event log. Event IDs : 7022 (service hang), 80, 81, 83, 85, 82, 566, 608, 592.

    The server became unresponsive, no rdp, no file share access, Ctrl Alt Delete not working.

    Only solution is to uninstall the patch. Which may be difficult.

    ANOTHER UPDATE: Sophos has posted an official acknowledgment, putting the blame on both the Win7 Monthly Rollup and the Win 8.1 Monthly Rollup, KB 4493467:

    If you have not yet performed the update we recommend not doing so.

    If you have performed the update but not yet rebooted we recommend removing the update prior to rebooting.

    If you have performed the update and have rebooted, triggering the issue:

    Boot into safe mode
    Disable the Sophos Anti-Virus service
    Boot into normal mode
    Uninstall the Windows KB
    Enable the Sophos Anti-Virus service

    It’s still much, much too early to tell if the same change in Win7 and 8.1 will also clobber other software. Just sit tight and wait for the MS-DEFCON level to change.

    More details (including a question about precisely which patches are breaking Sophos) in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

    UPDATE: We’ve had several reports that Avast customers are experiencing the same symptoms. Avast has a mea culpa:

    Windows machines (particularly those running Windows 7) are becoming locked or frozen on startup after Microsoft updates KB4493472, KB4493448, and KB4493435.

    Avast has received reports of an issue affecting our customers running Avast for Business and Avast Cloud Care on Windows machines, particularly those with Windows 7 operating systems. While this problem is currently being researched, we have discovered some temporary solutions to restore functionality to our users.
    1. Reboot your machine into Safe Mode. Our customers are reporting that they are able to get past the login/Welcome screen in Safe Mode.