ISSUE 17.1.1 • 2020-01-11


A rare event: Microsoft patches are surprisingly stable

Woody Leonhard

By Woody Leonhard

It’s highly uncommon for AskWoody to go to MS-DEFCON 5 — the lowest threat level.

But a confluence of few December patches (because most of Microsoft was on vacation) and an unusually high level of patch quality make this an ideal time to get all your machines caught up.

It’s also a good time to upgrade, too. I’m now recommending that all Windows 10 customers move to Version 1903 — if you haven’t already. The patching debacles of September and October seem to have subsided, and 1903 has one important new feature that you’ll want.

If you’re already on the latest version, Win10 1909, don’t panic. There’s at least one significant bug in it that has me skittish — but if you’ve already learned to work around the problem, or you’ve simply ignored it, you’ll be fine. There’s no need to try to roll back to Version 1903.

For those of you still on Windows 7, which gets its last security patch on January 14, there’s also no reason to panic — no matter what you may have read. As we’ve said many times, Win7 will continue to work, even if you don’t jump through the hoops and pay the fee for extended support. (We’ll be covering that topic extensively in Computerworld and AskWoody over the coming weeks.) Susan Bradley has already started a no-bull Windows 7 FAQ series on

Look for step-by-step details about applying the December patches in my Computerworld column. Discussion and commiseration — free, as always — on the AskWoody Lounge.

Publisher: AskWoody LLC (; editor: Tracey Capen (

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