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  • Patch Lady – countdown reminder

    Posted on October 20th, 2019 at 21:40 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Spotted this web site tonight:

    86 days and counting

  • Patch Lady – okay Microsoft, how about you help?

    Posted on October 19th, 2019 at 19:22 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    So the other day the only place I could find solid actionable information about the risk of attacks from the IE zero day was on a Microsoft 365 ATP E5 console called the Threat analytics dashboard.  It was the only place that gave me information that assured me that we could wait until the issues with the patches were dealt with and we didn’t need to rush to patch.  Today I went to the console and saw there was a new alert.  At the bottom of the alert is brand new wording:

    © Microsoft 2019. All rights reserved. Reproduction or distribution of the content of this site, or any part thereof, without written permission of Microsoft is prohibited

    Sigh.  So there goes another resource that Microsoft is limiting access to just certain paying customers.  Once upon a time Microsoft gave actionable information that helped administrators of all sizes to make smarter decisions about security and the risks they face.  They told everyone ahead of time on the Thursday before the second Tuesday the types of patches to expect.  They had webcasts open to all customers to help all of us understand how to deploy updates better.

    Now we have a MSRC blog that just tells us to turn on automatic updates and provides no overall discussion about risks.  Thanks guys, but I rushed out that out of band update and spent several HOURS fitzing with printers, updating drivers,  removing the update – and in one case had to roll the entire workstation back to the week before to get printing working again.  Customers with premier support contracts are the only folks that still get security guidance webcasts.  Customers with premier support contracts still get the security patch heads up email on the Thursday before Patch Tuesday.

    We’re told by Microsoft that Patching is a social responsibility.  Well yes, Microsoft it is.  And you have a social responsibility to all of your customers large and small to treat their IT assets with respect.  You need to do the right thing and release better patches that don’t break printing (as a recent sample of impact) and you need to release better information to all customers to help us understand the risks of not patching as well as patching.  You have a responsibility to all of your customers, and not just those with premier support contracts.

  • Microsoft 365 health status

    Posted on October 18th, 2019 at 10:30 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Yes, that’s copyright 2017

    Mary Jo Foley has details on ZDNet.

    Starting at approximately 13:42 UTC 18 Oct 2019, customers in North America are experiencing issues with Sign-in when Multi-Factor Authentication is enabled. Engineering team is currently investigating the issue and will send out an update as soon as possible.

    UPDATE: MS has modified the announcement:

    Title: Unable to access Microsoft 365 services with MFA

    User impact: Users may be unable to sign in to Microsoft 365 services when leveraging Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).

    More info: Users may not receive authentication requests via phone call, SMS or within their authenticator app.

    Current status: We’ve confirmed via telemetry and reports from some of the affected customers that service has recovered for a majority of impacted users. We’re continuing to investigate log data to better understand what caused this issue and to validate which recovery measures we took restored service functionality. Additionally, our telemetry indicates that this issue was specific to users located in the North America region.

    Scope of impact: This issue could affect any of your users located in North America if they leverage MFA to access Microsoft 365 services.

    Start time: Friday, October 18, 2019, at 1:30 PM UTC Next update by: Friday, October 18, 2019, at 6:30 PM UTC

  • The second “optional non-security” October cumulative update for Win10 version 1809 breaks MS Defender Advanced Threat Protection

    Posted on October 18th, 2019 at 09:37 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Microsoft just acknowledged that KB 4520062, the second October cumulative update for Win10 version 1809 breaks ATP:

    Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection might stop running

    The Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) service might stop running and might fail to send reporting data. You might also receive a 0xc0000409 error in Event Viewer on MsSense.exe.
    Affected platforms:
    • Client: Windows 10, version 1809; Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2019
    • Server: Windows Server, version 1809; Windows Server 2019
    Next steps: At this time, we suggest that devices in an affected environment do not install KB4520062. We are working on a resolution and estimate a solution will be available in mid-November.

    Opened: October 17, 2019 05:14 PM PT

    Martin Brinkmann has details on

    Ponder for a moment. This is an “optional non-security” update that breaks a major security feature, used by a large percentage (if not a majority) of Win10 Enterprise customers. Who in blue blazes is testing this stuff?

    There’s a reason why we’re on MS-DEFCON 1, eh?

    Thx, @Zerafa

  • Announcing the arrival of the Win7 Pro upgrade-to-Win10 nag, KB 4493132

    Posted on October 18th, 2019 at 07:50 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    It’s official — and I can confirm. If you install the Win7 patch  KB 4524752 on a Win7 Pro machine and reboot a couple of times, you’ll see the new nag screen:

    That shot’s taken from my Seven Semper Fi machine, which is now forewarned about impending doom.

    OK, I’m being overly dramatic – in fact it all looks like a straightforward nag. As best I can tell, checking “Do not remind me again” actually does take away the nag. But there are some oddities — and a couple of registry settings that send my Spidey sense tingling.

    Details in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

  • Liberate the Windows Feedback Hub!

    Posted on October 17th, 2019 at 09:22 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Couldn’t’ve said it better myself….

    The fact that Google (or bing) searches don’t turn up Feedback Hub results is, in and of itself, proof that the Hub is unusable.

  • Yet another Win10 version 1903 cumulative update video bug: Installing this month’s first cumulative update clobbers some Intel video drivers

    Posted on October 16th, 2019 at 13:41 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Mayank Parmar at Windows Latest has connected the dots on another Win10 version 1903 cumulative update KB 4517389 bug. (See the next post for yet another unacknowledged bug.)

    Per Parmar:

    If you install Windows 10 KB4517389 (Build 18362.418) on a PC that has Intel display driver version or possibly other versions, basic features like Start menu, Windows Search or Google Chrome will render incorrectly… At the time of writing this story, more than 60 users have confirmed display issues on Microsoft’s community forum. Users have documented the following bugs:

    • Windows Search and Internet Explorer with ‘X’ across dialog and links
    • Triangled images in Microsoft Word.
    • Chrome rendering a black screen.

    This one hasn’t been acknowledged by Microsoft, either.

    Looks to me like the folks running the Release Status Information page are asleep at the wheel.

    UPDATE: Details in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

  • Getting the error “unexpected error; quitting” in Win10 version 1903? Blame the latest cumulative update

    Posted on October 16th, 2019 at 13:27 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Yet another bug in this month’s first cumulative update for Win10 version 1903, KB 4517389.

    Our own Mark Busby described the symptoms:

    After installing KB4517389 on these Windows systems, when opening 16-bit applications an error message is displayed “unexpected error; quitting” …  After removing the update the application works fine once more.

    An anonymous poster on AskWoody pointed to this Answers Forum post, which gives more details:

    I have a Windows 10 Home 1903 32bit machine.

    After installing the windows update KB4517389 any programs that were coded in Microsoft Visual Basic 3 no longer run and give the message ‘unexpected error; quitting’

    This message appears to be part of VBRUN300.DLL

    If I uninstall the update the programs work ok again.

    I have tried running these programs as administrator but this makes no difference.

    Microsoft hasn’t confirmed the bug – and the only fix appears to be uninstalling the latest patch.