Newsletter Archives

  • MS-DEFCON 4: It’s time to get patched

    The moment you’ve all been waiting for…

    It looks like the October Windows patches are ready for prime time. The usual caveats — and there are many — apply. We also have special warnings for people running Win10 1903 with certain RealTek LAN adapters, and for folks who need to run older VisualBasic programs on 32-bit version 1903.

    There’s no rush this month, by the way. Nothing in the patches screams for installation. But in the normal course of events you want to get patched. We’ve entered the normal course of events.

    Full step-by-step updating details for everybody, from Win7 to Win10 1903, are in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

  • Another patch-induced conflict: Transport Layer Security fails with error 0x8009030f

    Microsoft has acknowledged a problem with the latest patches for Win7, 8.1, Server 2008,  2008 R2, 2012, 2012 R2 and Server 2016 – Monthly Rollups, Security-only or (apparently) Previews of Monthly Rollups.

    When attempting to connect, Transport Layer Security (TLS) and Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) might intermittently fail or timeout.  You might also recieve one or more of the with the following errors:

    • “The request was aborted: Could not create SSL/TLS secure Channel”
    •  error 0x8009030f
    • An error logged in the System Event Log for SCHANNEL event 36887 with alert code 20 and the description, “A fatal alert was received from the remote endpoint. The TLS protocol defined fatal alert code is 20.​”

    If TLS is failing on your up-to-date Win7, 8.1 or related Server based machines, now you know why. There’s a fix, documented in the KB article, but it’s messy.

    Thx @abbodi86

  • Where we stand with the October patches

    What a weird month. First we got the third round of patches for a zero-day in Internet Explorer (which never materialized) and then Start, Search and print bugs reappeared.

    To date, most — but not all — of the bugs have been fixed.

    Details in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

  • Microsoft posts its second October cumulative update for Win10 version 1903

    Microsoft just released its second October cumulative update for Win10 version 1903. It’s KB 4522355, “optional, non-security” patch. You only get it if you click on Check for Updates.

    At this point, I haven’t heard of any problems.

    But the day is yet young.

    Worth noting: Microsoft released three different versions of KB 4522355 to Insider testers in the Release Preview ring. This is the third one, which raises the build number to 18362.449.

    Also worth noting: Those of you still on the Release Preview ring, who have installed Win10 version 1909, will see the same patch. Your build number will go to 18363.449. That’s the build number I see on my 1909 test machine at this moment.

    @EP adds: also Intel DCH Graphics driver version is available from Intel’s web site (adds 1909 support; may also work with older Win10 versions from 1709 to 1903) 🙂

  • So where are all those horrible zero-days?


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

    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

    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.

  • Second October patches mostly harmless – but the resurgence of the potentially unwanted “nag” patch, KB 4493132, raises questions

    Screenshot credit: @speccy

    How doth the little crocodile
    Improve his shining tail,
    And pour the waters of the Nile
    On every golden scale!
    How cheerfully he seems to grin
    How neatly spreads his claws,
    And welcomes little fishes in
    With gently smiling jaws!

    — C.L. Dodgson

    Are you Win7 Pro users seeing KB 4493132 as Optional/Unchecked or Important/Checked — or do you have it installed already?

    Details in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

  • Second October cumulative updates posted – the “optional, non-security” kind

    I see second monthly cumulative updates (“optional, non-security”) for Win10 1809, 1803, 1709, Server 2016 and 2019. Lots of .NET patches. Monthly Rollup Previews for Win7 and 8.1. Nothing for 1903, as usual.

    Martin Brinkmann has his usual thorough roundup:

    The 1809 KB article lists almost 50 patches. Makes me wonder how much is still wrong with 1903 — much less 1909.

    Both the Win7 and 8.1 Monthly Rollup Previews list this among the “Improvements and fixes””

    Addresses an issue with evaluating the compatibility status of the Windows ecosystem to help ensure application and device compatibility for all updates to Windows. For more information, see KB4525208.

    Predictably, KB 4525208 isn’t up. All I’m seeing is a 404. I wonder if it’s the next generation of the widely despised KB 4493132 — the “patch” that introduced upgrade-to-Win10 nag screens. (Maybe issuing a similar “patch” with a different KB number is Microsoft’s way of overriding the “Do not remind me again” checkbox in the original patch.)

    Mary Jo Foley reports that MS is going to get more… obnoxious… in its upgrade nags to Win7 customers.

    As of this week, users of Windows 7 Pro devices that are not domain-joined will begin receiving notifications about the January 14, 2020 end-of-free-support deadline for Windows 7.

    I don’t see anything specific about the form the new nags will take – but the Microsoft announcement singles out Win7 Pro users who aren’t attached to corporate networks. I’d be willing to bet the nag is implemented in the Monthly Rollup Preview.

  • Reports of Win10 1903-like bugs in the September Win10 1809 patch, KB 4512578

    An anonymous poster just advised:

    I’m running 1809 Pro.  I had the start button won’t work problem, the Outlook won’t start problem, the search won’t work problem AND all the icons on the Task Bar disappeared.

    I ended up uninstalling KB4512578 to fix my machine.  I also ran the Microsoft utility to hide this update until further notice.  It’s been three days and so far so good.

    Are you seeing similar problems with 1809?

    I wonder if he/she had web search turned off….

    UPDATES: I mis-identified the patch. The one this reader’s having problems with is the first September cumulative update for 1809. No indication whether the October cumulative update induces the same weird behavior. And it looks like my hunch was right – the poster had Web Search turned off.

  • Here’s where we stand with bugs in this month’s Patch Tuesday patches

    Microsoft’s given short shrift to the Start Menu critical error – but I see it popping up all over.

    Search isn’t working right – but that may be linked to a manually changed “BingSearchEnabled” registry setting (long recommended to turn off Cortana’s infernal habit of searching the web for everything you type in the search box).

    Edge won’t start.

    Outlook won’t start, or won’t authenticate with Office 365.

    VMWare looks flakey, but I haven’t found any details.

    The latest in Computerworld Woody on Windows.

    UPDATE on VMWare: Peter Deegan, over at Office Watch, has more details on the VMWare bug. He’s looking at VMWare 14 (which is a very old version) and KB 4517211, which is the “optional non-security” September cumulative update to Win10 version 1903. It isn’t clear to me if this is the same bug we’re seeing with the October Patch Tuesday patch, but it sure sounds suspicious. If you’re using VMWare and getting the error “VMware Workstation Pro can’t run on Windows,” check it out.

  • October 2019 Patch Tuesday problems

    I see remarkably few reported problems with the October 2019 incarnation of Patch Tuesday.

    Looks like the printer problems have been resolved (only took MS four tries). I haven’t seen anybody with exploding Start menus or missing Cortana boxes — I know, that’s a feature, not a bug.

    What have I missed?

    Of course, I recommend that you NOT install any Windows/Office/NET patches just yet. There’s a reason why we’re on MS-DEFCON 1.

    Synopsis in Computerworld Woody on Windows.