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IT security firms worried about Microsoft Vista

It seems that some IT security firms are less than pleased with Microsoft and the way it has handled IT security features in its new Vista operating system.

The problem, it seems, stems from the fact that Vista is a 64-bit operating system and only a few IT security products can protect against 64-bit malware and security problems.

According to Sophos (opens in new tab), Symantec and McAfee have recently made high-profile complaints that they are being locked out of the Vista operating system kernel by Microsoft's PatchGuard prevention system.

Sophos claims that (opens in new tab)Symantec and McAfee argue that this is preventing them from continuing to develop pro-active protection - known as Host Intrusion Production (HIPS (opens in new tab)) and that such actions are un-competitive.

What's interesting is that Sophos argues that its approach to HIPS technology has met with no problems on both the low-spec and high-spec versions of Windows Vista.

In addition, the IT security vendor adds that Microsoft has so far provided all the interfaces that Sophos needs for providing this form of protection.

Richard Jacobs (opens in new tab), Sophos' CTO, said that the competition may have overlooked the 64-bit nature of Vista, rather than - as Sophos is doing - focusing on catching bad behaviour before it has a chance to occur.

Interesting comments. I suspect that, as the Vista bandwagon gets rolling, there will be a lot of inter-vendor slagging off like this going on.

My advice? Wait for the dust to settle before making a buying decision...