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Microsoft Monthly Patch Tuesday Brings Dozen of Fixes

Today's Tuesday and with it comes Microsoft's patch process with 12 fixes in the pipeline including seven which have been classified as critical, pertaining both to Office and Windows.

The critical vulnerabilities affect Internet Explorer and Media Player on all contemporary operating systems (Windows 2000, XP and Vista, Windows Server 2003 and 2008); as it is the case in most breaches, the patches deal with remote code execution which allows a hackers to control a computer unbeknown to the legitimate owner.

The other five non-critical patches target Microsoft's popular Office Applications: Access, Excel and Poowerpoint.

Also in the bunch are a number of important fixes for Outlook Express, MSN Messenger and Word plus an upgrade to its Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool.

Last month's release did not include any critical vulnerability patches and marked a turnaround in the way Microsoft deals with vulnerabilities; the software company has already signalled that it would be collaborating more closely with third parties before releasing patches to the public.

In August 2007, Microsoft's Patch Tuesday was fingered out as the culprit for a general breakdown in Skype worldwide.

Désiré Athow
Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.