Less patches?

On January 31, 2008, in news, by

On Dr. Jesper Johansson’s blog he lays out the evidence for the fact that Vista has had less security patches than XP during the same time frame.  The operative word there is “security patches”.  As for the rank and file, the reality is that it ‘feels’ that Vista has been patched way more often than XP during the time frame (and I haven’t honestly counted for sure) because of all the performance and application patches.

One author in PC Magazine has the same feeling…


‘Scarcely stopping for a breath and not noticing that I had long ago left behind conversation for a full-fledged speech, I added, “The UAC [User Account Control] is a prime example. Microsoft Vista is inherently more secure than its predecessors, and, in fact, I cannot recall a recent successful attack—but on the other hand, I get more Windows Updates than I’m really comfortable with.” ….’

He then goes on to make a statement that showcases that Microsoft hasn’t communicated well the UAC experence at all.

“As I was saying, the UAC. For everything I do, and I mean everything–whether I’m installing an app, a game, or a Microsoft product–the UAC is always jumping in to warn me. It appears with such jarring regularity, and I do mean jarring—what’s with that crazy screen shift, Bob?—that I no longer read it. I simply say ‘OK’ to everything. Is this what Microsoft intended? I ratchet it down in the OS, but then, am I disabling a key portion of Vista’s security features? No feature should be so in-your-face that it becomes faceless.”

Lance, you are SUPPOSED to get it when you install software… all the things you say you are doing … your “I mean everything”… the installing an app, a game or a Microsoft product… “installing” is an administrative function.  You are supposed to get prompted.  And how many times do you install stuff?  When I roll out Vista for the very first time, I see it a lot the first couple of days, and then after that… nada.  Like on this Vista here at the office I have not seen it once all day long.  Line of Business apps, the whole shebang, not a single time have I seen it today.  None.

Then Lance loses me completely…

• “Do an Apple and start with new code. Forget about supporting every piece of hardware and software ever written. For people with major compatibility issues, keep Vista Premium around. You’ll be surprised at how many people simply want to move forward.

When you have 90% of the marketplace to Apple’s 4% … you can’t dump the entire partner eco-structure and ‘do over’.  Like the guy on Todd’s MS blog  – http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/microsoft/archives/130605.asp who is having issues with printers, I don’t buy the argument that ‘start with new code’ will give you cleaner code, more secure code, and that there’s enough of the marketplace that is willing to rebuy everything.  When the first comment on that SeattlePI post, Keith states that Quickbooks 2006 and prior have issues with Vista when it’s documented by Intuit that they support 2007 and 2008 on Vista, you can tell that people don’t buy new, upgrade, etc nor even read the fact of what is supported on what platform. 

For the record you can get 2006 and prior running on Vista, just follow the guidelines of what we had to do to get the program to run as non admin back in that day.  Hack up the registry and set user/full control for the folder and registry locations of Intuit.  In fact I have to do some more testing as I hit an issue the other day in my network deployment of QB 2007 on Vista opening up and attempting to update a payroll tax table update in Vista and until I loosened the permissions on the Intuit location in the Program files, it wouldn’t update.  (This didn’t occur in a standalone Vista deployment on a single computer so I’m going to have to do some testing and see if it’s due to the data file being parked on the server drive).

But bottom line, new code creates just as many problems as old code and ticks off a large vendor ecostructure in the process (not to mention with the DOJ and EU once again firing up a review… get real).


One Response to Less patches?

  1. Richard says:

    There are a couple of applications that I use regularly that need to run as administrator.

    One is a program for remote controlling other people’s PCs – which seems legit that it needs admin rights.

    The other is Visual Studio 2005, which is really annoying.

    I know 2008 doesn’t do this, but I’d have to upgrade the project I’m in the middle of developing, so that’s not going to happen.