June’s Patch Tuesday Updates Includes Updates For Windows XP and Vista

Here’s a bit of a plot twist that I noticed last night while running updates on my virtual machines that have a variety of Windows OSes installed on them. My Windows XP and Vista machines got updates for either the first time in a very long time (in the case of XP) or the first time in a few months (in the case of Vista). I did some quick research and found that Microsoft actually documented that they were doing this in a post on their website:

In reviewing the updates for this month, some vulnerabilities were identified that pose elevated risk of cyber attacks by government organizations, sometimes referred to as nation-state actors or other copycat organizations. To address this risk, today we are providing additional security updates along with our regular Update Tuesday service. These security updates are being made available to all customers, including those using older versions of Windows. Due to the elevated risk for destructive cyber attacks at this time, we made the decision to take this action because applying these updates provides further protection against potential attacks with characteristics similar to WannaCrypt.

Interesting. But they also said this:

It is important to note that if you’re running a supported version of Windows, such as Windows 10 or Windows 8.1, and you have Windows Update enabled, you don’t need to take any action. As always, we recommend customers upgrade to the latest platforms. The best protection is to be on a modern, up-to-date system that incorporates the latest innovations. Older systems, even if fully up-to-date, lack the latest security features and advancements.

Translation: Dump XP and Vista and get with the times because Microsoft is likely not to do this again. So my advice is that if you’re running XP and Vista, run software update to ensure that you’re up to date. Then make plans to migrate to an updated OS from Microsoft….. Or Apple….. Or Red Hat….. Or whatever company you prefer.

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