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Microsoft doing secret Dimdows updates

 
 
Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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      09-14-2007
Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does so
<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_updates_sneaky_updates.html>,
<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_updates_perception_problem.html>.
 
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Nathan Mercer
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      09-14-2007
On Sep 14, 3:25 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does so
> <http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>,
> <http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>.


Rubbish. This is false.

Bad news drives eyeballs to websites and generates ad revenue

Windows Update will not update itself if it is disabled:

http://blogs.technet.com/mu/archive/...p-to-date.aspx

"I would like to address another misconception that I have seen
publically reported. WU does not automatically update itself when
Automatic Updates is turned off, this only happens when the customer
is using WU to automatically install upgrades or to be notified of
updates."

Cheers
Nathan

 
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Peter
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      09-14-2007
Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:
> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does so
>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_updates_sneaky_updates.html>,
>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_updates_perception_problem.html>.

from Nick White, Vista Product Manager at Microsoft ...
"This self-updating is done regardless of whether the user has enabled
automatic checking, download and/or installation of updates."
http://windowsvistablog.com/blogs/wi...c-updates.aspx

and from Bruce Simpson ...
"And, if Microsoft is effectively using a "silent back door" to your
computer, what happens when some "evil little sod" (ELS) cracks the
protection such a system (hopefully) has built into it. ...
So, given that it's been proven MS has (and is willing to use) a back-door
into your PC, how on earth can we be sure that this isn't being used for
whatever purpose suits those who have access to such a system? We all know
that power and abuse of power go hand in hand - and the chances of the
later are almost directly proportional to the level of the former."
http://aardvark.co.nz/daily/2007/0914.shtml



 
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Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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      09-14-2007
In message <(E-Mail Removed) .com>, Nathan
Mercer wrote:

> On Sep 14, 3:25 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
> central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
>> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does so
>>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>,
>>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>.
>
> Windows Update will not update itself if it is disabled:


Only if it is completely turned off.

>

http://blogs.technet.com/mu/archive/...p-to-date.aspx
>
> "...this only happens when the customer
> is using WU to automatically install upgrades or to be notified of
> updates."


In other words, it still silently updates itself if you ask to be _notified_
of updates. It will not notify you, it will simply do it.

The explanation given is that, for some reason, Dimdows Update seems unable
to keep track of new updates unless it is itself updated. Why is this? It
seems to suggest that there are ongoing, backward-incompatible updates
being made to the Dimdows Update protocol itself.
 
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Nathan Mercer
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-14-2007
On Sep 14, 11:11 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
> >> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does so

>
> <http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>,
> <http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>.
>
> > Windows Update will not update itself if it is disabled:

>
> Only if it is completely turned off.


Is there a difference between disabled and completely turned off?
Thank you for restating what I already said.

The files that are being updated are part of the Windows Update client
itself. Windows Update automatically updates itself from time to time
to ensure that it is running the most current technology, so that it
can check for updates and notify customers that new updates are
available. This is normal behavior, and it has worked this way since
the service debuted several years ago.

> http://blogs.technet.com/mu/archive/...ows-update-kee...
>
>
>
> > "...this only happens when the customer
> > is using WU to automatically install upgrades or to be notified of
> > updates."

>
> In other words, it still silently updates itself if you ask to be _notified_
> of updates. It will not notify you, it will simply do it.


Yes it will notify you - you are incorrect (again)

> The explanation given is that, for some reason, Dimdows Update seems unable
> to keep track of new updates unless it is itself updated. Why is this? It


>From time to time Microsoft must also update and enhance the Windows

Update service itself and, as part of this process, we need to update
the client side code. These upgrades are important if we are to
maintain the quality of the service. It would be very difficult to
support multiple versions of the client code, so it is important that
all Windows Update customers receive these particular updates.

> seems to suggest that there are ongoing, backward-incompatible updates
> being made to the Dimdows Update protocol itself.


Microsoft is confident that the choice to use Automatic Updating
continues to be the best decision.


 
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Peter Huebner
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-15-2007
In article <1189759736.25369@ftpsrv1>, http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed) says...
> from Nick White, Vista Product Manager at Microsoft ...
> "This self-updating is done regardless of whether the user has enabled
> automatic checking, download and/or installation of updates."
> http://windowsvistablog.com/blogs/wi...c-updates.aspx


Yes, and then he further gives a link to the Update Product Team Blog:
http://blogs.technet.com/mu/

Where, if/when you read the full document you will come across the following:
Begin quote >>
The point of this explanation is not to suggest that we were as transparent as
we could have been; to the contrary, people have told us that we should have
been clearer on how Windows Update behaves when it updates itself. This is
helpful and important feedback, and we are now looking at the best way to
clarify WU=3Fs behavior to customers so that they can more clearly understand how
WU works.
<< end quote

and just below you can read:
Begin quote>>
Before closing, I would like to address another misconception that I have seen
publically reported. WU does not automatically update itself when Automatic
Updates is turned off, this only happens when the customer is using WU to
automatically install upgrades or to be notified of updates.
<< end quote.

In other words: if you turn it off, it's OFF. If you have it on any other
setting, it will update itself to maintain functionality. When it's OFF it will
NOT go online and update itself.

Fair enough. Hell, they even say that they should have made the functionality
of the thing more transparent. What more can you ask for?

This is one conspiracy theory that doesn't wash.

>
> and from Bruce Simpson ...
> "And, if Microsoft is effectively using a "silent back door" to your
> computer, what happens when some "evil little sod" (ELS) cracks the
> protection such a system (hopefully) has built into it. ...
> So, given that it's been proven MS has (and is willing to use) a back-door
> into your PC, how on earth can we be sure that this isn't being used for
> whatever purpose suits those who have access to such a system? We all know
> that power and abuse of power go hand in hand - and the chances of the
> later are almost directly proportional to the level of the former."
> http://aardvark.co.nz/daily/2007/0914.shtml


Exactly. This is why I keep Windows Update turned OFF. I don't need unwatched
backdoors into my system. I control what updates I want and what gets
installed. The issue Bruce raises is one reason why I was so horrified by the
whole rootkit saga. Any backdoor, any stealthing can potentially be exploited
by ELSs. Imagine the botnet one could create by slipping a fraudulent dns
record used by such software into one of the backbone servers for a mere 15
minutes ... how secure is WU handshaking/authentication I wonder? There are
some very very capable hackers working out of Russia and Romania (among other
places) some of whom are black hats working for syndicates with lots of
resources.

Co-incidentally:
One of my first experiences after installing XP was, literally seconds after I
went online with it the first time, and before I had had/taken the opportunity
to batten down the hatches (well,I was about to _get_ an up-to-date firewall),
my system was hacked, either via Windows Update or by spoofing it somehow, &
very well. It started downloading and installing automatically (I was not using
IE, and whatever it was did not come from MS). After gaping at the screen for a
couple seconds like a stunned mullet I hit the hard reset switch. It didn't
finish doing whatever ...

It never happened again

-P.

--
=========================================
firstname dot lastname at gmail fullstop com
 
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Will Spencer
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-15-2007
On Fri, 14 Sep 2007 06:52:44 -0700, Nathan Mercer wrote:

> On Sep 14, 11:11 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
> central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
>>>> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does so

>>
>> <http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>,
>> <http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>.
>>
>>> Windows Update will not update itself if it is disabled:

>>
>> Only if it is completely turned off.

>
> Is there a difference between disabled and completely turned off?
> Thank you for restating what I already said.
>
> The files that are being updated are part of the Windows Update client
> itself. Windows Update automatically updates itself from time to time
> to ensure that it is running the most current technology, so that it
> can check for updates and notify customers that new updates are
> available. This is normal behavior, and it has worked this way since
> the service debuted several years ago.
>
>> http://blogs.technet.com/mu/archive/...ows-update-kee...
>>
>>
>>
>>> "...this only happens when the customer
>>> is using WU to automatically install upgrades or to be notified of
>>> updates."

>>
>> In other words, it still silently updates itself if you ask to be _notified_
>> of updates. It will not notify you, it will simply do it.

>
> Yes it will notify you - you are incorrect (again)


So what's going on Lawrence, have you now been reduced to telling fibs and
porkies about Dimdows in order to gain support for your second rate OS? Is
this what it's come down to after all these years?

-ws



 
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Shane
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-15-2007
Will Spencer wrote:

> On Fri, 14 Sep 2007 06:52:44 -0700, Nathan Mercer wrote:
>
>> On Sep 14, 11:11 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
>> central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
>>>>> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does
>>>>> so
>>>
>>>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>,
>>>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>.
>>>
>>>> Windows Update will not update itself if it is disabled:
>>>
>>> Only if it is completely turned off.

>>
>> Is there a difference between disabled and completely turned off?
>> Thank you for restating what I already said.
>>
>> The files that are being updated are part of the Windows Update client
>> itself. Windows Update automatically updates itself from time to time
>> to ensure that it is running the most current technology, so that it
>> can check for updates and notify customers that new updates are
>> available. This is normal behavior, and it has worked this way since
>> the service debuted several years ago.
>>
>>> http://blogs.technet.com/mu/archive/...ows-update-kee...
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>> "...this only happens when the customer
>>>> is using WU to automatically install upgrades or to be notified of
>>>> updates."
>>>
>>> In other words, it still silently updates itself if you ask to be
>>> _notified_ of updates. It will not notify you, it will simply do it.

>>
>> Yes it will notify you - you are incorrect (again)

>
> So what's going on Lawrence, have you now been reduced to telling fibs and
> porkies about Dimdows in order to gain support for your second rate OS? Is
> this what it's come down to after all these years?
>
> -ws


As opposed to staff from Microsoft doing just that?
--
Q: What does a mathematician present to his fiancée when he wants to
propose?
A: A polynomial ring!

 
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Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-15-2007
In message <(E-Mail Removed) om>, Nathan
Mercer wrote:

> On Sep 14, 11:11 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
> central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
>> >> Even if you tell it not to update your Dimdows system, it still does
>> >> so

>>
>>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>,
>>

<http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/operating_systems/windows_upda...>.
>>
>> > Windows Update will not update itself if it is disabled:

>>
>> Only if it is completely turned off.

>
> Is there a difference between disabled and completely turned off?


Yes. "Disabled" simply means you don't get automatic updates. Or at least,
you're asking not to get them--it appears Dimdows Update has a different
interpretation of this, but only applying to itself, not to other updates.

> The files that are being updated are part of the Windows Update client
> itself. Windows Update automatically updates itself from time to time
> to ensure that it is running the most current technology, so that it
> can check for updates and notify customers that new updates are
> available. This is normal behavior, and it has worked this way since
> the service debuted several years ago.
>
>> http://blogs.technet.com/mu/archive/...ows-update-kee...
>>
>> > "...this only happens when the customer
>> > is using WU to automatically install upgrades or to be notified of
>> > updates."

>>
>> In other words, it still silently updates itself if you ask to be
>> _notified_ of updates. It will not notify you, it will simply do it.

>
> Yes it will notify you - you are incorrect (again)


No it does not. All the reports are quite clear on that. And you yourself
admit as much:

> From time to time Microsoft must also update and enhance the Windows
> Update service itself and, as part of this process, we need to update
> the client side code. These upgrades are important if we are to
> maintain the quality of the service. It would be very difficult to
> support multiple versions of the client code, so it is important that
> all Windows Update customers receive these particular updates.


Even if they don't ask for them? And why are they not notified about these
updates, even if they ask to be notified? That is the question that you're
not answering.

>> The explanation given is that, for some reason, Dimdows Update seems
>> unable to keep track of new updates unless it is itself updated. Why is
>> this? It seems to suggest that there are ongoing, backward-incompatible
>> updates being made to the Dimdows Update protocol itself.

>
> Microsoft is confident that the choice to use Automatic Updating
> continues to be the best decision.


Which is not answering the point I made--why does Dimdows Update insist on
automatic, silent updates to itself, even when you disable automatic,
silent updates?
 
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Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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      09-15-2007
In message <taxzgi89iaqy$(E-Mail Removed)>, Will Spencer wrote:

> ... Dimdows ...


Gotcha.
 
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