Patch Tuesday Sees Nine Security Patches

Microsoft today released a total of nine security patches, six of which are considered "critical" and the other three "important."

All of the critical patches revolve around Windows, Internet Explorer, Office and XML Core Services, and fix problems that enable remote code execution. The important security patches address remote code execution issues with Windows and Vista, and elevation of privilege with Virtual PC and Virtual Server.

In addition to security patches, Microsoft also released a total of six non-security but high-priority updates, with four of them focusing on Microsoft Update (MU) and Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), and two on Windows Update (WU) and Software Update Services (SUS).

Novell Wins SCO Copyright Case
In what can only be interpreted as a severe setback for SCO in its lawsuit against IBM -- and, by extension, the Linux community -- a federal judge last Friday ruled that Novell, in fact, owns the copyrights to Unix and Unixware. Furthermore, Novell has the right to waive SCO's claims against IBM and Sequent, and SCO must comply and drop its suits.

To add insult to injury, SCO also owes Novell a portion of the royalties on Unix paid by Microsoft and Sun, which bought its rights to the source code outright several years ago.

While SCO still has legal avenues to pursue, this ruling effectively undercuts its entire case against IBM and, indirectly, Linux. The Groklaw entries make for fascinating reading.

Because SCO was also going after end users and demanding licensing fees, this is a big deal for companies who are using Linux. Have you been following SCO's legal moves the last few years? Tell me what you think at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

Windows Vista-Ready Suit Moves Forward
As further proof that lawyers are technology's new entrepreneurs, a judge for the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington in Seattle has denied Microsoft's request to dismiss lawsuits surrounding its use of "Windows Vista Capable" stickers on systems sold before Vista's availability.

These lawsuits, which seek class-action status, revolve around the fact that at least some of the systems sold with this sticker could run only Vista Home, rather than the more feature-rich versions.

My current laptop has a "Windows Vista Capable" sticker on it, and when I purchased it, I made sure that it would run all versions. How about you? Do you feel cheated by the sticker? Stick it to me at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

About the Author

Peter Varhol is the executive editor, reviews of Redmond magazine and has more than 20 years of experience as a software developer, software product manager and technology writer. He has graduate degrees in computer science and mathematics, and has taught both subjects at the university level.

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