Patch Tuesday Leaves SharePoint Out

For September's Patch Tuesday, Microsoft released a total of four security patches, one of them for a "critical" issue and three for "important" issues.

The "critical" patch addressed a problem regarding the ability to execute code remotely on all versions of Windows. The "important" patches addressed Visual Studio, Windows Services for Unix, Subsystem for Unix-based applications, and MSN Messenger, Windows Live Messenger. These issues involved remote code execution and elevation of privilege.

In addition, Microsoft released one non-security, high-priority update on Microsoft Update (MU) and Windows Server Update Services (WSUS). Microsoft announced that a planned update to its SharePoint collaboration software wouldn't be released this month.

Google Apps Gains Ally
Google's getting a new friend in its push to spread Google applications: Capgemini said this week it's going to start pushing the Premier Edition of Google Apps (the $50 version of the company's office suite) to corporate customers -- including enterprise companies. The Premier Edition, which is delivered as a Software as a Service (SaaS) over the Internet through the Web browser, includes Docs & Spreadsheets, Gmail and Google Calendar.

The partnership may give a boost to both Google and the entire concept of SaaS. And until Microsoft has a credible offering in this area, it may leave our favorite Redmond company out in the cold.

Would you recommend online office applications for your company? Recommend them to me at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

This Is Why I'm Not a Lawyer
Those of you who are still following the SCO-Novell case may be interested to know that on Friday, a judge rejected SCO's request for an immediate formal ruling that could be appealed in the near future.

And in the legal blog I referenced above, author Roger Perloff makes some interesting points regarding what should and should not have come out of Novell's request for a summary judgment. I replied in the blog's comment section that this case was almost a sideline to the real one, which was SCO's assertion that Unix code had invaded the Linux source base. That has yet to be proven, or even supported with evidence.

It may be that this case will not be decided before SCO runs out of money. But it continues to point out some of the hazards involved when technology and the law collide. If there's anything more that can be said about this case, say it to me at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

VMware Piles It On With New Virtualization Products
Yesterday, VMware made several announcements that appear to cement its leadership position in this increasingly important technology segment.

Included in these announcements was the next-generation thin hypervisor and its integration into server hardware, and new desktop management and automated disaster recovery solutions based on its virtualization products. These new products are being showcased at VMworld in San Francisco this week.

I'm parked in New England this week, so if you make it to VMworld, tell me what you think at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

Mailbag: 9/11 Six Years Later, Viva la Amiga, More
In honor of the sixth-year anniversary of 9/11, Doug asked readers where they were when it happened, and what they think about it now. Here's what some of you had to say:

Hard not to remember where I was on that day apart from work. We had just celebrated my son's fourth birthday -- presents, dinner, etc. As the event did not occur on Australia until around 11:00 that night, we did not realise that our son's birthday was going to be remembered for something other than a joyful event. In fact, on the eve of his next birthday, he asked us if anything was going to happen that year.

This may be a blinkered, self-centred, view of what was a very tragic event but it was, and is, every bit as real and personal to us.
-Allan

The view from Nigeria: Six years ago this week, the first news I heard was Nigeria had been bombed. Later I heard that it was the rapture. It wasn't until late in the evening that I learned the truth about what happened. Even though I was more than millions of miles away from the actual event, I felt it like it was a personal event. My boss (then) was scheduled to be in one of those buildings for that date.

My heartfelt sympathy to the families of the victims and the heroes.
-Oladipo

At that time, I was the network administrator for the Western Pacific regional office. On 9/11, I had just walked into the office in L.A. and walked over to the executive offices where the air traffic western service manager's office is located. We were watching the TV when the second plane hit. A few minutes later, our manager, just a few feet away, had a telecon with five or six other regional air traffic managers and decided independently of the FAA headquarters executives to pull all aircraft from the skies. That began a flawless piece of air traffic control where air traffic controllers all across the country brought over 5,000 aircraft to the ground in less than two hours -- don't remember the details. This also began about two weeks of 24/7 air traffic management support emanating from that very room and from the other regional offices. All our servers stayed up that entire time.
-Rob

I was at sea as the captain of a government fisheries research vessel six years ago. We did not have satellite TV then. Just after lunch, one of the deckhands came up to the bridge and said he'd heard on his AM radio that a small plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. Using a high-frequency radio, I was able to dial in WBZ, a Boston AM station. At that point, we all learned that the towers were gone. Taken out by two planes.

We were out on Georges Bank, east of Massachusetts, in an area where TV reception (just using an omni directional antenna) usually was pretty poor. For some reason, that day the atmospheric conditions were right and we were able to watch in horror as the Twin Towers came down, over and over again. Every year after that I would ring the ship's bell on 9/11 in memory of those that were killed in that terrorist attack.

I still work for the same government agency but on the beach. I travel by air frequently for meetings and to visit the vessel crews. Things have changed as far as screening passengers on the plane but air cargo is not being screened as closely as it should. Cargo containers on cargo ships are not being screened. I don't see how we can screen every container before it comes into this country.

I sometimes wonder when the next attack will occur. I pray, never.
-Jack

Everyone at our corporate headquarters in downtown Seattle kept drifting in and out of the room where the television was reporting what was happening in New York. People would gather for a few minutes and get the latest updates and discuss what was happening before drifting back to work. Some people had been to the observation deck and discussed what it was like to go up in the Towers. Several people turned on radios to get updates at their desk. They evacuated the tallest building in Seattle around mid-morning and after that there was talk of our office closing down for the day. Being on the West Coast, we kept discussing where the terrorists might strike again and if Seattle would be targeted.
-Greg

I work for a daily newspaper in northwest Georgia and was standing in our newsroom watching everything unfold. My reaction, like most of the country, was pure hatred and anger but being that we had a newspaper to put out about the events that were unfolding, we had to put those feelings aside so that we could be objective for our readers.

Six years later, I feel like although we are engaged in Iraq and Afghanistan, I don't think we have done enough to get Osama bin Laden. The administration's current position of bin Laden being impotent is the wrong attitude to have based on the fact that we are still so vunerable in this country.
-Matt

I was going to the local community college (taking a Unix class) here in Raleigh, N.C. when the radio broke in with a news bulletin about the first plane that crashed into the south tower (I think it was the south tower that got hit first). When I arrived at school, people were scurrying to and from class as usual. I had some time before class so I went to the student hall and they had brought out a big-screen TV to watch the goings on. From the news I knew it was no accident and when the second plane hit the other tower I thought for sure we were in for some rough times. I felt a little scared and also kinda pissed. I find it amazing that I still remember all that.
-Anonymous

I was at work at the FAA and saw on TV when the plane hit the second tower. It's hard to describe the feeling in the pit of my stomach at that moment -- and that stayed with me long afterward. I'm proud of my fellow FAA-ers who did a yeoman's job that day and who continue to serve our country with distinction. But I'm amazed that so many fellow Americans seem to have forgotten the war that was declared that day and live as if the danger of another 9/11 is remote.
-Bill

I work at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois. Your comments about 9/11 brought me back to remember that day, as well. I work in the Tanker Airlift Control Center for Air Mobility Command, where we monitor and direct military airlift around the globe -- between 300 and 500 missions per day. During that time, I was the lead officer for our Crisis Action Team, and I got the call to "fire up the CAT" for what I assumed was just another exercise. As the news filtered in, everyone in the center watched with a mixture of shock and disbelief, and the news that "all flights had been grounded" caught my attention. As part of my duties, I ran my checklists and brought up all of our monitoring systems. It was then that the imact of what had happened (and was continuing to happen) really hit home.

In our center, we have a large display wall with the FAA link to all air traffic over the United States (fed from all the air traffic contol radars nationwide). Normally, there are about 4,500 (or more) flights airborne over the U.S. during the daylight hours. As you might imagine, the majority of flights are concentrated on the east and west coasts, and near the major inland cities. Even at night, there are normally 1,000 to 1,500 flights up in the air, so this display of U.S. airborne activity is never dark.

When I looked at the screen this time, it was completely blank. If you looked closely, there were a handful of military flights in the air (representing the fighters that were up over major cities) but nothing else. This truly brought up the gravity of the situation and of what had happened. With everything grounded, I realized that our world had changed forever. It was a sight and a feeling I hope I never experience again.
-Eric

Like you, I was on the road attending a technology conference. I was out in Los Angeles at the annual HP Technology Symposium for HP certified professionals. Since the conference only started on Monday, my body was still somewhat on East Coast time. As such, I naturally awoke early on Tuesday, 9/11 and turned on the TV. I switched to CNN and they were covering the story. At that time, only the first tower was struck but no one really knew what happened. As I was watching live, I saw the second plane hit. In an instant, you knew exactly what happened.

I got dressed and headed down to breakfast. The news was on every single TV including the conference rooms. They announced that today's sessions were cancelled and they would decide by later in the day if the conference was going to continue at all. Shortly thereafter, rumors started circulating that one of the planes still in the air and unresponsive was heading to Los Angeles. I was thinking that a convention center located next to Disneyland would certainly be a good target. Thankfully, the rumor didn't materialize and was not covered on national TV from what I remember. The decision was made to continue the conference on Wednesday, since almost everyone was basically stuck in L.A. anyhow. They followed a modified session format with several speakers cancelling.

Getting back home was the most difficult part of the process. Some rented cars and were driving cross-country. Others tried for buses. Both came into short supply rather quickly. I decided to stick it out and keep trying the airlines as soon as the FAA would allow flights again. I figured this was probably the safest time to fly with all the security in effect. I was lucky and caught a flight on Friday morning. I was amazed at how empty the plane was given how hard it was to get a reservation. Flying back into Newark, all eyes were to the east, looking at the still smoldering site. The landscape seemed barren and unfamiliar. The towers were an integral part of the NYC landscape. It seemed foreign with them not there anymore.
-Dave

We are fighting against religious fanatics that don't believe in democracy or the Geneva Conventions, and refuse to accept accountability for their actions. Unlike bin Laden, their leader is easy to find: Just check 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
-Bill

Amiga fans bask in the news that the company is releasing a pack of old Amiga games ported to Windows:

I believe I have the second Amiga 1000 sold throughout the entire Midwest which, as I recall, was the geographical region throughout which the machine was first released for sale to the public. Two of my favorite programs won't run anymore because I need a new copy of the Amiga WorkBench 1.0 boot disk. Which one of you do I need to bribe?
-Clinton

I still have my Amiga and about 100 games and software titles. It's been stored away for about three years now due to lack of time but after this article, I think it's time to pull it out and play! It was and is a great platform and there is nothing like a little nostalgia.
-Dennis

Of course my Amiga question is: Did Amiga settle with Hyperion Aug. 31? They were in court. Supposedly, Hyperion was selling OSes to a company in Italy (past the original time limit set by the contract). So it went to court in Washington.
-James

And in the wake of news that Yahoo is buying ad network BlueLithium, Lafe asked last week what kinds of online advertising readers find most annoying. Here's Ron's list:

The worst kind of advertising is the full-page ad before the Web page you want, even though there's a "skip" link! The next is the flashing "IBM" type in the middle of an article, and the third is the floating "we're doing a survey" ad.
-Ron

Got something to add? Share it with us! Leave a comment below or send an e-mail to pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

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