Last Patch Tuesday More Important Than I Thought

I made short shrift of the last Patch Tuesday, not taking it too seriously since there were only two fixes, and only one of those critical.

Turns out one of the patches was far more interesting and important than I thought. It seems that Microsoft has had a hole in its Server Message Block -- a hole that took seven solid years to fix! The vulnerability can let hackers control an entire network. Security pros have no idea what took so long, and believe that many may have been hacked this way without even knowing it.

I'm pretty happy with how Microsoft patches, and see this as an anomaly. You agree? Thoughts welcome at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

IT Spending Possibly Safe for 2009
Research firm Computer Economics released a study arguing that IT budgets will be tight next year, but there's no real horror show. The better news? IT shops are keen to keep staff.

On the chopping block? Equipment upgrades, travel and entertainment, and temps. Let's hope they're right!

Microsoft Can't Stop Talking about Azure
Once Microsoft pre-announces a product with massive competitive implications, it simply won't stop talking about it 'til the darn thing ships -- no matter how long it takes. The idea is to convince customers that Microsoft is the most important game in town, even if it doesn't have a product.

That's what's happening now with Azure, Microsoft's upcoming cloud services platform. Latest case in point: a speech by David Treadwell that treads over some old Azure ground and then added some news in the form of a real, live (or is that Live?) demo.

I'm not how much was real and how much was Memorex, but Treadwell showed how he could launch a document and then make it available to others over the Web. Sort of like Google Docs, I guess.

Mailbag: Taking Azure Down a Notch
Microsoft may be busy talking up Azure, but Kevin thinks it's not all that revolutionary:

Isn't Azure nothing more than the remaking of the mainframe? Think about this: Why do we even need virtualization? Shouldn't you be able to run multiple apps on the same box under one OS? The OS doesn't protect apps from each other, or them from wrecking it. Remember, IBM's Z/OS allowed hundreds, if not thousands, of apps.

And I'm not even pointing strictly at Windows, as Unix and Linux also seem to need virtualization. Virtualization has its place, but not for 80 percent of the servers in a site!
-Kevin

Tell us what you think! Leave a comment below or send an e-mail to dbarney@redmondmag.com.

About the Author

Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.

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