Be careful with your Windows 7 updates!

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Be careful with your Windows 7 updates!

Post by maximus » Tue May 18, 2010 9:03 am

Just noticed an update today flagged as "important". Miscrosoft are calling it "update for Windows 7 for x64-based systems (KB971033)"

If your running a let's say, slightly "unofficial" version of Windows 7 you may want to change your updates to "custom" rather than automatic and deselect this update when it appears. If you have already downloaded it you can un-install it but if your system has been flagged it won't make any difference.

As part of its anti-piracy efforts, Microsoft recently released update KB971033 for Windows 7’s built in activation and validation system, called Windows Activation Technologies. This update is available through Window's built in updates system and is available free of charge.

What does it do?

KB971033 was designed to give Microsoft the ability to help you determine the legality of your Windows 7 installation. It does so by looking for software specially developed to circumvent the operating system’s genuine check. In its current state, according to the Genuine Windows blog, this update will be able to monitor the customer’s computer for over 70 known potentially dangerous hacks, cracks and exploits that might have been used. Those exploits might contain malware and might affect the user’s pc usage experience, the blog says.

How does it do it?

Once installed, update KB971033 will alert the user if it finds any malicious software that it was designed to locate. If it does find such a program, the user will be able to fix the problem, usually with just a few mouse clicks. Computers that are not affected by any of those programs will not display any messages, and the update will continue to run silently in the background.

What if it finds something?

If your computer is affected by some exploit, update KB971033 will give you two options. You will be able to go to Microsoft’s website for more information, and you will also be presented with an option to purchase a valid license for the copy of Windows 7 installed on your computer.

Will it fix my computer?

Yes, if your computer scans positively for a known exploit, update KB971033 will attempt to repair important core licensing system files that might have been tampered with by the exploit. If those files were disabled or removed, the update will regenerate a valid copy. The exploit will in that case be rendered useless and disabled.

Will it protect me against future threats?

Yes, update KB971033 will communicate with Microsoft’s servers every 90 days to download an updated index of exploits that have been released and might have compromised your computer.

Is this update mandatory?

No, by default the update is not selected in Windows Update, though we encourage users to install it. To do so, simply navigate to the Windows Update section of the control panel, and put a checkmark besides the update. The official name is: Update for Microsoft Windows (KB971033)


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Post by m8internet » Tue May 18, 2010 7:49 pm

I'm sorry but I woudn't be so forth coming on such advice; get a fully licenced version of software
If the update locks your computer for an illegal version of Windows 7 tough
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Post by maximus » Tue May 18, 2010 10:28 pm

Well I'm sorry too but I think your on the wrong site to be giving that sort of advice ;)
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Post by Wodger » Wed May 19, 2010 7:54 am

In addition to what Max said, this update was rolled out in March this year to counter the anti WPA techniques used to activate windows 7.

This update goes after quite a few of the older patches, and deals specifically with files that have been exchanged/modified.
From what I have read, many using the RemoveWAT haven't been affected, however soon, by next month, we may see this also being affected.

From many people that I know of running varying types of activation, only those running frankenbuild versions are having some issues, however with much these days, its not long before someone comes up with an alternative.

SP1 for windows 7 is due soon, and I would expect that they will roll out a new load of anti-piracy updates. You also have the infinite rearm project going on at the moment, that doesn't use any hacks, mods, loaders etc.etc. And Windows is still activated :)

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Post by maximus » Wed May 19, 2010 8:41 am

Thanks for that info Pete :)

Actually yesterday was the first time this update appeared in my downloads. Although as a system builder I run a licensed copy of Win7 I still always have updates set to "custom". I like to know what they are trying to install on "MY" system ;) Anyway, there's plenty of OEM versions out there that are not going to be affected by this.

It's the same old story with MS. Bolt the door after the horse has done a runner and is vacationing on a beach in the Bahamas ;) Here's a much simpler solution...do away with all the different versions, sell one for home users and one for business users and drop the frigging price so more people can afford to go legitimate?

Windows 7 is a fantastic operating system but, it is just an operating system. Linux is also damned good these days and it's FREE! Let's get it in perspective. Windows 7 as good as it is, is still too expensive for many people around the world. Oh and whilst I'm on the subject of operating systems being too expensive I notice Apple are not in the cheap seats any more either! Not good, definitely not good :evil:
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