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XPSP2 -- Anyone having troubles?

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  • User profile image
    imekon

    jonathanh wrote:
    imekon wrote:There's still two firewalls to get past, that hardly makes me "wide open vulnerable".


    Fine, you can take care of yourself - that's good.  But as others have said, if you're recommending to your friends and family that they DON'T install SP2, that's bad.  Best case, you have to spend more time supporting them.  Worst case, they get hit with something that SP2 would have stopped, and then they won't like you so much anymore Smiley


    Why is it bad to be cautious about SP2 and wait until everything is clearer? Surely, that's basic common sense! Or do you advocate installing fixes as soon as they appear? Especially one as big as SP2 for the OS???

    What guarantee do we have SP2 won't have as many holes as non-SP2? The fact that Microsoft has rebuilt a whole bunch of stuff with special switches? I prefer to wait and see... let's see how vulnerable SP2 is first.

  • User profile image
    jonathanh

    imekon wrote:
    Why is it bad to be cautious about SP2 and wait until everything is clearer? Surely, that's basic common sense!
    Nope, it's not. What was common sense five years ago is no longer true. The time from patch-release to exploit-in-the-wild is on a consistent downward trend. That's bad - if everyone takes a "wait and see" attitude, that just leaves a bigger population for the inevitable exploit to attack. Thankfully, the stability of patches is on a consistent upward trend. That's good - it means we CAN advocate everyone installing patches as soon as possible after release.

    We've convinced most administrators to change their mindset on this one. "Patch Tuesdays once a month" helped a lot here, and Oracle just announced that they're going to follow suit. We're still working on changing the attitude of consumers (auto-update and BITS makes that a whole lot easier), and of influencers like you.

    imekon wrote:
    Or do you advocate installing fixes as soon as they appear? Especially one as big as SP2 for the OS???
    Yes, 100%. It's been through months of testing and two massive release-candidate cycles. We published information for developers about what it would and wouldn't break months ago. It's kinda sad that a lot of businesses didn't pay any attention to this, and screamed at us to push back the auto-update cycle for XP Professional, but I can at least understand that attitude: they're busy trying to earn a living, in a totally reactive mode, and they're not going to test anything or learn about it until it arrives on their desktops.

    imekon wrote:
    What guarantee do we have SP2 won't have as many holes as non-SP2? The fact that Microsoft has rebuilt a whole bunch of stuff with special switches?
    Um, yes. That plus the improved firewall that's on by default, the "tainting" of executables downloaded from the net, the security center that's easier for consumers to understand, the hundreds of other fixes, blah blah blah.

    imekon wrote:
    I prefer to wait and see... let's see how vulnerable SP2 is first.
    Seriously, what would it take to change your mind on this? Because if the answer is "nothing", then it makes more sense for me to go help someone who hasn't got their fingers stuck in their ears shouting "lalalala I can't hear you" Smiley

  • User profile image
    smw

    I've installed SP2 on two Athlon-64 machines, and I've had problems with  "Data Execution  Prevention" on both of them. 

    Basically, after installation, Windows Explorer won't launch most of the time -- it returns a DEP error.  It seems to matter which shortcut I use.

    I've got current (Symantec) AV software, and I've run both Adaware and Spybot, but I haven't found anything that should cause this.

    Disabling the DEP for 'Windows Explorer' through the UI doesn't seem to fix the problem.  Finally, after quite a bit of searching, I found:  kb 875352.  Adding "/execute" to my boot.ini file does seem to effectively disable DEP and allow my computers to function properly.

  • User profile image
    imekon

    jonathanh wrote:
    imekon wrote:Why is it bad to be cautious about SP2 and wait until everything is clearer? Surely, that's basic common sense!
    Nope, it's not. What was common sense five years ago is no longer true.


    Unlikely.

    jonathanh wrote:

     The time from patch-release to exploit-in-the-wild is on a consistent downward trend. That's bad - if everyone takes a "wait and see" attitude, that just leaves a bigger population for the inevitable exploit to attack. Thankfully, the stability of patches is on a consistent upward trend. That's good - it means we CAN advocate everyone installing patches as soon as possible after release.

    We've convinced most administrators to change their mindset on this one. "Patch Tuesdays once a month" helped a lot here, and Oracle just announced that they're going to follow suit. We're still working on changing the attitude of consumers (auto-update and BITS makes that a whole lot easier), and of influencers like you.


    For small patches, I can accept. For a large patch like SP2, I think we're talking a whole different league here.

    jonathanh wrote:


    imekon wrote:Or do you advocate installing fixes as soon as they appear? Especially one as big as SP2 for the OS???
    Yes, 100%. It's been through months of testing and two massive release-candidate cycles. We published information for developers about what it would and wouldn't break months ago. It's kinda sad that a lot of businesses didn't pay any attention to this, and screamed at us to push back the auto-update cycle for XP Professional, but I can at least understand that attitude: they're busy trying to earn a living, in a totally reactive mode, and they're not going to test anything or learn about it until it arrives on their desktops.


    The amount of testing XP went through, and it still was released with a large number of bugs - you want me to believe SP2 is better?

    jonathanh wrote:


    imekon wrote:What guarantee do we have SP2 won't have as many holes as non-SP2? The fact that Microsoft has rebuilt a whole bunch of stuff with special switches?
    Um, yes. That plus the improved firewall that's on by default, the "tainting" of executables downloaded from the net, the security center that's easier for consumers to understand, the hundreds of other fixes, blah blah blah.


    The improved but flawed firewall which is actually worse than what I run now (and recommend others do the same).

    jonathanh wrote:


    imekon wrote:I prefer to wait and see... let's see how vulnerable SP2 is first.
    Seriously, what would it take to change your mind on this? Because if the answer is "nothing", then it makes more sense for me to go help someone who hasn't got their fingers stuck in their ears shouting "lalalala I can't hear you" Smiley


    Nothing you have to say, so far.

  • User profile image
    ewall

    (I'm going to ignore all the arugments and respond to the actual question.)

    This may have been said before, but...

    I had no problems with a clean installation of a slipstreamed XP-SP2 installation on an old Compaq laptop.

    However, its interactions with Norton Internet Security 2004 have been less than stellar: XP doesn't think there's a valid firewall, and can't communicate with the anti-virus to get the status (although at least it knows there's an AV program installed).

    I know, I know: blame it on the vendor! But SP2 has been in testing long enough, and it recognizes enough competing firewalls and anti-virus products, but numerous other people have reported problems with Symantec's market-leading, current-generation products... so much so that I'm starting to sniff conspiracy theories (with Microsoft's re-renewed commitment to security, are we suddenly starting to see Symantec as a competitor rather than a side-market?).

         ~ewall

  • User profile image
    jonathanh

    ewall wrote:
    I know, I know: blame it on the vendor! But SP2 has been in testing long enough, and it recognizes enough competing firewalls and anti-virus products, but numerous other people have reported problems with Symantec's market-leading, current-generation products... so much so that I'm starting to sniff conspiracy theories (with Microsoft's re-renewed commitment to security, are we suddenly starting to see Symantec as a competitor rather than a side-market?).


    Nope - as far as I know, all the major security vendors got the same heads-up from Microsoft in advance, and received the same information and help to integrate their products into the Security Center. Some of them worked to get their stuff integrated in time, and some of them didn't. Maybe they were believing all the press stories about how SP2 was slipping more than it did? Sniffing conspiracy theories here is stretching it a bit Smiley

  • User profile image
    EricD

    I have a Shuttle NForce3 based, Athlon-64 3G+ running XP Pro and it crashed on reboot of XPSP2. It also has a Silicon Image based SATA raid controller & NVidia based video card.

    "Page fault In non-paged pool"

    It's probably a driver issue.

  • User profile image
    MisterDonut

    Yep, I'm still having some problems (I had mentioned this on an earlier thread, but I'll repeat for ya, Scoble.. Smiley )
        
    After installing SP2 for the first time, I got a message saying that it was trying to repair MSN 6.2. (Which was working fine to my knowledge) after rebooting for the install. It then got an error saying that it was in the middle of an install. Ok. 
    Then after that, most things I do after installing SP2 gives the "Preparing to Install" message. Including: Opening MSN Messenger. Opening a link in a new browser from IE. Trying to open MS Money, etc...

    I have a case open with support who walked me through a bunch of things to do (re-installing, re-installing with a new install executable from MSDN (previously it was burned from an image on the MSDN Subscriptions), uninstalling / reinstalling MSN 6.2, crossing fingers, etc.).

    I now am having the privilege of being referred to a "higher level support staff". No word yet.

    I don't know of anyone else having this issue, go figure..


  • User profile image
    Jazzynupe

    Opened up a can of worms have we scobelizer???

    imekon, I understand the philosophy... Don't run IE, run multiple firewalls... So on and so on, but the reality is not, "Well I did enough," cause you did not do the one thing left, which was PATCH THE VULNERABILITY!!!

    The patches exist for a reason... I mean your Linux boxes, do you patch the applications you use regularly? Do you patch your Kernel when an update is posted? Those are standard things you MUST do to be sure with 99.99% that you are protected. Of all the machines I have administered (from 95, 98, 98se, ME, NT 4, 2000 Pro, 2000 Server, XP, Server 2003) only one has been compromised that I am aware of. That one was not PATCHED (got distracted with other work)!!!

    So I understand your caution, but I HIGHLY recomend that if you don't at least TEST on your own machines, how can you be sure that the people you advise are safe? Because if you recomend against a patch, you have the problem of KNOWING there is a patch for a problem without fixing it. The problem will be exploited sooner or later. It is just a matter of WHEN it is can it reach you, and IF it can are you PROTECTED. So I ALWAYS install patches as soon as they come out. If an app breaks, I report to Microsoft the problem, and call the vendor of the app and let them know about the problem. Obiously one of them did something incorrect, and usually the app was wrong (but sometimes it is Microsoft).

    Anyway, I would recomend that you at least TRY to install SP2 to see how it goes. If it works, then you are protected and you can recomend the same to all you advise. If you have a problem, at lease you can provide the feedback of saying, "I installed and this stuff broke."

    Anyway, back to the subject of the matter... Smiley

    I have installed SP2 on all machines I have and also enabled the software Data Execution Prevention. So far the only hickups I have had were related to the firewall. For example here are some apps I run on my work PC.

    Required some configuration:

    • TIBCO Business Works/Rendezvous/Hawk/Designer (had to open UDP Ports or enable exceptions)
    • Microsoft Visual Studio (local debugging works have not tried remote)

    Nothing Special required so far with these apps/tools:
    • Groupwise
    • Media Player 10
    • Remote Desktop
    • RSS Bandit
    • WB Editor
    • QuickTime
    • TimeSheetPro
    • Acrobat Reader
    • JDK 1.4.2_05
    • Funk Proxy Master

    I have installed it on my home PC and home Tablet PC without incident so far and installed it on my work PC and work Tablet PC. Everything had been running great and I have not noticed any issues yet. I also ran the RC1 and RC2 versions of the Service Pack so that may be par of the reason why I did not have to do much configuration, but all in all I have not had many issues. I plan to burn a copy of the update to a CD and take it to my parent's house this weekend (still on Dialup so it would probably take them too long to get the update and I want them to get it ASAP).

    The one problem I had previously that I have not revisited yet was the Remote Web Debugging with Visual Studio. I read the document and followed the initial instructions (around RC 1 time) and could not get it to work. Anyone noticed if these directions changed at all since then?

  • User profile image
    jonathanh

    Jazzynupe wrote:
    Opened up a can of worms have we scobelizer???
    I think that's what we pay him to do Smiley
    Jazzynupe wrote:
    The one problem I had previously that I have not revisited yet was the Remote Web Debugging with Visual Studio. I read the document and followed the initial instructions (around RC 1 time) and could not get it to work. Anyone noticed if these directions changed at all since then?
    Yup, it seems that this issue isn't fully explained yet - take a look at my earlier post with a bunch of pointers to Microsoft blogs talking about it.

  • User profile image
    Jazzynupe

    One more question then, since we would need to change some of the DCOM/COM access permissions to anonymous, are there plans to patch VS for this or is this something that is tough to fix because authentication is at the local machine level... (I've read some of what Don Box had to say about the changes to COM and DCOM to understand some but not all the details of the the implecations of changing the permissions)

    By the way, everyone envolved at Microsoft deserves major kudos for this fix. One of the biggest changes since the OS shipped and one of the biggest changes in mindset of the software. Now if we can just get this "privleged user" stuff fixed, XP would be darn near perfect...

    So that by default, users are at the most Power Users and not Administrators. That would make it perfect...

  • User profile image
    Jazzynupe

    OOHH My Machine Specs....

    Work Desktop:

    Compaq Evo D5M/P1.7/20J/P/256C/6
    P4 1.7 GHz
    1 GB RAM


    Work TabletPC

    Fujitsu Stylistic AQDoL1008AC01030
    P3m 800 MHz
    256 MB RAM


    Home Desktop

    Generic Home Built
    AMD Duron 900 MHz
    640 MB RAM


    Home Tablet PC

    Compaq TC1000
    Transmeta Processor 800 MHz
    256 MB RAM

    I can get more specifics once I get home for the home PCs. If anyone at MS wants more info, just yell.

  • User profile image
    lars

    Holding off on the patch for yourself is one thing. Telling those that rely on your advice to do it is another. Just because they have a firewall, Firefox and antivirus installed does not mean that they necessarily know how to use them right. Or does so consistently.

    Some businesses need to hold off on the patch until they have tested the RTM version in depth with their own environment. I understand that. They need to make sure the transition is smooth and that it does cause any problems with the daily operations. Someone makes this decision and have to stand by it if there is trouble that could have been prevented if the SP was installed earlier. Do you stand by your advice and take full responsibility for anything that can happen to your friends acting on your advice?

    But why should home users not install this patch? For most people their home computer isn't more misson critical than they can set aside some time for tweaking the settings and getting used to the changes made to their system. They have to do this sooner or later anyway. No matter what kind of security layers that are already in place I would still advice home users to go ahead and install SP2 at the earliest possible convenience. Secure software is always better than options that rely on humans doing the right thing all the time.

  • User profile image
    irascian

    Sounds like a good idea. Does anyone know of a single site source of "known problems with SP2"?

    I've just installed SP2 on a test machine but have little running at the moment other than Office 2003 and VS2005 and SQL Server 2005 Beta. Can't get my HP network printer installed but I suspect that's because I need to go away and read some docs rather than any real problem.
     
    However I do find the "red" "I can't tell how up-to-date the most widely used virus software in the world is" warning that appears on start-up annoying and the only option seems to be to live with it every time you boot up or say "I'm taking care of monitoring that myself" and have the "red" warning become a "yellow" one saying virus monitoring has been turned off.

    I think the comments made elsewhere about the number of bugs fixed by this patch are slightly off-wack because there is no list of new bugs that SP2 introduces (and past experience of upgrades indicates there will be new bugs, potentially a lot of them Sad ).
    If you're already running a proper firewall (Zone Alarm) and haven't experienced any problems why take the risk of introducing some?

    I'll be waiting for the dust to settle personally and not risking SP2 on any of my "non-beta" PCs until I'm happy that all of my software purchases will install and run without problem or irritating warnings and endless dialogues.

  • User profile image
    scobleizer

    >Opened up a can of worms have we scobelizer??? I
    >think that's what we pay him to do Smiley

    My boss might argue with that, but the whole idea of Channel 9 is to open a dialog and shine light on the problems so we can fix them as fast as possible. So, yeah, I guess I'm paid to open up the can of worms. Heh.

  • User profile image
    lars

    scobleizer wrote:

     the whole idea of Channel 9 is to open a dialog and shine light on the problems so we can fix them as fast as possible. So, yeah, I guess I'm paid to open up the can of worms. Heh.


    And that is the only way forward. If there are issues with SP2 then it should be brought to Microsoft's attention so they can fix them or give advice on how to deal with the problem. 

  • User profile image
    imekon

    Jazzynupe wrote:
    Opened up a can of worms have we scobelizer???

    imekon, I understand the philosophy... Don't run IE, run multiple firewalls... So on and so on, but the reality is not, "Well I did enough," cause you did not do the one thing left, which was PATCH THE VULNERABILITY!!!


    And if I see no virii and survive, what then?

    Jazzynupe wrote:

    The patches exist for a reason... I mean your Linux boxes, do you patch the applications you use regularly? Do you patch your Kernel when an update is posted? Those are standard things you MUST do to be sure with 99.99% that you are protected. Of all the machines I have administered (from 95, 98, 98se, ME, NT 4, 2000 Pro, 2000 Server, XP, Server 2003) only one has been compromised that I am aware of. That one was not PATCHED (got distracted with other work)!!!


    Yep, I patch 'em.

    Like I run Windows update.

    However, there is a subtle difference between a small patch (even one for a kernel) and an 80MByte Service Pack.

    Jazzynupe wrote:


    So I understand your caution, but I HIGHLY recomend that if you don't at least TEST on your own machines, how can you be sure that the people you advise are safe? Because if you recomend against a patch, you have the problem of KNOWING there is a patch for a problem without fixing it. The problem will be exploited sooner or later. It is just a matter of WHEN it is can it reach you, and IF it can are you PROTECTED. So I ALWAYS install patches as soon as they come out. If an app breaks, I report to Microsoft the problem, and call the vendor of the app and let them know about the problem. Obiously one of them did something incorrect, and usually the app was wrong (but sometimes it is Microsoft).


    The only way to test, is to install SP2. I do not know what the outcome of that will be. Will I lose some important application? Will my machine reboot? Can you guarantee that it will?

    Jazzynupe wrote:

    Anyway, I would recomend that you at least TRY to install SP2 to see how it goes. If it works, then you are protected and you can recomend the same to all you advise. If you have a problem, at lease you can provide the feedback of saying, "I installed and this stuff broke."


    "If it ain't broke..."

    Why should I be Microsoft's guinea pig?

  • User profile image
    scobleizer

    >Why should I be Microsoft's guinea pig?

    You shouldn't be. So far millions of people have installed XPSP2. So far the number of issues people have had are very small. Heck, you've posted more times than the number of issues reported here.

    But, you've already demonstrated that you aren't willing to install XPSP2 no matter what we tell you. We've given you a list of hundreds of bugs that have been fixed. We've detailed that yet another layer of security has been added on beyond what you are using today (recompiled Windows to not allow buffer overruns and closed down some APIs so that remote users can't cause as much damage, and closed a bunch of vulnerabilities in IE so that surfing the Web is far safer).

    So, my advice to you? Don't install. If you don't want all that, definitely don't install.

    In fact, why don't you go back to using an Apple II? After all, that worked just fine too.

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