EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

02.22.09

Microsoft’s Latest Web and Security Setbacks: A Summary

Posted in Microsoft, Security, Windows at 6:41 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Novell cloud

Silver Lie

MICROSOFT’S fight for the Web is an important one, but it is not working out too well because none of its technologies are properly adopted. Microsoft has already bribed people to boost its search engine (without success) and since Silverlight is scarcely adopted, Microsoft has resorted to “shovelware” techniques with the help of companies like H-P. Here is the type of things they do, based on the latest news.

It’s also relying on old tactics, like using Silverlight in Microsoft Web pages or to power Microsoft Web applications. For example, Microsoft uses Silverlight in its MSN Toolbar and in places like a presentation on the economic downturn on MSN Money’s Web site.

Novell too is helping Microsoft in this area, despite dismal demand.

Internet Explorer 8 (Test Build)

How well is it coming along? Here is something to serve as a clue.

All-about-Microsoft blogger Mary-Jo Foley has reported that – out of the box – the current IE 8 release candidate will not work with at least 2,400 web sites. That’s “major” sites as defined by Microsoft and excluding many more considered too small or too niche by the company.

Microsoft continues to reinvent the wheel poorly because it implements its own rendering engine rather than decentralise the work like some other companies do (e.g. WebKit). What would Microsoft shareholders have to say, let alone Web developers whose sites arbitrarily ‘break’ every time Microsoft makes an IE release?

Internet Explorer 6

This Web browser is so obnoxious to users and Webmasters alike that people in the home or Opera work on some kind of a gentle boycott.

Norwegian web sites are campaigning to have users dump Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 6 for a modern browser.

This news is also covered here and here.

Internet Explorer 7

Microsoft’s current Web browser is IE7 and it’s under attacks at the moment.

Internet attack trackers and antivirus companies warn that a flaw in Internet Explorer 7 (but not earlier versions) that Microsoft just patched last week is under attack in the wild. The attacks appear to be targeted and small-scale right now, but will likely grow.

Trend Micro describes a somewhat roundabout attack that starts with an e-mailed .doc file that, when opened, exploits the MS09-002 vulnerability to download and install remote-control backdoor malware.

This was also covered in The Register.

More (In)Security

There is a lot more going in this critical area of security. Blame-shifting has not exactly worked charmingly for Microsoft because Conficker is causing great damage [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12] and now come the mutant-variants which can probably dodge detection.

The criminals behind the widespread Conficker worm have released a new version of the malware that could signal a major shift in the way the worm operates.

The new variant, dubbed Conficker B++, was spotted three days ago by SRI International researchers, who published details of the new code on Thursday. To the untrained eye, the new variant looks almost identical to the previous version of the worm, Conficker B. But the B++ variant uses new techniques to download software, giving its creators more flexibility in what they can do with infected machines.

Other online services of Microsoft are being exploited by crackers. Xbox Live is one example.

Hackers target Xbox Live players

Xbox Live is being targeted by malicious hackers selling services that kick players off the network.

This is not the first problem of this kind. Previously, there was a massive blunder where people’s Xbox Live accounts were being hijacked and Microsoft couldn’t be bothered to do anything about it.

Adding to the existing troubles Microsoft causes to E-mail, there is this:

Spammers have cracked Microsoft Corp. ‘s latest defense against abuse of its Live Hotmail e-mail service using a sophisticated network of hacked computers that receive encrypted instructions from a central server, a security company has reported.

Lastly, regarding reliability concerns, the Microsoft-dominated NHS, just like the Microsoft-dominated LSE, has crashed pretty badly.

The database that stores vital medical information on millions of NHS patients crashed last week.

Haven’t any lessons been learned by UK healthcare [1, 2]? Microsoft does not belong in critical operations where life is at stake.

“Our products just aren’t engineered for security.”

Brian Valentine, Microsoft executive

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

A Single Comment

  1. NotZed said,

    February 22, 2009 at 10:24 pm

    Gravatar

    “Microsoft continues to reinvent the wheel poorly because it implements its own rendering engine rather than decentralise the work like some other companies do (e.g. WebKit).”

    I disagree. It’s just a rendering engine. Sure it might be a prick to get it perfect/etc, but if they have enough resources it can be solved – mozilla have their own, opera has its own. It’s not impossible.

    It probably has more to do with a poor codebase (just a guess – lots of bugs and rushed to market) and trying to keep compatability with their existing buggy crap. They probably haven’t thrown that many engineers at it anyway – HTML5 competes quite favourably with silverlight for many uses. It’s probably more of a marketing `effort’ to convince people they’re actually committed to the net.

What Else is New


  1. Rebranding Malware and Spyware as 'Linux' to Dilute the Brand (and the News)

    Signal-to-noise ratio continues to be reduced, as a lot of "Linux" news has nothing to do with GNU/Linux or even with Free software



  2. Understanding Thierry Breton: In the Beginning...

    Career roundup of Thierry Breton, possibly the next EU Commissioner



  3. Startpage Has Been Delisted, But it Ought to be Blacklisted

    Startpage has just warned its fans (I am a former fan) of what Startpage itself covertly became months back



  4. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, November 12, 2019

    IRC logs for Tuesday, November 12, 2019



  5. Links 12/11/2019: Plasma 5.17.3, More Intel Defects, Bytecode Alliance

    Links for the day



  6. You've Gotta Go When You've Gotta Go

    How most staff of the European Patent Office (EPO) feels these days



  7. Teaser: Thierry Breton and His Disquieting Past

    "The company attracted notoriety and loathing in the UK for its role in assessing disability benefit eligibility."



  8. EPO and EU: People Behind the Faces

    It’s no secret that the EPO breaks the law and European officials have taken no concrete steps to intervene; to make matters worse, potentially new EPO allies may soon be put in charge of the EU Commission



  9. Maintaining the 'Delete Github' page

    "This list really is a starting point, which can hopefully increase awareness about the issue of concern."



  10. Linux Foundation Picking Money

    The dating standards of the Linux Foundation



  11. Microsoft 'Borrows' the Linux Brand

    With help from the likes of the Linux Foundation Microsoft continues to misuse and ‘dilute’ the Linux brand (and registered trademark)



  12. EPO Corruption Compared to Cocaine Scandals in Antwerp

    Days after the Dutch protest discussion is sort of 'uncorked' regarding EPO corruption (published, as usual, in the form of anonymous comments)



  13. SUEPO Showed That the Media Won't Cover EPO Corruption Until Half the Workers March in the Streets

    What ought to have been a central (if not 'the' central) issue of debate in Europe is still being treated as borderline irrelevant or marginal



  14. Meanwhile in California

    News from California is being spun by Microsoft this week, owing to weak journalism that's more like PR than journalism



  15. Privacy-Centric Services and Even Drupal/Acquia Defect to the Camp of Mass Surveillance

    In search of money [pun intended] companies and services that are supposed to respect their customers and users turn out to be doing the opposite; this merits research and public discussions



  16. IRC Proceedings: Monday, November 11, 2019

    IRC logs for Monday, November 11, 2019



  17. Links 12/11/2019: Sparky 2019.11 Special Editions and Twisted 19.10.0 Released

    Links for the day



  18. Microsoft's Abduction of the Voice of Its Opposition Highlights the Urgency of the Movement/Campaign to Delete GitHub

    Microsoft understands that by entrapping FOSS and GNU/Linux inside proprietary software platforms like GitHub and Azure it can utilise the false perception that it somehow speaks on behalf of both (whilst attacking both)



  19. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, November 10, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, November 10, 2019



  20. SUEPO Protests Against Management of the European Patent Office Brought Back Discussions About Corruption

    The atmosphere at the second-largest institution in Europe has long been toxic; now it is becoming a lot more visible again and comments highlight the reasons for the cover-up (gross misuse of billions of euros)



  21. Links 11/11/2019: Linux 5.4 RC7, HandBrake 1.3.0 and Analysis of XFCE

    Links for the day



  22. Links 10/11/2019: digiKam 6.4.0, OpenMandriva Lx 4.1 Alpha and OpenZFS Plans

    Links for the day



  23. Video: Dutch Media on EPO Protest

    The new video added by SUEPO on Saturday in order to show Dutch media coverage of last week's protest in The Hague



  24. Politics in the Workplace Are Not Paradoxical and Outside the Workplace They Are Free Speech

    The safest space is one in which no other human (or creature) exists, but in reality we must make compromises and accept that not everyone will agree with us 100% of the time (so we must learn to live with that)



  25. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, November 09, 2019

    IRC logs for Saturday, November 09, 2019



  26. Thick Skin Makes Strong Communities

    Learning to coexist with people who don't agree on everything is a strength and successful societies encourage that (the alternative is blind conformity on all matters)



  27. Training (Proprietary Software) Versus Teaching (Free Software)

    Education necessitates software freedom — a fact that companies like Adobe, Apple and Microsoft try hard to distract from



  28. The Linux Foundation Brought as Keynote Speakers People Vastly Worse Than Those Whom It Now 'Cancels' for Purely Political Reasons

    A lot of people are very upset about the Linux Foundation's alleged 'witch-hunt' and even press coverage has caught up with the outrage; but our position is that it distracts from vastly bigger Linux Foundation scandals



  29. An Open Letter to Richard Stallman

    "It's past the time for the official cornerstones of the Free software movement to return to their full operational capacity, and to take the gear out of neutral."



  30. Links 9/11/2019: Linux Journal Goes Dark (Offline), KStars 3.3.7, OpenSUSE Name Change Aborted

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts