Episode # 225
Article they referenced
Steve: Yes. There is now the Black Screen of Death.
Leo: Oh, yeah, I've been seeing a lot about this, yeah.
Steve: Yes. Apparently Microsoft tweaked in this massive update some ACLs. Those are Access Control Lists which govern what processes are able to read and write files and even registry keys in the registry. And Microsoft has acknowledged the problem. They're trying to track it down.
Leo: It's Windows 7 only; right?
Steve: Good question. It might very well be, although...
Leo: That was my sense, but I haven't done a lot - I haven't...
Steve: Yeah. It might very well be Windows 7 only.
Leo: And by the way, I don't think that widespread.
Steve: No. And that's what Microsoft is saying. It's like, okay, we're looking into it. But it's not, I mean, I updated everything. Although I'm not on Windows 7 yet, so it wouldn't have hit me. But, yes. If this had been a huge, huge problem, first of all, it would not have gotten through Microsoft's own pre-release testing. And the world as we know it would have come to an end if everybody running Windows 7 had this happen. But certainly, apparently, maybe it relates to one particular graphics driver. I think I remember seeing, it's like some ATI Radeon something or other, where you could say, okay, well, I could see how that could slip through Microsoft's testing. But it's never good when the security updates that we're being increasingly forced to install just out of our own instincts for self-preservation, when they go bad, that's not good. So...
Leo: It just underscores the difficulty, though, that Microsoft faces with this huge variety of hardware that they run on.
Leo: Testing is a nightmare.
Steve: It's phenomenally difficult, yes. And in a weird story that I just sort of picked up on...
Leo: Just briefly, the chatroom is saying that on Slashdot now the story is being retracted.
Steve: Okay. So Microsoft said they were investigating reports.
Leo: And this might be the Microsoft result. This was a Neowin report. And Microsoft said they hadn't seen issues - okay. Prevx, the guy who found it, has issued an apology. They blame malware for making changes to the registry which causes this behavior. So they had malware on their system, making it an even more oddball environment.
Steve: Interesting. So, okay, so there was something bad there to start with, and then Microsoft's security updates come along, change some ACLs and **** off the malware, and so now other things don't work.
Edited by warwagon, 22 December 2009 - 22:50.