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AutoPatcher no longer allowed

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Farquard    0

I also contacted Microsoft, using my stationary at the university. I was informed about a week later via the President's office that any further such contact on the issue would have a negative impact upon the school and their agreement with Microsoft.

I shall therefore, let you just guess how my personal feelings are regarding the total situation...

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cme4pc    0
My reply to MS.

That's an excellent calm rational arguement and I hope it finds its way through the MS Labyrinth to a real flesh and blood decision maker with half a grain of common sense.

The way MS feels to handle the few 1000 of AP users who are also MS Customers, is severely lacking in the spirit of putting the customer first. MS is so ripe to have its applecart tipped by the next slick OS out there, and many in the open source community are closing the gap. (Think Ashton Tate (Dbase)... MultiMate... WordPerfect Lotus123... VisiCorp, etc.) You'd think MS would be more concerned with allowing customers freedom of choice in patch management techniques and "locking" in loyal customers instead of relying on computer generated form letters to respond to legitimate customer concerns. I don't think MS is going to make any textbooks from its example, unless these continued practices become so damaging that the most successful organization in the history of IT basically trashes itself.

I fully understand MS wanting to protect intellectual property rights and integrity of its software distributions. They DO own these toys. However, the patches, hotfixes, etc., in of themselves are pretty much useless until applied to an operating system and have little commercial, as opposed to security, value. This is where their rationale escapes me. It would seem that if MS truly has end user security in mind, they would encourage alternate patch distribution systems, with verification and validation accordingly, through a managed channel similar to the way they have taken the SysInternals utilities under their official/authorized wing. They are just not thinking this through and now the AP situation represents a LIABILITY to MS both from security (less AP users - less applied patches) and commerically (less satisfied and loyal customers.)

I keep seeing folks post that MS shutting down AP is all about WGA.... NOT!... Setup a computer with Win9x and download all the XP-Vista security releases / hotfixes / toys your little heart desires. In other words, you don't even have to own XP or Vista to download the modules MS releases for them. There are so many other ways around WGA that this argument simply can't be made. As stated in other posts, the real intention of WGA is to inform end users as to whether they own legal copies of MS products.

I'm still putting together an independent inquiry into obtaining official / bona fide authorization for redistribution of the updates / hotfixes / security patches and will report later on progress, if any.

It is ironic that MS decides to restrict how legitimate users can use a valid and secure alternative patch distribution system to protect themselves from malware, but then make "hidden" and unauthorized updates to a computer without the consent of legal owner of the affected computer.

These actions cannot be justified for any reason and are clearly an invasion of privacy and infringing upon owners rights. The distribution / pushed installation of these unauthorized updates from MS are no different in concept than that of a botnet and MS should be held liable for any adverse effects that result.

I for one will decide what is good for me as an individual and what is good for the computers for which I have legitimate ownership of both hardware and software. If I chose not to have them interface with the MS servers for whatever reason, then MS is legally obligated to respect my wishes. There should and probably will be class action taken against MS for this transgression against personal property rights and the illegal use of the internet to push undesired software through a backdoor/trojan to unsuspecting users. I've previously been dismissive of arguments made that Windows itself is a trojan, but these latest actions by MS are making me rethink that position.

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Panacik    27
I also contacted Microsoft, using my stationary at the university. I was informed about a week later via the President's office that any further such contact on the issue would have a negative impact upon the school and their agreement with Microsoft.

I shall therefore, let you just guess how my personal feelings are regarding the total situation...

Did you use your school email address? Why didnt you use a Hotmail or Yahoo account?

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Dennis_HR    0

Let's go underground...torrent rules.... Mcsft sux

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badcobra    0

I wrote to Microsoft, here is my mail and their reply. Addresses edited out for my safety

----- Original Message -----

From: Microsoft Contact US

To: abc@abc.com

Sent: Monday, September 17, 2007 6:12 PM

Subject: RE:'RTCProd=abc-abc-abc'

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for contacting us about AutoPatcher.

I am sorry for the delayed response. I would like provide you with more information on our position.

It is our policy that the distribution of supplemental code such as hotfixes, security updates, and service packs is discouraged. This policy is in place due to concern for the safety and security of our customers, as we can only guarantee the download?s contents when it comes from a Microsoft web site. Distribution of these materials without permission is also an infringement of our copyright.

We try and contact anyone who is in violation of our policy as soon as we can, once we are aware of what they are doing. AutoPatcher is not the only company we have contacted.

We recommend that our customers sign up for Microsoft Update (MU) and enable Automatic Update functionality to receive all updates directly from us. In addition, we have enterprise services such as Windows Server Updates Services (WSUS) that we recommend our enterprise customers to use.

We provide this guidance as it is common to see email scams encouraging people to download our latest patches, but the URL takes them to sites where they are actually exposed to malware. In order to ensure that customers are getting actual Microsoft updates and not malware, we recommend customers get their updates directly from us.

On a separate note, we have noted that you have selected India as your country of residence. For more information you may wish to contact your local Microsoft office as they might be able to provide more information or help you further at;

http://support.microsoft.com/contactus/?ws=support

Many thanks for contacting us.

Warm regards,

PARASHIVA MURTHY

Customer Service Professional

Microsoft Customer Services

Protect Your PC: Microsoft recommends that you protect your PC from Viruses and Security threats. Please visit our website http://www.microsoft.com/uk/security/protect/alert.mspx and follow the steps to stay secure.

-----Original Message-----

From: abc@abc.com (abc@abc.com)

Date: Tuesday, September 04, 2007 05:42 AM

To: CS (msconus@microsoft.com)

Subject: windows genuine user

---

CUSTOMER PROVIDED SYSTEM PROPERTIES

Country/Region: India

---

SYSTEM PROPERTIES

Ref URL: /common/survey.aspx

O/S: windows nt 5.1

O/S Lang: en-US

Br: mozilla/5.0 (windows; u; windows nt 5.1; en-us; rv:1.8.1.6) gecko/20070725 firefox/2.0.0.6

Br lang: en-us,en;q=0.5

---

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS

Message: I am a genuine Microsoft Windows Home Edition user and a Hotmail Plus user, and have been using the AutopatcherXP software for installing patches to my system especially after a reformat. Downloading all the patches (MBs of them) all over again does not make sense. You cannot fight piracy (or I cannot imagine why you stopped it - intellectual property??? or they did not ask your permission) by stopping autopatcher as people will simply start keeping tabs and collect patches and install them, albeit more cumbersome. Autopatcher opened my eyes to optional updates like windows power toys - multiple desktops, and windows power shell, and a few other things which i would not have normally seen in Automatic updates. If the Autopatcher project goes underground it may do more harm to your users than any good, if they were to use any unofficial source. Please think about it. Thank you

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Mister Naked    0

<snip>

Edited by Pink Floyd

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The_Observer    293

after M$ takign out autopatch, i made my own windows backup batch file

************************

@echo off

if exist c:\windowsupdates.rar (

"c:\Program Files\WinRAR\Rar.exe" u "c:\windowsupdates.rar" C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download

) else (

"c:\Program Files\WinRAR\Rar.exe" a "c:\windowsupdates.rar" C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download

)

************************

all it does is make a windowupate.rar the first time around then after that is will update the rar when new or changed files come into the C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download, have it setup it will work once a week, looking into build a windows 32 version and then maybe make a exe file.

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koppit    7

badcobra: So basically they think people are going to get bad patches or viruses, etc... and other than that they don't have a damn good reason at all. A simple hash check would solve that - long live autopatcher!

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angelitto    0

just move the whole thing to a .ru domain

;)

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jfree81762    0
just move the whole thing to a .ru domain

;)

If only life were that easy. Hope MS rethinks this and lets the project be redeveloped.

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Crazysah    7

We all hope that.

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RaisinCain    0

There are ways. :shifty:

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+M2Ys4U    97

Antonis is developing the next version now. Keep checking autopatcher.com for info

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skullv    0

Microsoft really can't see anything that they didn't own,if they were capable they ban all other OS and softwares of other companies. :crazy:

Mac can't be installed on all machine otherwise i begin to use it. :wacko:

India is additcted to Windows :pinch:

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exit    0

I agree it had to be interfering with the stealth updates and the soon to be made movie

MS the movie how MS secretly gathered information and manipulated the world

With the MS operating system the truth will be told.

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redbone110    0

This is so unfortunate. I agree that Autopatcher saved time and grief.

Thanks for your work

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bojanbl    0

Microsoft should be ashamed of what they did! Trying to stop great project like autopatcher is? They are afraid of unauthorised downloading and redistributing of their own updates?! Has anyone seen the youtube videos where you can see who is steeling ideas. Just look for windows vista mac os keywords and you will see. They have no right to say that they invented something special with Vista. That's why I am angry why are they forbiding autopatcher. Aren't you?

Edited by bmaher

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nikrusty    0

It is certainly sad that MS has done this. I love what Autopatcher guys did, you are the best!! I hope now we can get autopatcher thru torrents or something. I've till aug07 only and am itching to get my hands on new ones...Sniff>>

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nilkemitra    0
I had a call from Microsoft Legal this morning and they have told me that we are no longer allowed to endorse AutoPatcher on Neowin.

Microsoft will only allow updates to be downloaded from its own servers.

AutoPatcher started in 2003 and has been redistributed in some of the worlds best computer magazine cover CD/DVD's. I have no explanation for why Microsoft allowed it to continue unchecked for 4 years before making this decision.

I asked the representative if Windows Genuine Advantage had anything to do with it and he categorically told me this was not the case, he added that Windows Update for pre-Vista versions of Windows can now be accessed using Firefox and that the concern at Microsoft had more to do with the possible malicious code that could be redistributed with certified Microsoft updates.

We have no grounds to challenge the decision by Microsoft.

I'd like to thank the whole AutoPatcher team for their continued work, unfortunately none of the team is online, but they have been contacted via the AutoPatcher.com website by Microsoft Legal.

The AutoPatcher forums have been disabled for guests and members.

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Joni_78    48

Are they idiots?

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CelticWhisper    6

Was AutoPatcher Open-Source? If so, someone should fork the project and keep it alive.

If not, the developer should make his new app open-source to protect against future moves like this by Microsoft.

Well, looks like it's back to cutting off all my Windows systems from the Internet at my firewall. I planned on cutting them off from the WU server IPs once the stealth update story broke, but if I can't even use AP to keep them patched, it's no internet at all on them. I don't have the time to manually download all those patches and apply them by hand, and I clearly can't trust WU or automatic updates if MSFT is putting out stealth patches.

You hear me, MSFT? Your stealth crap will never, ever reach my systems. Should my firewall ever fail me I'm not above setting up a sequestered VLAN or popping the network cables and stranding the WinXP systems completely. They're just ripboxes and file servers anyway, they don't need internet connectivity. I have Macs and Linux boxen for the internet. I don't need your unstable, unsafe OS to get what I want online.

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dragon25    0

correct me if i wrong, but as far as i can tell they haven't banned you from continuing the work and releasing autopatcher, they have in fact just banned you from hosting it on the site.

so simple do another site and possibly rename the software and hey presto another 4 years and im sure they will make some other crap up.

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