Home > Windows > Windows XP SP2 RC2 in May Windows XP SP2 RC2 in May Submitted by Gsurface 2004-04-21 Windows 24 Comments CRN is reporting that May will be the release date of the second release candidate of Windows XP SP2. Microsoft executives speak of integrating more features into the new service pack, including a spyware tool. More detials here. About The Author Adam Scheinberg Vice President, Information Technology at Massey Services, Inc • President, Board Member, The Mockingbird Foundation • All Things Web, Umphrey’s McGee • Web Developer • Father • Foodie • Music Snob • OS enthusiast Follow me on Twitter @sethadam1 24 Comments 2004-04-21 6:40 pm MS doing this will help out alot more home users. Personally I’m sick of going over to a friends house, running adaware for them (since they never do) and finding 1000+ spyware instances on their computers. ;-_- 2004-04-21 6:57 pm Spyware is a problem for people who want control over the content that is on their machine. I think it’s great to see that MS is trying to make their product more monoplistic everyday. I’m sure in about 1 year or 2, you will see a new anti-trust court suit over the antivirus, and spyware tools. In fact i would love to see if it works on the same line as Search and Destroy (http://www.safer-networking.org/) It’s the best one on the market, and its Free. I’m sure the MS one will only catch ones like Cydoor.. Prolly not even that one. Plus I wouldn’t trust MS and the Antivirus that will be built in, because guess what, there are going to be ways to deactive this service, and I bet, in the first 2 weeks of the official Service pack, you will see a “Patch” to patch a hole that allows attackers to disable the antivirus, and have full prilivaliged user rights on the clients disk. Although there is no evidence to point my opinions, They are just the way MS has been in the future. — Have a good one. 2004-04-21 7:03 pm why does this matter? One shouldn’t be using a pirated version. If you are maybe it’s some incentive to buy a version. After all, you void all rights to bitch about MS is you are using a pirated version. But still I would have to guess no. At any rate. This seams so long in coming. Seams like we have been expecting sp2 for a year (as in it has been actively talked about). I’m getting real tired of waiting. I don’t even know why I want it to come, but I do want it to. 2004-04-21 7:05 pm “At any rate. This seams so long in coming. Seams like we have been expecting sp2 for a year (as in it has been actively talked about). I’m getting real tired of waiting. I don’t even know why I want it to come, but I do want it to.” Amen. How many RC versions and betas are we going to hear about? Just get the thing out already. 2004-04-21 7:09 pm This won’t totally help all users, but its a good step. (a whole that requires a fix). The users that know they need “Search and Destroy”, are probably not the users they need to worry about. Dumb users should not have to know that they need a program like this. The OS shouldn’t have a gaping whole that allows these things to get installed so easy. 2004-04-21 7:17 pm IMO an operating system is broken if it actually needs a scanner checking executable code for disallowed instruction (sequences). Shouldn’t a proper permission system be more suitable for that task? 2004-04-21 7:23 pm O_o The fact of the matter is, many users are not intellegent enough to get their own antivirus/spyware prevention/removal tools on their own. I’m sure there will be an option to disable this if you do not want it. It just seems that they are bundling programs good for the user in their Service Pack because spyware and virii have become such a huge problem! “Although there is no evidence to point my opinions” Yeah, stop there. This may be news to you, but not everything Microsoft does is to purposefully hurt it’s users. (Though I’m sure that last sentence will be used later in comments to make some lame joke, but some moron who can’t take the good with the bad… which I admit there is alot of ;-_-) They arn’t making any money off users including this in there (They arn’t charing for SP2 now, are they?). Finnally I’ll stop getting calls about NewNet disabling internet of my friends/family machine and other such harmful spyware crippling a system, because MS took some charge and is including neccisary functions like antivirus and antispam in it’s OS. For once, Bravo. 2004-04-21 7:30 pm There will always be security holes in a popular operating system. That which makes Windows so desirable also makes it vulnerable. A permission system wouldn’t help very much, since most users would still run as Administrator. (Not sure if you realize it, but Windows 2000/XP do have a pretty good permission system… if you’re running it as a regular user). You cannot install certain things, and running a virus as one of those users is generally isolated. Sadly, it’s more convient for most users to run as administrator full time… So you’d still have the same problem (Just like you would with a new person to linux doing everything as root) 2004-04-21 7:57 pm Regardless of what anybody thinks about the contents of this service pack, I bet a barrel of monkeys that the success of Longhorn will depend on this service pack being better than just good. CTOs most likely will be watching this to see if MS’s promises regarding better security are shallow or not. If SP2 has a lot of security issues then I’m sure that will put a lot of doubt into the minds of potential Longhorn customers. 2004-04-21 8:03 pm I was just pointing out that more functionality usually leads to the fact that some of the code may be exploitable and that sometime, building new features are more troublesome then helpful. I truly think it will be a better Service Pack, because of all the “patches” applied, and the new features. Heck, Right off the bat, they are enabling the Internet Connection Firewall. Dispite the fact, that my above post sounded as if I was making arguements about the new spyware / antivirus. I’m just commenting on the obvious intentions of Microsoft. Some people took offence to the post, for reason unknown. As Far as Linux is concerned, thats a whole other thread. The Windows Xp / 2000 may not be as tight as you think, for example if a program is not programmed to use the rights, they will not be inforced. This also depends on the programs purpose, and yes, because MS is a popular Operating System, it is sustainable to virus’, and spyware. Personally, why not take spyware to the next level, and provide ad blocking, no not pop-ups. 2004-04-21 8:08 pm “Sadly, it’s more convient for most users to run as administrator full time… ” The thing is, in the small pamphlet that comes with aa pcc with XP pre-intalled, there’s a small section on setting up user accounts, but nowhere are the dangers of running as administrator addressed. Neither is Windows Update covered in any detail. The fact is, Joe User, for his money gets almost no documentation with XP and no real security warnings except when Blaster kicks him off the net and forces him to reboot. Even Suse comes with a nice instruction manual, don’t see why Windows couldn’t do the same. 2004-04-21 8:31 pm “…is considering adding spyware capabilities…” When I first read this I thought that MS was going to add some sort of spy-ware to their next release… Maybe I am a bit too suspicious of what MS comes up with. It’s funny how your prejudices influence your way of thinking. 😉 2004-04-21 9:15 pm The best way to prevent spyware would be to get rid of the awful frankenstein’s monster called the Registry…but I guess we’ll have to wait until Longhorn for that. The Registry gives software vendors way too much control over the overall windows system. It’s unbelievable what a program installed as a standard user can do to make system-wide changes with the Registry. I’m glad MS is including a removal tool, though, if it actually happens. I can’t believe Norton, McAffee, Trend Micro, et al don’t scan for spyware and don’t consider them viruses. In my experiece they’re more pervasive and destructive than traditional viruses. Just becaues they have a EULA and weren’t written by a 13 year old in Taiwan doesn’t mean they’re not viruses. Another change I wish MS would make would be to default file extension to be ON. This would help out a lot of users who run scripts sent as email attachments. If users could see the extensions, they would learn what extensions are associated with documents, pictures, music, and executables, and they would know that HOT-Sexy-Picture.scr is NOT a hot sexy picture. The file name can lie, the icon can lie, but the extension cannot. Please, MS, turn these useful extensions back on by default! 2004-04-21 10:17 pm Hello all, I have been using the service pack 2 latest release for quite some time now. I have noticed some problems with it. 1. Search and Destroy Update does not work on it. 2. Firewall Stuff at some point is guffy. I mean it blocks some software while it does not always. Gaim uses window ports and communicate without firewall raising alarm to it. It is also with few other applications. 3. VMWARE has stopped working for me atleast. System just reboots. 4. IE does allow some pop ups still(even if blocker is there!!!) But I think MS has come up with fairly decent interface of firewall that I can think of. Least annoying of them all. Zone alarm and other stuff is so ugly to use. 2004-04-21 10:18 pm won’t like this at all. I just wish they’d fix the d*mn file handle problem. And having to need Process Explorer to close the file handle manually. 2004-04-21 10:29 pm I don’t think it is necessary to build spyware into the platform. I’m looking forward to the Grid, and the agents that will live on it. 2004-04-21 10:31 pm Hello Anmol, 1> Search and Destroy Update does not work on it. A> I think with search and destroy the update server is flaky, it don’t seem the work have the time, this may be due to high traffic, or it truly is a half broken feature. Just keep trying 4> IE does allow some pop ups still(even if blocker is there!!!) A> IE pop-up blocker works on existing and broadcasted pop-up technology. There are sites that use custom setups, that will pop-up even if you have builtin software, or third part apps. I have experienced the same with Firefox 0.8 (whttp://www.mozilla.org/products/firefox/) it will catch about 99% of pop-ups, but still 1% get through. Nothing is perfect 2004-04-21 10:53 pm You mean Linus isn’t perfect?! I am SO disillusioned Linux zealot bashing never ceases to be fun! 2004-04-22 12:56 am I have been using SP2 RC1 for about a month and there are two things I hate about it: 1. A site can’t launch popup windows without the status bar anymore, even if it is one of your trusted sites. What is the point of this? I understand the logic behind not allowing popups to be placed off-screen and not allowing popups without a title bar (so you can close the darn things), but useless the status bar? Especially if the site is in your Trusted Sites list, it should be able to launch popup windows without the status bar. This is going to muck up the look of a lot of my database applications. 2. All IE popup windows now have the root URL of the site that launched them placed before the window title in the title bar. You’re thinking, “Great, this is helpful!”, and it is…until you look at the taskbar and see that all of the buttons for the different popup windows you have open now say exactly the same thing, and you have no way of knowing which window is which until you click on the button to bring it up. This is going to present problems to users of my database applications, which make heavy use of popup windows for displaying lots of pages of data simultaneously. Now when a user looks at his/her taskbar, instead of the helpful window title, all they will see is a bunch of buttons that say the same thing: “https://www.whatever.com“. I am fine with the root site that launched the window being prominently displayed in the title bar, but not on every single button on the taskbar. This is a usability nightmare for any legitimate site that relies on multiple popup windows. I have submitted bug reports to MS about both of these issues; hope (really hope) they will be looked at. 2004-04-22 9:34 am And what exactly u wanted to say ? 2004-04-22 10:20 am You mean this Kingston guy isn’t a mental midget?! I am SO disillusioned Microsoft zealot bashing never ceases to be fun! 2004-04-22 10:21 am I see that you got the mod keys back, what fucking moron made that call? That comment, yeah the “linux zealot basher” comment. MODERATE IT DOWN WHERE IT BELONGS 2004-04-22 10:42 am So testy! 2004-04-22 1:12 pm Your thoughts hit several of the targets. No matter the OS; you can’t control the experience level of the end user. Most of the people reading this fail to understand just how horribly inexperienced most home users really are.