A highly mysterious update that was pushed out to Windows machines globally was the result of a test that was not correctly implemented.
Yes, Microsoft accidentally released a test patch (KB3877432) to consumer machines running Windows 7, making users believe that the Windows Update service got hacked, and they are infected with malware.
However, several hours later, a Microsoft spokesperson clear the air by confirming that the company had“incorrectly published a test update” and that they are “in the process of removing it.”
Windows users started raising concerns on social media, Microsoft community forums, and news-sharing sites that the Update service has been compromised in some way.
The rogue patch, 4.3MB in size, advertised itself as a Windows Language Pack and flagged as an “Important” update, but featured strange and inaccessible URLs and lacked any detailed information.
Is My Windows PC Being Compromised?
A Windows user reported
that after the successful installation of the patch, his laptop was “screwed after the update,”
describing frequent crashes and that it “killed [his] system and compromised [his] gear.”
Some Windows users tried to install the patch in question, but the process failed as Microsoft rapidly removed the test update from its servers.
It is still unclear what was inside the test patch, or whether the patch modified any Windows files, but the fact that the test patch was mistakenly released on the Windows 7 systems should definitely give Windows 10 users relaxation.
Microsoft Stated that:
A highly suspicious Windows update that was delivered to customers around the world was the result of a test that wasn’t correctly implemented.”We incorrectly published a test update and are in the process of removing it,” a Microsoft spokesperson wrote in an e-mail to Ars. The message included no other information.
The explanation came more than 12 hours after people around the world began receiving the software bulletin through the official Windows Update, raising widespread speculation that Microsoft’s automatic patching mechanism was broken or, worse, had been compromised to attack end users. Fortunately, now that Microsoft has finally weighed in, that worst-case scenario can be ruled out. What follows is the remainder of this post as it appeared before the company issued its explanation.
One user has reported installing the update and finding that it rendered the computer largely inoperable.
“My laptop was screwed after the update,” the user, ByGodZombie, reported in a comment to this post. “Windows explorer crashes VERY frequently now and most of my programs stopped working even in admin mode. System restore didn’t work and I don’t have the information I need for a reinstall. Basically whatever it was killed my system and compromised my gear so I wouldn’t want to look up anything sensitive to personal data on your machine.”
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