Feeds

MS patches Win XP Core Duo battery drain bug

One out of three causes fixed

Business security measures using SSL

Microsoft has fixed the battery drain bug that has been affecting a number of computer owners with Intel Core Duo-based notebooks. However, two of the three causes of the drain are not fixed by a patch posted by Microsoft yesterday.

The problem emerged in January. At least some Core Duo machines connected to USB peripherals suffer a persistent loss of battery charge above and beyond what you'd expect. Originally thought to be an issue with Intel's chipset, the bug was later identified as a glitch in Windows XP Service Pack 2's power management code that had, in fact, affected older, pre-Core Duo notebooks running the OS.

In February, Microsoft said it was working on a fix and the patch has now arrived. Well, sort of. The patch fixes faster-than-usual battery drains arising from the CPU's inability to enter Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) processor idle sleep states as a result of the USB 2.0 driver leaving "the asynchronous scheduler component running continuously".

However, the patch doesn't prevent the USB host controller from finding itself unable to shut down when devices are removed from nested USB hubs, or when said controller is hooked up to USB 2.0 devices that make use of its periodic scheduler. Both instances can also cause the exceptional power drain, but neither are fixed by the patch.

And Microsoft also warns: "Various factors can affect the battery life of different portable computers that use different types of batteries. Therefore, you may not notice any improvement in battery life after you apply this update."

You can get the patch here. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.