Feeds

MS warns of forced Messenger update

More fallout from ATL snafu

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Microsoft has outlined plans to push a mandatory Windows Live Messenger upgrade in order to plug a security hole related to a vulnerable code library.

The security vulnerability stems from the use of a vulnerable version of Microsoft's Active Template Library (ATL). A programming error involving the inclusion of an extra "&" character meant that any software packages that made use of the ATL library template inherited a critical software flaw.

Software developers across the IT industry used the vulnerable ATL library to write application components, or more specifically Component Object Model code, including ActiveX controls.

In late July, Microsoft issued a pair of out of sequence patches to fix the ATL bug in Internet Explorer and Visual Studio, its development platform. As part of the August patch Tuesday update, Microsoft patched five more software packages to defend against bugs stemming from the ATL snafu.

Windows Live Messenger 8.1 and 8.5 are both also vulnerable as a result of the same ATL problem. Microsoft has already begun offering a voluntary update but, starting later this month, will force users to upgrade to the the latest version of Live Messenger if they want to use Microsoft's IM service.

Users already on version 14 of Live Messenger will also be pushed towards the latest variant, version 14.0.8089, but mandatory updates in these cases won't happen until late October, as explained in a blog post by Microsoft here.

Microsoft's post on its Windows Live blog goes on to explain the featured improvements in the new version of Windows Live Messenger, including improved photo sharing and personalisation features. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
FYI: OS X Yosemite's Spotlight tells Apple EVERYTHING you're looking for
It's on by default – didn't you read the small print?
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch
Redmond makes a hash of hashing add-on
'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail
15 months home detention leaves egg on feds' faces as they grab for more power
China is ALREADY spying on Apple iCloud users, claims watchdog
Attack harvests users' info at iPhone 6 launch
Carders punch holes through Staples
Investigation launched into East Coast stores
Kill off SSL 3.0 NOW: HTTPS savaged by vicious POODLE
Pull it out ASAP, it is SWISS CHEESE
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.