Feeds

Uh oh! Here comes the first bug in the Windows 8.1 Update

Fortunately, it only affects Windows Server Update Services customers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Microsoft has suspended distribution of April's Windows 8.1 Update to some enterprise customers after a bug was discovered that could bork affected machines' ability to receive future updates.

The issue affects businesses that distribute software updates via Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) 3.0 Service Pack 2, which shipped with Windows Server 2008 R2 but can also be used with earlier versions of Windows Server.

After installing the Windows 8.1 Update, affected PCs will try to contact their WSUS servers using the TLS 1.2 secure communications protocol. But because TLS 1.2 support is not enabled on WSUS 3.0 SP2 by default – that version defaults to the older SSL protocol – in many cases these attempts will fail, and the PCs will no longer be able to receive future software updates.

This unfortunate side effect is delivered in Windows update KB2919355, the 707MB code chunk that makes up the majority of the Windows 8.1 Update set of patches.

Systems admins have a couple of workarounds available to resolve the problem, at least temporarily. First, if they're running WSUS 3.0 SP2 on Windows Server 2008 R2, they can enable TLS 1.2 support via some Registry tweaks. A Microsoft Knowledge Base article explains how.

Earlier versions of Windows Server, however, lack support for TLS 1.2. In these cases, the only way to re-enable software updates is to disable HTTPS in WSUS 3.0 SP2 and ship updates to PCs unencrypted.

Redmond says – with some small irony – that it's working on a software update that will restore proper behavior for all supported versions of WSUS, though it hasn't said when to expect that update to arrive.

Until then, Microsoft will no longer be distributing update KB2919355 to WSUS servers, and the only way for customers in WSUS environments to get the Windows 8.1 Update will be to download it from the Windows Update Catalog or from MSDN. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Preview redux: Microsoft ships new Windows 10 build with 7,000 changes
Latest bleeding-edge bits borrow Action Center from Windows Phone
Google opens Inbox – email for people too thick to handle email
Print this article out and give it to someone tech-y if you get stuck
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
FTDI yanks chip-bricking driver from Windows Update, vows to fight on
Next driver to battle fake chips with 'non-invasive' methods
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Entity Framework goes 'code first' as Microsoft pulls visual design tool
Visual Studio database diagramming's out the window
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
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.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.