McAfee fixes update glitch that knocked BT users offline

McAfee fixes update glitch that knocked BT users offline

Summary: The buggy update, which was issued last Friday, affected both home and enterprise users, with some suffering loss of access and others seeing errors in McAfee's antivirus software

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TOPICS: Security
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McAfee has issued a hotfix for a buggy update that it pushed out last Friday, which caused some customers to lose internet connectivity.

The problem, which also caused errors for some within McAfee's antivirus software, hit both home and enterprise users. BT flagging up the problem for its customers on Monday, saying those using Windows XP, Vista and 7 may have been affected.

According to a McAfee note, the buggy update (DAT) files were numbered 6807 and 6809.

The security firm pushed out a hotfix, containing DAT 6809, on Monday. However, that hotfix was around 100MB in size, and McAfee warned it "can cause high bandwidth usage in large environments".

McAfee subsequently put out a smaller version of the hotfix, not containing DAT 6809, on Tuesday, but it pointed out that this hotfix would need to be followed by a "full DAT update".

The company is not the only of its kind to issue faulty updates. In July, a new Symantec SONAR signature set inflicted the blue screen of death on some Windows XP users.

Topic: Security

David Meyer

About David Meyer

David Meyer is a freelance technology journalist. He fell into journalism when he realised his musical career wouldn't pay the bills. David's main focus is on communications, as well as internet technologies, regulation and mobile devices.

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6 comments
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  • McAfee?

    Do people still use that p.o.s?
    John_Pantaletas
    • Bundled

      I think it is bundled with new laptops from Toshiba and many other OEMs
      Martmarty
  • Funny updates

    Not the first tim an AV product released a faulty signature update.
    There was even Avira incident where after the update it detects itself as malware.
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/10/26/avira_auto_immune_false_positive/

    That's just one example, there might be hundred other funny updates.
    Martmarty
  • Loss of connectivity was ridiculous...

    I can understand why there might have been AV problems, but the McAfee Security Suite was preventing users from getting to the Internet. Even after I used the Security Suite console to stop the McAfee firewall, I still couldn't get Internet connectivity (which in my opinion is completely ridiculous) . Couldn't get connected until I completely removed the software. It is staying removed (this is a relatives PC) as far as I am concerned. One thing to mess up AV, but to force removal of the software to fix a connectivity problems tells me that have a design flaw that they need to get fixed if they want to stay in business. Oh, and it seems to me that this problem must have been slow to get out to the masses (McAfee's fault ?). If I would have heard about the problem BEFORE I had to deal with the problem, I would have been more likely to accept that it was a problem. After dealing with the lack of Internet Connectivity for an hour I was so frustrated (and I do IT for a living) that there was no way I was putting the McAfee Suite back on that PC.
    Sometimes it is best to own up to a problem and get the word out (ala the LinkedIn problems a few months ago) than to downplay or ignore them (ala the iPhone signal problems of a few years ago).
    jkohut
  • "BT"?

    Thought it meant that BitTorrent users couldn't connect.
    Had to Google the the article link - BT Business = a UK broadband provider.
    Say editor, you gotta factor in these things when you link a ZDNet UK story in the ZDNet US version newsletter.
    KenTankerous
  • Awful

    McAfee is just awful, in all my experience. It is installed as standard on all cheap laptops I've ever come across, and absolutely ruins the end-user experience by slowing the machines down, interrupting the user, and scaring them into paying for a security suite that they don't need. I am certain it is one of the very top reasons for PC users to get fed up, and get a Mac.

    This is why Microsoft Signature PCs can't come quick enough.
    roblightbody