Microsoft pulls updates, recommends uninstall

Microsoft pulls updates, recommends uninstall

Summary: UPDATED. Customer reports of blue screens of death and reboot loops have led the company to withdraw several updates and recommend that users uninstall MS14-045.

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TOPICS: Security, Microsoft
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Since Patch Tuesday this past week, Microsoft has been receiving reports of severe system errors caused by one or more of the updates. In response, the company has pulled several updates from download channels and offered advice on how to remove them. In one case, it recommends that users uninstall the update.

Updated on August 16: A Microsoft spokesperson tells ZDNet "[w]e are aware of some issues related to the recent updates and we are working on a fix." 
Edward Langley at the Naked PowerShell Blog has written a series of PowerShell scripts to determine if any of the relevant updates are installed on a system.

The most severe case appears to be MS14-045 (Vulnerabilities in Kernel-Mode Drivers Could Allow Elevation of Privilege). The security advisory recommends that users uninstall that update.

Microsoft reports problems with three other updates and has pulled them from download and provided uninstallation instructions, but has not specifically recommended that users uninstall. Two of these are non-security updates released on Tuesday. The third is a re-release ("Revision: 7.0") on Thursday, August 14 of an older update rollup for Windows RT 8.1, Windows 8.1, and Windows Server 2012 R2; only metadata was supposed to change in the new version and users who had previously installed it did not need to reinstall.

A Knowledge Base article written for these problems (KB2982791) includes uninstallation instructions and lists three known issues. We list #3 first because it is the most severe:

  • Known issue 3:Microsoft is investigating behavior in which systems may crash with a 0x50 Stop error message (bugcheck) after any of the following updates are installed: 
    • 2982791 MS14-045: Description of the security update for kernel-mode drivers: August 12, 2014
    • 2970228 Update to support the new currency symbol for the Russian ruble in Windows
    • 2975719 August 2014 update rollup for Windows RT 8.1, Windows 8.1, and Windows Server 2012 R2
    • 2975331 August 2014 update rollup for Windows RT, Windows 8, and Windows Server 2012
    This condition may be persistent and may prevent the system from starting correctly.
  • Known issue 1: After you install this security update, fonts that are installed in a location other than the default fonts directory (%windir%\fonts\) cannot be changed when they are loaded into any active session. Attempts to change, replace, or delete these fonts will be blocked, and a "File in use" message will be presented.
  • Known issue 2: Microsoft is investigating behavior in which fonts do not render correctly after any of the updates listed above for known issue 3 are installed.

The uninstallation instructions are long and involved and are detailed in the Knowledge Base articles linked to above.

Topics: Security, Microsoft

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135 comments
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  • Uninstall

    I interpreted it to mean uninstall all: "Find and then uninstall any of the following update that are currently installed...."
    rseiler
    • At best very unclear

      The advice to uninstall is in MS14-045. The other updates are unrelated to it and the passage says "Microsoft recommends that customers uninstall *this* update" [emphasis mine].
      larry@...
      • Release a FixIt tool

        They should at least release a FixIt tool to uninstall the update. Average folks aren't going to go hunting in their patch history as they won't normally be shown in your Add/Remove programs list.
        ZStoner
        • Agree 100%

          MS should absolutely send the patch out immediately that would automatically uninstall the offending update. It seems like a simple fix that could be done quickly.
          larsonjs
          • Just do it already...

            Just uninstall Microsoft already. What is it going to take? The CIO getting fired!
            Tim Jordan
          • I grepped thru my update history

            By opening Start>Control Panel>Windows Update and found that I installed 2982791 and 2970228 but not the other two updates. This was on three machines running Win 7 Ultimate SP1. I had no problems.
            harry_dyke
          • Uninstall MS? Really?

            And then install what?

            Linux? Do they have an app store that matches up with Android or iOS apps?

            OS X? And go out and buy new hardware and learn a new OS?

            I think not, troll...
            Rodney Longoria
          • Yes Linux has had a centre for applications.

            In fact Linux has had one before OSX and Android even existed. Hence why Desktop applications arnt full of malware like MS free software is and why i've only had 1 virus in 15 years of using Linux.

            It also has a Steam for games and Spotify. Only thing Win 7 has going for it is games over wise its a buggy desease riddled system. That is also starting to change as AAA games are now getting released for Linux. Also my Linux PC runs smooth as it doesn't get malware riddled.

            Oh and before you sneer at Linux. Android is Linux. As is Chrome with a different interface tacked on and cloud based apps.
            Mi Pen
          • Mi Pen: "i've only had 1 virus in 15 years of using Linux"

            Some questions:

            o Was it a Linux client or server that got a virus?
            o What was the name of the Linux virus?
            o When did your Linux system get hit?
            o How did you find out that your Linux system had a virus?
            o If you know, how did your Linux system get infected?

            Thanks :)
            Rabid Howler Monkey
          • I've used Windows since 2.0

            and never had a virus either.
            roteague
          • Not even the Asian flu?

            Rabid Howler Monkey
          • 1 bug in 15 years...

            Impressive, but not mind-boggling... in terms of presenting a juicy little morsel for every script-kiddie on Earth, most probably have no clue what it is... As a Windows user as far back as 3.11 (who actually uses my head while using my computer), I've dealt with no more than two the entire time, both caused by installs gone bad... Think before you click!
            EnKrptyed
          • What else can he say?

            It's not like he can say anything positive about his OS of choice, so he trolls.

            Pretty obvious to many.
            William.Farrel
          • and you are somehow less of a shill willy?

            seriously?
            frankieh
          • Yawn. Right from the mouth of Google.

            Trolling again, we see. What else would we expect from you, Timmy?

            :)
            William.Farrel
          • as opposed to you and microsoft right willy?

            wow.. you can't even see it.
            frankieh
          • Sould we take this post to mean

            that you dislike and/or not use Windows at all? If so, why on earth are you even reading something relating to Windows?
            Charles_B
          • It means he has no life

            Why else would he read about Windows issues if he doesn't use Windows. It means that he is looking to gloat about his Linux to a heap of people who use Windows and don't give a damn. Sad really.
            pethers
          • Errr

            If you hate Microsoft and/or Windows what are you doing reading this column and replying with useless remarks?
            Gisabun
        • It is no more than a menu item on the left.

          Pretty hard to miss. I am guessing this problem isn't as bad as it may, on first blush, to seem. I haven't had a single problem with any of my assigned Windows 7 64-bit installs and have now confirmed the patch is running on all of them. We even tried a test shut down and restart on all of them and still see no problem. Considering the nature of the problem the patch was addressing we have decided to leave the system as is (with the patch) until and unless we detect some type of adverse behavior. This has got to require some really exotic hardware/software combination to trigger the BSOD. I can't even remember the last time I've actually seen one in the wild but for a system that was dropped on the floor while accessing the HDD.
          The Heretic